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Corolla Restaurants

Choosing where to dine in Corolla is an enviable task. Discriminating vacationers demand top-quality dining, and Corolla restaurants have stepped up to serve them well. Whether you’re looking for breakfast, lunch or dinner, fast fare or intimate dining, you’ll find it here.

There are four fast-food chains here, but all of the other Corolla restaurants are locally owned, allowing for creativity and individuality you’ll never be able to find at a chain. We have to say that that’s one of the aspects of Outer Banks restaurants that locals are most proud of—that even given the hundreds of dining choices here, only a tiny percentage of them would be found anywhere else. 

Seafood is the main event in almost every Outer Banks restaurant because that’s what is the freshest and that’s what everybody wants. Tuna, mahi mahi, rockfish, flounder and a variety of other fish, plus blue crabs, clams, shrimp, scallops, mussels and oysters are the most popular catches. If you’re here in early summer, don’t miss a chance to taste the regional delicacy of fresh soft-shell crabs. Of course, local chefs also serve meats, pasta, vegetarian offerings and fresh regional produce. Mainland Currituck County is home to many farms, so fresh vegetables are available year round.

Restaurants in Corolla are able to serve liquor in addition to beer and wine, so expect to find a full bar in many establishments. In the height of summer, restaurants can be quite crowded. This is a testament to their quality, but it’s also a sign that you need to make reservations. You should know, too, that dining out in extremely large parties can be taxing to some restaurants, while others can handle it with ease. If you must dine out en masse, always call ahead to make sure your restaurant of choice can accommodate a large party (and to give them a warning that you’re coming).

Dining is casual here, even in the finest restaurants. Dressing up means putting on long pants (or nice shorts) and a collared shirt or a sundress. Most Corolla restaurants close for at least part of the winter and early spring, though a few stay open year round. Call ahead if you’re visiting in the off-season.

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Agave Roja—Modern Mexican

  • 807-B Ocean Trail, Monteray Plaza
  • Corolla

Agave Roja’s modern Mexican fare is a welcome addition to the Corolla restaurant scene. A little more upscale than the traditional Mexican restaurant but still relaxed and casual, Agave Roja is a place to sit down and savor a meal. The interior is contemporary, with tile, woodwork and colorful reds and oranges that lend a lively style. Enjoy Mexican fare prepared with skill, and sample some new twists on Latino cooking. The menu includes creative starters, soups, salads, seafood dishes (think fish tacos, snapper Veracruz,), tacos, enchiladas, steak, chicken, kids’ meals and so much more. Wait until you see their variations on guacamole. Agave Roja has a full bar featuring more than 50 varietals of tequila, fresh-made Margaritas, mojitos, sangria, signature cocktails and beer. Agave Roja serves lunch and dinner seven days a week.

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BuddhaLicious

  • 887 Albacore Street, Monteray Plaza
  • Corolla

The fellows who brought you the ever-popular Agava Roja restaurant in Corolla have done it again. Bringing on a third partner, the trio have created BuddhaLicious. It’s an Asian restaurant, but not your typical one. Here you’ll feast on meals inspired by the flavors from places as varied at Vietnam, Thailand and China—daily sushi specials, Wagyu beef seared on hot stones, Korean Bulgogi (an interesting take on barbeque) and more. They also offer an extensive exotic sake selection.

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Corolla Movie Bistro

  • 815 Ocean Trail, Monteray Plaza
  • Corolla

Corolla Movie & Bistro is the perfect place for a meal and a movie. The only theater on the Currituck Outer Banks, Corolla Movie & Bistro is open year round and located near the Food Lion in Monteray Shores Plaza. The theater shows all first-run movies on its three state-of-the-art movie screens, each featuring digital projection and Dolby 7.1 digital sound.

The Bistro, open from 11 a.m. until 2 a.m. features a variety of options for lunch and dinner that will be sure to satisfy parties of all shapes and sizes. With a focus on small plates, the Bistro offers an assortment of sliders, including crab cake and sirloin, tuna bites, hummus and cheese boards, Caprese salad, loaded nachos and specialty pan pizzas and more. Steaks and fresh seafood are sure to curb hungrier appetites. The Diner’s full ABC license means all your favorite cocktails are only a few splashes, stirs or shakes away! The beer selection includes most of the popular domestics, a nice selection of imports as well as beers from North Carolina-based microbreweries. Wines by the glass and bottle are also available. Don’t forget the gourmet popcorn!

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Corolla Pizza and Deli

  • 1152 Ocean Trail, Austin Complex
  • Corolla

Celebrating their 25th anniversary this season, this longtime family owned and operated local favorite serves up fresh hand-tossed pizza by the pie or slice. They also offer delicious hot and cold subs, sides and more. Their Philly cheesesteaks are authentic too, as the owners are originally from Reading, Pennsylvania. They’re open almost all year round for lunch and dinner with free delivery and take-out service. Call them from the road, grocery store or beach but definitely call before you’re hungry! For a sweet treat try their ice cream shop next door, Corolla Scoops & Sweets.

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Crafty Cow Burger Bar

  • 817 C. Ocean Trail
  • Corolla

The simplest joys in life are often the most satisfying. Your favorite blue jeans straight from the dryer, listening to your favorite band live or a perfectly cooked burger. This is Crafty Cow Burger Bar. Crafty Cow’s passion is to offer a modern twist on burgers that sets a standard and go to the extreme to taste the best. Using regionally sourced products, their burgers are 100% natural, handcrafted and made fresh daily. They also offer a distinctive assortment of the best craft beers and wine in a comfortable and relaxed environment. Guests can dine inside and catch up on the latest sporting events on one of four high-definition TV’s, chill in the courtyard while enjoying a variety of live local music or takeaway a bag of sliders for the beach. No matter what, Crafty Cow has got you covered. Craft Burgers, Craft Beers.

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Fat Crabs Rib Company

  • 1159 Austin Street, Corolla Light Town Center
  • Corolla

This is a great local dine-in or take-out restaurant with a very casual family atmosphere. The menu features seafood including steamer pots, blue crabs, crab legs, shrimp, scallops, clams, mussels, oysters, and fresh fish, and all kinds of BBQ including North Carolina pulled pork, beef brisket, smoked ribs and chicken. They also offer homemade soups, Southern-style sides and desserts. Open daily for lunch and dinner, April through October.

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First Light Breakfast & Burgers

  • 793 Sunset Boulevard, TimBuck II Shopping Village
  • Corolla

First Light feels a bit like Restoration Hardware meets surf shack with reclaimed hardwood floors and cool, red bench seats at the bar. In addition to lunch and dinner, they serve brunch mid-week. Their handmade biscuits, waffles with fresh fruit and a variety of omelets and Benedicts are a special treat for breakfast. Their juicy burgers are made with hand-formed patties, and they also have sandwiches, salads, entree items and a kids’ menu. This is exactly what you would expect from a Corolla establishment—laid back and super friendly. First Light serves liquor, wine and beer. They are closed January though mid-February.

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Flip Flops Bistro & Bar

  • 815 Ocean Trail, Monteray Plaza
  • Corolla

This brand new bistro is nestled in the Corolla Movie Bistro complex with an entrance adjacent to the Food Lion in the Monteray Plaza shopping center. Suitable for parties of all sizes and family friendly, Flip Flops Bistro & Bar offers great food and great entertainment seven days a week from 11 a.m. until 2 a.m. Folks will love the big open space and comfortable bar where you can settle in and dine on all of your favorites like gourmet sliders, hummus and cheese boards, tuna bites, salads, steaks, seafood, specialty pan pizzas and a menu just for kids. Cocktails are a specialty here. Have fun sampling from the mimosa, martini or Bloody Mary menu where you can order your Bloody Mary with bacon vodka. Activities like hula hooping for the young ones is provided as well as Direct TV to keep you up to date on the latest news and sporting events. After 9 p.m. and until 2 a.m. Flip Flops Bistro and Bar transforms into Corolla’s hottest spot for nightlife with live music, dueling DJ’s and a dance floor. Life’s Better in Flip Flops!

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Giant Slice Pizza

  • 785 Sunset Boulevard, TimBuck II Shopping Village
  • Corolla

Giant Slice Pizza has been a Corolla favorite since 1994. Located in TimBuck II, Giant Slice bakes hand-tossed New York-style pizza in their stone ovens with your choice of more than 18 toppings. Other popular choices are their appetizers, stromboli, calzones, subs, baked wings and Italian desserts. They offer dine-in, carry out or delivery service that is free from Pine Island through Ocean Hill. They can happily accommodate orders both large and small.

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Mike Dianna’s Grill Room

  • 777 Sunset Boulevard, TimBuck II Shopping Village
  • Corolla

Mike Dianna’s Grill Room has become a legendary Outer Banks restaurant. Fine dining with a casual atmosphere, it is most well known for its excellently prepared meats — offering all-natural and USDA Prime beef, pork, chicken and veal — cooked over a hardwood grill. The fresh, local seafood is treated just as beautifully, and there are daily pasta specials. The distinctive wine selection has won Wine Spectator’s Award of Excellence for the past nine years. They have an outdoor deck and bar with live music seven days a week in season. From Memorial Day through Labor Day they serve lunch outside on the deck daily, starting at noon. The restaurant opens for dinner at 5 p.m.; reservations are recommended. Most nights they serve beverages until midnight. They are kid friendly and offer a kids’ menu. Mike Dianna’s Grill Room can accommodate rehearsal dinners, small intimate weddings and other family gatherings.

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North Banks Restaurant and Raw Bar

  • 794 Sunset Boulevard, TimBuck II Shopping Village
  • Corolla

North Banks, in the west building of TimBuck II, is casual, contemporary and high-energy. Filet mignon and lobster are the house specialties. They also have several preparations of local fish every night and a raw bar offering up the freshest local delicacies. It’s open for lunch and dinner and has a fully stocked bar featuring specialty drinks including their house special flaming martini. Take-out is available.

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Northern Lights Bakery

  • 109 A Austin Street, Corolla Light Town Center
  • Corolla

This is a terrific stop in Corolla Light to start your morning right! They have everything from freshly made donuts and cupcakes to a wide variety of breakfast pastries, cookies and pies. Their full line of specialty coffees and smoothies is sure to delight. They also specialize in cakes for all occasions.

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Outer Banks Coffee Company

  • 807 Ocean Trail, Monteray Plaza
  • Corolla

The sunny-orange atmosphere in the coffee shop is enough to wake you up, but you’ll want to try the coffee too — they have quite a variety and it’s roasted fresh in the shop to delight your olfactory senses. All the usual coffee drinks are offered as are tea and homemade pastries and other sweets, all baked in the Coffee Company’s bakery. They have newspapers available so you can enjoy your morning paper, sitting inside or out, and you can also take advantage of their free WiFi.

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Outer Banks Restaurant Tours

  • Various Meeting Places in Kitty Hawk, Duck and Corolla

Outer Banks Restaurant Tours provides walking and driving tours of restaurants in three locations on the Outer Banks. On each tour, chefs and owners greet you, talk to you about their background, their restaurant, their food and their passions and give you a behind-the-scenes look at their restaurant. You are treated to delectable samples of signature dishes, paired with wine, beer or a mixed drink. Along the way, you’re also likely to learn a little history about the Outer Banks and local food sourcing and get a few wine or beer tasting tips. The best thing about these tours is that for the price of one dinner out, you are able to sample the cuisine at multiple restaurants in one afternoon. What better way to find the best places to eat if you are a new visitor to the area? The Duck Walking Tour takes you on foot from one end of the quaint town to the other, sampling great food and strolling on the boardwalk where you’ll have gorgeous views of the Currituck sound. The Kitty Hawk/Kill Devil Hills Driving Tour transports you in their company vehicle to the rock stars of the Outer Banks restaurant scene, and the Corolla Driving Tour features a short ride in their vehicles on the north end of Corolla where some surprising plates of delicious food await you. Even if you are a return visitor or if you are fortunate enough to live here, these restaurant tours allow you to revisit your old favorites and rediscover them in a whole new, more personal way. Outer Banks Restaurant Tours also offers a Brews and Bites Tour on Wednesdays and a Winery Tour on Thursdays. New to the schedule for 2014 is a BBQ class: Secrets of a BBQ Master! Tours start the week of May 19, 2014, and run through the end of September 2014. Reservations are required.

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Route 12 Steak and Seafood Co.

  • 786 Ocean Trail, TimBuck II Shopping Village
  • Corolla

Route 12 has a casual atmosphere that’s appealing for the whole family. You can get fresh seafood, choice grade beef, duck, pasta dishes and ribs. A few of their must-try selections are the crab bisque and the Ahi tuna pepper filet. Their raw bar is well known for having a good selection of oysters, clams, shrimp, Alaskan crab legs and more. Route 12 is open for lunch and dinner in season, with limited hours and a limited menu in the winter. This year they will open for breakfast daily at 7 a.m. and will also serve brunch on Sunday. They feature daily specials and a full ABC license and wine selection. Kids are welcome with a menu of their own. It’s located immediately south of the main TimBuck II complex, next to Brew Thru. Call ahead for reservations, especially in the busy summer months.

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Salt Water Grill

  • 811 Ocean Trail
  • Corolla

Salt Water Grill’s Carolina Coastal Kitchen menu focuses on items that show their fresh take on classic dishes. Start your experience (and that’s what owner Chuck Read insists you will have here) with a shrimp corn dog and stone ground mustard dip or their house-made fried green tomatoes with fresh pimento cheese and pickled three-bean salad. Their menu has a range of local and domestic items like tuna, mahi, Rockfish, Gulf shrimp, all natural beef, pork and chicken freshly prepared in multiple ways from fried to grilled as well as steamed to suit any taste bud. Traditional coastal dishes like shrimp and grits and crab cakes are given an update when served with the right accompaniments and sauces that highlight the flavors. There is always something new on the specials board featuring creative additions to the menu. In season Salt Water Grill is open for lunch and dinner starting at 11 a.m. Monday through Saturday.

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Seth’s Sweet Treats

  • 817 B Ocean Trail, Food Lion Shopping Center
  • Corolla
  • (252) 453-2240

Seth’s Sweet Treats is located inside Bob’s Wild Horse Tours in the courtyard by the Corolla Theater and Food Lion in Corolla. They serve 28 flavors of delicious Edy’s Ice Cream and offer all the sweet ice cream treats you want from an ice cream shop including sundaes, waffle cones and a variety of toppings. Come in and cool down, and while you’re at it don’t forget to book a once in a lifetime Corolla Horse Tour!

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Steamers

  • 798 Sunset Boulevard, TimBuck II Shopping Village
  • Corolla

A local favorite, Steamers has been dishing up fresh and gourmet cuisine to Corolla beachgoers since 1994. Their casual take-out/eat-in restaurant serves high-quality steamed, grilled and fresh fried seafood as well as signature items like baby back ribs, vegetarian black bean soup and classic Key lime pie. Diners place their order at the counter and can then enjoy a craft beer or glass of wine while they wait. Take-out diners can choose from an a la carte and Steamer Pots To Go® menu, the original Outer Banks New England Style Clambake and the ultimate beach party fare. Eat-in diners can enjoy their meal at one of the three tables inside or a picnic table on the deck overlooking Currituck Sound, ideal for watching the sunset. Located in the heart of Corolla at the TimBuck II shopping center, an adjacent mini golf course and a Kids Meal menu make this restaurant especially family friendly.

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Sundogs Raw Bar and Grill

  • 807 Ocean Trail, Monterey Plaza
  • Corolla

For lunch and dinner, this is a great family-friendly restaurant. The grill offers an array of appetizers along with steamed seafood, salads, sandwiches, burgers and full entrees like seafood and ribs. Be sure to check out their new raw bar that features several varieties of oysters and other delicacies, plus they have daily happy hour specials including 33% off crab legs Monday through Friday from 3 to 5 p.m. A children’s menu is available. Looking for a little action in quiet Corolla? Sundogs is the place. They are open until 2 a.m. in the summer season and have live entertainment seven nights a week. Tuesday and Saturday it’s live music; Karaoke happens on Monday, Wednesday and Thursday with kid hours from 9 to 10 p.m.; DJs spin on Friday; and trivia night is Sunday. They also have 11 large flat panel TVs and a huge projection TV for sports and a fully stocked bar where you can hang out and shoot the breeze. No one younger than 21 is allowed after 10 p.m.

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Tomato Patch Pizzeria

  • 803 Albacore Street, Monteray Plaza
  • Corolla

Operating since 1993 with the same Greek family, Tomato Patch offers gourmet pizzas with a variety of standard and more unusual toppings (like salami, gyro meat, caramelized onion or grilled eggplant). The Tomato Patch also serves calzones, classic pasta dishes, garden salads and unbelievable wraps.Try a seafood platter or a delicious po’boy sandwich. Looking for something different and authentic? They have lots of exciting items to choose from. Order the fish lavraki or a gyro for a real taste of Greece, or try Linda’s tasty crabcakes for something more traditional. They’re open for lunch and dinner. Tuesday nights they do something really fun — it’s Kids’ Night, and the small fries get to make their own pizzas! Dr. Unk’s, the full-service bar within the restaurant, has a fully stocked bar and some really fun drinks to choose from. Try an elixir to cure what ails you! Don’t miss this great family-friendly restaurant in Corolla.

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Village Food Truck

  • Corolla Historic Village
  • Corolla

Village Food Truck is the premier mobile dining experience in the northern Outer Banks. Serving up lunch and dinner seven days a week between May and November, this is certainly a stop you will want to make while on vacation. Owner and chef Mark uses his fine dining training and years of expertise to craft the most flavorful and finger licking versions of American and coastal staples. Try a moutwatering burger with handcut french fries or a North Carolina-style shrimp boil. Everything is handmade down to every sauce and sourced locally when available. Be on the lookout for the chef-driven, down-home cooking food truck in or near Corolla Historic Village.

Bacchus Wine & Cheese

  • 891 Albacore Street, Monteray Plaza
  • Corolla
  • (252) 453-4333

Bacchus is located on the south end of the plaza and offers wine, cheese and gourmet foods. You can get fantastic deli sandwiches, paninis, subs, wraps and salads for take-out or to eat in. Their sandwiches are made with Thumann’s meats and cheeses. There are yummy gourmet side items and sinful desserts as well. Order a glass of wine or have a bottle of beer as you enjoy your lunch here. They also have an amazing wine selection – more than 4,000 bottles in every price range! Combine that with a variety of hand-cut domestic and imported cheeses and it’s one-stop happy-hour shopping. They are open every day in season. Ask about the daily and weekly wine tastings, catering services and gift baskets. See Shopping for more about the wine and gourmet foods.

Bad Bean Taqueria

  • 785 Sunset Boulevard, TimBuck II Shopping Village
  • Corolla
  • (252) 453-4380

A cool and comfortable taqueria, Bad Bean will exceed your expectations and has quickly become a favorite stop for locals and visitors to the Outer Banks. They consistently deliver a delicious experience by using fresh simple ingredients cooked with integrity. The fresh-made salsas and guacamole are perfect with the house-made corn tortilla chips. Don’t miss the pan-seared mahi-mahi (fish) tacos topped with Jicama slaw and homemade salsa fresca, quesadillas or a giant burrito. Like margaritas? They make them shaken and on the rocks with their own house-made mix—it’s the real deal! They have a casual, family-friendly atmosphere so sit back, relax and enjoy. Take-out is available, and be sure to ask about party packs for large groups. If you’re in Kill Devil Hills make sure to visit their sister restaurant, Bad Bean Baja Grill. Its all the great things you love about the Bad Bean with an expanded menu and full service bar.

Big Buck’s Homemade Ice Cream

  • 794 Sunset Boulevard, TimBuck II Shopping Village
  • Corolla
  • (252) 453-3188

For a tasty treat, head to Big Buck’s Homemade Ice Cream. Choose from more than 50 flavors of made-from-scratch ice cream plus sherbet, sorbet, soft serve and frozen yogurt. You can get any flavor made into a shake, split, sundae or float, even a brownie sundae — yum! Big Buck’s has an espresso bar and all the espresso-based coffee drinks you need to pick up your day. Candies, homemade chocolates and taffy are also available. Check out the Big Buck’s Ts, and don’t forget the ice cream cake! They have a flavor for every occasion.

Bubbies

  • 788 B Sunset Boulevard, TimBuck II Shopping Village
  • Corolla
  • (252) 453-4010

Come try TimBuck II’s newest family-oriented restaurant located next to the courtyard playground. Bubbies offers juicy hamburgers, hot dogs, french fries and satisfying milkshakes. If you’re in a hurry, don’t worry—they offer take out!

Bunker’s Grille and Bar at The Currituck Club

  • 620 Currituck Clubhouse Drive
  • Corolla
  • (252) 453-0061

Whether or not you’re golfing, make time for a meal at Bunker’s. Located inside the beautiful clubhouse on the spectacular Currituck Club grounds, they offer breakfast and lunch daily and are open from 8 a.m. until 6 p.m. with chef specials and house-made soups. The menu features a variety of appetizers, salads and sandwiches, and they are kid friendly with a special menu, high chairs and booster seats. Full bar service is also available, and dinner is also served one night per week, with extended dining hours and entertainment. They specialize in hosting weddings and private events such as family reunion dinners, and they offer off-site catering as well. Bunkers is open year round, every day but Christmas, and is open to the public.

Butcher Block

  • 807 E. Ocean Trail, Monteray Shores Shopping Plaza
  • Corolla
  • (252) 453-3663

For the meat lovers in the northern Outer Banks, Butcher Block is the prime location for all your barbecue needs. They offer cut-to-order Angus steaks ready for the grill. Enjoy Filet Mignon, Ribeye and New York Strip as well as bone-in Porterhouse and T-Bones. You can also find fresh ground beef, gourmet burgers, fresh pork (including homemade sausage), poultry, lamb and veal, all of the highest quality and freshness. For a real Southern treat, consider Butcher Block as the source for whole pigs on the OBX. Butcher Block also specializes in fresh seafood straight from the local docks. Fresh fish filets, shellfish and mollusk are available. Shrimp and crab steamed and spiced to order are other handy items. Butcher Block also features Boar’s Head deli meats and cheeses sliced to order. Check out their party trays and fresh salads.

Corolla Cantina Bar & Grill

  • 1159-B Austin Street, Corolla Light Town Center
  • Corolla
  • (252) 597-1730

Breakfast, lunch or dinner, Corolla Cantina is the place for fresh Baja-inspired Mexican food. The decor of the cozy cafe reflects its menu: bold, refreshing and laid back. Owner Nadya Williams makes you feel as if you’re stepping into her own kitchen, greeting you with a genuine smile and hearty laugh. Breakfast, which is served 8 to 11 a.m., includes omelets, pancakes and a breakfast burrito. For lunch and dinner, start your meal with the spiked queso to share. The Baja Fish burrito is a star feature item as well as the Chicken Salad Wrap. There are plenty of vegetarian items as well as a great kid’s menu. Take a moment, as their motto suggests, “be kind, unwind,” with a tart margarita or a glass of local scuppernong wine on the front patio.

Corolla Scoops & Sweets

  • 1152 Ocean Trail, Austin Complex
  • Corolla

Last stop for ice cream before Virginia! From the owners of Corolla Pizza and Deli, and located at the North end of Corolla, this fun little shop serves Hershey’s hand-dipped ice cream and all the usual goodness that goes along with that such as sundae’s, milkshakes and more. They’re open daily in season.

Corolla Village Barbecue

  • 1129 Corolla Village Road
  • Corolla
  • (252) 457-0076

Locals sing the praises of the Carolina pork barbecue sandwiches served at this little restaurant that sits in the heart of old Corolla village. At meal times, the delicious smell of hickory-smoked barbecuing pork, ribs and chicken lures customers from all over the village. This is a carry-out restaurant only, but there are a few picnic tables close by. You can also get soft-serve ice cream here, the perfect treat on a hot summer day. It’s open for lunch and dinner, until 8 p.m., in season.

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