It’s hard to get over the fact that diners have the opportunity to eat a meal right alongside a waterfall, but that’s exactly what Atrium Pancakes provides. This is one of the few homestyle cooking establishments left in Gatlinburg, and it won’t disappoint patrons. This spot has been around for over 20 years and still provides the same high standards of service as it did on opening day.
From the stunning scenery right down to friendly staff, it’s worth a stop at 432 Parkway Avenue to get a feel for local mom-and-pop style cooking. Friendly and attentive are two words that stick out when it comes to service and delivery at Atrium Pancakes, as the restaurant is frequently commended for its warm and inviting atmosphere.
An extensive menu provides patrons with anything from hearty breakfasts all the way through to sandwiches and desserts. It’s hard to decide on a meal, which leaves patrons with only one option: to return for more. It may seem like an obvious choice to go for the breakfast dishes, but when you’re in a pancake restaurant, it only seems fair to try a pancake. Some of the local favorites include:
- Apple Cinnamon Pancakes: If disaster struck and the restaurant was forced to serve only one dish for the remainder of its days, let it be this one! At first glance, it hardly resembles a pancake, but any doubts are laid to rest as patrons take their first bites. In between pops of delicious stewed apples and an equally delicious apple sauce, you’ll also enjoy bites of tasty pancakes.
- M&M Pancakes: Pure dessert should be the label on this item, as it provides diners with a delicious pancake base. Instead of working those M&Ms into the batter, they’re scattered on top, providing a full dessert experience.
- Chocolate Covered Strawberry Pancakes: Deliciously decadent, the combination of chocolate and strawberry is always a winner. A strawberry compote adds some tartness, which the chocolate fudge sauce balances out.
Those who have a hankering for something savory should consider breakfast options such as the Happy Hiker Breakfast. It includes eggs with bacon or sausage, and patrons can choose between buttermilk pancakes, French toast, or plain Belgian waffles as a side. There is also a selection of salads, combo lunches, and sandwiches to choose from. Lunch entrees include a selection of beef, chicken, and pork options prepared homestyle.
Although this establishment receives great recommendations and reviews, there are a few issues that deserve some attention. The parking area is small, and guests are often forced to park elsewhere and walk a distance to get inside. The restaurant across the street is often happy to share its parking area with Atrium Pancakes. The decor could also do with an update to attract more customers.
The redeeming qualities of this establishment include great staff who are always friendly and willing to lend a helping hand. The food also receives positive feedback, and the pancake section of the menu never inspires less than a stellar review from guests. Atrium Pancakes is the kind of establishment that people return to for more, as the setting and food options are nothing short of memorable.
- When choosing pancakes that include compotes, ask for these separately in order to control the amount that goes onto the pancakes. Also, phone in to reserve a table on the waterfall side ahead of time. These spots tend to fill up fast, especially during the busy season. Finally, the restaurant hours are from 7:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. daily, so arrive early to avoid the disappointment of that “Closed” sign.