ABINGDON, Va. (WJHL)- As News Channel 11 continues its year-long celebration of its 70th anniversary, Abingdon also has something to celebrate. For the fifth year in a row, U.S.A. Today named the Southwest Virginia town as one of the 10 Best Small Town Food Scenes.

“This is something that’s been building for, you know, 30 years or more. And so it just continues to build. There’s more and more interest both from the locals and regionally and even throughout the south,” said Hugh Belcher, the owner of The Girl and the Raven Coffee Shop and Café. “Now, we have people that are coming in all the time to Abingdon just find out what’s the next great thing Abingdon and having it in food.”

With fresh coffee, all day breakfast and lunch and even an art gallery, The Girl and the Raven creates the perfect atmosphere to start your day.

“We’re a small batch roastery. So we roast our own coffee beans on site every day. And we also are a scratch kitchen that probably sets us apart more than anything else,” Belcher explained. “Our people make this place special from our head roaster, Zin Moon, to Aaron, our head barista and barista trainer to Erica, the front of the house manager and all the way back into the kitchen. We have people that are going to hopefully make you feel welcome from the moment you step on property.”

From biscuits and gravy and specialty lattes to burgers and truffle fries, and daily soup and grilled cheese specials, the menu is as diverse as Abingdon’s food scene itself.

“On the menu, you’re going to find things like the drop the Mike Cheeseburger, which is a one half pound of black Angus beef, always had Patty with caramelized onions and American cheese with a special housemaid aioli on a Martin’s bun. Most people pair that with the truffle fries that we do here in-house,” Belcher shared. “We have an amazing Reuben. My wife, Julie’s famous Napa chicken salad is the number one seller. Our buttermilk biscuit- the hip to be square biscuit with house made gravy, eggs, avocado, bacon. The crunch time features yogurt and fresh fruit with house made granola.”

About half a mile up Main Street and down on Pecan Street- you’ll find Jack’s 128 Pecan serving up lunch and dinner.

“This a quirky spot,” said owner Jack Barrow. “It’s just a fun little local spot. I am local. I’m from Abingdon And so it’s just good to be here. This is all I’ve done in my life.”

The American Style menu has several favorites- with the Caesar salad and tomato bisque, Cuban sandwich, and salmon and grits just to name a few.

“We’re that type restaurant that- sometimes you want to go out to eat, but you don’t want to have to buy the restaurant to do it,” Barrow explained. “It’s quirky. It’s fun, it’s casual and it’s good.”

Barrow says the “quirky” vibe of his restaurant plays into Abingdon’s culture.

“We have the theater. We have people traveling from different areas for the different aspects of the town. And so I think they’re more attuned to like different foods and things like that,” said Barrow. “Of the towns in the area [Abingdon] is pretty diverse and it’s got a good tourism base. So people are moving and shaking and coming and going. So it allows for a lot of people to come and try the restaurants.”

Back on Main Street, you’ll find Summer’s Roof and Cellar.

“It’s fine dining,” said Co-owner, Nathan Berg. “It’s a little bit more elevated… taking things that you might have grown up eating at Grandma’s Kitchen, we’re kind of taking a new spin on that and making it something a little more elevated.”

Fairly new to the town, it brings picturesque views up top and dining in a wine cellar on the bottom.

“We’re really trying to create is kind of a a unique experience for people to be able to come down into the wine cellar and dine kind of in a subterranean basement. And the kitchen is down there,” said Berg. “It’s open to the dining area. And then be able to go get on the elevator right up a few floors and kind of be at the very top of Abingdon with the panoramic views of the Blue Ridge Mountains.”

Wine not only plays a role in the ambiance of the restaurant but also in the meals themselves.

“My brother and the manager of the restaurant Charlie Berg, he’s a really a world-renowned Sommelier,” explained Berg. “He’s worked in some of the best restaurants in the world and has developed a really amazing wine program and wine selections.”

This story will just whet your appetite as the town is filled with restaurants.

We featured some of the same and additional restaurants- like Foresta, Rain and others in our Abingdon Eats series.