Dylan Stewart

Carb-Load Before (and After) You Ride

Welcome riders! Auburn-Opelika is pumped to host the USA Cycling Marathon Mountain Bike National Championship at Chewacla State Park on September 23, 2023! If you’re looking to carb-load before (or after) the race, check out these local favorites for a hearty taste of Auburn-Opelika.



Arriccia Cucina Italiana

Arriccia Cucina Italiana

Feeling fancy? Head to Arriccia Cucina Italiana, located just inside the Auburn Hotel, where you’ll experience fine dining like never before. Try their famous Porchetta pizza with mozzarella, provolone, San Marzano sauce, roasted red peppers, and fresh basil. They also offer tasty upscale dishes like the Bisteca pan seared 8 oz. filet with white truffled potatoes, asparagus, and a red wine Demi-glace. Feeling extra hungry? You won’t regret ordering their Gnocchetti salsiccia con crema di gorgonzola garlic, served with Calabrian chili, fennel sausage, spinach, gorgonzola creama, and your choice of shrimp or chicken. Open daily. 

Venditori’s Italian Restaurant 

Venditori’s Italian Restaurant is a family-owned business serving homemade Italian cuisine, fine wine and mouthwatering desserts. Their signature dishes offer large portion sizes and have been around for more than 20 years. Venditori’s menu includes the Italian food you crave like fried ravioli, classic chicken parmigiana, and loads of fettuccine alfredo variations. Open daily.

Espocito’s Italian Bistro 

Explore downtown Auburn and get your pasta fix from Espocito’s Italian Bistro. Indulge in Tagliatelle Bolognese with beef, pork, hot Italian sausage, imported Italian tomatoes, and fresh herbs. Other popular menu items include five cheese ravioli and the Tuscan 14 oz. ribeye. Open daily. 




Taco Mama

If you are more of a taco lover, stop by Taco Mama. They offer signature margaritas and a wide variety of build-your-own burrito bowls, burritos, tacos, nachos, or quesadillas with the option of steak, flounder, pork, ground beef, chicken, or chorizo. Double protein is also an option for riders who need more calories. Open daily.  

Bow & Arrow 

Bow & Arrow

Check out the Texas/Alabama crossover at Bow & Arrow. A staple here in Auburn, Chef Bancroft will whip up some amazing dishes including the Lonestar Platter that combines ½ lb of all meats and a large of all sides including green beans, mac and cheese, sweet corn rice, and more, along with white bread and flour tortillas and for dessert an eclair with banana pudding, or try their fried gulf grouper basket with a choice of two sides. 

El Dorado 

El Dorado is nestled right next to Auburn’s campus and offers delicious traditional Mexican food. Start with the enchilada supreme with one chicken, one bean, and one cheese enchilada topped with melted cheese, lettuce, sour cream, and tomatoes, their three soft or hard tacos with your choice of chicken or beef, or their Molcajete combo with chicken, steak, and shrimp served with refried beans, Spanish rice, guacamole salad, and tortillas. 




Irish Bred Pub  

At the Irish Bred Pub, dive right in to their Reuben egg rolls with corned beef, Swiss cheese, and green onion. Then indulge in traditional Irish fare: the Reuben- corned beef and sauerkraut sandwich, the Guinness BBQ burger, 1/2 lb. Angus burger with toppings provided, or the Jameson ribeye 16 oz., Hand cut marinated ribeye with a choice of 2 sides.  All served with your choice of one side or more of grits, potatoes, beer battered fries, coleslaw, or baked brown sugar carrots. Located on South Railroad Avenue in downtown Opelika. Open daily. 

Pannie-George’s Kitchen 

Get in line at Pannie-George’s Kitchen! This meat-and-three restaurant offers some of the best Southern, soul food you’ll find in the Southeast. Known for their fried chicken, Pannie-George’s selection of buttery-delicious meats and veggies will fill the hungriest of riders. Have a sweet tooth? Try the pie. Their menu changes daily so check their social media for updates on what food will be served that day. Open daily. 

Amsterdam Cafe 

Enjoy brunch, lunch, dinner, and dessert till your heart's content. Items on their menu include chicken gemelli alfredo with your choice of gulf shrimp or chicken on top, fried chicken and smoked gouda mac and cheese, and their 12 oz Duroc Pork Chop.  Amsterdam Cafe is located close to downtown Auburn and is open daily. 

The Hound 

The Hound

The Hound has a rich family history of all Auburn University alumni, this watering hole is one you cannot pass up. They are known for their house cured bacon and bourbon. Must try items on their menu include their smoked brisket platter, fried beef cheeks, or their Berkshire pork chop. 

Mandarin House 

At Mandarin House, try out their buffet items including Mu Shu with your choice of beef, chicken, or pork, served with thin Chinese pancakes, the Happy Family plate served with selected seafood of crabmeat, shrimp, scallops, and lobster sautéed with Chinese greens in brown sauce, or the Mongolian Trio: a combination of shrimps, chicken, and beef sautéed with a variety of vegetables. Check out their social media to see the full updated menu. 


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