Banner Elk

22 07 2008

Nestled among one of my favorite little areas of the world, is the town of Banner Elk, North Carolina.  Not far from Valle Crucis, Boone and the ever so popular Sugar Mountain, Banner Elk’s history was forged by Cherokee Indians and Welsh immigrants (Is it any wonder where folk music began?) around 1848 and earlier. 


Protected by the Blue Ridge Mountains, Banner Elk and the surrounding area is an oasis for the weary soul.  The mountains are a place to find yourself, renew what was lost, and to again find your path and return again to life refreshed.  Between reading, walking, eating and napping and just loving life, the mountains are for lack of a better phrase, a breath of fresh air!


If fresh, farm vegetables, starry skies, mountain views, and clean air are not enough, the people of North Carolina and Banner Elk will be the draw.  Southern hospitality is at its best, and who doesn’t enjoy the kind smile of a stranger?  Banner Elk can boast of her own accomplishments but on my last visit, I enjoyed the fruit of her labor at the Banner Elk Winery.  East Coast wineries are not among the most popular in the world, but they are growing in number and offer surprisingly good tastes at moderate prices.  While I am not much of a fan of sweet wines, the Banner Elk Winery does produce a really nice blueberry wine that would accompany any dessert or spicy appetizers ever so nicely.  Honestly, I hope that wineries on the East Coast never reach the height of popularity as Napa and other wine mecca’s.  Too much popularity, can translate into the inflation in prices and often wine quality becomes poor.   


Admittedly, I am a helpless romantic, but there truly is something so magical about walking into an establishment, live acoustic music (my favorite) playing in the background, ordering a glass of wine and being seated outdoors to enjoy the view with friends.  One might argue that you do not need much more in life and this made me fairly happy.   The vines surround and the winery cottages offer refuge for those looking for something further afield.

Traveling is just plain fun, but traveling with a chef is even better.  Somehow I need to make enough money in my life to ensure that my father is constantly able to travel with me and be my personal chef.  Returning from Banner Elk Vineyard resulted in a meal of homemade bread, freshly grilled salmon with cappers, and tomatoes, black bean and corn salad with extra cilantro, and skin on mashed potatoes.  Sigh! Luckily, there are plenty of little eateries in Banner Elk, just in case your personal chef called in sick.  Zuzda Tapas is a relatively new dinner spot, serving everything from gnocchi to seared tuna.  The Ham Shoppe in Valle Crucis is a must visit lunch spot and worth every bit of glorious ham!

Life can sometimes be so complicated, and instead of reliving moments of hurt, or worry, I would prefer to rewind and relive the moments in the mountains. 


Enjoy the trip!


Click to see some photos!




4 responses

1 08 2008

I’ve never been to Banner Elk but I hope it’s nice place 🙂 Banner Elk visiting will be one of my dreams.

20 08 2009
North Carolina Week: Southern Comfort « Sweet Iced Tea

[…] ever so lovely North Carolina.  Also, in case you missed a few of our postings about Asheville and Banner Elk  the past, now is your opportunity to catch up with us and this beautiful state.  Six Pane Window […]

19 04 2010
2nd Anniversary: North Carolina Feature « Sweet Iced Tea

[…] Banner Elk, North Carolina […]

15 06 2011
Screen Door Series: Boone and Valle Crucis « Sweet Iced Tea

[…] Key. These are in Boone and Valle Crucis, North Carolina. You might also love to visit nearby Banner Elk, which we posted about eons […]

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