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Neutral Ground is a “afro-creole” restaurant who's identity and vision are   reflective of a cuisine that reaches all the way back to Chef Ashford's ancestors who were enslaved in West Africa and brought to the Americas and journeys through the rich and often over-simplified culinary traditions of his hometown New Orleans. Dishes on the menu range from bean and rice dishes with strong African influences to interpretations of working class staples from New Orleans like po’boys and yakamein.  We also offer Chef driven specials that change seasonally.

Po-Boys and Yakamein are quintessential to New Orleans’ food culture. These foods are emblematic to any New Orleans native. You can often get a bowl of “Yak” after a second line from Ms. Linda Green or at your favorite local spot.

Hours of Operation

Thank you for all of your support over the last 2 years.  We are temporarily closed until further notice.  Keep an eye on our social media for pop-up times and locations

Please contact us for your catering needs at


    M E E T    

The Chef

Chef Kenyatta Ashford studied at the renowned Culinary Institute of America in New York. Before returning to Chattanooga, he gained experience and inspiration while working in New Orleans, New Hampshire and Rhode Island. He is enthused about the expanding food scene in Chattanooga. He recently was awarded Jean-Louis Palladin Professional Work/Study Grant by the James Beard Foundation that he used to study cuisines of the African American diaspora and West Africa. Chef Ashford recently co-founded a new dinner series called "4 Courses and."  He has been featured in Travel Noire, New York Times, and The Chattanooga Times Free Press. 


Why This Chef Looks To The Past
To Plan His Future

This Tennessee Chef Recently Launched A Concept  Celebrating The African Diaspora

Meet Kenyatta Ashford of Neutral Ground in Chattanooga

Kenyatta Ashford Nurtures Native Cuisine and Diverse Food Cultures

The Heart Behind It

How This Black Tennessee Chef Is Exposing The Youth To Culinary Arts

'4 Courses and 4:44' dinner themed to music of Jay-Z

Kenyatta Ashford Updates Creole Cuisine as His New Restaurant Incubates at Proof 

  • Can you accommodate dietary restrictions and allergies?
    Yes. Please alert our team of any special dietary needs you have, and they’ll be able to help identify appropriate offerings. Due to our constantly evolving menus, we can make accommodations on a case-by-case basis.
  • Is Neutral Ground wheelchair accessible?
  • Does Neutral Ground accept reservations?
    Neutral Ground does recommand a reservation.
  • Can I have a private event at Neutral Ground?
    Yes, we have private spaces available at Neutral Ground. For more information, email
  • Can I bring my own wine?
    Yes. Our corkage fee is $20 per 750 mls, with a maximum of four bottles per table.
  • Can I bring my own cake?
    Yes. Please inform us beforehand if you plan to bring an outside cake, which may incur a cutting fee of $25.
  • Do you do take-out orders or delivery?
    Yes. We accept take out orders in person or over the phone. Please note, to-go offerings may differ from our online menu.
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