For the past decade, Blue Sky Café owners Julianna and Mark Pletcher have continually added to a menu nearly as big and cheery as the restaurant’s namesake. Cooks are proud of their hefty, hand-formed burgers and their chicken—each served in a dazzling array of preparations—but there are just as many health-conscious wraps and salads and vegetarian and vegan dishes. A recent development is a creative, sweet-and savory brunch service, where cheese and garlic turn grits into a bowlful of decadence and prosciutto and parmesan put the Sicilian in a Sicilian frittata.
Kids get their own, more-flexible-than-usual menu, though they’ll have to weigh whether to dig in or finish what they’ve been drawing with provided crayons on the paper placemats. A further draw for tots is the playhouse that stands on an oasis of a patio, whose tall wooden fence encloses hanging lanterns, huge umbrellas, and plants trailing from every wall as they toward their goal of trying the sweet-potato fries everybody keeps talking about.
With more than 30 years of dough-kneading experience, the chefs at Iannucci's Pizzeria & Italian Restaurant have crafted a menu of time-tested, authentic Italian food and pizzas. Choices such as eggplant and hamburger top Iannucci's housemade dough and sauce, allowing pie lovers to build a large 16 inch or Sicilian style to their liking or to look like them. For dinner, pasta fans can quell hunger tides with the baked ziti a la joi or satiate carnivorous cravings with the veal parmigiana, each chaperoned by the pizzeria's signature breadsticks. When the time comes to celebrate a birthday, reunion, or AVP: Alien vs. Predator anniversary, patrons can ogle the catering menu to spice up the shindig with a tray of meatballs or italian sausages, meat or spinach lasagna, or a large greek, italian, or house salad.
Hannah Flanagan’s captures the welcoming the welcoming camaraderie of the Emerald Isle in its menu of hearty pub staples and more than 100 bottled and draft brews. While glasses clink to the sound of rousing cheers, fresh, local ingredients transform into Irish favorites including bangers and mash, Reubens piled high with corned beef, and mushroom-laced pot roast. Flanagan's also puts forth a seasonal menu of weather-matching fare, gracing tables with country-fried steak in the winter and sautéed kites in the spring.
The Falls Landing Eatery boasts expansive lunch and dinner menus loaded with burgers, meaty entrees, and seafood spreads. Jump-start eating adventures with hand-breaded fried oysters ($9.95) or the Drunken Shrimp Boil ($9.95), which pairs five beer-infused shrimp with a tangy cocktail sauce for a delicious, albeit slightly uncoordinated, taste-bud tango. Then hike your appetite to a hearty main course, such as the lamb chops drizzled in a red-wine demi glaze ($18.95, dinner only), or the New York strip steak with dill-cream dressing ($24.95, dinner only), which can come grilled, blackened, or immune to the sounds of incessant car honking. A Brevard’s Best Burger enswathes a juicy patty between locally baked rolls that chefs can adorn with cheese, bacon, or both ($7.95–$8.95). Guests primed to cast their mouth-lines into fresh waters can reel in fresh North Carolina trout sautéed in lemon butter and Kentucky bourbon and escorted by walnuts and pecans ($19.95, dinner only).
In 1964, brothers Leroy and Forrest Raffel banded together to come up with a new restaurant concept. Arby's took off almost immediately on the coattails of its hallmark roast-beef sandwich and the founders’ idea of providing customers with fast, quality food. Over the company's 48-year franchise history, its foundational pièce de résistance of thinly sliced, juicy beef has been served in a many permutations, and continues to be popular today, served at more than 3,500 stores in North America. Today’s menu still ignites appetites with traditional beef sandwiches, plus hot and seasoned curly fries, fresh-chopped salads, and desserts good for richly capping off meals or bribing any bridge trolls on the way home.
From outside, Quixote Restaurant looks more like a lodge than a Mexican restaurant. But one step inside the wood-paneled dining room, and you'll be met by the smells of chimichurri-marinated skirt steak, shrimp with chipotle sauce, and shredded chicken topped with mole. In addition to those specialty entrees, the eatery serves up à la carte favorites such as tacos, burritos, and guacamole, which is smashed in-house during a game of Whac-a-Mole.