Stephen and Cheryl Kraus, the bakers, teachers, and husband-and-wife duo behind Upcountry Provisions, know that the best food begins with the best ingredients. Drawing upon their education at the French Culinary Institute, they start their crusty breads and flaky croissants with organic, locally sourced ingredients, including fresh eggs and milk freshly squeezed from local milk plants. Beyond pastries, they also bake breads that serve as the basis for sandwiches stacked with tender peppered chicken, crisp fried onions, and homemade chutneys, for example. The Krauses also lead two-hour cooking classes for curious chefs of all experience levels, teaching them to craft croissants, breads, cookies, and scratch-made soups.
Bucky's Bar-B-Q owner Wayne Preston honed his craft at a young age, spending boyhood afternoons in his father's meatpacking plant and Wednesday nights preparing suppers for his local church. Word about Wayne's saucy ribs and pulled pork spread shortly after he founded his own roadside barbecue stand, forcing him?like the barbecue-sauce barons of years past?to expand his operations to new frontiers. Today, each of Bucky's four locations fashions heaping plates of never-frozen Boston butt, tender chicken, and St. Louis?style ribs in the traditional country style: hand-rubbed with secret seasonings and slow-cooked over a smoky fire of hickory chips. Three housemade sauces garnish slices of juicy meat served alongside traditional sides of baked beans, coleslaw, and sweet potatoes. When they aren't dishing out meals in the restaurant, Bucky's tireless staff serves parties, formal events, weddings, and flash mobs as large as 1,500 people with fully catered barbecue feasts.
Wayne shares his more than 15 years of barbecuing expertise with aspiring grill masters during in-depth classes offered at his Roper Mountain and Donaldson Center locations. Students not only learn the art behind sauces and rub but also get to eat their class materials.
As they enter under the hanging wood sign bearing a carving of grapes and shuffle past the gray stone and golden stucco façade, patrons at Kozani Restaurant & Bar find themselves transported to the warm kitchens and rolling vineyards of the Mediterranean. Aromas from spices imported from Italy, Greece, Israel, and Lebanon waft through the dining room, signaling the arrival of Mediterranean dishes, including recipes from head chef Tim Robinson's favored region of Emilia Romagna. While he focuses on Northern Italian dishes, the chef also consistently snares an eclectic blend of local ingredients, such as produce and seafood, and crafts gluten-free versions of every dish on the menu. He often appears on the floor to meet clientele, roaming the dining room to chat with diners and make sure their forks have the proper number of prongs. To compliment his dishes, the serving staff often pairs meals with more than 80 wines hailing from Europe, South and North America, and Australia.
Like a hockey player chasing the Stanley Cup or an Olympian pursuing gold, the chefs at The Zone Sports Grill think big when it comes to food. Up to 50 original or boneless wings emerge from the kitchen slathered in 1 of more than 15 sauces, from cilantro lime to Cajun teriyaki. Three half-pound beef patties, onion straws, and bacon fit between two grilled cheese sandwiches to create The Cowboy Killer burger, which was modeled on the sandwich Wyatt Earp used to squash his enemies. The Big Wag burger pits hunger against a breaded pork fritter topped with a half-pound burger patty.
The rest of the massive menu runs the gamut of bar classics, from house-cut fries topped with housemade chili to build-your-own quesadillas drenched in cheese and house queso sauce. The Zone's interior complements the kitchen staff's exuberance with 18 televisions and two giant projectors broadcasting all the latest games.
In 1937, Vernon Rudolph founded Krispy Kreme in Winston-Salem, North Carolina, with the first location on South Main Street in Old Salem. Seventy-seven years later, his secret doughnut recipe lives on within hundreds of Krispy Kreme locations, serving premium sweet treats across the globe.
The entire doughnut-making process, which customers can view up close and personal at many of Krispy Kreme?s outposts, begins with fresh ingredients and ends with the click of a fluorescent sign bearing the words, "Hot Doughnuts Now." From the original, mold-breaking glazed doughnut to newer doughnut varieties, such as Chocolate Iced with Kreme Filling, Glazed Raspberry Filled, and Glazed Chocolate Cake, each round dainty pairs with piping-hot coffee for a compact snack.
Since 1950, Spero Contis’s family has prepared an eclectic array of Greek and American casual classics to share with the greater Greenville community. Today, the kitchen staff at each of Spero's Pete's Original's two locations starts the day by brewing coffee and flipping blueberry pancakes and omelets filled with feta cheese or philly steak. At lunch and dinner, their tender gyro meat tops greek salads and fills pita bread. Pimientos, chili, and jalapeños are layered in the 1950s original burgers, so named for both their persistence on the eatery’s menu and their resemblance to Sputnik. For easy meals and parties at home, Spero's Pete's Original also caters throughout the area.