Local Artists Robert Batey & Dana Cohen exhibit “Branching Out,” panoramic photographs of the Smoky Mountains


“Branching Out,” a group of panoramic Smoky Mountain photographs in hand-built rustic frames begins its Knoxville show on February 6 and runs through March 6. “Branching Out” will continue its exhibit at The Tomato Head Maryville location from March 7 through April 4.

Read about the exhibit from the full press release:


Local artists exhibit photographs of Smoky Mountains
January 18, 2010

“Branching Out”, a group of panoramic Smoky Mountain photographs in hand-built rustic frames by local artists Robert Batey and Dana Cohen, will be on exhibit at the Tomato Head Restaurant on Market Square in Knoxville, from February 6- March 6, 2010. A continuing exhibit will be held at the Tomato Head’s Maryville location from March 7-April 4, 2010.

The photographs were created by Sevierville photographer Robert Batey, for exhibits commemorating the recent 75th anniversary of the Great Smoky Mountains National Park. Photography was instrumental in forming the park 75 years ago. Batey has photographed the Smokies for fifteen years, returning frequently to experience familiar places in new ways. “Nature inspires my search for beauty and mystery”, says Batey. “Experiencing the world through the lens provides a meditative way to explore nature and share my discoveries with others.”

Robert and his wife Dana Cohen collaborate on building the rustic frames. Our “elegant rustic” designs are inspired by the Great Camps of the Adirondack Mountains, first popularized during the late 1800s. “Being a photographer,” adds Batey, “it seemed only natural to combine my original nature photographs with some of our designs for a unique blending of rustic and fine art.”

Each one-of-a-kind frame is hand crafted from traditional birch bark and native materials gathered here in the Smoky Mountains. “Our design process is simple”, says Batey. “Nothing is predetermined. We start with a pile of branches and twigs and then work out a pattern, an idea. It’s very much an intuitive, sculptural approach.”All of our branches are taken from fallen trees or thinned saplings from the edges of utilitycuts”, adds Cohen. “We even use Hemlock, cut from standing dead trees killed by the Hemlock Wooly Adelgid. It gives them a new life.”

The artists, both trained as architects, have studied the rustic style from many sources, yet emerge with something unique. “We may start with an idea from a historic piece, and by the time we bring in our own style and use materials available, it becomes our own design,” Cohen says. Every piece is selected for its unique character, and its contribution to the overall design.


The artists enjoy working with homeowners and designers to create a one of a kind picture, entry door or custom piece for your home or office.
More information is available on their website at Robert and Dana
can be contacted at 865-774-5955 or

Tomato Head’s Super Bowl Sunday 7 Layer Dip

Mahasti was up early this morning (heck, she’s up early every morning), sharing this recipe for 7-Layer Dip on WBIR. If you didn’t catch her on air, you can check out the recipe below. Plus, we’ll be serving it at the restaurant all day today.

Tomato Head’s Super Bowl Sunday 7-Layer Dip

1 can black beans, drained and rinsed
½ cup chopped onion
¼ cup oil
1.5 Tbs ground cumin
¾ tsp. Salt
1 cup water

Heat oil in a medium skillet over medium heat. Add onion and sauté until translucent. Add ground cumin and salt. Sauté one minute longer. Add water and bring to boil. Remove from heat and mash with a potato masher until 50% of beans have broken up.

Can be made up to this point one day ahead.

To assemble dip:

1 cup shredded mozzarella or Monterey jack cheese

Place beans in a 1.5 to 2 quart baking dish. Cover with 1 cup of shredded cheese. Place the dish in a 350 degree oven just until cheese has melted. If you made your beans a day ahead leave the beans in the oven longer until they heat up and cheese melts.

1 cup shredded lettuce
½ cup diced onion
½ cup sliced black olives
½ cup diced tomatoes
½ cup sour cream
Your favorite hot sauce

Remove beans from oven – top with shredded lettuce, onion, tomatoes, black olives, sour cream and hot sauce. Serve with corn chips

Serves 4.

If you are expecting more of a crowd you can double the recipe.

Artist Reception for Leslie Hatten, Maryville Location, Sunday, January 31, 2010 @ 7pm

Join The Tomato Head, friends and art-lovers of the area for a closing reception honoring artist Leslie Hatten. Hatten’s work is currently on exhibit at the Maryville Tomato Head and has shown throughout January. Hatten’s work appeared at the Knoxville location of the restaurant throughout December. Come speak with the artist and enjoy some convivial time. Reception begins at 7pm.

Tomato Head Customers Raise More than $1000 For Haitian Disaster Relief Effort

We decided to hold a two-day fundraising effort to support disaster relief in Haiti because it just felt right. We wanted to do something to help, so we announced that five-percent of all sales from Friday, January 15 and Saturday, January 16, would be donated to aid efforts. We hoped for a good outcome and braced ourselves for (hopefully) two busy days.


Upon posting the announcement to Facebook there were immediate responses, immediate activity from the Twitter feed and local news and entertainment media helped spread the word. We’d like to thank everyone who helped support the effort, especially to those customers who ate with us in Knoxville and Maryville those days. You helped raise $1,154, which was donated to Doctors Without Borders on Monday afternoon.

To our staff, who initiated the idea, and to everyone who took part, a sincere thank you. We’re proud to be a part of a community that gives to those in need and we’re pleased to be a part of making it possible.

Mahasti & Scott & the whole T-Head Crew

MLK Day!

It’s MLK Day…Tomato Head will be open today, regular hours.

Tomato Head to Donate Percentage of Sales to Support Haiti Disaster Relief Effort

Upon hearing the news of the extensive devastation in Haiti caused by the recent earthquake, the staff and owners of Tomato Head knew they wanted to do something to help.

On Friday, January 15 and Saturday, January 16, The Tomato Head restaurant will donate five-percent of all sales to support disaster relief efforts for Haiti, including Doctors Without Borders. Both the Maryville and Knoxville locations of the restaurant will be participating.

WHO: The Tomato Head Restaurant
Serving innovative pizzas, sandwiches, salads and specials since 1990, The Tomato Head’s focus on great food extends from homemade breads, dressings, salsas, dips and desserts all the way to the peppers that are pickled in house.

WHAT: A donation of five-percent of all sales occurring on Friday, January 15 and Saturday, January 16, will be given to efforts supporting disaster relief in Haiti, including Doctors Without Borders.

WHEN: Friday, January 15 and Saturday, January 16
Knoxville location, 11am – 10:30pm (both days)
Maryville location, 11am – 9pm (both days)

WHY: The Tomato Head restaurant is committed to sustainable practices and community engagement. By acting locally to raise funds for this humanitarian effort, the restaurant can extend its reach to the global community that needs help most.

WHERE: Knoxville, TN—located in downtown Knoxville at 12 Market Square (865.637.4067) & Maryville, TN—located in downtown Maryville at 211 Broadway (865.981.1080).

HOW: Diners eating at The Tomato Head on Friday, January 15 or Saturday, January 16 will be supporting the Haiti disaster relief effort, no matter what food they select or the size of the order. Five-percent of all sales will be donated.

Who’s Showing — 2010 Exhibit Schedule

January 2010
Knoxville, 1/2-2/6: Dale Mackey
Maryville, 1/3-2/7: Leslie Hatten

Knoxville, 2/6-3/6: Robert Batey
Maryville, 2/7-3/7: Dale Mackey

Knoxville, 3/6-4/3: Julie Armburster
Maryville, 3/7-4/4: Robert Batey

Knoxville, 4/3-5/1: Todd Witcher
Maryville, 4/4-5/2: Julie Armbruster

Knoxville, 5/1-6/5: Diana Rogers
Maryville, 5/2-6/6: Todd Witcher

Knoxville, 6/5-7/3: Julie Bernal
Maryville, 6/6-7/3: Diana Rogers

Knoxville, 7/3-8/7: Jarrod Justice
Maryville, 7/3-8/8: Julie Bernal

Knoxville, 8/7-9/4: Zach Jones
Maryville, 8/8-9/5: Jarrod Justice

Knoxville, 9/4-10/2: Steph Huntz
Maryville, 9/5-10/3: Zach Jones

Knoxville, 10/2-11/6: Patrick McInerey
Maryville, 10/3-11/7: Steph Huntz

Knoxville, 11/6-12/4: Jonathon Howe
Maryville, 11/7-12/5: Patrick McInerey

Knoxville, 12/4-1/1: Heather Middlebrook
Maryville, 12/5-1/2: Jonathon Howe

Holiday Happenings in Maryville

The Maryville/Alcoa Jaycees Christmas Parade will be ho-ho-ho-ing right by our front door Saturday, Dec. 12 at 11:00 a.m. (Yes, we’ll be open!)

The Palace Theater is also screening some holiday favorites, which is a great opportunity for dinner and a movie.

Thursday Dec. 17 & Saturday Dec. 19 at 7:00 p.m. “White Christmas” with Bing Crosby, Danny Kaye, and Rosemary Clooney.

Friday Dec. 18 at 7:00 p.m. you can catch “It’s a Wonderful Life” with, well, you know who.

© 2016 The Tomato Head Site by: Robin Easter Design