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Root and Vine in Morganton NC

things to do in Morganton NC

Mountain towns in North Carolina offer all the appeal of living in nature’s splendor without forcing you to give up the opportunities afforded by a more urban existence. You’re never far from shopping, dining, medical care, culture centers, educational opportunities and so much more. So Western North Carolina land for sale has become a wise choice for people seeking the best of both worlds in their retirement years.

Visitors are often delighted to find that there are plenty of things to do in Morganton NC and surrounding areas. When you first visit Morganton‘s popular Root & Vine restaurant, you may be drawn there by the unique menu that perfectly blends the culinary tradition of France with Southern comfort food. Maybe you’ll hear from locals that it’s one of the area’s most popular places to eat. But chances are you won’t know the real story behind Root & Vine and the two remarkable people who brought it to life.

In 2011, Aimee Perez was general manager of a café in Hickory. And Brian Miller worked there as a line cook while he was enrolled in culinary training at Asheville-Buncombe Technical Community College. The fact that they lived on the same street became the basis for conversation at first, but they soon learned they had similar goals and interests. Before long, Aimee and Brian began dating.

A day trip led them to Linville Gorge for swimming, and afterward they stopped in Morganton to eat. Enjoying lunch on a restaurant’s patio, they soon found themselves talking about the place’s untapped potential. There were relatively few tables, but the location at the corner of Union and King streets was ideal, and the ambiance of brick, big trees and plenty of shade was very inviting.

The two had already begun thinking in terms of opening their own restaurant, and when it came down to the details, they found that their visions and ideas were pretty much identical.

Brian was just weeks away from earning his diploma when they decided to go ahead and take the plunge. “I don’t think I would have had the courage to do it without her,” he now says.

First, there was research to be done. The two, armed with a legal pad, spent time on Union Street trying to learn the eating habits of people in Morganton. Was there anything missing – a need that a brand new restaurant could fill?

Around this time, the restaurant they had visited on their way home from Linville Gorge suddenly closed. Sensing that the time was right to pursue their dreams, they took over the property. It was a very old building, and Aimee and Brian soon found themselves ripping up old linoleum flooring, smashing wall mirrors and doing everything else necessary to bring it up-to-date. That included investing $60,000 in shoring up the foundation.

Today’s Root & Vine is a far cry from those beginnings. In fact, now it ranks among the best things to do in Morganton NC. Brian has used his childhood influences – the basic foods of after-church lunches in the South – to create entrees such as six-cheese macaroni and cheese, pork chops with Cheerwine barbecue sauce, seared duck, the iconic iceberg wedge salad, with its grilled lettuce topped with bleu cheese and chunks of smoked pork belly and of course North Carolina mountain trout. Consistent with what he and Aimee learned from their survey of the local populace, they offer a remarkable array of dishes that are uncomplicated yet contemporary.

Root & Vine is open Monday through Saturday at 139 West Union Street in Morganton. Lunch is served from 11:30 to 2:30, and dinner is from 5:00 to 9:30. Reservations are welcome. Call (828) 433-1540.

One of the more desirable mountain towns in North Carolina is Lenoir, home of The Coves Mountain River Club. With its setting on more than five miles of frontage of the Johns River near Wilson Creek, The Coves stands out as a uniquely beautiful place to live. Anyone considering the purchase of Western North Carolina land for sale should definitely take note of the many amenities at The Coves Mountain River Club.

Stop by, kick back with a free glass of wine and watch the sun set behind the mountains. This is life in the Western North Carolina foothills. This is yours to enjoy…at The Coves Mountain River Club.

Call us directly at 828.754.0700 to schedule a tour.

If you’re exploring the area for the first time, ask for our 84-page complimentary Western North Carolina Visitor’s Guide, which gives you more information about living in the foothills of North Carolina.

Exploring the area for the first time?

Let us know & ask for our 70 page Complimentary Magazine.

The Coves Mountain River Club magazine