Most of us enjoy a good surprise, and there is nothing better than to be perfectly amazed when you find a little specialty eatery tucked away in gas station, grocery or library. Some of NWA’s best wraps, sandwiches, chicken, salads and more can be had at these little out-of-the-ordinary establishments.
Treat yourself to something off the beaten path, and discover rave-worthy food when you visit any of the hidden gems we’ve listed below.
Bentonville Library Café – Cycle Path Café $
405 S Main St
Bentonville, AR 72712
Not the kind of eatery you would expect to find in a library, it specializes in quality coffee and delicious sandwiches and wraps. Try the fresh homemade chicken salad on Cranberry Pecan bread.
It’s the kind of sandwich that keeps you coming back time after time. They also offer an amazing catering menu for all your catering needs.
Grand Central Station $
1806 Forest Hills Blvd
Bella Vista, AR (479) 855-9214
A gas station that serves some of the best fried chicken, soups, sandwiches, and burgers to be found in the country. They also serve breakfast including killer cinnamon rolls and three-egg omelettes. The folks that run the place are really nice and go out of their way to make you feel welcome. Try the place once, and you’ll be hooked!
Backdoor Club & Grill $
1190 S Highway 59
Located behind TNT Express in Decatur, AR, Backdoor features great food and brews. Appetizers, salads, wings, wraps, sides, sandwiches, burgers (killer burgers), dinners and a kid’s menu are all available. The staff is neighborly and efficient and will help you celebrate almost any occasion. Karaoke is happening on Thursdays and some Saturdays.
The Short Stop $
18440 Marshall St
If you’ve ever craved a tall, perfectly flavored, giant ice cream cone, then you must visit The Short Stop in Garfield, the home of the giant cone. Not far from Beaver Lake, folks stop by to grab one of these commercial sized ice cream cones. When you first see your cone, you may think you’ll never be able to eat all of it, but they are so yummy, you’ll have it all eaten before you know it. Besides the giant cones they also have burgers (cooked to perfection and juicy) and plate lunches. The Short Stop also sells Phillips 66 gas
Shorty’s Deli & Meat Market $$
112 Southwinds Rd, Ste 1
Shorty’s is a one-stop deli, grill and fresh meat market. They sell only the best USDA Choice meats and cheeses, and they have a qualified butcher available to cut your meat just the way you like it. Don’t feel like cooking? Pick up one of their homemade and made fresh daily “heat and eat” meals and desserts. There is also a dining area where you can eat a quality meal and not just typical deli food.
Blackboard Grocery & Eatery $$
644 W Dickson St #101
Located on Dickson Street in the heart of Fayetteville, this eatery is an upscale urban market offering one-stop shopping and featuring select groceries, produce, coffee, delicious soups, sandwiches served on Apple Blossom Sourdough bread, crisp salads, and that’s just for starters.
Little Greek Restaurant– Northwest Arkansas Mall $
4201 N Shiloh Dr. #1380, (479) 442-4700
Don’t let the fact that this Little Greek Restaurant is located in the food court of the Northwest Arkansas Mall fool you, this little eatery serves stop-in-your-tracks Greek food. Their Dolmades are simply among the best I’ve ever eaten as are their freshly made 8-step fries.
Their beautiful salads are made from only the freshest ingredients. If you want a colorful, healthy salad to serve for a special occasion, they’ll be happy to make one for take-out. Just tell them how many you’re serving, they’ll do the rest. Try the Olympic Gyro, you’ll be a customer for life.
Gaby’s Bakery $
1803 S 8th St
Although Gaby’s is primarily a bakery turning out delicious breads and pastries, if you get there early enough, you can get some of the best tamales you’ve ever put in your mouth. For all you tamale lovers out there, get up early and get you body over there to see what all the fuss is about.
Pinnacle Station Local Market $
2000 S Promenade Blvd
Located in the thick of the hustle and bustle of Pinnacle Hills on the corner of Promenade Blvd. and New Hope, this amazing award-winning, gourmet grocery features meats, seafood, produce and homemade bakery items including their signature breads. They also make delicious soups, fresh salads, pizza (single servings available), plate lunches, sandwiches and subs. All this, and a fabulous after 5 bar too! Try the Philly Sub!
Rose Stop International Delicacy $
1003 S Pleasant
Springdale, AR 72764
You’re in for a real treat when you visit this unique International grocery, bakery, and gas station. This is a great place to find Mediterranean, Persian and South American food items. Specialties include homemade felafel sandwiches, hamburgers, pie, freshly made Gyros, Baklava, and frozen Middle Eastern meals.
Note: Photo at top of the page is courtesy of Cycle Path Café .