Senior Foodies Are Welcome in Spruce Pine

sp_banner In a recent Condé Nast Traveler magazine Spruce Pine NC was highlighted as one of three small towns where senior visitors will enjoy some top notch great food. Spruce Pine is not large (2,123) however it is famed for its restaurants.

Located 50 miles NE of Asheville, this mining town is right in the heart of the Blue Ridge Mountains.  Senior visitors will find Knife and Fork, a modern farm-table restaurant that fills the tables. Spoon (Yes, that’s the name of the restaurant) on the other hand is an up-scale cocktail bar. Both are owned by Nate Allen, a former chef who spent a decade cooking in an acclaimed LA restaurant, so he knows his business.


 Senior travelers will find Spruce Pine located geographically between Mt. Mitchell and Grandfather Mountain, the two highest mountain peaks east of the Rockies. 

Spruce Pine lists among its assets the unsurpassed beauty of the Blue Ridge Mountains. Spruce Pine, Mitchell County’s largest city sits poised along the North Toe River.

Seniors Find “Ol’ Spruce Pine Tree”

Spruce Pine was once referred to as “The Kim Thickets”, after resident and axe handle and shovel maker Kim Mchone. Traveling salesmen would come to Kim Thickets and try to reach the “ol’ spruce pine tree” beside The English Inn before nightfall. Although the name of the town has changed to Spruce Pine, the “ol’ spruce pine tree” is still standing in all its glory.


The town was originally centered around a tavern operated by Isaac English, located on an old roadway that ran from Cranberry down to Marion, NC. The Old English Inn still stands at its original location near the center of town.

Spruce Pine Montessori School in Spruce Pine was founded in 1972 by parents who sought a creative, active learning environment for their young children, SPMS has grown for four decades into a highly respected center for pre-school through sixth grade. It has been highly successful.

 Rocks, An Orchard And Great Food…

Stop by the Linville Falls Visitor Center to pick up maps and information that will prove helpful on your visit. A visit to the Orchard at Altapass would be on my list being a Master Gardener. And if you are “into  rocks”, like one of my daughters who collects them, the Museum of NC Minerals is a place you will not want to pass up.


There is a lot to check out on TripAdvisor’s site. Seniors, come on down to Spruce Pine, enjoy some fine food and get to know the locals. The North Carolina hospitality is as legendary as the Blue Ridge landscape. -jeb

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