St. Elmo Restaurant Imbued with the Spirit of the Southwest
Little Coyote, our St Elmo Restaurant, is indefinable – and we like it that way. While living in Texas, Chef Erik was drawn to barbecue and smoked meats served with tortillas – and this is the central focus of Little Coyote’s menu.
Like any good outlaw, no rules apply. We are a beautiful mix of Texas Barbecue, Cuban, Caribbean, and Southwestern cuisines – bringing you a food & drink menu filled with things we love, using tortillas as the ultimate vessel to get food from your plate to your mouth.
Located at the foot of Lookout Mountain, our St. Elmo restaurant provides a temporary escape to the Wild West, complete with terracotta tiles, turquoise accents, and of course the signature flavors of the region. Expect striking flavors and melt-in-your-mouth meats accompanied by house-made corn tortillas. Wash it all down with the nectar of gods, with over 100 varieties of agave spirits to choose from. When you’re at Little Coyote, indulgence is expected.
Chef & Co-Owner
Erik Niel is the Chef and Co-Owner of Easy Bistro & Bar, Main Street Meats, and Little Coyote in Chattanooga, TN, and a two-time James Beard Award nominee for Best Chef: Southeast. His first restaurant, Easy Bistro & Bar, has been a pillar of the Chattanooga dining scene since it opened in 2005 — offering a robust menu of shareable plates that celebrate local flavor and ingredients from the Tennessee River Valley. In 2014, Erik and his wife Amanda opened Main Street Meats, a neighborhood restaurant and butcher shop that utilizes whole animal butchery and works closely with Chattanooga’s surrounding farmland to explore the distinctive flavors of the region. Deeply committed to furthering Chattanooga’s food culture, the Niels launched the Scenic City Supper Club in 2015, a guest chef series created to shed light on Chattanooga’s restaurant scene and its dedicated community of chefs, farmers, and producers. In 2023, Erik and Amanda designed and built their newest concept - Little Coyote - inspired by his time in Texas and the food there that captured his heart. Located in Chattanooga’s historic St. Elmo neighborhood, the restaurant showcases smoked meats and house-made tortillas (made on a roller press and oven from Mexico) – all served alongside an agave-driven beverage program with aptly crafted cocktails, Mexican and Spanish wines, and a selection of beers.
Owner & Managing Partner
A Tennessee native, Amanda Niel - Owner and Managing Partner of Easy Bistro & Bar, Main Street Meats, and Little Coyote - grew up in Soddy Daisy, outside of Chattanooga. Combining her love for design with her business skills, Amanda discovered her true passion for hospitality, customer service, and people management in opening restaurants alongside husband Erik – starting with their first concept in 2005, Easy Bistro & Bar, in downtown Chattanooga. In 2014, ready for a new venture, Amanda and Erik assumed operations of Main Street Meats, a neighborhood butcher shop and restaurant that works closely with Chattanooga’s surrounding farmland to explore the distinctive flavors of the region. Passionate about shedding light on Chattanooga’s emerging restaurant scene and its dedicated community of chefs, bartenders, farmers, and producers, Amanda and Erik also launched the Scenic City Supper Club, a guest chef series a year later. In 2023, Amanda and Erik built their newest concept - Little Coyote - inspired by Erik’s time in Texas, located in the city’s historic St. Elmo neighborhood. The open and airy indoor-outdoor restaurant was designed by Amanda, where she used her aesthetic vision to create an environment that fits seamlessly alongside the food. In addition, Amanda oversees all general operations, human resources, marketing, events, and catering at each of their concepts.