Roanoke, Virginia, is a city that has more to offer than just stunning mountain views and outdoor adventures. Its culinary scene is a delightful blend of traditional Southern comfort food and innovative dishes. Whether you’re a food enthusiast looking to explore the local food culture or a visitor seeking a great dining spot, you are sure to find something delicious on the menu.
Virginia‘s Blue Ridge is known for its stunning mountains and fun outdoor activities like biking, hiking, and kayaking. With all of those (and more!) activities, visitors are bound to work up a hardy appetite for good food. There a lot of options to choose from in Roanoke and the surrounding area. I am going to highlight five restaurants where I have dined and give you my personal recommendations.
1. The Roanoker
The Roanoker has been in business for more than 70 years. It has been recognized by Southern Living magazine as “One of the 5 Best Places in Virginia to Eat Breakfast.”
The biscuits at The Roanoker are a must. They are light and fluffy and made daily with a flour that is milled in Virginia. They will probably be the best biscuits you ever put in your mouth. (Can’t make it to Roanoke? I am so sorry because these are really incredible. If it’s any consolation, you can get the recipe and try making some at home by clicking here.)
Update: The Roanoker shuttered its doors on May 29, 2021 after serving hungry customers for 81 years.
Dining options are plentiful at Roanoke City Market in downtown Roanoke. Among them is Scrambled, a great place to fill up before exploring the Star City of the South.
Scrambled is open 6 days a week serving breakfast, brunch, and lunch. It’s rated #2 on TripAdvisor for breakfast in Roanoke.
They take their French toast seriously and you will see #WTFT (WHAT THE FRENCH TOAST) on its Facebook page and on T-shirts in the restaurant.
We tried their Star City Scramble which came with 2 eggs cooked to order, one meat, and either a pancake or 1/2 order of vanilla French toast. We got our eggs Denver-style, turkey sausage, and the vanilla French toast. We found breakfast to be quite delicious.
A heads up about the tab – We ordered our breakfast To Go and the waitress placed a 20% gratuity on the tab, without us asking. The receipt had another spot for gratuity, which we declined since we were forced to pay 20% on a To Go order. (Be sure to read your receipt before you pay!)
Scrambled is located at 32 Market Square SE and is open Tuesday through Saturday from 7:00 am until 2:00 pm and on Sunday from 8:00 am until 2:00 pm.
3. Wall Street Tavern
I opted to dine at Wall Street Tavern and ordered the Smoked Ham & Havarti sandwich. It was topped with Dijon aioli and served with a side of garlic Parmesan fries. This meal gets two thumbs up from me. My friends ordered the Wall Street Burger, Turkey and Brie sandwich, and Smoked Salmon Salad and they were all thoroughly pleased.
Update: The Wall Street Tavern closed in 2020, a casualty of the impact of the coronavirus.
4. Homestead Creamery
Between the city of Roanoke and Smith Mountain Lake is my next recommendation – Homestead Creamery. There is probably a line of 10 or so people right this very moment ready to place their order for a delicious sandwich, like the El Presidente Panini above. I would definitely order another one as well as a side of potato salad.
The pièce de résistance is the super-rich and creamy ice cream. With more butterfat and less air whipped into their ice cream compared to others, Homestead Creamery ice cream is luscious and delicious. It’s heaven on a spoon. A kiddie cup was the right size for me. I recommend ordering Moose Tracks, shown below.
Homestead Creamery is located at 7254 Booker T Washington Hwy in Wirtz, Virginia, and is open Monday through Thursday from 10:00 am until 6:00 pm and from 10:00 am until 7:00 pm on Friday and Saturday.
The Wildflour Cafe is a quaint little restaurant that emphasizes whole foods and original recipes. The environment inside the dining room is cozy and the food is quite delicious.
I had the Dragon’s Tooth sandwich (eggplant medallions coated in Parmesan cheese layered on Wildflour bread and topped with sautéed green peppers, red onion, mushrooms, sliced tomato, provolone cheese, lettuce, ranch dressing, and secret sauce). It came with a side of pasta salad.
For dessert, I was able to sample the Honey Oat Cake, Coconut Cake, and Mounds Cake. The Mounds Cake was so moist and the flavors of chocolate and coconut were absolutely perfect.
Wildflour is located at 143 Colonial Ave SW in Roanoke and is open from 11:00 am until 9:00 pm Monday through Saturday and from 10:00 am until 3:00 pm on Sunday.
I recently attended a whirlwind of a tour of Virginia’s Blue Ridge courtesy of Roanoke Valley CVB.
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What’s your favorite dish in Viriginia’s Blue Ridge?