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Divine Cafe and Catering opens second location at HMG facility

February 1st, 2012 3:25 pm by Staff Report

Divine Cafe and Catering opens second location at HMG facility

Divine's HMG site is dedicated to a 'quick service' breakfast and lunch menu designed to provide HMG staff and patients with quick menu options.

Six years ago, Karen Allen took a leap of faith and opened Divine Cafe and Catering at 247 Broad St. in downtown Kingsport. Most recently, she took another leap of faith and opened her second location in the Holston Medical Group (HMG) facility, located at 105 W. Stone Dr.

The former stay-at-home mom had always dreamed of owning her own café and coffee shop. When she initially opened Divine Cafe, she had two partners - one of which left after a short two months and the other six months later.

The loss of her partners did not stop Karen from continuing her dream. Instead, she dug her heals in and has worked many long hours growing her downtown restaurant, pickup, delivery, to-go and catering business. Karen, however, is quick to admit she could not have grown and expanded without the help and support of a "wonderful staff" and family.

"I have been fortunate to have high-quality and dedicated people working with me - a staff that I admit I consider family," she said.

Karen is very much a "hands-on" owner.

"You have to be hands-on when you are a small, family-run business, and you have to depend on family to help out as needed," she said.

Karen’s son, Ben, recently joined Karen full-time and operates the HMG location.

While the two locations offer many of Divine’s signature items, the HMG site is dedicated to a "quick service" breakfast and lunch menu designed to provide HMG staff and patients with quick menu options. Patrons of the HMG location will find Divine’s familiar homemade four-cheese pimento sandwich and Divine signature tomato bisque soup, plus Divine’s special recipe chicken salad croissant and desserts like the Chocolate Brownie Trifle.

"About the only menu item we do not offer at HMG are ‘hot’ lunch selections like the daily specials at the downtown location. However, we have plans to offer additional catering and pick-up menu options from both the HMG and downtown locations," Ben said.

Divine’s second location has also enabled the Allens to expand the catering side of the business.

"Being in the HMG facility has given us more exposure to the medical industry," Ben said.

Catering has always been a big part of the business, with Divine providing an assortment of catering options from box lunches to corporate events and weddings.

Although Karen attributes her success to great employees, no one will argue about the quality of her food. All menu items are prepared fresh daily, with attention paid to providing high quality food.

"Nothing is ever frozen," she said. "All of our sandwiches, soups, salads and hot lunch specials are made when ordered. The same quality is applied to our catering business."

The Broad Street location is open from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m., Monday through Friday; and the HMG site is open from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m., Monday through Friday. The phone numbers are 423-245-3030 for the Broad Street location and 423-245-3130 for the HMG site. Email addresses are or

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