The Tennessee Department of Tourist Development unveiled its official 2021 Tennessee Vacation Guide today with its cover showcasing the state's diverse cuisine.
Tennessee's world-class hospitality and culinary creations have long been a draw for visitors and residents alike, and this year's guide highlights top chefs and their signature dishes inspired by regional traditions. The guide comes at a time when many restaurants experienced significant revenue loss since the start of the coronavirus pandemic and, in some cases, were forced to close their doors.
Penned by Tennessee-based food critic Chris Chamberlain, the cover story emphasizes such notable and road-trip-worthy chefs and eateries as Dancing Bear Lodge & Appalachian Bistro in Townsend, Chef Tam's Underground Café in Memphis and City Farm Co. in Nashville, among others.
To spark travel planning, the guide highlights Tennessee stops on the U.S. Civil Rights Trail, scenic beauty, Tennessee Music Pathways, kid-friendly destinations and more. The guide offers over 140 pages of travel inspiration and is available free as a printed guide or instant download at TNvacation.com, or at any of Tennessee's 16 Welcome Centers.
Readers can enter to win a six-night culinary vacation through Tennessee including nights in Knoxville, Memphis and Nashville when they sign up for the guide at TNvacation.com. Open only to U.S. residents, the "Come to the Table" Sweepstakes launched today and runs through Aug. 31, 2021. Prizing includes hotel, complimentary attraction passes and restaurant gift cards valued at over $2,000.
Tennessee is home to more than 11,000 restaurants according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. According to the Tennessee Department of Revenue, the state's eating and drinking establishments have seen a 47 percent decline in sales, representing a decline of $1.92 billion in gross taxable sales and a $135 million loss in state revenue since March 2020. Employment continues to trend upward, however the industry remains down 8 percent or 22,500 less jobs since March 2020.
Franklin, Tennessee-based Journal Communications, Inc. produces the guide, which is distributed to nearly 500,000 visitors annually.
photo courtesy of TN Vacation