The Best Restaurants in Mount Airy, NC

Published: January 14, 2015

Restaurants in Mount Airy, North Carolina are judged not only on their appeal to the locals but how people from across America and around the world like what they see and eat. Mount Airy is the birthplace of Andy Griffith and his fan base knows no bounds. It is not unusual to be having lunch with someone at the next table who is visiting from Germany or France. Since it is such a popular tourist town, there is a large variety of restaurants with many different cuisines and of course, something for every budget. This list contains the restaurants that are favorites of locals and visitors alike. 

  1. Gondola

    Not far from the center of the downtown area is the absolute best Italian restaurant. This is place that is frequented by locals on a regular basis and visitors drive from miles around just to have dinner here.  They have an extensive menu that accommodates meat eaters and vegetarians alike. The portions are very generous and positively delicious no matter what choice you make. It is always served piping hot to the table and the service is incredible. The waitresses are very attentive and friendly. An added touch and one of the reasons the restaurant is so good is the owner visits each table to make sure the food is satisfactory. If you can, try to save room for the desserts. They bring the dessert tray to each table and everything looks divine. They consistently serve wonderful, tasty entrees and desserts while attending to your every need. A great place to eat! 

  2. Mayberry Soda Fountain

    A terrific place for a quick bite to eat or an old fashioned ice cream soda.  Here, lunch is served up with a helping of trivia, jokes and news of the local area. The owner serves as the "soda jerk" and is happy to answer questions and give advice to anyone who asks. This restaurant has maintained all the charm and character of the good ol' days by keeping the same fountain drink machine and the decor from days gone by. Great food at a very reasonable price is served here, making this a nice place to relax and cool off on a hot summer day.

  3. Trio Restaurant and Bar

    Trio's is fine dining at its best. It is one of the few places in town that is handicap accessible, as they have an elevator for those that can't tackle the stairs. They have a very creative menu and the food is delicious and beautifully plated. The food is from local growers and is always served fresh. They also have a well-stocked bar. The atmosphere is relaxing and quiet, and although it is a little costly, it is still worth a visit when in the area. 

  4. Snappy Lunch

    Snappy Lunch is known to have the best pork chop sandwiches found in North Carolina. This restaurant is also the only existing restaurant mentioned by name in the old Andy Griffith shows. Fans of the show come to Mount Airy every year to stand in line, sometimes a block or two long, just to get a chance to eat at Snappys. Many famous people, including Oprah Winfrey have dined here and if you like old fashioned burgers and fries as well as a walk down memory lane, then Snappys is the place for you.

  5. Hungry Farmer

    A few miles from Mount Airy, across the Virginia line, is a nice little restaurant called The Hungry Farmer. This is down home, country goodness, with a different entree for each day of the week and a dinner buffet that has a great variety of choices. The breakfast buffet is a big hit for locals wanting a hearty breakfast served up with their famous "cat-head" biscuits. If you choose to order from the menu, you will not be disappointed either. They will do everything they can to make sure it is served exactly the way you like it. 

  6. Olympia Family Restaurant

    If you like home style cooking with a touch of Greek influence then the Olympia is for you. They serve up a special every day and are one of the few restaurants that serve old fashiion meat loaf and country fried steak. The menu is extensive and offers burgers and fries as well as the complete dinners. You will find souvlaki as one of their specialties and the green beans have a kick to them that is not usually found in home style cooking. Breakfast is also served here hot and made to order. This place is always packed and they don't accept credit cards but that doesn't stop the locals from eating here on a regular basis. The service is super and everyone is very friendly. A favorite eating place, for sure.

  7. The Thailand Cafe

    If your taste buds are craving something more exotic, then The Thailand Cafe is where you want to go. They will serve authentic Thai food to order, with the heat you request and it always tastes great. They happily accommodate your special requests and do so with a smile. The atmosphere is casual and this restaurant is a favorite place for business lunch or a quiet dinner. 

  8. Little Richard's BBQ

    A visit to any small town in North Carolina is not complete without stopping to eat at a BBQ restaurant and Little Richard's is one of the best. They serve up lavish helpings of barbecue in many varieties. Smokey sweet and Lexington style are their specialty and you can get dinner plates, sandwiches and even pints to go. Each table is equipped with a paper towel holder so you can wipe the juicy goodness off your hands and face as you eat. Busy atmosphere but consistently good food at a reasonable price.

  9. El Agavero Mexicano

    The El Agavero serves authentic Mexican cuisine. The atmosphere is light and enjoyable and the large portions are served piping hot with a smile. Their pablano peppers are a specialty that locals can't get enough of. They also have a dinner for two that is enough to feed most families of four. Count on taking some home with you, because you will want to save room for the delicious fried ice cream or churros. If you can't find room for a big dessert, they serve a free cinnamon tortilla covered with a big dollop  whipped cream covered in strawberry sauce. A great way to end any meal.

  10. Mill Creek General Store

    Ordinarily you don't expect a general store to serve great sandwiches but Mill Creek's lunch menu is surprisingly good. They have huge sandwiches with a large selection of meats and cheeses and the chicken salad can't be beat. It is served deli style and you can get an old fashioned bottle of soda to wash it down. They sell organic spices, cheeses and grains as well as a large variety of other items including genuine Amish furniture. It's fun to look around at all the choices and choose a pound of real butter,  a sack of gluten free flour, or a pound of old fashioned candy. That is, after you've eaten one of their wonderful sandwiches. 

While every restaurant on this list could arguably be the best on any given day, Gondalas is number one because the consistency of good food. After many, many lunches and dinners here, we have never had a meal that disappointed us. We have never had bad service and we have never eaten there without seeing the owner checking on everyone and assuring satisfaction. You can't go wrong if you decide to visit Gondolas or any of the restaurants on this list.