Well Being Retreat Center

"Where Silence Is Expressed"

Picnic Area from the River.JPG
Photo of lilies on the serving counter at Well Being Retreat Center
Having a cup of tea on the deck at Well Being Retreat Center with view of the hillside along the Powell River

Retreat Meals

A photo of a freshly prepared meal of salmon, Caprese salad and greens
A Photo of the Commercial Kitchen at Well Being Retreat Center

Availability of Meal Service

Meal Service is available for retreatand workshops by prior arrangement.  


Note: Unless you are here as a participant in a retreat, meeting, event or workshop, meal service is not available. Therefore, for guests renting the cabins only, meal service is not available, but there are outfitted kitchenettes in all the cabins so you can prepare meals yourself

Well Being Retreat Center has two licensed Commercial Kitchens:

  • Main Retreat Center Building

  • Powell River Pavilion

The kitchen at the Main Retreat Center Building is directly adjacent to the Dining Room which seats 32 people and the outside deck which seats an additional 28 people.

The kitchen at the Powell River Pavilion is intended to serve meals at the Pavilion which can seat 50 or more people in the open air pavilion directly on the Powell River. There is also an outdoor grill and a wood fired cob pizza oven at the Pavilion

Our kitchens are inspected by the State of Tennessee Health Department twice a year.

                      Meal Preparation Policies

A photo of Cooking on the Six Burner Range at Well Being Retreat Center
Photo of Don Oakley & Patty Bottari during meal prep at Well Being Retreat Center
Photo of cups on Retreat Center window sill

Meal served at Well Being Retreat Center are tasty, mostly freshly prepared, and healthy.


By prior arrangement, we can serve vegetarian or non-vegetarian meals. We can also offer a vegetarian option with our non-vegetarian meals. We are also fully capable to serve dairy-free, gluten-free and vegan meals. Since "vegetarian" can mean different things to different people, we find it useful to define Vegetarian as including eggs, dairy, and honey, but not including fish or meat.

For group events, we do not prepare special individual meals, For example, if the retreat 

is a vegetarian retreat, we will not prepare a special raw food plate for an individual.

Here are some things that we do and don't do:

We DO Use:
  • Non-chlorinated well water (which is tested by the Claiborne County Utility District)

  • Mostly organic ingredients

  • Produce from our own organically tended vegetable garden in season

  • Healthy oils such as organic extra virgin olive oil, ghee, real organic butter, and unscented organic coconut oil

  • High quality stainless steel pans

  • Ceramic plates and cups and BPA-free drinking "glasses" (except during the time of COVID-19 where we use paper plates and plasticware to reduce handling of other people's food dishes).

  • Veganaise, a vegan form of mayonaise

  • Organic eggs, from our own chickens

  • Mostly gluten-free ingredients (we list ingredients when we serve the meals) 

  • Organic maple syrup or honey. 

We Don't Use:
  • Soy Products, except wheat-freeTamari and, rarely, tofu (because of their hormonal effects)

  • Peanuts (because of their potential for aflatoxins)

  • Aluminum Cookware or aluminum based baking powder (aluminum detrimental to brain cells)

  • Soft plastic food storage containers (due to BPA content)

  • Corn, Canola, or soybean oils (due to high Omega-6 levels and propensity to oxidize)

  • Trans-fats (like Margerine)

  • High Fructose Corn Syrup (HFCS)

  • Mono Sodium Glutamate (MSG)

                      What Meal Service Means

Chevre Cheese with pecans and Well Being honey
Photo of hearty cole slaw, sweet potato fries and mashed cauliflower
Oversize picnic tables for socially distanced meals
Photo of Snack Table at Retreat Center

Meal Service means three meals a day served promptly at the scheduled times plus all day availability of drinks and snacks.


Breakfasts (served at 8:30 AM) usually consists of organic scrambled, organic gluten-free ancient whole-grain cereal with a choice of nut & fruit toppings, yogurt, juice, coffee and teas. Occasionally, we will serve organic chicken or vegan sausages.


Lunches (served at 12:30 PM) will vary with season and availability of vegetables from our one-acre, organically-tended garden. Generally, there will be a fresh hearty, mostly organic salad. (We won't bore you with a bowl of wimpy iceberg lettuce and call it a salad.) The salads may be mixed green salads, complex cole slaw, or a grain salad such as a tangy barley or rice salad. And then usually a hearty home-made soup or other hot dish such as chili with home-made corn bread, or (wild-caught Alaskan) salmon salad.


Suppers (served at 6:00 pm) will have one or two cooked vegetables (almost never white potatoes and often from the garden in season), a meat (or vegetarian) main dish,  freshly prepared complex salad, and dessert. Most of our meals are low glycemic, tending towards Paleo in character, but we will often make a sweet dessert for supper as well as offering fresh fruit for those abstaining.

All Day Choices for Drinking

Drinks will be available all day and will include:

  • Chilled, tested, non-chlorinated well water which is delicious and mineral rich

  • Starbucks coffee

  • Unsweetened black tea with ice (sweeteners available including our own unadulterated raw honey)

  • An unsweetened herbal tea (usually lemon balm) with ice available

  • On-demand steaming hot water and a variety of herbal and black tea


Snacks will be available all day and will include one or more of the following:

  • Fresh Fruit

  • Mixed Nuts (does not include peanuts)

  • Paleo sweet loaf such as banana-apple-carrot cake, zucchini-almond loaf. These are moist and yummy, low-guilt delights that Patty serves up.

                       How Meals are Served

Fresh Fruit for Snacks


We endeavor, and almost invariably succeed, in serving meals precisely at the scheduled times.

Each dish being served will be label. Labels will list ingredients and whether it is Gluten-Free (GF), vegetarian (VEG), organic (OG), and/or dairy free (DF).

COVID Era Meal Service

During this time of COVID-19, all meals will be served at the open-air  Powell River Pavilion.


                         Food Waste Recycling

Photo of Well Being's laying chickens

We have a very efficient food waste recycling system. We call it "Having Chickens."

Chickens are omnivorous and will happily devour almost any kind of food wastes. However they don't like citrus, pineapple, banana peels, or raw onions. And, as a matter of principle, we don't give them leftover chicken or turkey (their cousins). It just doesn't pass the "feel right" test, although non-organic industrial meat production do not seem to have the same qualms.

We have the chickens located in the orchard and, in off-season, field crop locations in the garden but not in our vegetable production beds. Therefore, food waste is cycled back into the topsoil of the garden.

Contact Well Being Retreat Center:

Patty@WellBeingCC.org or at 423-626-9000 for more information