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Nena Potter

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Top Places to Cozy Up by a Fire in Knoxville

If youre new to Knoxville, there is something you need to know about Tennessee weather… it can be a little crazy. Im not sure who originally said this, but the saying:If you don’t like the weather, just wait a few minutes and it’ll change,” definitely applies to our scruffy little city.

For instance, as Im writing this, its pretty dang cold out. On days like today, there are lots of places around town to warm up inside – but I am a big fan of being able to get roasty-toasty outdoors. If you’re the same way, here are a few of my favorite places to hang out on a patio, around a fire in Knoxville, Tennessee. (But quick! Before the temps change again!😂)


Fire Pit Outside Schulz Brau Brewing in North Knox by Fletcher Burkhardt


Schulz Brau

I have to start with my favorite area in town, the Happy Holler as there are a couple different options within walking distance of each other where you can grab a seat by a fire and stay cozy with a craft beer in hand. At the top of the list is Schulz Bräu Brewing Co. Their German Biergarten has been outfitted for winter with not only a proper fire pit but plenty of heaters AND outdoor igloos! (Three cheers for whoever started the igloos-on-patios trend.) There is something for everyone here and its perfect for big groups, families, dog lovers, or even first dates (yes, Im speaking from experience on that one 😉).

Hops & Hollers

My other pick in the Holler is Hops and Hollers. These guys have firepit tables you can sit around. Relax around the fire in Adirondack chairs or get up and work on perfecting your golf swing at The Inward Half Golf Swing Bay (behind the beer garden). They’ve got over one hundred golf courses that can be rented by the hour!


Balter Beerworks

Right down the road from the Happy Holler is another option in downtown Knox for winter patio dining: Balter Beerworks. Balter has been one of my favorite patio spots for several years now and they just keep getting better. Their patio options include igloos and firepit tables. Their seasonal craft beer selections are always on point. The food has never disappointed (my vegetarian friend will even vouch for their black bean burger being the best in Knoxville). If anyone’s counting, that’s three major wins for Balter🤩🎉


Five Thirty Lounge

Speaking of igloos and firepits, I also must mention one of my favorite rooftop bars: Five Thirty Lounge. If you are looking to get closer to the stars while sipping on a craft cocktail, this is the place to be. Their indoor bar and back rooftop have an upscale but laidback vibe that lowkey encourages stealing glances with strangers and striking up sultry conversations. (Pop over here to read more about this rooftop bar and other faves around town in one of my older articles!)

Five Thirty Lounge in Downtown Knoxville

Pro Tip: The igloos at Balter and Schulz are on a first come, first serve basis and the Five Thirty Lounge igloos are reservation only and require a minimum purchase for groups. Either way, call ahead to make sure you’re golden!

Now, I know there are a ton of other options around Knoxville and I hope you all will let me know about all of them. (Seriously, please DM me @knoxknena on the ole Insta as I love checking out new places.) BUT I had to limit this to my TOP choices. (This is serious stuff, people. You get it.) However, please see some of my honorable mentions below and hit me up if you ever need a fireside friend as I always have all the ingredients for smores on hand🙌


Honorable Mentions:

⭐️ North Knox: Central Filling Station (they close for the winter but open back up in March!)
🌟 South Knox: Landing House
⭐️ Bearden: Bearden Beer Market, Union Jacks and Backdoor Tavern
🌟 Sutherland/Marble City: Golden Roast Marble City
⭐️ Oak Ridge: Calhouns Oak Ridge

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