The best compliment a business owner and operator can receive is a heartfelt recommendation from one of his or her customers, and that’s what the Readers’ Choice Award is all about. Winners are selected by the very patrons who’ve enjoyed quality service, superior results and all-around blue-ribbon experiences. Consider the following pages our round of applause for a job well done.

Best Home Remodeler: F.E. Trainer Construction

1185 Keowee Ave., 522.2423,

For more than 20 years, F.E. Trainer Construction has been building new and custom homes, as well as tackling remodels and additions, for residents in Knoxville and the surrounding area. Founder and President Fred Trainer built a team of local experts who strive to deliver exactly what the clients want with detail, finesse and exceptional customer service.

“It’s always an honor to be recognized for our work,” Fred says. “We build our clients’ beautiful homes, and our process is closely supervised and managed throughout.”

Best Orthodontist: Pickering Orthodontics

4741 N. Broadway, Suite C and 118 Mabry Hood Road, Suite 200, 687.9412,

Dr. Jim Pickering established his practice in 1995. He specializes in Invisalign and Damon Braces, an innovative method of treatment that requires fewer adjustments than traditional braces. In 2017, Dr. Pickering brought in a partner, Dr. Tyler Allen, to continue building on the success of the practice.

“He’s a Christ-like man with a great work ethic. We’re like-minded in our treatment philosophy and very similar in nature,” Dr. Pickering says. “We offer big, beautiful, broad smiles and great bite.”

Best Heating/Cooling/Plumbing: Cantrell’s Heat and Air

5715-B Old Tazewell Pike, 687.2520,

Family-owned and operated since 1992, Cantrell’s Heating and Air employs trained, experienced technicians who keep Knoxville homes comfortable year-round. Customer service is key, as the team abides by the Golden Rule. Cantrell’s specializes in installation as well as maintenance, but they also repair gas logs, repair and replace water heaters, and install tankless water heaters for those interested in high-efficiency systems.  

Best Financial and Wealth Management: PYA Waltman Capital, LLC

2076 Lakeside Center Way, 693.6301,

Founded in 2005, PYA Waltman Capital exists to empower clients, as well as employees, to lead a more fulfilling life through its unique values-based financial planning process. The company strives to build a long-term relationship with its clients, helping them uphold their core values and aspirations. The dedicated team is passionate about collaborating to ensure clients live the life they imagined.

Best Fitness Center: Fort Sanders Health & Fitness Center

270 Fort Sanders West Blvd., 531.5000,

Fort Sanders Health and Fitness Center just celebrated 30 years of providing a top-notch health and wellness facility designed to meet the needs of its members, from college students and working professionals to families of all shapes and sizes. With more than 130 fitness classes, a swim team, indoor and outdoor tennis courts, heated pools and tracks, as well as a day spa and childcare for those 12 weeks to 13 years old, there is truly something for everyone at Fort Sanders. With no contracts and excellent customer service, new members are always welcome to take a tour and join the fitness family to make 2019 a healthy new year.

Best Private School: Webb School of Knoxville

9800 Webb School Drive. 693.0011,

Established in 1955, Webb School of Knoxville continues to raise the bar in private education with its world-class college preparatory curriculum. Steeped in history and tradition, Webb School’s story is one that magnifies the potential of every student by infusing its rich curriculum with creativity, innovation and experimentation, all in an environment that nurtures and cares for its students, faculty and administration. Blending a superior balance of academics, arts and athletics, Webb School brings learning to life by empowering its students to thoughtfully solve problems and formulate their own ideas as they explore their passions and interests.

Best Veterinarian: Dr. Nathan Butler, DVM, Butler Veterinary Services

10801 Sam Lee Road, 951.0787

Butler Veterinary Services began as a large animal ambulatory practice in February 2015, which Dr. Nathan Butler operated on his days off from his full-time position at a small animal clinic. Two years later, Dr. Butler felt the nudge to open his own clinic, so he and his wife, Katie, made the leap and never looked back. They broke ground in June 2017 and opened in December. At Butler Veterinary Services, every animal is treated with care using state-of-the-art equipment and medical treatment. Dr. Butler is a Knoxville native, a graduate of Karns High School with a B.S. in animal science and Doctor of Veterinary Medicine from the University of Tennessee.

Best Dessert/Bakery: Nothing Bundt Cakes

5300 Kingston Pike, 745.0800,

Owned by Kasey and Richard Isaac, Nothing Bundt Cakes continues to lure in customers with a sweet tooth and something to celebrate. The San Diego franchise does well nationwide, and Knoxvillians are enjoying a taste of the company’s success. Their signature bundt cakes come in myriad flavors, from classic vanilla and lemon to white chocolate raspberry and red velvet. There’s even a chocolate chip gluten-free cake. The cakes come in various sizes: 8-inch or 10-inch, single or tiered, as well as bundlets (the perfect hand-held cake for one) and bundtinis (bite-size).

Best Chiropractor: Dr. John Dandelski, D.C., Sport & Wellness Chiropractic Center

10429 Hickory Path Way, 219-3570,

This is the second year in a row that Dr. John Dandelski of Sport & Wellness Chiropractic has been honored with the Best of West Knoxville award. He is the highest rated chiropractic physician in Knoxville on Yelp, with more than 20 5-star reviews. Dr. Dandelski diagnoses and treats a variety of musculoskeletal and myofascial dysfunctions, from chronic low back and neck pain to performance care for elite athletes. You will be treated at your first visit, and there are no contracts or long-term treatment plans. Additionally, Dr. Dandelski is one of only a few chiropractic extremity specialists in Tennessee and has fixed shoulders, knees and feet where others have failed. All conditions will be treated and managed based on quantifiable metrics and rehabilitation protocols, standards and timelines generally accepted in the physical medicine community.

Best Home Builder: Eagle Bend Development


Herbert W. Davis established Eagle Bend Development Company in 1956 with a vision to construct and remodel superior homes and develop neighborhoods of distinction. Three generations later, the mission of Eagle Bend is being carried out by Scott Davis and his team of real estate development professionals. Eagle Bend has helped hundreds of families find the homes and neighborhoods of their dreams. With thoughtful attention to detail and a keen focus on energy efficiency, Eagle Bend continues to bring new ideas and designs to East Tennessee residents.

Best Home Decor and Furnishings: O.P. Jenkins Furniture & Design

209 W. Summit Hill Drive, 522.9632,

Located in the heart of downtown Knoxville, O.P. Jenkins has been providing customers with high-quality, contemporary and classic furniture and decor for more than a century. Currently operated by Terry and Meg Troutman, O.P. Jenkins offers three floors of furnishing options for every room in the house with a staff of professional interior designers at the ready. With five generations of experience under its belt, O.P. Jenkins provides a one-of-a-kind experience for those who want to refresh or redo a room with style and flair.

Best Jeweler: Markman’s

6932 Kingston Pike, 584.0247,

Opened in 1976 by Harold and Ida Markman, the goal was to provide the “best quality and best service at the best price,” and it turned out to be the best business plan. Customers continue to frequent Markman’s to celebrate all of their major life events, from engagements and anniversaries to births and birthdays. The family-run jeweler has maintained the original plan of its first generation owners: exceptional quality with exceptional service.

Best Cosmetic Surgeon: Dr. E. Edward Breazeale Jr.

2068 Lakeside Centre Way, 342-0300,

At Breazeale Clinic, patient care is of the utmost importance, starting with the first phone call and initial consultation. Dr. Breazeale spends time getting to know each patient and creates a treatment plan that will lead to the desired results. With modern technology and precision, steeped in two decades of professional experience, Dr. Breazeale and his staff ensure that each patient can have confidence in every step.

Best Dentist: Dr. Ruth Bailey, D.D.S.

6001 Walden Drive, 588.1294,

Best Dermatologist: The Skin Wellness Center

10215 Kingston Pike, Suite 200, 584.8580,

Best Optometrist: Winston Eye & Vision Center

8609 Kingston Pike, Suite 101, 693.3441,

Best Landscaper/Lawn Care: A Cut Above

2501 Virgil Rushing Way, 363.3076.

Best Realtor: Debbie Elliott-Sexton, Alliance Sotheby’s International Realty

859 Ebenezer Road, 357.3232,

Best Luxury Automotive: Lexus of Knoxville

10315 Parkside Drive, 856.8234,

Best Day Spa: Spa Visage

1645 Downtown W Blvd., 694.9007,

Best Hair Salon: Salon Visage

1701 Downtown W Blvd., 694.4000,

Best Insurance Agent: Bill Thomas, TIS Insurance Services

1900 N. Winston Road, Suite 100, 691.4847,

Best Retirement Community: NHC Place – Farragut

122 Cavette Hill Lane, 777.9000,

Best Fine Dining: Copper Cellar

1807 Cumberland Ave, 673.3400

7316 Kingston Pike, 673.3422

Best Casual Dining/Sports Bar: Lakeside Tavern

10911 Concord Park Drive, 671.2980,

Best Dog Care/Grooming: Doggone Pretty

449 Park 40 N Blvd., 531.4977,