Satisfy Your Adventurous Appetite with a Taste of Jackson County, N.C.

Satisfy Your Adventurous Appetite with a Taste of Jackson County, N.C.

Nestled within the mountains of Jackson County, N.C. are amazing restaurants ready to please every palette and price. Its small towns offer big flavors from eateries that have earned loyal followings and impressive accolades. From white linen experiences against spectacular granite backdrops to tucked-away taverns steps off the sidewalks, Jackson County offers tastes that are sure to please even the most discriminating foodie and adventurous appetite. The area is home to award-winning chefs and rising culinary stars offering dishes that are eclectic and intriguing, often making creative use of farm-to-table and locally-sourced ingredients. This is where you may find more than one trout dish on the menu, but each will offer its own, imaginative twist. Plan your culinary journey by starting from the southern end of Jackson County, in Sapphire and Cashiers, and work your way up N.C. 107 to Sylva and Dillsboro. And don’t forget to make your lodging reservations so you can rest and relax after your delicious meals. While almost every locally-owned restaurant in Jackson County is worthy of praise, we’ve selected a few that have recently received rave reviews, critical praise or accolades. Canyon Kitchen: Taking Flavor to Great Heights – Sapphire With clear views of thousand-foot granite cliffs, Canyon Kitchen may offer one of the most dramatic and beautiful restaurant settings in the country – a dining experience sure to stir the soul and senses. It’s easy to see why Food & Wine selected it for its “Most Romantic Restaurant in Every State” list in […]

Spring trip planner — where to eat, stay & play

Spring trip planner — where to eat, stay & play

Spring will soon be in full swing! To prepare for this new season ahead, we rounded up our suggestions for where to eat, stay and play in the mountains when the flowers are in bloom and the warm sun is shining. EAT AM – They say the most important meal of the day is breakfast. Rise with the sun and pair a hearty meal or a fresh-baked pastry with with a delicious coffee from one of our several local cafes such as The Coffee Shop, White Moon, City Lights, The Farmhouse Mercantile & Coffee Bar or Buck’s Coffee Café. AFTERNOON Grab something sweet! Discover housemade chocolate of every variety at Baxley’s Chocolates or Dillsboro Chocolate Factory, or if you need an excuse to cool down, order from 24 frozen custard flavors at Crossroads Custard & Coldbrew or treat your tastebuds to a hand-dipped ice cream cone from Jack the Dipper. There’s nothing like a fresh cold beer. Sip on something crafty at one of our seven local breweries throughout Sylva, Dillsboro, Cashiers, Cullowhee and Cherokee. Start with Innovation Station, located in the heart of Dillsboro along the railroad tracks, or Whiteside Brewing, a family-friendly hangout within walking distance of The Wells Cashiers. PM – For a chef-driven sit-down experience, book a reservation at ILDA, The Library Kitchen & Bar or Canyon Kitchen. If you’re wanting something more casual and affordable, we recommend Meatballs, a new pizza joint from the team behind ILDA, or Haywood Smokehouse, The Ugly Dog Public House […]

Sensory-inspired food & drink exploration through Sylva and Dillsboro

Sensory-inspired food & drink exploration through Sylva and Dillsboro

Sometimes the best way to experience a new destination is by letting your palate guide you through it! Here are our recommendations for a sensory-inspired foodie experience in Sylva and Dillsboro, our perfectly paired mountain towns within Jackson County, NC. HEAR| the Tuckasegee River roar as you dine outside on Foragers Canteen’s spacious patio. Set right along the mighty river, which flows almost the entire length of beautiful Jackson County, this local restaurant serves up a fusion of locally sourced, farm to table ingredients. It’s also near the Great Smoky Mountain Railroad, so it’s possible you’d also hear the trains as they come by as you dine! SEE| Chef Santiago Guzzetti prepare Italian-Appalachian cuisine in the kitchen at ILDA, the space where his wife’s family opened her own restaurant nearly 40 years ago. ILDA has a growing reputation in the Southeast, and was even named “Mountain Restaurant of the Year” by Eater Carolinas in 2021. Its union of Italian and Southern Appalachian cuisine presents Instagram-worthy plates such as Saffron Paccheri pasta, Taleggio Crostinis to share, and eye-catching cocktail and mocktail creations. See for yourself here. TASTE | the farm fresh flavors at Guadalupe Cafe, like locally grown organic salad greens and regeneratively raised beef from Mountainside Family Farm. You probably wouldn’t think of the tropics when you think of dining in the mountains, but Guadalupe’s incredibly creative tropical fusion cuisine is not to be missed. When its menu was first developed, the intention was to take diners on a trip through Spain, the Middle East and the […]

Top Foodie Favorites in Jackson County

Top Foodie Favorites in Jackson County

A growing trend, food travel is becoming increasingly popular as travelers seek out the tastiest eateries and dishes across the country. In the towns of Cashiers, Cherokee, Dillsboro and Sylva, which make up Jackson County, you’ll find a true haven for all things delicious, making it the ideal spot for a culinary adventure. From barbecue to fresh farm-to-table cuisine to handmade chocolates, Jackson County has everything needed for a foodie’s perfect getaway.

8 Great Picnic Spots in the NC Mountains

Picnic at Waterrock Knob

8 Great Picnic Spots in the NC Mountains

Great food, great views, and warm weather go together so well! In the NC Mountains of Jackson County, many of our delicious non-chain restaurants offer numerous takeout options for you to enjoy while soaking up the best of the warm spring mountain air. In our towns of Cashiers, Cherokee, Dillsboro, and Sylva (about an hour west of Asheville), you’ll find the best picnic spots to break out the picnic basket and enjoy quality time with friends and family. Check out ‘8 Great Picnic Spots’ to enjoy in the NC Mountains.

Elevate Your Palate in Jackson County

Elevate Your Palate in Jackson County

Bacon-wrapped filet mignon, fried Apalachicola oysters, maple bourbon-brined pork chops, jerk chicken and homemade berry pie—is your mouth watering yet? Food is one of the best parts of any vacation, and in the mountain towns that make up Jackson County, the restaurants make as much of a lasting impression as the towering mountain landscapes that surround you. Enjoy big flavors with a small-town vibe at some of these buzzworthy dining spots.