Friday, July 26, 2013

Up on the Blue Ridge Spine

Yesterday afternoon Mother, Daddy, Hannah, and I drove to Pisgah Inn for dinner. Mother drives because she gets very carsick. I ride shotgun because I get moderately nauseous as well.We drove along windy hwy. 215 with its rock outcroppings and lush foliage.
Toward the top, after 17 miles of twisting, the rock walls appear.
You go into tunnels,
And come out into the cool green air.
A study in contrasts: dark green, deep blue, brilliant white
Sometimes the road shoots up, takes a curve, and you feel you could fly off into space.

The view from Pisgah Inn is always stunning, even on a cloudy day.

We entered the restaurant area. I believe the elevation is technically a bit over 5700 feet. My parents' home is at 3000 feet. My ears were popping.
The restaurant. Sit and rock in the grass and wonder at the view.
The inn has lovely walkways and paths, and exquisitely kept grounds.
Calla lilies in bloom:
This is the inn portion, from the "view-side."
Pisgah Inn has a wonderful gift shop, the perfect place to while away the few minutes until you're seated at your table. I've bought many nice things there over the years. Yesterday I startled Hannah when I asked her to turn and see this bottle holder. Yikes!
The restaurant. Pisgah Inn and Restaurant are open during the season, from April to October. The restaurant was full. I think it's the only watering hole along this section of the parkway.
Several bright quilts adorn the walls.
The copper light fixtures are unique.
I sat across from this nice couple.
And next to this lovely girl.
The view out the plate glass windows is fabulous. Of course, this is what everyone is here for.
We came for a fun evening together, but didn't want to break the bank. The restaurant has pricier items, up to $30/plate, but we wanted neither the price tag nor the huge portions. I ordered an extremely tasty chicken pot pie, full of meat and veggies and a delicious thickened broth, topped with puff pastry. I was very pleased. Yummy as it was, I couldn't finish the last few bites. It was filling.
Mother ordered the French onion soup, topped with Swiss and provolone cheeses. The broth was rich. She paired this with half a Reuben sandwich. Although this particular combo is not offered on the menu, our waiter said he could make that work for her.
Hannah ordered the spring roll. She said the inside -- chicken, cabbage and veggies -- was very good, but she was unfamiliar with the rice wrapper. I'm not fond of them myself.
Daddy also had the pot pie. That dish comes with one side, and I chose fried okra. Yes, all you foreigners and non-Southerns,  fried okra. It's cut, breaded, and lightly fried in oil. What a yummy, easy finger-snack! Here's what it looks like:
And I'll end with a few shots of the Blue Ridge, seen from the restaurant veranda.
It looks very much like the view from my parents' dining room windows. In fact, from their home, on a bright sunny day, one can see Pisgah Inn. Impossible, you say? It's true! The sun shines on those massive windows at the restaurant. It reflects like a giant mirror, and we can see it blinking and dazzling, from so many miles away. It makes one realize that the old semaphore communication techniques really worked!
We drove back down hwy. 276 into Brevard, and then wound our way home in the gloaming.
Our 4 1/2 hour outing was leisurely. I'm so glad Hannah could go with us. And because five years from now none of us will remember the reasons -- why was Hannah here without her family? why was I here without Adam? why did we go out to eat? -- I'm glad I can record it here to assist my failing memory. Thank you, Pisgah Inn. You've been helping us make family memories for decades.
Abundant rain this summer has made Looking Glass Falls a true cataract. Normally it thunders in the ears, but with my residual head cold my ears would not pop as we descended from 5700 feet to 2300 feet. The tons of water were a faint roar to me.


  1. Oh, how lovely, MK! I can't believe how gorgeous the drive is! Your parents are so beautiful, too!
    What a good idea to dine out right before your mama sets to cooking for the crowd!

  2. Lovely outing! Those cloud shots are beautiful.

  3. So very beautiful! And tasty looking pot pie, too!

  4. Thanks for taking us along! I have never been to Pisgah Inn but I love driving around in that area. All my adult life I've had to live in the flat lands, but I do miss the mountains.


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