Elizabeth Moore isn’t always the first face you see when you walk in the door at River Place on the Clinch, but the little café wouldn’t be the same without her. Moore has been the primary cook at River Place since its opening in 2007. Born and raised in Appalachia, Moore knows what good country cooking is, and most of the authentic Appalachian recipes the eatery is known for are recipes she has personally used for years. This authenticity is one of many things that makes River Place on the Clinch a very special place.
River Place is more than just another restaurant in a small town. It is a model sustainable development enterprise owned by Clinch-Powell with a specific mission: to create jobs in one of the most economically depressed counties in Tennessee without imposing negative consequences on local culture or on the environment. It has consistently been one of the largest employers in Hancock County.
It has certainly been a steady source of stability for Elizabeth. She was looking for work when she accidentally became connected with River Place in the early stages of the project. She and her husband often drove over to Rogersville to go to church on Sundays and one day as they were passing the old abandoned country store that is now River Place, Elizabeth saw someone she knew and, like any good small town resident would, stopped to chat. When she found out that Clinch-Powell was planning to turn the store into a restaurant she offered to help and started volunteering the next day. It wasn’t long before she was on the pay roll and she was the perfect fit for the position of cook in the restaurant that wanted to appeal to both locals and to tourists who wanted a taste of authentic Appalachia. Elizabeth showed me a set of binders with hand-written recipes she uses. She says, “If it hadn’t been for River Place, I don’t know what I’d be doing. And it helps that I enjoy the job and the people.”
River Place on the Clinch boasts a country café serving delicious home cooked Appalachian cuisine and a quaint store offering a variety of necessities as well as art, jewelry and other unique products from local vendors. Visitors can take advantage of our outfitter services and enjoy a relaxing float down the beautiful free-flowing Clinch River. Canoes, inflatable kayaks, tube trackers, rafts and inner tubes are all available and a shuttle service up and down the river is provided with an advanced reservation. Cozy rustic cabins are available for rent for those wishing to enjoy the river or any of the hiking trails for the weekend. The Nature Conservancy names the Clinch River in the area “one of the last great places on earth” because of the very special biodiversity and the unique ecosystems that surrounds River Place. And we agree. There aren’t many other places where you can enjoy relatively untouched natural beauty and an authentic Appalachian meal all while actively supporting an organization that provides economic and environmental sustainability to the community. For more information or to make a reservation call 877-483-7211.