I am excited to share this next review! I even typed this up when it was fresh in my mind, so we didn’t have to worry about me forgetting something LOL. Second stop in Tennesee was Juniper! It is my brother’s and his business partners recently open restaurant in Johnson City, TN. After following the progress on social media and seeing the delectable dishes posted on social, I was so excited to experience it first-hand! Note: more pictures and videos will be up on my Instagram Page!
Ambiance/Atmosphere: This adorable family home has lots of history and was rehabbed and reconstructed to keep as much of that as possible. The white exterior with a yellow door pops and is inviting for all to come in! The interior is bright, homey and the perfect setting for a family dinner, date night out or just a night out with friends! The staff are beyond friendly and welcoming. They treat you as part of the family/team. The family theme and vibe is throughout the whole restaurant with local art, family pictures of staff and more! We sat a table that had pictures of my grandparents at their wedding🥰.
Drinks: There is a list of cocktails, liquor, beer and wine options! We started our night at the bar (the bartenders are awesome!). I started with a cocktail, after a narrowing it down to two, Jojo made the recommendation for the L.N.E.M (late night, early morning) so I went with it. This cocktail, was perfectly balanced and refreshing. Hint of lime and honey made it so smooth! It gets a 10/10. I would have ordered more, if I didn’t want to try as much as the menu as possible. Dad ordered Johnnie Walker on the rocks and Mom ordered the cocktail Through Being Cool. I did not enjoy hers as much as LOL. For dinner we ordered a bottle of natural wine, again a recommendation from Jojo. We shared Orbis Moderandi Petillant Naturel made in New Zeeland. It was my first natural wine and I give it a 7/10. It paired nicely with dinner and was light but a bit more acidic than I was used to. With dessert I decided to order a chocolate espresso martini. Again something that paired perfectly with the food and gets a 10/10! All around we give drinks a 10/10.
Menu: As mentioned before, I was following posts of dishes, to help get an idea of what to order. And as I am sure none of you are surprised, I had a hard time deciding what to order. So we tasted as much of the menu as we possibly could! I will tell you everything we order is amazing, and you will not be disappointed. I can only imagine how delicious the items we didn’t order were LOL. As I mentioned we started at the bar, so that meant some small plate/snacks needed to be ordered to share! We started with the crispy chicken skins, focaccia and wood roasted oysters. The oysters (10/10) were my favorite! They paired so perfectly with the focaccia (10/10) as it was used to soak up all the juice and sauce from the oyster. The crispy chicken skins (8/10) were the perfect added spicy crunch to complete the first round. Although, I think next time I will skip them to try something new or save room for other items!
We moved to our special table for the main course. As I said, we tried to taste as much of the menu as possible so we ordered and ate family style. So here is all we indulged in: Fried green tomato and burrata (10/10), Mafalde with beer braise short rib (11/10, the truffles and sauce totally leveled up this dish), Brussel sprouts (9/10, I loved the hint of vinegar in these), sautéed mushrooms (10/10), au gratin potatoes (10/10, were so rich, creamy and decadent), wood grilled salmon (10/10, cooked to order, juicy, flaky and delicious), cured bacon wrapped pork tenderloin (11/10, the best of pork combination, juicy, tender and so flavorful), lastly was the flat iron wagyu steak (12/10, bold, rich, and literally just melted in your mouth). Honestly, there was not one bad bite, and it will be hard to decide what to order the next time around. I cannot even narrow down and tell you my favorites because they were all that good.
And I am sure you are reading all of this and thinking “how did they have room for dessert.” We didn’t really LOL. So we asked for some to go, but had to order ice cream, one because it was Grandpa’s birthday and two, there is always room for ice cream as it just fills the cracks. We ordered the peanut butter chocolate chip cookies to go (11/10) and a piece of the pear sorgum chocolate bar (10/10). This came with the bourbon-caramel ice cream (9/10) that had to be eaten or else it would have melted LOL. We also ordered the brown butter ice cream, because we never had this flavor and it also came with a butter cookie. 11/10 again, it was another perfect combination that wasn’t too sweet and just melted in your mouth. Last item sent to the table with mini orange Madelines, that were the perfect bite size, light and warm dessert! There are so many good things to see and their menu does change. Click here for my reel for more pictures and videos of our night!
Tips/Recommendations: First, make a trip and go! LOL Second, make a reservation. It’s highly recommended. Bar seating is first come first serve and it did get very busy! If you can start out at the bar and then move to your table, do it. It was great way to experience the whole restaurant. I think the must order items will be as follows: focaccia, wood roasted oysters, fried green tomato and burrata, Mafalde with beer braise short rib and the steak. Make sure you ask the bartender and/or server for recommendations because they did not steer us the wrong direction. And as always, try something new every time you go!
Live to Eat,