Little Switzerland is a tiny town, a popular stop for Blue Ridge Parkway travelers in the summer. Named for its likeness to the Swiss Alps, as there are mountain views at every turn (though much smaller than the Alps). Whether you’re passing through or have plan to stay overnight, you may be in the mood for some grab.
Unfortunately, there aren’t many Little Switzerland restaurants, but there are some tasty bites in close vicinity. We break down the best restaurants in Little Switzerland, Burnsville, Marion, and Spruce Pine.
Best Little Switzerland Restaurants
1. Las Cruces Fusion Restaurant
- Price: $$
- Cuisine: Food Truck, Latino, American
- Address: 652 W US Hwy 19 E, Burnsville (GPS)
- Website: See menu
Little Switzerland is a world away from Mexico but that doesn’t mean you can’t indulge in the delicious food of the more southerly region of North America. Embark on a short drive to nearby Spruce Pine where you’ll find the inviting Las Cruces Fusion Restaurant and its menu full of delicious and time-honored dishes made following family recipes that were passed down through the generations.
Tacos, enchiladas, burritos and rice-based dishes are just some of the things you’ll find on the menu. Because it’s a fusion restaurant, you’ll also find many dishes from Spain and other countries in South America, Central America and the Caribbean.
Everything is made using fresh, locally-sourced ingredients when possible and if you arrive at just the right time, you’ll dine to the sound of live Mariachi music.
2. Switzerland Café
- Price: $$
- Cuisine: American Restaurant
- Address: 9440 NC-226A, Marion (GPS)
- Website: See menu
- Open daily seasonally from 11am-4pm
If you’re looking for a cozy, old-fashioned place to enjoy local comfort food, the Switzerland Café in nearby Marion is a great choice for a delicious meal.
Part café, part smokehouse, you can expect a wide range of dishes to choose from on the menu including homemade local favorites, BBQ options and sandwiches. Some of the more popular options include smoked pork and quiches.
3. The Tropical Grill
- Price: $$
- Cuisine: Cuba, Argentina, Jamaica, Mexico, Carribean, and Asian
- Address: 198 Oak Ave, Spruce Pine (GPS)
- Website: See menu
As far as unique dining experiences go in the Little Switzerland area, it doesn’t get much more unique than enjoying a meal at The Tropical Grill in downtown Spruce Pine.
There are plenty of options to try out when it comes to traditional southern comfort food but if you’re in the mood to taste something more exotic, you’ll find an assortment of dishes from various places around the world at this lively and colorful place!
Get a taste of Cuba, Argentina, Jamaica, Mexico and various other countries in the Caribbean and Asia. This isn’t your typical Blue Ridge Mountains fare but for those who don’t like to stray too far away from their favorite downhome dishes, there is a selection of American items on the menu too.
Some of the popular items on the menu include the famous Cuban sandwiches, paninis, burgers, quesadillas, salads, empanadas and Jamaican jerk.
4. Fox and the Fig
The cozy couches, fresh-locally sourced food options, a laid-back atmosphere, homemade baked goods and a range of specialty coffees and teas are what give the Fox and the Fig that café feel.
The extensive menu, which features always-changing brunch and lunch options, is what makes this place more than just a cozy café. Bagels, quiche, an assortment of egg-based items and vegetarian, vegan and gluten-free dishes are just some of the available items.
5. Garden Deli
For a light mid-day meal, Garden Deli is the place to be! This long-standing eatery in Burnsville with views of the town square is a popular option for visitors looking for a cozy place to take a break from whatever it is they are doing and enjoy a light, casual lunch.
Soups, salads and sandwiches made with fresh, top-quality deli meats are some of the items available for lunch. If you happen to be in the area at dinner time, you can choose from a selection of steaks, ribs, chicken dishes and seafood dishes. On warm days, you can enjoy your meal in the outdoor dining area.
6. Anchor’s Away Cafe
Although Anchor’s Away Café in Spruce Pine specializes in seafood dishes, you’ll find many other delicious options on the menu for lunch and dinner.
Just looking for a laid-back spot to sit back with a coffee or tea and a sweet treat? Or perhaps you’re craving a plate of some good old fashioned comfort food. Either way, this is a great place to go any time of day!
7. Tokyo Restaurant
Tokyo Restaurant in Spruce Pine specializes in Chinese and Japanese cuisines. The little bistro features an extensive menu but you also have the option to enjoy a buffet-style meal. Friendly and knowledgeable staff is available to help you understand the menu and choose a dish that’s best suited to your taste.
Most of the dishes are based on traditional recipes but have been jazzed up a bit with more modern additions. Dumplings, soups, salads, seafood dishes, rice-based dishes and noodles are just some of the things you’ll find on the menu.
8. Western Sizzlin
Any steak is tasty but you haven’t tasted a truly delicious steak until you’ve tried one from Western Sizzlin in nearby Spruce Pine. The steak here is like none you’ve ever had before. It’s made using grilling and seasoning techniques you’ve never seen anywhere else and the end result is a perfect steak every time.
Sit down in a casual and laid-back environment where you can also enjoy a wide variety of other items from the menu including sandwiches, salads, burgers, seafood dishes and freshly made bread and desserts. The option to indulge in a buffet is also available.
9. El Ranchero
It appears Mexican food is quite popular with residents of the Little Switzerland area as there’s another great option to enjoy this delicious cuisine in the center of nearby Spruce Pine.
A wide variety of flavorful, ethnic dishes are served at El Ranchero and each is made using a traditional family recipe. Take a seat in a dining area with traditional Mexican décor featuring beautiful artworks from the country’s most scenic places.
10. Cast Iron Kitchen
Cast Iron Kitchen is one of the most popular and most recognized restaurants in nearby Burnsville and a popular dining option for people visiting Little Switzerland. The restaurant specializes in traditional and modern American cuisine and vegetarian dishes and the prices aren’t bad either!
On the menu, you’ll find a selection of steaks, burgers, seafood dishes and salads and, when in season, only the highest quality local products are used in the preparation of these dishes. You’ll also enjoy local beers and wines with a side of that hospitality the area is known for.
11. Chalet Restaurant
Last on this list of Little Switzerland restaurants is one of the only restaurants actually in Little Switzerland. Located in the Switzerland Inn you can have breakfast, lunch, or dinner in a beautiful setting. Sit on the terrace for a delicious lunch with fantastic mountain views.
Enjoy the homemade Swiss onion soup, or go big and get the house prime rib – a specialty on the menu.
Having a nice romantic meal out in North Carolina? Take a look at the Switzerland Inn’s extensive wine list and pair with a beautiful meal.