Ghosts of Christmas Past, Hope for Christmas Future: How One Local Restaurant is Giving Back to the Community
“Blessed is the season which engages the whole world in a conspiracy of love.” -Hamilton Wright Mabie
“God bless us every one,” Tiny Tim famously declared in A Christmas Carol, by Charles Dickens. This same Dickensian spirit filled The Crown & Goose at the annual Holiday Dinner to benefit Empty Stocking Fund. On a fittingly dreary night, patrons braved the London-like weather to dine inside the festively adorned gastropub in the heart of Knoxville’s Old City.
Once you stepped into the warm glow of the twinkling lights, you could almost forget about the rain and gloom outside. Eighty some-odd guests dined on a five-course feast of Oyster Rockefeller, shrimp & sherry bisque, arugula, spinach and radicchio salad, beef tenderloin or herb-roasted chicken roulade with brussel sprouts browned in butter. And, of course, there was a proper Christmas Pudding, two weeks in the making, for dessert.
Owners Pat and Jeffrey Nash were on hand to greet guests. Pat was the driving force behind the elaborate decorations and lights. Nash was more interested in mingling … and eating.
“It’s wonderful how just the smell of these dishes takes me right back to my childhood in East London,” marveled Nash.
Son and head chef, Jeffrey DeAlejandro was bustling in and out of the kitchen with his boundless energy.
Clinking glasses. Laughter. Polished mahogany. Warm red leather. A magical wrinkle in time. Out of the bustle of Black Friday, Cyber Monday, holiday traffic and mall madness, a singular celebration occurred.
It was an evening of good will, wet weather and warm hearts!
It never ceases to amaze me what a geographic melting pot Knoxville is. And The Goose seems to be the gathering place for an eclectic mix of transplants. Chris from Northern California, Hillary from Oregon and Denae, from Powell by way of London, were all seated together in a cozy bar sipping wine and swapping stories – displaced kindred spirits making a connection. Knoxville may not be a cosmopolitan city, but there sure are a lot of cosmopolitan people living and working here.
By the way, anything you order off the Christmas Menu at The Crown & Goose generates money for Empty Stocking Fund from now throughout the holidays. The Goose is also a designated toy drop off. Just look for the tree covered in tiny red stockings. The News Sentinel Empty Stocking Fund, now in its 98th season, feeds 3,600 families and provides toys and books to over 3,000 children in nine counties.
Cheers and God bless us, every one!
The Crown & Goose is a client of The Tombras Group