If you are a local in Sneads Ferry, you know that there is not a plethora of choices when it comes to grub. You also know, that in light of the recent and unexpected COVID-19 pandemic, there have been a countless number of nights where we all needed a break from standing in our kitchens. If your favorite fast food places are not confined to McDonald’s, Taco Bell, Dairy Queen, or Hardee’s, you could find yourself a little sad about your surroundings. Take me for instance-I love a good burger and fries, but I pine for Sonic or a local burger place when I am in the mood for that. However, I am here to inform and remind you, that there are indeed quality places here to get your burger fix, and others! No need to fret or fear! So, with that being said, we will jump right in and take burgers first. Here are my fav local places that I frequented before and during COVID-19. They are my tried and true dishes that I hope you will salivate over as well!
(979 NC Highway 210 – Sneads Ferry / 910-327-1555)
Up first is this chain, that I actually did not know was a chain, because it has such a hometown feel! I have never heard of Highway 55 until we moved here in 2019, but I am a sucker for ANY diner, so it was a shoe-in as far as first try. Highway serves up scratch burgers with a variety of custards. I have always preferred custard over ice cream and soft serve. Look forward to a friendly smile as soon as you hit the door, coupled with 60’s nostalgia. Leah’s fav(s):
- bacon pimiento cheeseburger– it is ooey, gooey, cheesy, house-made pimiento. Even if you are not a fan of pimiento cheese, I advise you to try. It is the star of the menu.
- shrimp basket/poboy: a surprise star on the menu, these shrimp are juicy, flavorful, and crunchy. They remind of getting seafood at a spot that is know for, well, seafood!
- ANY of the sides, including the medium cut fries, tater tots, and the delicious onion rings
- try ANY of the custard, its amazing! At the Hampstead location, they open the door for you as you enter and leave. This place is a vibe. They will also give you a sampling of the daily flavor! KIDS EAT HALF OFF ON TUESDAYS!
(1044 NC-210 – Sneads Ferry / 910-741-0367)
It took awhile for me to try this place. For some unknown reason, I was leery. Do not ask me why because I am a tried and true fan now. Fat Burger is a bar and burger joint that ALSO has amazing wings. Count me in. It has a pub-like atmosphere but is still family friendly at all times and the hustle and bustle of the spot is invigorating. Expect locally sourced ingredients and craft beer, which is something I love. Leah’s fav(s):
- jalapeño poppers;
- sweet thai chili, cajun jerk, and garlic parmesan wings;
- The Texan burger;
- bacon cheese fatty burger;
- waffle fries and regular fries.
(119 Hall Point Rd – Sneads Ferry / 910-327-2011)
From the moment we found out we were going to be taking on coastal living, we became excited about the access to seafood-one of our favorite things to eat! We began to try places and found disappointment, so we finally stopped trying and decided to start asking new people we were meeting where to turn. A fellow church member told us about Riverview. We had no clue about it, but boy am I thankful to this day. Riverview knows that they are doing! Southern sides and flavorful, juicy, fresh seafood are what you are going to get every time. Large, heaping portions and friendly customer service, accompanied with homemade tartar sauce? Count me in! Leah’s fav(s):
- the fried oysters are WONDERFUL;
- fried shrimp;
- fried fish;
- fried squash
Hollands Shelter Creek II
(756 E Ocean Hwy, Holly Ridge, NC 28445)
You guys, I had no idea about this place until this year, and I was blown away by the flavor and quality! Like Riverview, you can expect southern comfort and food, fried up or grilled to perfection. Hollands is cajun style seafood and they ALSO have an old fashioned storefront that even serves ice cream! When we dined in, I thoroughly enjoyed the clam chowder, fried shrimp, fish, and okra. The coleslaw was the best I have ever had. They also have a full bar and dessert-you can look forward to full feature on them in the future.
Cancun Mexican Restaurant
(1192 NC Highway 210 – Sneads Ferry / 910-541-0745)
Alright look, there is only ONE Mexican restaurant in Sneads Ferry, and it is good! I was born and raised in San Antonio, Texas, so I am a tough critic when it comes to my Latin grub, but I have found gems at this family-friendly spot, including the el pastor tacos, cheesy enchiladas, and the extraordinary juicy carnitas!
(965 Old Folkstone Rd Unit 102 – Sneads Ferry / 910-327-1210)
All I can initially say about this place is WOW! I have always been a fan of small, authentic, deli-style places that offer REAL ingredients and loads of savory meats and this place is a hidden gem here. Located at the far, left-end of the Food Lion plaza, Napoli is a sure bet for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. They have the BEST meatball sub I have ever had. Excuse me, the best MEATBALL I have ever had, which we all know is what matters most-the execution of the meatball. They have mastered it with no frills, just GOODNESS. The bread is moist, the sauce is delicious, and they serve the sandwiches with a fresh corn salad that is to die for. The loaded Italian is my husbands favorite, and any of the other subs are simply made with care and perfection. Do not worry about an airy sandwich with minuscule amount of meat here. They are also offering a variety of desserts, including homemade cannoli that they do not fill until you order it. Want hot or iced coffee? They have a huge selection of tasty treats and when your child has a birthday, they offer a special, monstrous sized sundae that they serve in crafty mason jars.
Napoli Cafe was featured on this #FerryFoodieFoto post: https://rci-plus-topsail.com/ferryfoodiefoto-napoli-cafe/
(977 NC-210 / 910-327-0888)
I saved this category for last because it is my personal fav! I could eat Asian cuisine every day of the week, and most of the times we have it at least twice a week. Red Pepper is not only the best Chinese takeout spot in the ferry, but it is the best. Ever since I have first tried this spot, there has never been a dish that I did not enjoy! I was highly skeptical when we first moved here because I knew options were limited so I had very little expectations. However, it is actually one of the best Chinese places I have ever tried. When my parents came to visit, we had their favs from here several times. Yes, they have favs! Leah’s favs: The house special egg foo young is the best they and I have ever tried anywhere. It is DELICIOUS! Three, thin, protein-packed omelets are given, with a savory brown gravy. A lot of places make the omelettes too thick. Not here. Another win? The pad thai! I normally get house special but the beef is my new fav, the flavor is spot on, whereas a Thai dish is normally a gamble from a Chinese place. Do not be afraid to step out of the box and try some other dishes besides the ones you normally opt for, or you will miss out on the coconut shrimp and coconut chicken. Jumbo sized shrimp are lightly fried and tossed in a sweet, coconut sauce and there is no way you won’t eat them all. Other favs:
- kung pao chicken,
- orange chicken,
- sesame chicken,
- shrimp and broccoli,
- lo mein.
Okay, I will stop now 🙂
(1961 NC HWY 172 Suite 110 – Sneads Ferry / 910-741-4282)
When I moved to this coastal town the last thing I thought I would have access to was a Vietnamese restaurant. Let me clarify: an authentic, quintessential, Vietnamese hole in the wall, with a numbered menu. Ecstatic does not begin to describe my feelings. I had high expectations for Miss Pho, and it exceeded them from the beginning. Beginning with trying the actual pho: homemade broths, filled with everything from raw steak, tendon, beef balls, fish balls, pork! The usual accompaniments are offered, that make this staple even better-bean sprouts, jalapeño, cilantro, rice noodles, and it is all phenomenal. Even if you order it to-go, they separate every thing so that when you get home, you can combine it. Why? Because they are articulate when it comes to food prep and you will appreciate it. Leahs fav(s):
- the seafood fried rice, that doesn’t taste anything like Chinese fried rice (#42),
- grilled lemongrass chicken and bbq pork with steamed rice and vegetables (#40),
- sliced rare beef with beef balls with spicy soup (#21),
- bbq ground pork, spring roll, vegetable with vermicelli (#30).
Last but not least are the best egg rolls you ever want to try-these are no run of the mill, ordinary egg rolls. They taste nothing like them. Vietnamese flavors are very distinct and their use of fish sauce sets them apart. You can find these under the appetizer items, and they are called cha gio (#6). They are crispy, and filled with flavorful vermicelli noodles and pork. While they have vegetables in them, they are not chock-full of vegetables and barely anything else like most egg rolls we encounter. No. Eating their egg rolls, that they serve with a side of fish sauce, is an experience.
All these places are offering take-out right now, and I look forward to updating you on these and other new places that I try in the surrounding areas!
Forks up, food down,