9 Best Restaurants (right now) in Brevard, North Carolina
9 Best Restaurants (right now) in Brevard, North Carolina
Story by Chris Chamberlain Sponsored Editorial
Whether you’re hungry for outdoor adventure or Southern cuisine, the beautiful community of Brevard, North Carolina has you covered.
Brevard is an outdoor paradise. Hit the trails on a mountain bike or your own two feet and explore forests peppered with waterfalls, rivers and streams, stunning vistas, and abundant fresh air. Go fly fishing. Saddle up for horseback riding. Try your luck at gem mining. Enjoy bird watching. Paddle the French Broad River. Play golf. And so much more!
“Quaint” is an appropriate word to describe downtown Brevard. Its wide avenues invite strolling around to see all the shops, galleries, and restaurants. Oh, the restaurants! Brevard is an excellent foodie destination: It’s loaded with all sorts of independent restaurants that offermouthwatering menus at wallet-friendly prices and generousoutdoor dining options. At longtime stalwarts as well as newer restaurants, Brevard’s chefs push the envelope of modern cuisine.
Come have fun outdoors and fuel up at your pick among Brevard’s best restaurants right now:
Rocky’s Grill & Soda Shop fits in perfectly with the vibe of downtown Brevard, but unlike some other “retro” diners, Rocky’s comes by its ambiance honestly. A soda fountain has operated at this address since 1941, and five years later the luncheonette took over most of the drug store that previously housed the lunch counter. Rocky’s is dedicated to preserving the old school atmosphere of that original soda fountain, serving fresh salads and sandwiches made from scratch plus thick, creamy shakes, malts, and smoothies. Rocky’sis most famous for its burgers and hot dogs smothered in delicious toppings like pimento cheese and homemade chili. The bread is super fresh:It’s delivered from Bracken Mountain Bakery right next door.
Traditionally, the “meat & three” dining experience involves taking a tray down a line of steam tables that display choices of meats and veggie side dishes (the “three”), but Magpie Meat & Three simplifies that process. You can stay seated and order off the menu, though you still get to customize your plate with picks among the offerings. Choose a fantastic smoked meat (such as chicken, sausage, barbecue ribs, or pulled pork shoulder) and then add some soulful side dishes (like black eyed peas, grits, collard greens, or mac & cheese). There’s also a notable grilled pork loin if you’re looking for a leaner cut of meat, and vegetarians can assemble a pretty fine veggie plate with all the side options. Wash down your meal with a pint or two of beer from thedrink menu that includes craft brews from local and regional breweries.
Tucked away down a little alley in the middle of downtown, The Square Root is worth seeking out. Located in a restored building, it’s a delight for both the eyes and the palate. In the dining room, the historic architecture is on full display with exposed brick walls, wooden beams, and trusses. You’ll find additional seating at the wood-topped bar as well as the breezy outdoor patio.The Square Root is all about choices, from where you’d prefer to sit to its broad, eclectic menus for lunch, dinner, and brunch. You might opt to take dining expeditions via dishes with clear Asian, Cajun, Bavarian, Mexican, and other global influences, with diverse options like the chicken curry, grilled Spanish octopus, rabbit gumbo, and crispy roasted duck à l’orange. Regional flavors are also featured in creations like North Carolina trout, Southern fondue with pimento cheese, fig and grilled chicken salad, and more. The bar offers thoughtfully chosen wines and local beers. Occasional live music performances add to the ambiance. The Square Root does many things well.
The Falls Landing Eatery is a popular gathering spot for locals, but the hospitality extends to out-of-towners, too. For more than a quarter century, this restaurant has served seasonal Americana cuisine made with fresh ingredients. The owner came to Brevard from the Virgin Islands and brought a love of seafood with him, so you’ll see plenty of oysters, shellfish, and fish on the menu, including trout from nearby streams. A children’s menu features all the kids’ greatest hits like chicken fingers and grilled cheese, but also some more interesting choices like fried shrimp and fish & chips. For adults, a full bar and fairly extensive wine and beer list are a nice accompaniment to an al fresco meal on the cozy patio.
The husband and wife team behind the Jordan Street Café are a talented duo; he runs the kitchen while she creates the dessert menu and oversees the operations in the front of the house. Together they have established this fixture of a restaurant that has served beautiful yet unpretentious dishes for almost two decades in a historic building in downtown Brevard.Over the years, they have expanded the operation from a single dining room to add a bar, a lounge area, and a popular outdoor patio that’s especially in demand during the weekly Sunday brunch. The menu exhibits a wide geographic diversity ranging from Asian-inspired seafood dishes to classic Italian chicken parm to a hyper-local plate of bacon-wrapped trout. No matter where you go on a culinary journey at Jordan Street Café, you’re sure to be satisfied.
Whether you’re enjoying Brevard’s temperate spring and summer weather or warming up next to the roaring fire during fall and winter, Marco Trattoria is always a comfortable spot to enjoy classic Italian cuisine in a convivial environment. Marco’s menu features specialties from different regions of Italy along with rotating specials that are always worth learning about before settling on your order. An infernally hot wood-fired oven lends a kiss of smoke to artisanal pizzas that emerge from a quick pass through the heat with lovely “leopard spots” on the slightly charred crusts. Pizza toppings range from traditional like the classic Margherita pie (upon which the tricolor flag of Italy is represented by marinara, mozzarella and basil) to Marco’s more inventive brie pizza topped with pesto sauce, brie, apples, pine nuts, arugula, and drizzled honey.
Vescovo Neighborhood Eatery is named for the Italian word for “bishop,” which was also the nickname of a late friend of the owner. Bishop’s big red beard has become a design motif for many aspects of the dining space, a nice memorial at this popular Italian restaurant in Brevard’s Lumber District. The owner is also the chef, so he pays attention to each plate that comes out of the kitchen. Traditional Italian dishes are raised above the ordinary thanks to premium ingredients and elegant plating; pasta dishes are the specialties of the house. Vescovo features an expansive list of international wines to accompany your meal or just to enjoy a glass at the impressive, rustic, wooden bar.
While the name of this cozy wine bar is a fun pun, it’s also an understatement because a lot more than just vino is served at Wine Down on Main. While interesting wines are available by the glass or bottle, and the list of options is certainly impressive, the menu of food items is also notable. Designed to pair with wine—whether you favor red or white—the menu features cheese and charcuterie boards, flatbreads, paninis, and small bites. The actual wine bar is made from gorgeous planks of gnarled, polished wood from a single tree. Several other cozy seating areas provide excellent spots to spend quality time with companions over some wine and snacks.
Every town needs a great prototypical Irish pub, and Dugan’s fills that need in Brevard. First and foremost, it pulls a proper Irish pint of Guinness, which means that it’s actually a 20-ounce glass with a thick creamy head of foam. The walls at Dugan’s Pub are decorated with a wild kaleidoscope of Notre Dame sports memorabilia, but fans of other teams are certainly also welcome. The menu is a mix of traditional pub grub like wings, chicken tenders, and burgers, but there’s also a selection of classic Irish dishes including fish & chips, corned beef and cabbage, and shepherd’s pie. On your first visit, you might enter as a stranger, but you’ll leave as a friend!
Plan A Trip
Brevard is an easy half–hour drive from Asheville where the regional airport offers direct flights from many larger American cities. Brevard is also a less than a four-hour drive through the beautiful mountains and forests from multiple Southern cities including Atlanta, Charleston, Knoxville, and Charlotte.
Brevard offers a wide variety of accommodations including resorts, hotels, B&Bs, inns, and even opportunities for “glamping” in cabins. No matter your budget or preference, you’ll find comfortable places to stay.Find places to stay in Brevard, NC on TripAdvisor.
During the Coronavirus pandemic, many venues are limiting public access and events with safety in mind. Please call to confirm visitor details in advance. We anticipate that regular operations will resume as soon as possible. In the meantime, wash your hands frequently, stay safe, and keep calm.