Tennessee Jack’s restaurant in Morristown offers wings, seafood and live entertainment in its effort to revitalize the Terrace Lane shopping center.
The large venue includes three separate dining areas, plus a generous outdoor patio.
“It’s a place that you can come and have fun and enjoy yourself,” Jim Price, Morristown Area Chamber of Commerce incoming chairman, said during the restaurant’s ribbon cutting held over the summer.
Owners and partners are Dean Hitt and Michael Boyd.
“We’ve been in this business for a long time,” Hitt said. “Michael and I both have a company out of Sevierville that we sell computer systems to restaurants. We have 40 to 50 restaurant customers. So we know the restaurant business pretty well. Our role here is basically the business process; we handle all of it out of our Sevierville office: payroll, accounting, bookkeeping — we know the point of sale business really well, and that gets us ahead of the game, in that respect.
“In knowing the restaurant business, we realize that we are inviting everyone into our home, basically. It’s hospitality; we want to make people happy, we want to provide them with a place where they can have a great time, and we want them to enjoy good food, good hospitality and with this particular facility we have a lot to offer.
The banquet room in the restaurant can be closed with a set of barn doors, for privacy – or it can be opened up to the adjacent dining room. Both rooms hold 50 people.
The outdoor dining room, or patio, is rated for 150 people. There is also an outdoor bar on the patio.
“We’re not just a good restaurant that brings a unique menu to the market. We’re independent. We do wings, we do shrimp, we do oysters, we do seafood; that’s one of the things that distinguishes us from the local market. We are very loyal to local business; 90 percent of what comes in here comes from PFG Hale. We do our best to host the community and to support it however we can,” Hitt said. “That’s why we joined the Chamber. We want to be involved with the whole business community in Morristown and Hamblen County and the Lakeway region. We know that’s how you build a successful business.”
The effort to re-open a business on a site that had been closed for a long time was a challenge the two men, but has been rewarding for both.
“We’re thrilled to be in Hamblen County,” Boyd said. “Let me tell you, the officials we’ve worked with here in Hamblen County have been such a joy to work with. They’ve helped us get to where we are … This has been a really positive experience; I’ve just amazed at how easy things have gone and how much people want to help you get to where you want to be. You folks are doing lots of things right here in Hamblen County, to say the least.”
The choice to feature live entertainment, provided by local musicians was a no-brainer, according to Hitt and Boyd.
“There are so many talented performers from East Tennessee, from this area, that we decided that was one of the things we wanted to do is to offer them a place where they can play. Also, we’re going to make the hallway outside the banquet room a gallery for local artists: painters, sculptors, graphic artists, quilters. We put in track lighting out there,” Boyd said.
Hours are Sunday thru Thursday: 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. Brunch is offered on Sunday — featuring dishes like Crab Cakes Benedict and Bloody Mary drinks — and the restaurant stays open late, with a wings buffet.
Tennessee Jack’s also does catering for local businesses.
“We will deliver it to you,” Hitt said. “We have a pretty-good size kitchen back here, so we do more (with catering) than just what’s on the restaurant’s menu. Even though we’re known for wings, shrimp and oysters, we can do anything. Our chef is Cordon-Bleu trained and our assistant manager has worked in the restaurant business for years.”
Tennessee Jack’s is located at 130 Terrace Lane, across East Morris Boulevard from College Square Mall.