Friday, February 15, 2008

rouXbarb restaurant knoxville


If anyone is having as hard a time as I did tracking down info about the new Bruce Bogartz restaurant, Rouxbarb, I am trying to make this post about rouxbarb restaurant knoxville (not rhubarb restaurant knoxville) google friendly for your convenience. I am surprised Metropulse or the Sentinel hasn't reviewed it yet, at least not that I could find.

It's next to Union Jack's on Northshore, and I stopped by in person on my drive to dinner with girlfriends last night. Again, their number is 212.0024.

I was only inside for about 2 minutes, but the atmosphere looks cozy. I glanced at the menu, which is small and looks really good. The plan was to maybe go there tonight, but we're going to skip it for now because the menu doesn't seem to accommodate my bootcamp diet. Which isnt to say it doesnt look really good. Because it does. Trout, pork tenderloin and a filet were the items that caught my hurried eye. You know, 20-25 dollar range.

I usually like to give a new restaurant about 2 months to settle into itself before trying it, so I would love for someone to check it out and tell me that the wait isnt necessary. Oh, and it's BYOB.



Mickey said...

The reason the Grub Scout hasn't reviewed it for the News Sentinel is that he's too busy shilling for TGI Fridays. No shit, about three or four weeks ago, like I needed somebody to remind me that it's exactly like the 987 other Friday's in the country.

And we wonder why Papa John's gets the vote for "best pizza in knoxville." Or was it that friendly local joint called Pizza Hut?

ck said...

i'm a little ignorant here- what else has bruce bogartz done? from the tone of your review, he must have a good reputation. is rouxbarb in that little free standing building the mexican place used to be?

Big Guy on a Bicycle said...

Bruce has been around the Knoxville area for quite a while. There may be more than I know of, but he has been at 'Southbound at the L&N', 'Harry's', 'Bogartz/Ciao', 'Oodles', and even did a brief stint at 'Harold's Deli' on Gay Street before it closed. He left for Hilton Head a year or two ago, but is now back in Knoxville (I guess he just can't stay away).

I've been to RouXbarb twice since they opened. I was there by myself on opening night, and again with my wife on the following Saturday. In fact, we are going again tonight.

Please be aware that they are currently BYOB, but the $5 corkage fee is one of the lowests I've seen.

lc said...

I agree with you that most restaurants get reviewed too soon after they open. 2 months sounds like a good time to wait, normally. Bruce has enough experience to hit the ground running, however, so go ahead and try it. We had a great meal there last week.

By the way, thanks for the cross reference - hopefully you will save others from the time I spent trying to track down the number!

Anonymous said...

Bogartz always has great food. His problems tend to lie more on the financial side of the business.

Anonymous said...

Rouxbarb is a great place, tasty and cozy! I have been there several times and the food and service have been exceptional! The number is 212-0024, on weekends reservations are recommended. He is open Tuesday through Saturday from 5-10.
It is refreshing to have such an interesting menu in K-town. Bruce Bogartz is also willing to accomodate special diets. There is always a vegetarian special and vegetarian soup choice. Bruce realizes that eating vegetarian does not mean a salad or a boring pasta dish. I had the root vegetable lasagna one night and the winter vegetable piatta over a parmesan grits cake another night. I am thrilled as a vegetarian to have these types of options at a restaurant!! He has lots of meat options for you carnivores as well, and be sure to save room for the delectible desserts!! I like that it is byob, you can bring what you want and not have to pay a fortune for drinks. The food is very reasonably priced, especially considering the quality and portion size. Salads and small plates are around $7 and entrees range from $14 to $26. Bruce Bogartz is a real artist and I encourage you to check out Rouxbarb!!

Anonymous said...

I went last Saturday night & it was awesome. The Roasted Pineapple salad was incredible. I would definitely go again.

Michael Samtesto said...

Just wanted to let everyone know that Knoxville Films will be shooting it's first episode of "Behind the Line" at RouXbarb this Saturday.

The show will feature Chef Bruce Bogartz as he prepares his favorite dish--behind the line.

"Behind the Line" will premiere on the Knoxville Film/Metro Pulse video gallery in May.

I'm getting hungry just thinking about it.

Anonymous said...

There will soon be a web site about Rouxbarb launched, probably within the week. It's up now. Looks like they are refining it.

Anonymous said...

web site is under construction at

menu can be downloaded from there.

Anonymous said...

Begin with fresh ingredients as the notes; flames, smoke and the cacophony of utensils as the parchment upon which the notes are laid; staff reminiscent of the old sophistication of the Haight district with a European taint as the instruments; and, Mr. Bogartz wielding the baton creating a symphony just THIS SHORT of something more exquisite than any mere mortal can bear...there you have it... RouXbarb.

It is, if you open yourself up to it, a total "head-to-toe" experience.

The audible ambiance of the intimate, close but comfortable seating has a life of it's own; feeding on the lively conversation between friends, occasional "kitchen" sounds, the almost subliminal tunes and then out of nowhere the tinkle of laughter breaks out and brings an involuntary smile to your face just as you put a bite of the most delectable amalgamation into your mouth!

One or more or the unobtrusive yet imminently attentive staff most likely will be looking right at you at that EXACT moment and inquire with a quizzical glance or a more straight-forward thumbs-up question mark as to whether you have precisely what you wished for...

And the answer from this humble devotee is always and most resoundingly YOU BETCHA! YUM!

All you have to do is show up (well, calling ahead is always best) and without much ado the most glorious rhapsodies of flavors and textures and aromas have those taste-buds you which you heretofore figured had two left-feet dancing with each other in most intricate and uniquely balanced steps.

I have got to say that it is my extreme pleasure to plant myself and await what will undoubtedly be my next favorite thing, just EXACTLY what I was wishing for but could not for the life of me name or even dream...HOW DOES HE DO THAT!?

Anonymous said...

Bruce is a true artist; the food is imaginative, rich in flavor, unexpected, and delicious. He's hit his stride. Go!

Anonymous said...

RouXbarb now open for lunch!
Lunch menu link is on the front page at

Anonymous said...

I enjoyed my pulled chicken bar b que lunch with coleslaw and herbed potato salad. My lunch companion had the brisket.Complimentary homemade potato chips helped to pass the time between order and arrival. Not that it was a long wait. The hot entry was hot and quite tasty. The cold mitems were cold and not lukewarm as some places seem to serve. Bruce came out of the kitchen and greeted his noon time customers. Wait staff was very attentive.

Meal was great and was reasonably priced.

Anonymous said...

I've got to say that this has been quite an extraordinary day. I participated in a very innovative idea to foster and engender a sense of community. To paraphrase, it was the sheer genius of factoring it down to the lowest common denominator which, in this instance, was FOOD.

And who better to do the factoring in this medium than Bruce Bogartz at Rouxbarb

He probably had an idea about what he wanted to impart to the guests and what he wanted them to leave with and take into the community when he was planning and pulling this event together

The structure was simple about 40 or so invited guests come to a sit-down dinner, dine with people they didn't know and while partaking of a very simple yet exquisite meal (we are talking Rouxbarb, remember) in family style service, big tables, lots of people, good food passed amongst each other, lives touched and a small step in the direction of letting down barriers that keep us from feeling connected to our neighbors was made by something as simple as fried chicken, ribs, potato salad and warm Rhubard, blackberry and peach cobbler washed down with watermelon lemonade and mint sweet tea.

Asking the stranger next to you to pass the potato salad or freshly whipped cream for the cobbler goes a long way toward breaking down the barriers we create to keep ourselves from being involved with anyone not in our normal circles

And it's just so easy - it's neutral - it's FOOD!

It's not political, it's not socio-economic, it's not racial, it's JUST FOOD! GENIUS!

I just observed, listened and soaked it in much like any other night sitting at the bar at Rouxbarb

Remember the old exercise where a bunch of people are blindfolded and put in a room with an elephant? They each are told to discern the characteristics of the elephant using all their senses, experience and perceptions.

Then those people are put in another room and asked to recount their perception from their own unique perspective.

The amazing diversity of perception and the communication of that perception is the food of creating understanding, enlightenment and the kernel or grass roots of the formation of a thriving, living organism called community.

I don't know that everyone can comprehend my perception of the elephant. IT doesn't matter. What does matter is the insight gained into my perspective which allows the community to try to understand my viewpoint and incorporate me into the the living organism as an integral component, an important part of the whole BECAUSE of my unique experience and perspective

Each person who sat down at the table and shared a meal with people they did not know at Roubxbarb today had the experience to broaden their own experience by listening to other people describe the elephant

The end of it, I believe, if what was started this day can be sustained is an atmosphere structured by a Maestro adept at plying the best out of us all as human beings with the most common of denominators... FOOD

I think that each of the paricipants, named as mentors in this first of hopefully a steady schedule of events, left out with a different sense of what could be accomplished within a proactive thriving community

My elephant is most likely very different from many of the other participants' elephants. But that is in fact the beauty of the endeavor

From hearing, examining and contemplating another person's perspective, the horizon of interaction and possibilities for success within the community as a whole is exponentially increased

Like the proverb that says "like iron upon iron, so a friend sharpens the countenace of a friend"... here's to creating a community that sharpens the countenace of each of its members as friends and collegues over many more excellent meals.

Who would have thought it? A master at creating just what you wanted before you even wanted it and making it taste exactly the way you would have asked for it if you only knew you wanted it and an altruistic genius to boot!

Anonymous said...

Had dinner there. It was cute small and cozy on a cold knoxville night. Found the grouper to be salty and the dessert to be rather sweet. Felt it was overprised for the food.

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