Your Winston-Salem bucket list: What to eat, drink and do

Photo by Jay Sinclair

Often called “The Dash” as an affectionate nod to its punctuation, Winston-Salem is a small town with big city amenities. Just 79 miles north of the heart of Charlotte, this city is an easily accessible weekend destination. Winston-Salem has a notable craft beer scene, sumptuous restaurants, a stunning boutique hotel, and several places to play for every hobbyist.


Photo via Visit Winston-Salem

In the former RJ Reynolds Tobacco Headquarters, the recently renovated Kimpton Cardinal Hotel resides in this historic Art Deco building that was the inspiration for the Empire State Building in New York City. You can count on plush rooms, quality service and impressive amenities. Take advantage of the Recreation Room, outfitted with a bowling alley, basketball court, pool table and adult-sized spiral slide — all at no additional cost. Complimentary local beer and wine are served in the Living Room in the afternoons. Live music accompanies brunch on Saturdays and Sundays.


In an artsy industrial space, Krankies dishes out affordable homemade fare for breakfast, lunch and dinner with some ingredients from its own garden. Their top seller is a chicken biscuit smothered in Texas Pete and honey. Top off your meal with their very own roasted-on-site coffee.

Situated in the downtown arts district, Crafted: The Art of the Taco is a restaurant in a glamorized industrial space. The menu is a mash up of a variety of food from around the world. True to their name, Chef Kris Fuller was thoughtful on building layers of taco flavor that hit your palette at the right time to taste the range of flavors.

Parisian-inspired The Katharine Brasserie can be found in The Kimpton Cardinal Hotel. Expect a warm atmosphere blended beautifully into an upscale French restaurant. Chef Adam Barnett brings his modern style to classic French cuisine, making dining here worth remembering.

Photo by Jay Sinclair 
Alma Mexicana

Located in the Wake Forest Innovation Quarter, Alma Mexicana has established itself as a funky fun restaurant for modern Mexican food and cocktails. It’s a trendy spot not only to be seen, but also to enjoy well-crafted cuisine in a renovated hip building.

Nestled in the West End neighborhood, Mozelle’s Fresh Southern Bistro has a cult local following for many good reasons. Their modern take on classic Southern fare has this restaurant celebrating its 10th anniversary this year. Reservations are recommended to get a table at this well-established dining hotspot.

Set in a grand 1920’s residence, Spring House Restaurant has a distinctive culinary menu created by their award-winning chef Timothy Grandinetti. Bringing seasonal dishes from locally sourced ingredients to the restaurant’s tables. This chef’s passion delivers across the board from presentation to taste.


Inside a 1930’s renovated garage, Joymonger’s Barrel Hall is a popular neighborhood hangout with a lineup of 14 styles of beer that have been aged bourbon and wine barrels. Each beer has its own unique flavor that has patrons savoring every sip.

Located in the lower level of the Bailey Power Plant, Incendiary Brewing is a lively place to grab a few beers. Try a few of the local favorites, including Ritual Pilsner and Milk Stout, in this ultra-cool industrial space.

Photo via Visit Winston-Salem

If you are craving a Sexual Chocolate Imperial Stout, then stop in Foothills Brewpub for this limited signature brew. So popular, it sells out quickly. Each month, this brewery takes on a human, animal, or environmental cause, then creates a beer in its honor, and a portion of the proceeds is donated to the chosen cause.


Artists, book an art workshop at Sawtooth School for Visual Arts where you can create through pottery, printmaking, and wood carving plus many more crafty endeavors.

Foodies, head over to Colony Urban Farm for a honey tasting, where your taste buds will rejoice from indulging in local to global honey.

Shoppers, swing by Camel City Goods to purchase cool Winston-Salem-themed T-shirts, coffee mugs and hats to remember your good time in this city. And then, stop in Urban Grl, it’s a gift shop chock full of local goods to enhance your home or wardrobe.

Photo by Sara Kendall

History buffs, stop by Old Salem to broaden your knowledge by interacting with re-enactors who bring back to life this eighteenth-century Moravian village.


  1. Sarah, I live and work in Winston-Salem. I graduated from RJ Reynolds High School. Outside of a missed named baseball team, I have never heard of Winston-Salem ever being referred to as “dash”. The so called “dash” is actually a hyphen. There was a big fight over renaming the baseball team “The Dash” because it has no relationship to the name of our town.


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