Woodlands: Down home country BBQ
Established in 1977 and located just minutes south the Blue Ridge Parkway on Highway 321 Bypass in Blowing Rock, North Carolina, The Woodlands Restaurant specializes in North Carolina Barbecue Pork and Ribs with great food and nightly entertainment.
The Woodland's Menu features barbecue beef, pork, chicken and ribs. They serve Home style Mexican food as well and is considered one of North Carolina's best Barbecue with the bonus of Wide screen T.V. in a family oriented, rustic atmosphere.
Favorite Dish: The fried apples sticks were great as I have never had them before.
BBQ plate mains are: ( and include Corn, Slaw, Baked Beans, Choice of Roll, Hot or Mild Cornbread):
Chopped Pork Barbecue
Sliced Pork Barbecue
Chopped Beef Barbecue
Woodlands Smoked Turkey
Barbecue Chicken 1/2
Barbecue Pork Ribs
Baby Back Ribs
Rib & Chicken Combo
"The Hog" (Includes Ribs, Chicken, Beef & Pork)
"Pig Out Special" (Just Enough for Two)
- Family Travel
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- Road Trip
Canyons: Food, drink, music and views!
This is a landmark restaurant for the area and caters to all sorts of customers from sports-bar types to college types to regular travelers. The building is over 100 years old and sits on a cliffside and has served many purposes over the years.
There is regularly scheduled music from well-known entertainers and there is an awesome Jazz Brunch every Sunday morning.
There is also indoor and outdoor dining with vistas overlooking the western North Carolina mountains.
A bonus is that is a free wi-fi hotspot and the restaurant is "green" environmentally.
Lunch and dinner are served daily from 11am until whenever and all items on the menu are available for dining in or to go.
Favorite Dish: Canyons offers a diverse menu ranging from classic burgers and sandwiches to Southwestern specialties and a range of platters.
There are many vegetarian itemss including a variety of soups and salads, a veggie burger topped with housemade sundried tomato spread, plus it has black beans and rice, burritos, chimichangas--all veggie.
The loaded nachos I had were incredibly big, tasty and filling. Definitely a dish to be shared by the table.
Also, try the special appetizer called the TUNA VOLCANO WHICH IS TUNA TARTAR TOSSED IN SOY GINGER, PEPPERS, CUCUMBERS, AND SCALLIONS OVER JASMINE RICE AND TOPPED WITH A WASABI CREAM SAUCE $8.95 .
Don't forget the 'Chocolate Enchilada'!
- Road Trip
- Family Travel
Canyons: View with a Restaurant
Good mix of American / Pub Fare with some southwest options and an fantastic beer and wine selection. But you go here mostly for the VIEW of the Blue Ridge mountains. Go at sunset. You won't be disppointed. Try to sit in the outside deck area if you want to really get a great view of the setting sun.
Favorite Dish: I had Black beans / yellow rice w/ tomatoes and onions and sour cream and some sausage. It was pretty darn tasty. I had mystery beer. I ordered two Warsteiner's ... one was Warsteiner and one was NOT but I wasn't in the mood to kvetch... Wait staff is proficient and they get slammed at sunset as you can imagine, but they are very good staff.
Canyons of the Blue Ridge: Spectacular Views!
We pretty much all agree that when you find a parking lot full of cars it's a good indication of a restaurant's popularity, right? You'll find the food quite good here at Canyon's but with a distinct bonus- The View! If you can, make sure to arrive late in the day and request a seat on the back patio. Hopefully, it will be a nice sunny day and you can watch one of the most special sunsets in the area while you enjoy your favorite beverage and meal. Honestly, it's not to be missed!
There is a wide selections of wines & beers available along with your favorite cocktail. The food is better than adequate at moderate prices considering the available view which could easily add to the menu price. It's not the largest menu, but surely something that everyone can find and enjoy as all food is well prepared.
Favorite Dish: Having just finished the traditional Thanksgiving meal the day before, I had a hankering for some All-American fare of the Cheeseburger variety. And, though you can get it with most any topping you wish, I stayed true to my NC values and ordered it up with chili, coleslaw, and onions! YumYum! It was great with my Newcastle and the homefried chips were an added taste treat... A culinary delight for any farmboy!
- Road Trip
- Hiking and Walking
Kilwins: two of my favorites
Take two of my favorites, ice cream and chocolates, and put them into one store.... heavenly.
Decorated to look like an old general store or pharmacy, you have just about every type of chocolate treat on racks and in jars and on shelves, right at your finger tips. It is difficult not to over-spend in this store. There are boxes of cremes with dark chocolate coating; bags of matl balls or lemon drops; peanut brittle and caramel corn. Cashew clusters and white chocolate bark; foreign brands and homemade candy drops; taffy and suckers.
The shop keeper stands behind the wooden counter where the buckets of ice cream are kept and you can order any flavor or combination of flavors that they have in stock (something around 33 flavors).
You can even buy a jar of their famous chocolate or caramel coating for ice cream.
Come on in; you can't leave without buying something. I know, I've tried unsuccessfully.
And if you have kids then you best bring out the VISA card... you are going to need it.
- Road Trip
- Family Travel
Outback Restaurant: faux aussie
The decor is what Americans think is Australian (boomerangs, tribal art, pictures of kangaroos and koalas) but the food is strictly USA.
The best dinners are the prime rib and the spring chicken. The steak is done medium well and a bit red in the very center and the edges are crispy. The chicken is basted with honey mustard and is served with Monterrey Jack cheese sauce. Either meal is fifteen dollars and includes a salad or soup and a cup of coffee. Throw in a hot apple cobbler for dessert and the whole meal costs $25 per person including tax and tip.
The menu (see website below) has a lot more to offer than our favorites. For instance, you can go down and dirty and get a couple of quick burgers and Aussie fries and a soda. Or maybe a slab of baby back ribs or a plate of spaghetti. There also is a kids' menu with downsized portions and prices for mostly finger foods for the children.
This is not a bad place to stop for a meal. The staff was friendly and they were not into accents or figures of speech to pretend they were Australian. Just plain old American gals trying to serve their customers the best way they can. The meal was served quickly and the air conditioning was much appreciated in the summer heat. But the prices, I thought, were a bit high for what we got. however, being a penny pincher on vacation kind of ruins things so why not splurge a bit.
- Road Trip
Tijuana Fats: Un-authentic Mexican
We were deceived by this resturant. The outside and interior setting was very inviting.
The food was more Tex-Mex and just average. You could definately tell Mexicans were not preparing the food.
I think we are just spoiled.. because the area of NC in which we live has a high Latino (Mexican) population therefore we are very aware of how Mexican food should taste from our local resturants.
I ate: Bean Tostadas with rice. The tostada shells were stale and rice was from a box.
Hubbie ate: "Almost Vegetarian"dish- beans were from a can. Margarita
Favorite Dish: Tequila Sunrise- although tequila could've been better.
- Road Trip
Pssghetti's: Un-gourmet Italian
Perhaps we went on an off night . . ;.
First, let me say what I liked about the restaurant:
-Good bread with tasty garlic butter
-Great wine by the glass menu
(And, if you don't want to read the below, here is my short summary: save your money and go somewhere that has good service and "gourmet" Italian--you will not find it here)
Now, why this was one of my worst dining experiences . ..
-From the moment we walked in, the service was questionable. After being seated at our table, we waited at least ten mintues before a server came to our table (as we watched servers cleaning nearby tables)
-Our appetizer was bruschetta. The bread was grilled, which would add taste except that it was more like charred bread. Also, the tomatoes and basil were of good quality but it simple lacked flavoring (etc. I never add salt to food and the tomatoes needed salt and pepper). When we complained to the watier about the bread, he kind of shrugged and apoligzed half-heartedly
-Our waiter never asked us how our food was; as a result, we finally stopped a manager to compalin that hte ravioli was only lukewarm--he apologized and brought out half a plate of the original entree (our waiter never asked if we wanted paremsan cheese on our entrees, and the mananger didn't seem inclinded to either)
-In between the simple delivery of entrees, we were completely ignored, even when our glasses were obviously empty
-Despite our two complaints, the manager simply apologized (as briefly as possible) but never offered to compensate us for our miserable dining experience because "we had eaten all our food"--even though this wasn't true
Favorite Dish: Bread with garlic butter
Twigs: Frowns upon family dining
A friend and I took my 6 yr old daughter to Tweetsie Railroad. After a long day of traveling, we wanted to try a unique local restaurant - not a chain. We decided on Twigs in Blowing Rock. The hotel front desk said they had good feedback about the food and that jeans were allowed (always a plus). We arrived at Twings around 7PM on a Thursday. The hostess was downright rude (ignored us for about 10 minutes without even acknowledging us even though she was at her podium most of the time). Once she finally spoke, she pushed papers around before finally telling us there were no 3-seater tables available, when the papers on the podium clearly showed several tables open (not marked for reservation either) and we could see at least seven 4-seaters available in the dining room. Our assumption, based on the way she looked at my 6 yr old daughter, was that it was due to the fact that we had a child with us. She suggested we dine in the bar (which is somewhat inappropriate for a 6 yr old). If we had not been tired from traveling all day, we would have left and written off the restaurant forever. However, we decided to take a peek in the bar, and when we saw open tables and a nice/child-safe atmosphere we decided to stay. The bartender, Nate, was WONDERFUL!! He gave us table-service even though we could have gone to the bar to order and checked on us at least 6 times throughout our meal. He was very friendly to all of us - especially my daughter, and he even had the kitchen make her special buttered pasta. Nate made us feel very welcome, which was a very nice surprise considering the first person you meet (which is the one that gives you the first and typically the lasting impression of the establishment) was so rude. If children are not allowed, or encouraged, it should say that in the Vistor Guide ads and the restaurant website. Luckily the food was great - duck confit, filet mignon, shrimp bisque. But as far as first impressions go, Twigs is not family friendly.
Favorite Dish: I cannot complain about the food. The duck cinfit was very juicy and cooked jsut right. It was served smashed potatoes, with a side of broccoli and cauliflower. Excellent! My friend enjoyed her filet mignon and even my 6 yr old loved the shrimp bisque.
- Road Trip
- Family Travel
Six Pence Pub: Great Food and Drink in Blowing Rock
We stopped for lunch here after camping along the Blue Ridge Parkway at Julian Price Park. It was very cold overnight, dropping to 30 °F, so we wanted something warm and decided to split a bowl of chicken wing soup and an order of Sheppard's pie. Both were very good, especially the chicken wing soup, which had just a bit of spice. They also have a good selection of local beers - I had a delicious Pumpkin Ale to celebrate the fall season. Overall, the food was great, the service was good, and the prices were comparable to other places.
Favorite Dish: I really enjoyed the chicken wing soup after a cold night of camping. A hint of Tabasco sauce or maybe buffalo sauce gave it just the right amount of spice. It was a soup of the day, so it is not available all the time.
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