If you find yourself in the Sandhills region of North Carolina, whether for golf, shopping, exploring pottery, or attending a festival, one thing’s for sure: you’ll need to eat. Luckily, there are many fantastic restaurants in Pinehurst and Southern Pines. Let’s take a closer look at some of our favorites!
RESTAURANTS IN SOUTHERN PINES NC
160 W. New Hampshire Avenue, Southern Pines
To start my culinary journey in Moore County, I visited Wolcott’s, a beloved downtown spot in Southern Pines. This charming restaurant offers lunch and dinner, bringing a delightful twist to classic American dishes using fresh, locally sourced ingredients. The establishment exudes a refined dining experience despite its casual ambiance, thanks to its table settings and attentive staff.
One standout dish was the grilled chicken salad, which was unexpectedly delicious and flavorful.
140 E. New Hampshire Ave., Southern Pines
Ashten’s, known for its mouthwatering Reubens, offers a unique dining experience. Divided into a fine dining section and a casual pub area, guests can order from either menu, regardless of where they’re seated.
This restaurant, founded by sisters Ashley and Quinten Van Camp, was a pioneer in the farm-to-table movement in the region. I enjoyed discussing the globally inspired, locally rooted cuisine with their award-winning chef, Matt Hannon. He explained that their menu changes with the seasons to highlight fresh, local produce. A fascinating tidbit: Ashten’s uses local ostrich eggs in their desserts for added richness without altering the flavor.
Fun fact: He has to use a hacksaw to open them, and there’s the equivalent of 28-32 chicken eggs in a single ostrich egg.
My experience with the daily special featuring Brasstown Farms beef and curry on coconut rice with farmer’s market vegetables was spectacular.
C Cups Cupcakery
125 NE Broad St., Southern Pines
105 Cherokee Rd, Suite 1E, Pinehurst
For a delightful dessert, C Cups Cupcakery is a must-visit. Their key lime cupcake is a bestseller, and after trying it, I can see why. With an array of enticing flavors like pink champagne, snickerdoodle, and hotcakes, choosing just one cupcake was a challenge. They have two locations – one in downtown Southern Pines and another in Old Town Pinehurst.
RESTAURANTS IN PINEHURST NC
Drum & Quill
40 Chinquapin Road, Pinehurst
Drum & Quill, an Irish pub with a welcoming atmosphere, pays homage to the Drum Family and Pinehurst’s rich golf history.
The name comes from Bob “Drum” (Kevin’s father), a renowned golf writer and broadcaster who documented Arnold Palmer’s career and first coined the Professional Golf “Grand Slam” term. The “Quill” represents the pen and the powerful words that can turn stories into legends.
While I opted for a salad during my visit, the place is renowned for its exceptional tacos, diverse beer selection, and cocktails.
Pinehurst Brewing Company
300 Magnolia Rd, Pinehurst
Situated in Pinehurst’s original steam power plant, the Pinehurst Brewing Company impresses with its adaptive reuse of the historic building. The interior, adorned with industrial chic decor crafted from old steam valves and fittings, tells a fascinating story.
Their menu features classic pub fare, house-smoked BBQ, and delicious pizzas. I particularly enjoyed their pulled pork sandwich smothered in blackberry habanero sauce.
RESTAURANTS NEAR PINEHURST AND SOUTHERN PINES
Pik n’ Pig
194 Gilliam-McConnell Rd, Carthage
A 20-minute drive from Pinehurst, Pik n’ Pig at Gilliam-McConnell Airport in Carthage offers a unique dining experience with planes taking off and landing, providing an entertaining backdrop. The restaurant is renowned for its slow-cooked North Carolina BBQ over wood and charcoal fires.
The pulled pork, served with beans and cornbread, was exceptional, especially the flavorful burnt ends. They offer sauce options, including a spicy vinegar-based one I thoroughly enjoyed.
Another great appetizer or lunch option is the pie tin nachos!
In short, the Sandhills region is a treasure trove of culinary delights, with these restaurants offering an exceptional range of flavors and experiences. Do you have any other favorite restaurants in Pinehurst NC or Southern Pines? Feel free to share!