The 7 Best Restaurants in Mt Airy NC & Surry County

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Mount Airy is often called Mayberry because it inspired the small town setting of The Andy Griffith Show. But quite a lot has changed in the decades since Griffith left his hometown.

In addition to the Andy Griffith Museum, theater, and stores that make the town a major tourist draw, Downtown Mount Airy NC has grown considerably.

While Mt Airy is still drenched in mid-20th century nostalgia, it also offers numerous quality restaurants and lots of locally produced beers, wines, and liquor.

Many of the restaurants in “Mayberry NC” are great greasy spoons rooted in classic Americana, with traditional Southern Appalachian fare being slung around in old-timey diners.

But there are also modern Mt Airy NC restaurants that run the gamut of good eats, including fine dining, farm-to-table, and multiple sushi restaurants.

Slowly but surely, Mount Airy has grown into the biggest town in Surry County. The ever-expanding collection of awesome places to eat in Mt Airy NC is evidence that its culinary scene is growing as well.

We especially loved the Heart & Soul Bed and Breakfast, where we stayed during our recent visit. Their two-course breakfasts were so phenomenal, we couldn’t bear to eat anywhere else.

So read on for our guide to the best restaurants in Mt Airy NC and Surry County, including background on each business and our recommendations for the best dishes to eat there.

READ MORE: The 10 Best Things to Do in Mount Airy NC (& Surry County)

Best Restaurants in Mt Airy NC Guide

(Arranged Alphabetically)

  1. Kazoku Sushi & Bar 
  2. Mill Creek General Store
  3. Miss Angels Heavenly Pies
  4. Old North State
  5. Snappy Lunch
  6. The Loaded Goat
  7. Walker’s Soda Fountain

READ MORE: 10 Great Train Rides in North Carolina

Mt Airy NC Restaurants - Sushi at Kazoku in Mount Airy
Sushi at Kazoku in Mount Airy

1. Kazoku Sushi & Bar

121 Franklin St, Mount Airy NC • (336) 648-8700 • Official Website

HOURS: Tues to Fri 11AM-9PM; Sat Noon-9:30PM; Closed Sunday & Monday

In the running for our favorite Mt Airy restaurants, Kazoku Sushi & Bar is right off of Main Street, tucked away on quiet Franklin Street.

Our B&B hosts recommended it as the best place for sushi in town, so we stopped in on Saturday to try a couple of sushi rolls.

When we arrived right after opening, the place was already hopping! The line was soon winding out the door, and every table and counter had hungry guests anxious to eat. 

We sat at the sushi bar and watched three chefs rolling up house specialties non-stop. Our rolls were all fantastic, and the service was friendly and attentive despite the bustling crowd.

In addition to sushi, the Kazoku menu features plenty of cooked Hibachi-style entrees with vegetables, seafood, chicken, and steak.

They also have a kids’ menu and, at the other end of the spectrum, a fun cocktail menu.

READ MORE: The 20 Best Places to Visit in North Carolina

Restaurants Mount Airy NC - Mill Creek General Store in Mt Airy
Mill Creek General Store in Mt Airy

2. Mill Creek General Store

541 W Pine St, Mount Airy NC • (336) 755-2340 • Official Website

HOURS: Mon-Sat 9:30AM-6PM; Closed Sunday

When we first visited the Mill Creek General Store several years ago, it was still getting established. They had a tiny sandwich counter that barely registered among the various places to eat in Mount Airy. 

But on our latest Mount Airy visit, the place had been completely transformed.

There’s a huge deli counter (which was voted Best Local Deli in 2018) offering made-to-order sandwiches, wraps, and salads. They also have an old fashioned soda fountain with handmade sodas.

The General Store has also grown to offer a lot more items, including healthy groceries, Amish-style furniture, and kitchen supplies.

This place is right on the way to Downtown Mount Airy and it’s really worth a stop, not only to eat, but also as a cool place to mill around for a while.

It would be a perfect place to pick up a picnic for a day trip to explore the many Surry County wineries.

READ MORE: The 20 Best NC Wineries to Visit

Mt Airy restaurants NC - Miss Angels Heavenly Pies in Mt Airy
Miss Angels Heavenly Pies in Mt Airy

3. Miss Angels Heavenly Pies

153 N Main St, Mount Airy NC • (336) 786-1537 • Official Website

HOURS: Mon to Thur 9AM– 5:30PM; Fri/Sat 9AM–7PM; Sun 10AM–4:30PM

Located on the Andy Griffith-centered end of Main Street, Miss Angels Heavenly Pies is a standout among the collection of nostalgic restaurants in Mount Airy.

It’s owned and operated by Angela (a.k.a. Miss Angel) Shur, and many of the ingredients come from fruits and berries grown on her 63-acre farm and apple orchard.

While delicious sweet pies certainly dominate the menu (apple, blueberry, cherry, pumpkin, etc.), there are also savory pot pies, quiches, and fresh bread.

For those with a sweet tooth, Miss Angels makes muffins, moonshine cookies, cakes, brownies, cupcakes, and dessert bars. She also runs the Hillbilly Creamery & Gluten-Free Baked Treats next door to the pie shop.

You can also visit Miss Angels Farm & Orchard during the summer and early autumn months, when there are seasonal activities and camping options available.

READ MORE: Apple Picking in North Carolina: The 15 Best NC Apple Orchards 

Places to eat in Mt Airy NC - Old North State - Fish Hippie Wine
Wine before dinner at Old North State 

4. Old North State

308 N Main St, Mount Airy NC • (336) 789-9463 • Official Website

HOURS: Tues 11AM-3PM; Wed to Sat 11AM-9PM; Closed Sunday & Monday

Old North State is one of those restaurants we truly love. It’s attached to a local winery that has refurbished an old building (a former hardware store) right in the heart of Downtown Mt Airy.

The restaurant was recommended to us by several people as their #1 choice among the best places to eat in Mt Airy NC.

This place is a celebration of locally made wines and beers, and it pairs them with a seasonal menu orchestrated by world-renowned chef Chris Wishart.

We had an amazing maitake mushroom entree with perfectly roasted potatoes, magical sauces, and tasty vegetables. They’re happy to accommodate dietary restrictions, so our vegan diet was no problem.

Make sure you try the house wine, which is made in the basement. We enjoyed it so much, we bought an extra bottle to take back to our B&B. 

They also have a Chef’s Table experience and a Winemaker’s Table.

READ MORE: 10 Wonderful Yadkin Valley Wineries Worth Visiting

Snappy Lunch in Mount Airy
Snappy Lunch in Mount Airy

5. Snappy Lunch

125 N Main St, Mount Airy NC • (336) 786-4931 • Official Website

HOURS: Mon to Wed & Fri 6AM–1:45PM; Thu & Sat 6AM–1:15PM; Closed Sunday

With a nod from a single episode of The Andy Griffith Show, Snappy Lunch has achieved legend status in Mount Airy for tourists seeking retro-style places to eat.

Snappy Lunch has been in operation in the same Downtown location since 1923, but it has changed ownership a couple of times over the last century.

Charles Dowell, who started working at the diner in 1943, bought it 8 years later and became the sole proprietor in 1960.

The Snappy Lunch breakfast has biscuits made from scratch and eggs made to order. But the restaurant’s real claim to fame is Dowell’s World-Famous Pork Chop Sandwich, which is available at lunch.

Other popular dishes at Snappy Lunch include the Breaded Cheeseburger, Biscuits and Gravy, and Fried Bologna Sandwiches.

READ MORE: Where are the Blue Ridge Mountains? A State-by-State Guide

The Loaded Goat in Mount Airy NC
Lunch at The Loaded Goat in Mount Airy NC

6. The Loaded Goat

247 City Hall St, Mount Airy NC • (336) 755-3627 • Official Website

HOURS: Sun/Mon 11AM-4PM; Wed to Sat 11AM-7PM; Closed Tuesday

Arguably the best of the hamburger restaurants in Mount Airy, North Carolina, The Loaded Goat also has good beer and a fun atmosphere.

The Loaded Goat name comes from an episode of The Andy Griffith Show in which a goat eats dynamite, and everyone is terrified of it blowing up.

We visited the restaurant on a previous trip to Mount Airy a few years back, and it has that down-home Americana feeling, with sports pendants and quirky decorations.

In addition to burgers, the Loaded Goat menu has classics like a Club Sandwich, Fried Green Tomato BLT, Fried Pickles, Potato Skins, and Fish & Chips.

In our experience, it’s also the best of the bars in Mt Airy NC for catching a daytime game!

READ MORE: The 10 Best Things To Do in Hot Springs NC

Restaurants in Mount Airy North Carolina - Walker's Soda Fountain in Mount Airy NC
Walker’s Soda Fountain in Mount Airy NC

7. Walker’s Soda Fountain

175 N Main St, Mount Airy NC • (336) 786-4006 • Facebook Page

HOURS: Mon 11AM-4PM; Thu to Sat 11AM-5PM; Sun Noon-4PM; Closed Tue & Wed

The town of Mount Airy is riddled with throwback diners serving burgers, fries, and shakes. So Walker’s Soda Fountain isn’t all that unique in the grand scheme of things.

But for those seeking an old-school lunch counter, a jerked soda, or local ice cream, this spot gets the job done just fine. It’s full of memorabilia, antique diner equipment, and lots of Mayberry stuff.

Walker’s Soda Fountain (a reference to pharmacist Ellie Walker from the TV show) is part of a line of Andy Griffith-themed shops, such as Opie’s Candy Store and Floyd’s Barber Shop.

We arrived in Mount Airy early, so we made our way over to Main Street for some French fries and a handmade soda before visiting The Andy Griffith Museum.

Walker’s Soda Fountain is a family-owned place, and the whole family was working the day we stopped in.

It’s a Mt Airy restaurant that’s built more on atmosphere than sophisticated culinary prowess. But sometimes hot, tasty crinkle-cut fries and a sweet soda are just what you’re after! –Jonathon Engels; all photos by Emma Gallagher


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After visiting North Carolina for the first time, Senior Writer Jonathon Engels and wife Emma spent 2 years exploring Western NC in search of a homestead property. They first lived in Brevard, where Jonathon taught writing at Blue Ridge Community College and extensively explored the Blue Ridge Parkway and Pisgah National Forest. For the last several years they have lived just off the BRP near Elkin, Southwest Virginia, and the NC High Country. The couple also volunteers with the Surry Old Time Fiddlers Convention, the Elkin Valley Trail Association, and Reeves Downtown School of Music.