Best of the Blue Ridge 2020

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Food & Drink

Ice Cream

The Stache (Fayetteville, W.Va.)

Satisfy your sweet tooth after a day outside with an ice cream cone, sundae, milkshake, or candy from The Stache. 

Runners-Up

—Kline’s Dairy Bar (Shenandoah Valley, Va.)
—Homestead Creamery (Wirtz, Va.)

Food Truck

Riverchick Farms (Fayetteville, W.Va.)

Fill up on handmade sweet and savory crepes from Riverchick Farm. The menu rotates depending on the season, so try some new fillings each time you visit. 

Runners-Up

—Alex’s Taco Truck (Waynesboro, Va.)
—Mountain Momma’s (Bradley, W.Va.)

Vegetarian Restaurant 

The Wild Bean (Lewisburg, W.Va.)

The Wild Bean specializes in organic, made-from-scratch vegetarian and vegan dishes. Get your morning started with a breakfast burrito and organic espresso or hit the shop at lunch for a filling sandwich and smoothie. 

Runners-Up

—Twisted Branch Tea Bazaar (Charlottesville, Va.)
—Gillie’s Cuisine (Blacksburg, Va.)

Festival Food

Photo courtesy of Mama Crockett’s

Cinnamon Sugar Donut from Mama Crockett’s Cider Donuts (Lynchburg, Va.)

At Mama Crockett’s traveling food truck, you can watch as they make their mouth-watering cinnamon sugar donuts in front of you with apples sourced from an orchard in Nelson County, Va. Check out their Facebook page to see where they’ll be next or book them for your next event. 

Runners-Up

—Nachos Carnitas from Hank’s Fly’n Pig (McGaheysville, Va.)
—Avocado Fries from Wake N Bacon (Roanoke, Va.)

Burritos/Tacos

Burrito Bar (Lansing, W.Va.)

Order one of Burrito Bar’s tacos or burritos filled with ingredients like smoked chicken, sweet potato fries, and coffee’d black beans, or build your own as you enjoy the views and live music. 

Runners-Up

—FreeFolk Brewery (Fayetteville, W.Va.)
—Brazos Tacos (Charlottesville, Va.)

Pizza

Pies & Pints (Fayetteville, W.Va.)

Stop by the original Pies & Pints location in Fayetteville, right down the road from the New River Gorge. Try one of their specialty pies like siracha shrimp, chicken gouda, or black bean. 

Runners-Up

—Blue Mountain Brewery (Afton, Va.)
—Benny’s Pizza (Multiple Locations)

BBQ

Firecreek BBQ & Steaks (Fayetteville, W.Va.)

Treat yourself to some mouthwatering smoked brisket, baby back ribs, and homemade barbecue sauce. Be on the lookout for weekend food and drink specials. 

Runners-Up

—Mission BBQ (Multiple Locations)
—Blue Ridge Pig (Afton, Va.)

Coffee Shop

Mill Mountain Coffee & Tea (Roanoke, Va.)

Since 1990, Mill Mountain Coffee & Tea has been roasting their coffee by hand instead of relying on computers. Grab a cup at one of their six Virginia locations or order a package to make at home. 

Runners-Up

—Cathedral Café (Fayetteville, W.Va.)
—Trager Brothers Coffee Roasters (Afton, Va.)

Brunch

Beer Run (Charlottesville, Va.)

Hit Beer Run on the weekend for good food and good company. Saturdays are for breakfast tacos served on homemade tortillas. Sunday brunch features a variety of dishes, including their Bloody Marys and a well-curated tap selection. 

Runners-Up

—Cathedral Café (Fayetteville, W.Va.)
—Wood Iron Eatery (Fayetteville, W.Va.)

Farm-to-Table Restaurant 

Local Roots (Roanoke, Va.)

The guiding philosophy at Local Roots is SOLE: sustainable, organic, local, and ethical. The seasonal dishes are made with ingredients from area farms, including the restaurant’s own garden.

Runners-Up

—The Station (Fayetteville, W.Va.)
—Wood Iron Eatery (Fayetteville, W.Va.)

Restaurant 

Blue Mountain Brewery (Afton, Va.)

Blue Mountain offers an array of choices to complement their brews, from nachos loaded with cheese, salsa, and jalapenos to hand-rolled pizzas and specialty sandwiches. The food truck at the Barrel House location serves many of the same dishes as the brewery.

Runners-Up

—Secret Sandwich Society (Multiple Locations)
—Wood Iron Eatery (Fayetteville, W.Va.)

Spirit 

Big Level from Smooth Ambler (Lewisburg, W.Va.)

From beginning to bottle, the Big Level Bourbon is crafted at Smooth Ambler’s distillery in West Virginia. 

Runners-Up

—Blackback Honey Rye from Silverback Distillery (Afton, Va.)
—Bowman Brothers Small Batch from A. Smith Bowman (Fredericksburg, Va.)

Burger

Jack Brown’s Beer and Burger Joint (Multiple Locations)

You’ll find Jack Brown’s across the Southeast, serving their specialty burgers, French fries, and deep-fried Oreos that’ll keep you coming back for more. 

Runners-Up

—Wood Iron Eatery (Fayetteville, W.Va.)
—Secret Sandwich Society (Multiple Locations)

Post-Adventure Hangout

Blue Mountain Brewery (Afton, Va.)

Virginia’s Blue Mountain Brewery is just down the road from popular spots like the Blue Ridge Parkway, Humpback Rocks, and Wintergreen Resort. Stop by for staples like the delicious pale ale Full Nelson after a day outside. 

Runners-Up

—The Grove (Fayetteville, W.Va.)
—Maggie’s Pub (Fayetteville, W. Va.)

Local Non-Alcoholic Beverage

Zoey Crush from Wood Iron Eatery (Fayetteville, W.Va.)

The Zoey Crush is an iced drink made with a shot of espresso, vanilla, orange, and soda water. The owners of Wood Iron Eatery named the drink after their daughter, who was born two weeks before the restaurant opened. 

Runners-Up

—Ginger Bucha from Blue Ridge Bucha (Waynesboro, Va.)
—Berkeley Springs Water (Berkeley Springs, W.Va.)

Beer/Wine/Spirits Trail

Nelson 151 (Nelson County, Va.)

Drive along Route 151, a designated Virginia scenic byway, and stop at one of the six wineries, four breweries, two cideries, and a distillery along the way. All of the stops are within 14 miles of each other. 

Runners-Up

—Asheville Ale Trail (Asheville, N.C.)
—The Kentucky Bourbon Trail (Ky.)

Farmers Market

Fayette County Farmers Market (Fayetteville, W.Va.)

Stop by the Fayette County Farmers Market every Saturday from May through the end of October for fresh food, art, and crafts. You can also catch these vendors from two to six on Thursdays just down the road in Oak Hill.

Runners-Up

—Roanoke City Market (Roanoke, Va.)
—Nelson Farmers Market Cooperative (Nellysford, Va.)

Cider 

Bold Rock IPA from Bold Rock Hard Cider (Nellysford, Va.)

Bold Rock’s India Pressed Apple, winner of 14 national and international awards, combines the tartness of the apples with the hop-fueled notes of citrus, passion fruit, and grapefruit for a refreshing cider.

Runners-Up

—Elderberry Infused Hard Cider from Hawk Knob Hard Cider and Mead (Lewisburg, W.Va.)
—Queen of Swords from Gypsy Circus Cider (Kingsport, Tenn.)

Wine 

The Black Dog from Chateau Morrisette (Floyd, Va.)

A blend of Chambourcin, Cabernet, and Merlot, the Black Dog from Chateau Morrisette is a fruity red that pairs well with just about any meal. 

Runners-Up

—Three Hot Blondes from Toasted Goat Winery (Frostburg, Md.)
—Crosé from King Family Vineyards (Crozet, Va.)

Beer 

Devil Anse IPA from Greenbrier Valley Brewing (Lewisburg, W.Va.)

This India pale ale is named for William “Devil Anse” Hatfield, leader of the Hatfield family during their feud with the McCoy family. 

Runners-Up

—Full Nelson from Blue Mountain Brewery (Afton, Va.)
—Get Bent IPA from Parkway Brewing Company (Salem, Va.)

Cidery

Bold Rock (Nellysford, Va.)

Since opening their doors in 2012, Bold Rock has grown to become one of the most successful craft cider companies in the country. In 2019, they expanded their lineup to include hard seltzers and canned cocktails. 

Runners-Up

—Hawk Knob Cidery (Lewisburg, W.Va.)
—Gypsy Circus Cider (Kingsport, Tenn.)

Distillery 

Smooth Ambler Spirits (Lewisburg, W.Va.)

Stop by their tasting room and distillery in the mountains of West Virginia to view the production operation from the mash tank to the barreling process. 

Runners-Up

—Silverback Distillery (Afton, Va.)
—Twin Creek Distillery (Rocky Mount, Va.)

Vineyard/Winery

Chateau Morrisette (Floyd, Va.)

Chateau Morrisette is a third-generation, family-owned winery featuring fine dining, live music, festivals, and, of course, wine tastings. 

Runners-Up

—Veritas Vineyards (Afton, Va.)
—King Family Vineyards (Crozet, Va.)

Brewery/Brewhouse

Bridge Brew Works (Fayetteville, W.Va.)

Sit out on Bridge Brew Works’ patio to enjoy a pint, local food trucks, and the mountain air. 

Runners-Up

—Devils Backbone Brewing Company (Roseland, Va.)
—Blue Mountain Brewery (Afton, Va.)

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