Here's a few places to stop and rest on your way to Nashville.
Get off I 75 at Exit 22 in Valdosta, GA and go E on Valdosta Road to Smok'n Pig BBQ for Top 10 in the US BBQ. Or go to Old South BBQ in Valdosta, GA. Get off I75 at Exit 63A at Tifton, GA and go W on 8th Street W to Pit Stop BBQ for good road food. Get off I 75 at Exit 169 at Macon, GA and go SW on Tom Hill Blvd. to Riverside Dr. Take a left and go S about a mile to Fresh Air BBQ for outstanding GA smoked BBQ. Get off I 75 at Exit 187 and go S to Johnston Street. Take a right and go to Grit's Cafe for outstanding southern cooking for lunch or dinner. Get off I 75 at Exit 198 at Jackson, GA and go E about a mile on High Falls Road to good country food at Falls View Restaurant. Before you get to Atlanta, GA get off I 75 at Exit 233 at Morrow, GA and go S on Jonesborough Road to Southlake Parkway. Take a right and go to Anderson Diner for outstanding country food.
Don't stop for Atlanta, GA. The traffic is too bad. Get off I 75 at Exit 259B and go 1 mile W on I 285 to US 41 or Cobb Parkway. Take a right and go .7 mile to Thompson Brother's for good BBQ. Get off I 75 at Exit 273 in Kennesaw, GA and go W on Cherokee Street to Big Shanty Smokehouse for good BBQ. Get off I 75 at Exit 290 at Cartersville, GA and go W on Canton Highway to the dead end at Highway 61 and go S to Slope's BBQ for good road food.Get off I 75 at Exit 283 in Emerson, GA and go W on Highway 293 to Doug's Place for good country food. Get off I 75 at Exit 293 at White, GA and go NE on Highway 411 about a mile to Wes Man's Restaurant for outstanding country food. It's a little joint but the food is first class. Get the bananna pudding cake for desert. Or get off I 75 at Exit 283 in Emerson, GA and go W on Highway 293 to Doug's Place for good country food. Get off I 75 at Exit 333 in Dalton, GA and go E on Highway 52 to Glenwood Ave. Take a left and go to E Morris. Take a right and go 4/5 blocks to Miller's BBQ for good road food.
Smok'n Pig BBQ @ 4228 N. Valdosta Rd., Valdosta, GA. 229 - 245 - 8227. http://www.smoknpig.com/
Old South BBQ @ 1700 West Hill Avenue, Valdosta, GA 229 - 247 - 6700.
Pit Stop BBQ @ 1112 8th St. W., Tifton, GA 229 - 387 - 0888.
Fresh Air Bar B Que @ 3076 Riverside Dr., Macon, GA. 478 - 477 - 7229. http://www.freshairbarbecue.com/
Grit's Cafe @ 17 West Johnston Street, Forsyth, GA 478 - 994 - 8325. http://www.gritscafe.com/
Falls View Restaurant @ 42 Towaliga River Dr., Jackson, GA 478 - 994 - 6050.
Anderson's Diner @ 1395 Southlake Pkwy., Morrow, GA 678 - 422 - 3643. http://andersonsdiner.homestead.com/index.html
Thompson Brother's BBQ @ 2445 Cobb Parkway SE, Smyrna, GA 770 - 818 - 9098. http://www.thompsonbbq.com/
Big Shanty Smokehouse @ 3393 Cherokee St., Kennesaw, GA. 770 - 499 - 7444. http://bigshantybbq.com/
Slope's BBQ @ 1133 North Tennessee Street, Cartersville, GA 770 - 386 - 9090. http://www.slopesbbq.com/
Doug's Place @ 696 Georgia 293, Emerson, GA 770 - 382 - 9063.
Wes Man's Restaurant @ 3167 Highway 411 NE, White, GA 770 - 386 - 9933. I75/EXIT293.
Miller Brother's BBQ @ 606 East Morris Street, Dalton, GA 706 - 278 - 7365.
Just before you get to the I 24 Exit at Chattanooga, TN get off I 75 at Exit 1B and go W on Ringgold Road to Wally's Restaurant for outstanding country food for breakfast, lunch or dinner. For outstanding burgers and country food go past Exit 180A to the next Exit and go N on S Market Street 5 blocks to E Main Street and take a right. Go to Rossville Avenue and take a right. Go two blocks to a Chattanooga institution for breakfast and lunch at Zarzour's which has been in the same location since 1919.
Wally's Restaurant @ 6521 Ringgold Road, Chattanooga, TN 423 - 899 - 6151. http://www.wallysrest.com/
Zarzour's @ 1627 Rossville Ave., Chattanooga, TN 423 - 266 - 0424. http://www.roadfood.com/R.../Reviews/2618/zarzours
Monteagle, TN is about half way between Sarasota, FL and Chicago, IL. This would be a nice place to stop on your trip. Jim Oliver's has a Best Western Lodge connected to the restaurant. It would be a nice place for the night and have a quiet southern dinner in Monteagle.
High Point Restaurant in Monteagle at Exit 134 is in a historic building and serves dinner only 7 days a week. Jim Oliver's Smokehouse and Lodge at Exit 134 has outstanding southern country food serving breakfast all day and dinner in the evening in a very nice atmosphere. Mountain Breeze Cafe is next to JO's Best Western Smokehouse and serves ice cream, cold drinks and sandwiches. Modern Dave's in Monteagle, TN is open for lunch and dinner serving mix of good southern food, BBQ, seafood and steaks.
High Point Restaurant @ 224 East Main St., Monteagle, TN 931 - 924 - 4600. http://highpointrestaurant.net/
Jim Oliver's Smokehouse Hotel and Lodge @ 850 West Main St., Monteagle, TN 931 - 924 - 2268. http://www.thesmokehouse.com/
Mountain Breeze Cafe @ 828 West Main St., Monteagle, TN 931 - 924 - 2233. http://mountainbreezecafe.com/index.html
Modern Dave's Cafe @ 38 West Main St., Monteagle, TN 931 - 924 - 8363. http://www.moderndavescafe.com/
Jim and Nick's BBQ @ Exit 78B in Murphreesboro, TN has outstanding southern BBQ. Five Sense's Restaurant and Bar in Murphreesboro, TN serves outstanding southern country cooking in a nice atmosphere. Marina's on the Square in Murphreesboro, TN is a great local restaurant for lunch or dinner. Legend's Restaurant @ Exit 70 off I 24 in Smyrna, TN has good seafood and steaks. Whitt's BBQ @ Exit 57B near Antioch, TN is very good. If you stop in Nashville get off I 24 at Exit 47 and go W across the bridge to 6th Ave. Turn right and go to Monell's for outstanding all you can eat country buffet. City House in Nashville has outstanding pizza and pasta for dinner only. At Exit 24 off I 24 in Pleasant View, TN Cafe Ameno serves outstanding breakfast, lunch and dinner in a casual atmosphere.
Jim and Nick's BBQ @ 436 North Thompson Lane, Murfreesboro, TN 615 - 893 - 1001. http://www.jimnnicks.com/
Five Senses Restaurant and Bar @ 1602 West Northfield Blvd., Murfreesboro, TN 615 - 867 - 4155. http://www.fivesensesrestaurant.com/
Marina's on the Square @ 125 North Maple St., Murfreesboro, TN 615 - 849 - 8881.
Legend's Restaurant @ 1918 Almaville Road, Smyrna, TN 615 - 220 - 2115. http://www.legendssteakhouse.com/
Whit's BBQ @ 1800 Antioch Pike, Antioch, TN 615 - 331 - 4604.
Monell's Dining @ 1235 6th Ave. North, Nashville, TN 615 - 248 - 4747. http://www.monellstn.com/ndininginfo....
City House @ 1222 4th Ave. North, Nashville, TN 615 - 736 - 5838.
Cafe Ameno @ 254 Village Square, Pleasant View, TN 615 - 746 - 6702.