Yesterday we woke to grey skies and rain, but there wasn't much that could dampen our spirits, because we had plans to meet up with Kara & Remington for our second time at Knoxville's International Biscuit Festival! BiscuitFest occurs alongside the regular Market Square Farmer's Market, and biscuit festivities extend down into the Market St. and Krutch Park area.
The 'main event' of Biscuit Fest is Biscuit Boulevard, a street lined with vendor booths supplying samples of unique and delicious biscuit recipes.
One $10 ticket supplies you with 5 biscuit samples and a ballot to cast your vote for your favorite!
The rain can't keep Southern biscuit lovers from joining in the fun!
I'm excited to share all of our yummy samplings with you all! Please know that there were many many other fantastic vendors offering biscuits at the festival, so this is just a small sampling of what was available. We have provided links to all of the vendors' websites or Facebook pages if you'd like to learn more!
Our first stop was at the Rel Maples Institute for Culinary Arts from Walters State Community College.
They served up a delicious Bananas Foster biscuit, a banana-flavored biscuit dotted with colorful sprinkles and topped with a classic Bananas Foster sauce. It was sooo good!
Our next stop was the booth of Biscuit Love Truck from Nashville, TN
They were serving up a Bonut - one of those sneaky little dessert-like foods masquerading as a breakfast item! You know, because it definitely makes you feel less guilty eating something sweet for breakfast if it's associated with a more traditional breakfast food like biscuits, right? The Bonut was insanely delicious, and the fresh blueberry compote and cream topping was to die for!
RT Lodge had a hearty offering with their deep-fried biscuit stuffed with braised short ribs and the most delicious pickled onions I have ever eaten! Amazing.
Sapphire Knoxville baked up a Blueberry Oatmeal Scone. The oatyness (is that a word? It is now!) added a unique texture!
Tea at the Gallery served a rosemary biscuit topped with a delicious strawberry sauce.
The flavor of this biscuit was so very fresh - rosemary is one of my favorite flavors!
Applewood Farmhouse Restaurant, or as some locals call it, "The Apple Barn", was our next stop!
They brought their A-game with a melt-in-your mouth biscuit drenched in a savory shrimp and andouille sausage gravy. Talk about hearty!
Next, we got into this line, that snaked around the corner and down an adjacent street!
The line was for the booth of Tupelo Honey Cafe, which is one of my favorite new restaurants in Knoxville! It's no secret this place knows their biscuit, so we couldn't wait to see what they had cooked up!
We were not disappointed. This fluffy buttermilk biscuit baked with pimento cheese and stuffed with a pickled and breaded jalapeno completely knocked my socks off. From the perfect biscuit texture and the explosion of flavor from the jalapeno down to the signature sprinkling of salt on top, this one was just awesome. All around awesome.
The Plaid Apron had a gorgeous looking buttermilk biscuit with Benton's bacon, filled with clabbered cream and drizzled with a honey balsamic reduction.
So pretty! The bite from the balsamic and the clabbered cream was a great injection of flavor!
This year, Southern Living was the official media sponsor of the festival.
They served up a two-for-one deal, a biscuit stuffed with Conecuh sausage, and another topped with pickled strawberries and whipped cream. There's few things I love more than the simple combination of sausage and biscuits, the two just go together like peanut butter and jelly!
At the end of the day the winners of the vote were announced, and here are the results!
.... drumroll please....
1st Place: Applewood Farmhouse Restaurant - Biscuit with Shrimp Andouille Sausage Gravy
2nd Place: Flour Head Bakery - Sweetwater Valley Smoked Cheddar and Onion Biscuit (we didn't get to try this one!)
3rd Place: Tupelo Honey Cafe - Pimento Cheese Biscuit stuffed with Breaded Pickled Jalapeno
Rel Maples Institute for Culinary Arts - Walters State - Bananas Foster Biscuit
BEST BISCUIT NAME
Tupelo Honey Cafe - Green-Eyed Monster Pimento Cheese Buttermilk Biscuit
LAST BISCUIT STANDING
Latitude 35 - Country Apple Cinnamon Biscuit
UPDATED CATEGORY: CRITIC'S CHOICE
RT Lodge - Deep Fried Biscuit with Braised Short Rib and Pickled Onion
To learn more about the festival so you can mark your calendars for next year, be sure to visit the website!