Whether you say Corolla (like the car) or Corallah (correct) or Bohdi Island (like the skier) or Bodie (body-correct), we all say Happy Hour in the Outer Banks the same way! It is in our culture to celebrate every sunset with good friends, good times and good drinks so no matter if you are a beer drinker, a vinophile or prefer to sip your spirits straight, the fine people up and down our island are happy to accommodate.
Let’s start with our viniculture since the first known and oldest grape vine in America is actually located in Manteo. “The Mother Vine” still grows on private property in the Mother Vineyard community on the island. While North Carolina may not traditionally known for its fine wines, several local establishments are succeeding in changing that. John Wright at Sanctuary Vineyards in Currituck, after honing his craft for years, has established a large tasting room where you can sample several varietals. In the summer they celebrate with Acoustic Sunset that features local music, food and wine: locals and visitors can bring their families, including their fur babies, and spread out a picnic blanket for an unforgettable evening.
If craft brews are more your jam, we have several beer gardens that encourage you to belly up to the bar while still enjoying the natural scenery. The Corolla Beer Garden is hidden for a reason: situated alfresco tucked under a grand oak, they offer plenty of picnic tables, live music and something on tap for everyone. Further down in Kill Devil Hills, you will find the Outer Banks Brew Station which is one of the only wind-powered breweries in the US. Locals flock to the fenced in backyard to enjoy their house brews- try the Lemongrass Wheat- while enjoying live music, cornhole and watching their children enjoy the large pirate ship play structure or a pick-up soccer game. Manteo’s quaint downtown setting is the home of Lost Colony Brewery, where you will find great brews and chews you can enjoy on the shaded patio while you watch the boats and people stroll by. Ocracoke houses the newest member of the gang with the opening of 1718 Brewery. Take a short ferry ride over the island from the Hatteras docks to enjoy their house brews and be sure to take a 6-pack or growler home to share.
For our spirit enthusiasts, head back to Manteo to Outer Banks Distilling, the home of Kill Devil Rum. The owners are an amiable foursome who offer tours of the plant and serve up samples of their award winning rums. A local favorite is the Honey Pecan rum that is produced from an onsite pecan tree and provides a delicious base for a rum cake.
No matter your drink of choice, raise a glass responsibly and enjoy an authentic taste of the Outer Banks you won’t find anywhere else in the world.