Bubba Gump Shrimp Company is an unusual eatery in that it is the only restaurant chain in the United States that is based on a motion picture – in this case, the classic, Forrest Gump. Since its inception in 1996 in California, locations have spread to tourist locations across the country, including right here in Gatlinburg. So let’s check it out!
Bubba Gump is located in the heart of Gatlinburg, right on Parkway across the street from the Space Needle (and very near the Historic Gatlinburg Inn). If you’re staying in town, it’s an easy walk no matter where you are. If you’re driving into town, it’s easy to find.
It is located in a two-level building. On our visit, the quickest route to food and beverage was to situate at the upstairs bar (we generally prefer sitting at the bar anyway). We ordered a beer and it was served in a really cool glass with a “Bubba Gump 1975” logo. Beer in hand, it was time to take a look at the menu. Bubba Gump Shrimp Company serves what it calls “scratch-made, southern-style comfort dishes.” This includes items like sautéed shrimp, baby back ribs and burgers. There is also a wide variety of side items – from steamed rice to hush puppies. Whatever you like, it should not be hard to find something here that will please you.
A heavy portion of the menu is devoted to seafood – salmon, shrimp, Mahi Mahi and more. On the “handhelds” portion of the menu, we spotted the Texas Chicken Sandwich, which features a grilled Cajun chicken breast, bacon, pepper jack cheese, chili ancho aioli, lettuce, tomato, red onions. It comes served with fries. This was a good sandwich! As you can see from the picture above, there are slabs of bacon just hanging off the plate, which we like!
The chicken had a little crunch, and the sandwich had some heat. By the time we made it to the end, the bread had crumbled away, but it didn’t matter. It was a fantastic sandwich that we just finished in pieces. This ain’t the kind of place where you’re not allowed to make a mess. Highly recommended. The fries were standard fair – nothing wrong with that. Just good fries.
This is a lively, happy place – in fact, a series of smiley faces leads you through the entrance and up the stairs to the upstairs dining area. The restaurant also has a gift shop so you can pick up some official Bubba Gump merchandise.
In conclusion, if you find yourself in Gatlinburg looking for somewhere a little bit unusual to eat, this is the place! The food is good and the atmosphere is festive. Check it out!
Bubba Gump Shrimp Co. is located at:
Gatlinburg, TN 37738
If you’re dining in one of the busier times, you might want to give them a call at 865-430-3034.