Monday, August 29, 2011

Beam's Chinese American

In the mountains of North Carolina, tucked out between Newland and Spruce Pine in this monstrous signage. It is bizarre to me and I react surprised every time I see this 20 foot tall entrance sign for the now defunct attraction.  It makes me wonder in what years this was a mainstay in the local economy.  What was the experience like?  Does anyone have the back story on this place?


15 comments:

  1. I don't have any idea what years it was actually open, but i remember eating there fairly regularly in the mid to late 80s. It was huge for the area but we always had to stand in line. People were often dressed up. It had huge fish tanks that you could see from both sides of some of the walls. I remember lots and lots of decoration stuff stacked everywhere in the lobby area, but I was little so I don't remember any details of what any of it was.

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  2. My CPA is the grandson of the late owner. He said all the children had to earn their keep by working in the restaurant. People would drive from Boone, NC to Beam's for Chinese food, over an hour drive.

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  3. Sarah, thank you for sharing your memories about Beam's. I wish I had witnessed it in the heyday.

    Anon, maybe your CPA will sop in and share some info and his memories also. Thank you.

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  4. Friends said it closed when the owners got divorced. I gather that the husband was the chef. Too bad.:-(

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  5. The owner was a distant cousin of my grandmother, also a Beam. They were distant relatives of Jim Beam, the whiskey maker. When you walked in the restaurant, the front room was a giant glass showcase of every Jim Beam collectible decanter ever issued- Elvis, cars, hunting dogs, birds, ALL of them. One of the neatest things I'd ever seen.

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  7. I got to eat there once in the '80s. At the time it was rated the best Chinese restaurant in the Western Hemisphere, with fresh food flown in daily from New York. At least, that's what I was told. I hate that I can't have that experience again.

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  8. I loved this place we eat here many times during the 70 and 80's in summer they had a huge screen in porch over looking the pond. They had a very large collection of Jim Beam Bottles. The food was great as the place was

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  9. I loved this place we eat here many times during the 70 and 80's in summer they had a huge screen in porch over looking the pond. They had a very large collection of Jim Beam Bottles. The food was great as the place was

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  10. There really are no words to describe the trip and experience. Imagine you're 4, traveling from Ashe County - and would never be back. That must've been 1978. I wanted to return, but my dismay can no more be articulated than my wonder. Quite frankly, I was happier not knowing it was closed.

    Kevin Wayne Gentry

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  12. Donita and I used to drive in our '64 Volkswagon bus to Beam's in the early '70s from Boone. That was the closest Chinese restaraunt this side of Asheville. I'm sorry to hear it's closed. Another great family owned Chinese restaraunt was the Paradise Restaraunt close to Pack Square in Asheville, It too is now gone. Good memories of the food in each of these.

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  13. Best Chinese Food ever! at one point was among the Best 10 restaurants in the country. I Worked there, celebrities had their pictures on the wall.

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  14. I even remember this place when I was just a boy, actually before in became Chinese. I love the place. The Beam's were related to my grandfather Ollis side of the family.

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  15. I work at a golf course in the Banner elk area, about 25 minutes from where beams was. One of the rangers, that I work with, is one of the former owners grand children. He told me that he has been asked many times if he would ever open back up the Glorious restaurant, but he has said no because of the massive size and he doesn't know how to run a restaurant. Although he has thought of opening up a food truck in the Boone area to serve some of Beams most famous dishes.

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