Easy Bistro was originally opened as Easy Seafood in 2005, housed in a historic space on Broad Street. Owners chef Erik Niel and his wife Amanda Niel were just 26 and 24 years old at the time, and driven by their passion for incredible food and the hospitality industry. The restaurant gave Erik a home to work from while still focusing on seafood, a culinary corner he has long excelled in, while also establishing his local restaurants– Easy Bistro and Main Street Meats– as pillars in the Chattanooga food scene.
Easy is located in Chattanooga’s revitalized West Village. We welcome our guests to join us and take advantage of all that we have to offer from our talented crew in our kitchen and at our bar. Our shareable menu is designed to provide a wondrous variety of possible combinations. We shy away from the traditional course meal, in favor of a small and large plate shareable experience curated by our servers and chefs.
Raised in southern Louisiana, Erik Niel describes his home as a place where people care deeply about food— something that has no doubt helped forge his personal passion and career. He learned an early appreciation for where food comes from, and the process of preparing it from beginning to end, a philosophy is something that still heavily influences his cooking. Niel was a psychology major at the The University of Texas at Austin where he found he had a fondness for the calculated nature of business, and realized he eventually wanted to have his own.
After attending Johnson & Wales Culinary School in Vail, Colorado, Niel moved to Chattanooga and took a job as floor manager at the now-closed Southside Grill, where he ended up meeting his wife, Amanda. Eventually, the two took jobs at St. John’s, where Erik worked as sous chef for two years while he developed his own business plan. In May of 2005, the couple opened Easy Bistro & Bar in downtown Chattanooga. Then in 2014, they assumed operations of Main Street Meats, transforming it into the local treasure it is today.
Amanda Niel learned the value of hard work and entrepreneurship at an early age. She grew up locally, and her grandparents owned a construction and plumbing company, which was family-run for generations. While completing her education, Amanda worked at fine-dining restaurants in the area including St. John’s and the now-closed Southside Grill, where she met her husband and chef, Erik Niel. After graduating, Niel got a position working for a sports clothing brand in New York City, but consistently felt drawn back to Chattanooga.
Fast forward and Amanda is successfully combining her love for design with her business skills, and passion for the hospitality industry. As operations and events maven, she oversees everyday operations, marketing, events, and catering for both Easy Bistro and Main Street Meats.