Blowing Rock, located in the center of the Blue Ridge Mountains, was founded in the mid-1800s by Scotch-Irish colonists, hunters, and trappers as a halt on the mountain pass between Virginia and Kentucky. It wasn’t long before some very great Blowing Rock eateries sprung up.
To escape the heat of the lowlands below, many people started to construct summer houses in and around Blowing Rock. As awareness of Blowing Rock’s health advantages grew, so did the number of tourists. Then came camping, then boarding rooms, and finally huge hotels. Several rich private estates welcomed tourists, ultimately becoming into large hotels.
Blowing Rocks’ economy quickly became oriented on the numerous visitors traveling to the high country and offering facilities to keep them there and returning. Blowing Rock, North Carolina’s first true tourist attraction, has been drawing people to the Blue Ridge Parkway since 1933.
Blowing Rock is now located just off the Blue Ridge Parkway at the intersection of US Highways 321 and 221. For inhabitants and tourists alike, it provides the best of small-town life with a cool temperature, stunning mountain vistas, year-round outdoor activities, and the finest lodgings with outstanding restaurants and shops.
When I travel, one of my favorite things to do is eat and drink. I like identifying unusual restaurants that highlight the area’s history, culture, and agriculture, as well as locations that residents enjoy.
Blowing Rock does not let you down. This is by no means an exhaustive list of all the fantastic Blowing Rock restaurants; rather, it is a selection of our current favorites.
Visiting other places in North Carolina? Check out our other tasty guides:
- 13 Must-Try Restaurants in Mooresville, NC
- 11 Must-Try Restaurants in Manteo, North Carolina
- 13 Best Restaurants in Lexington, North Carolina
- 8 Must-Try Boone NC Restaurants
- 9 Best Asheville NC Restaurants
- The Best Chapel Hill Restaurants NC & 11 Best Things To Do In Chapel Hill
- 10 Best North Carolina Dishes
- 10 Best Restaurants In Raleigh NC
- 10 Must-Try Greensboro Restaurants
- 10 Must-Try Restaurants In Cary NC
- 8 Must-Try Outer Banks NC Restaurants
- 13 Best Restaurants in Lexington
- 7 Must-Try West Jefferson NC Restaurants
- 7 Best Fayetteville NC Restaurants & 9 Fun Things To Do In Fayetteville NC
- 9 Best Things To Do In Blowing Rock NC
- 1 The Top 9 Restaurants in Blowing Rock
- 2 Which of these Blowing Rock eateries do you want to try the most? Please share your thoughts in the comments box below!
The Top 9 Restaurants in Blowing Rock
The phone number is 828-295-31551121 Main Street.
The Sixpence Tavern was the first place we ate in Blowing Rock. First and foremost, I am Irish, thus any establishment with the word “pub” in its name is on my radar. As you go through the doors, the thick, dark wood is warm and welcoming, as it is in most traditional pubs. Looking around the room with all the classic British style décor is entertaining.
The Pub offers both American and British cuisine.
On our first visit, we sat at the large bar. A guy walked in and sat next to us as we waited for our order. Initiating discussion, he said that he was from Charlotte and that he often goes up to Blowing Rock simply to eat at Sixpence Tavern. My husband was overjoyed since it was exactly what he had requested.
The main dining room offers lots of seats, and the wide bar section includes numerous high-top tables as well. The outside patio has lots of seats as well as heaters for colder seasons.
No matter where you’re coming from, the Sixpence Pub, one of the top Blowing Rock restaurants to visit, has terrific comfort cuisine and cool beers.
The Town Tavern
Main Street, 828-295-75001182.
The Town Pub is welcoming and lively. They name themselves a sports bar, but I believe they are more. It’s the kind of place where you walk in and immediately feel at ease. As you step in, you can almost hear Norm! yells. They also offer some of the greatest pub cuisine I’ve ever had.
The Tavern has a diverse cuisine that includes everything from wings and nachos to burgers, wraps, and specialty sandwiches.
My husband ate his meatball sandwich as I ate my fried buffalo shrimp.
They provide an excellent assortment of lighter dishes as well as a superb, reasonably priced children’s menu. Additionally, inquire about their speciality (non-menu) foods and beverages.
The dining room is rather large. There are 19 television screens around the venue, so every seat has a terrific view of your favorite game. The long, wrap-around bar is a terrific location to relax, as is the spacious outdoor patio area in Blowing Rock.
Even if sports aren’t your thing, visit this top Blowing Rock eatery.
828-295-4008143 Wonderland Path
Bistro Roca is a Blowing Rock hidden treasure that is off the usual route yet still simple to discover. The cuisine at Bistro Rocas is upscale yet informal, with New American comfort food like lobster mac and cheese, burgers, and pizza baked fresh in a wood-burning oven.
We returned after being turned away on our initial visit because we did not have reservations, and we are very pleased we did. My dinner began with white wine cream and basil mussels, which were followed by a house salad and a Bistro special shrimp and grits in a bourbon red-eye sauce, which I paired with an Argentina Malbec glass of wine. My spouse thought his bacon-cheddar burger was the greatest.
The main dining area has plenty of seating. There is also a bar and a comfortable sun-porch-style space. All of the accommodations are welcoming.
Reservations are required for lunch and supper. Bistro Roca offers some of the greatest casual eating in Blowing Rock.
Savannah’s Oyster House
They claim it has the greatest seafood in the High Country. The name alone conjures up images of good ol’ southern, low country food. The menu features dishes from all across the south, including New England clam chowder and lobster tails.
Start with alligator nibbles, Cajun crawfish, or fried calamari.
She-crab, chowder, and gumbo are some of the soups available.
Entrees like crab cakes, jambalaya, and shrimp and grits are out of this world. Steamed pots, fried platters, oysters, you name it.
Is there someone in your group who isn’t a fan of seafood? Not to worry, Savannahs offers burgers, chicken tenders, and a fantastic kids menu.
Tuesdays feature All You Can Eat Snow Crab Legs and Fridays have Endless Steamed Shellfish. The two-tiered patio has plenty of outdoor seating. Every day. Savannahs is the place to go for seafood among Blowing Rock eateries.
185 Chetola Lake Drive, 828-295-5572
Timberlakes Restaurant at Chetola Resort is one of our favorite spots since it is situated in a historical structure that was previously the Manor House when Chetola was a private estate. North Carolina’s own Bob Timberlake, a world-renowned artist and designer, restored the exquisite mansion.
Timberlake’s love of cuisine also influenced the menu’s uniqueness.
Begin with a charcuterie board, followed by a fresh spring fruit salad or an Asian quinoa salad.
Entrees such as grilled Canadian salmon and Angus NY strip steak are popular choices.
My Fishermans Pie was delicious, with shrimp, scallops, and salmon in a white wine cheddar bechamel with a mashed potato crust, while my spouse appreciated his Sweet Tea Brined Pork Rib Eye.
Timberlakes has three pleasant dining rooms, an exclusive wine room, and terrace dining overlooking the water. Open everyday for breakfast, lunch, and supper, whether you are a Chetola Resort guest or not. Weekend nights include live music.
Timberlakes is an exquisite, historic restaurant in Blowing Rock that serves gourmet cuisine.
The Speckled Trout
The phone number is 828-295-9819922 Main Street.
The Speckled Trout, which specializes on fresh-caught North Carolina trout and other regional specialties, is proud of its menu’s local farm-to-table products.
This Blowing Rock restaurant’s menu features inventive meals like as trout nachos and tacos, as well as grass-fed beef burgers and steaks, in addition to their famous trout dishes.
There are also vegetarian, vegan, and gluten-free alternatives available. Their bottle store offers a large assortment of wine, including local rose and farm beer.
The large wooden wine barrel on the junction of Main Street and US Highway 221 is housed in a refurbished 1950s petrol station.
The Speckled Trout offers a large outside covered patio. Every Thursday night, there is live music. Tuesdays and Wednesdays are closed.
Foggy Rock Eatery and Pub
828-295-72628180 Valley Boulevard (US Hwy 321)
Passing by, Foggy Rock seems to be a hunting lodge. It’s a local family-owned restaurant that serves up terrific traditional cuisine with a twist, with an unusual selection of small dishes (they had me at crispy fried Brussels sprouts) and thirteen different salads.
The menu includes delicious Phillys as well as other sandwiches, burgers, and pasta. Entrees including trout, salmon, and bourbon pork chops are out of this world.
Foggy Rock looks and feels like a cabin on the inside, too, with weathered wood, shiplap walls, and a tin ceiling. The walls are covered with old black and white family pictures.
It’s a location I’d want to return to with friends since it’s warm and welcoming. In the main dining area, there are both tables with seats and comfortable booths. There are additional tables in the pub, as well as a large bar with numerous Televisions.
There aren’t many fantastic American restaurants in Blowing Rock, so make a point of visiting Foggy Rock.
Valley Boulevard, 828-295-36518304 Valley Blvd (US Hwy 321)
A family-friendly, come-as-you-are cafe. Begin with corn nuggets and pigtails (curly fries). All of your favorite hog, beef, chicken, and ribs are fresh off the smoker.
Woodlands is known for its classic North Carolina BBQ pork, but they also offer nachos, wings, sandwiches, burgers, and burritos. All of this, plus typical Barbecue sides and dessert. A very affordable children’s menu is also available.
Woodlands, which has been open since 1977, is a rustic and cozy Barbeque spot with long wooden tables and benches. At the bar lounge, you may relax with a drink, watch sports, or play darts.
They provide daily beer promotions and live music every night. Throughout the winter, Mondays and Tuesdays are closed.
Stop here for barbeque in Blowing Rock!
Blowing Rock Brewing Company
Sunset Drive, 828-414-9600152 Sunset Drive
No list of mine is complete until it includes at least one brewpub (brewery and eatery). Blowing Rock Brewery rounds out my list. Blowing Rock Brewery, situated on Sunset Drive just off Main Street, produces the best quality mountain artisan beer. Monday through Wednesday: closed
Like their beer, their Ale House menu varies seasonally, utilizing only the freshest local and organic foods.
Soft baked pretzels and Ale House chips, both offered with Ashe County Cheddar Beer Cheese, are among the menu items.
The bison chili and burger are just as delicious as the Angus beef burgers. Fresh seasonal salads and unique sandwiches fill out the menu.
With so many fantastic Blowing Rock restaurants to choose from, the only issue is which one (or two) will become your favorite.