The towns of Johnston County (or JoCo to the locals) invite travelers to take a break from the road and explore the unique and growing food scene right off the highway; Johnston County is located where I-40 and I-95 cross in Eastern North Carolina. Discover the unexpected tastes and traditions that await you beyond the exit ramp. Here are the top 5 ways in JoCo to let your foodie flag fly!
1. Enjoy traveling along our BBQ Trail during your visit, with 10 stops and counting. BBQ is a noun here in Eastern North Carolina, not a verb. And BBQ means slow-cooked, pulled-pork, no sauce, just a hint of vinegar.
2. Skip the fast-food joints and check out Under the Oak in Downtown Smithfield. Chef and farmer, Blake Gotliffe along with his wife Megan, started Under the Oak Farm and their endeavor to grow and cook with organic produce grew into a restaurant. Under the Oak is a farm to table, nose to tail, scratch-made kitchen that sources almost entirely from NC.
3. Visit Downtown Clayton and have a drink at Revival 1869 – A Drinkery – a sophisticated whiskey & craft cocktail bar, where the cocktails are fresh and cool, the jazz is hot, and the whiskey flows.
4. Travel along our self-guided craft beverage experience, the JoCo Beer, Wine, and Shine Trail. Enjoy touring and tasting at 3 breweries, 2 wineries, and 2 distilleries.
5. Don’t just stay for the day, make a weekend of it all and book the Sip and Stay package which gets you deals at area hotels as well as coupons for eating and drinking your way around JoCo at all the amazing places mentioned in this round-up.
With so much to explore, you’ll need more than one day or even one weekend to visit. Make JoCo and its many exits along I-95 a favorite place to stop on your travels. For more information visit www.johnstoncountync.org (please also use this link for the digital components).
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