Story by Lauren Levine
Welcome to Lexington
Located about an hour from the Queen City, Lexington, North Carolina, received its name as a nod to the famous battle fought during the Revolutionary War. It began as just a few houses, a tavern and a store, but was officially incorporated in 1828. Since barbecue is the cornerstone of Lexington’s culture, sampling at least a sandwich or two is almost a requirement when you’re in town. Once you’ve fueled up, Lexington has plenty to offer racing fans, wine drinkers, art enthusiasts and shopaholics alike.
What to eat
There’s no shortage of delicious food to be found in Lexington, but with barbecue as the focal point of the community, you’ll want to plan on having at least a few meals that include this smoky and delicious fare. Restaurants, like Barbecue Center and Lexington Barbecue, have been in business for more than 50 years. They often earn attention in national publications, such as USA Today. Southern Lunch is another Lexington staple, featuring homestyle cooking, like meatloaf and peach cobbler.
Stop by for a Saturday morning breakfast everyone will love. Café 35 is a popular lunch choice if you’re in the mood for fresh soups and sandwiches. If you’re craving Italian, you’ll want to try Naples Italian Grill, located in uptown Lexington.
What to see
Locals recommend checking out artist Bob Timberlake’s gallery and museum. There, you can admire Timberlake’s works and his eclectic collection of personal possessions; with items that range from Santa Claus collectibles to boats, there’s plenty to see. Lexington also features a handful of wineries that make for a relaxing way to spend the weekend. Childress Vineyards, founded by NASCAR team owner Richard Childress, is home to a quaint bistro that serves as an ideal lunch spot.
Where to shop
The uptown area of Lexington boasts more than 100 independently owned shops to explore. From antique stores to The Candy Factory, an old-time candy shop featuring sweet treats from every era, you can spend hours in this area of the city. There’s also the famed Conrad and Hinkle Food Market. People travel from all over to get their hands on Conrad and Hinkle’s homemade pimento cheese, so make sure to bring some home with you.
This article ran in the October 2015 issue of Charlotte Happenings.
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