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“Needs serious work”

The Derby Restaurant
Ranked #28 of 103 Restaurants in Mount Airy
Cuisines: American
Restaurant details
Level 5 Contributor
91 reviews
91 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 28 helpful votes
“Needs serious work”
Reviewed June 16, 2014 via mobile

Been going for years because my mother in law liked it. It's always been just ok but went this past Sunday and we all noticed it's taken a definite down turn. Had to ask to be waited on. Side salad was shredded lettuce in a bowl with literally nothing else. Ridiculous. Mediocre food at best and it seemed like more money this time as well. Even my mother in law doesn't want to go back and she's been eating there 40 plus years. They need also need to seriously clean and update.

Visited June 2014
Helpful?
2 Thank Wanda1808
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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40 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
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    5
    2
    2
Rating summary
    Food
    Service
    Value
    Atmosphere
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Any
English first
Durham, North Carolina
Level 5 Contributor
56 reviews
27 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 36 helpful votes
“Tastes like granny cooked it!”
Reviewed May 19, 2014

We were heading home from a weekend in VA and after reading the Yelp reviews and not finding much open on Main Street, we headed over here. I thought the name connection with the one is Hollywood was cute too.

This is one where it's clear the locals go cos it seemed like the staff knew everyone who entered as the place quickly filled up on a Sunday.

I was delighted when I walked in and saw old time wooden booths and realized if this place has been around since the late 1940's they must be original - cool! Yes, things can seem a bit dated at times, but that's the charm of it all. We were quickly greeted by a friendly staff person who gave us our menus and took our drink order.

I opted for the fried chicken with a choice of three sides. From a good long list I choose the mac and cheese, green beans and a side salad with Derby dressing. The chicken was delicious, just like something your granny would make. Perfectly fried, juicy inside and not too thick a coating on the outside. The mac and cheese had a loose sauce that was light in color, but very cheesy in flavor. The greens beans were tasty too! I was intrigued by the Derby dressing name and found out is a tomato oil and vinegar base with an oniony flavor. That was good too. Add in a couple of soft dinner rolls and I was filled to the brim when done!

My dining partner had eggs, bacon and toast with three of the biggest pancakes I've ever seen! She loved it all and made yummy noises though out. In fact, she said the pancakes were some of the most flavorful she's ever had!

Between the tasty food and the friendly staff, we both agreed we can't wait to come back again and try more of the wonderful choices on the menu. We thought, we've gotta tell Bob Garner from UNC tv's NC Weekend show about this place and then saw a framed review by him on the way out the door!

  • Visited May 2014
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
3 Thank ChiSox
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
2 reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
“Pleasant Surprise”
Reviewed May 19, 2014

Visited here on a trip to Mount Airy. We wanted to dine in a local establishment, not a chain available almost anywhere. This place is like walking back into the 50s or 60s. Historical pictures and artifacts. The food was just good home cooking served fast by a friendly staff. Would certainly eat here again when in the area.

  • Visited May 2014
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
3 Thank Wilson L
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Mount Airy, North Carolina
1 review
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
“Homemade food in 2014!!”
Reviewed February 8, 2014

I am a regular at the Derby. I am a food person. Have done lots of research and travel and am so impressed with the work ethic in this place. the atmosphere is like family and the food is top quality! I have visited the very clean kitchen and witnessed the chicken and dumplings being made!! Wow ,,,,its a process. I do know the owners as well and I know they never shy away from a charitable contribution for the community and they take care of their employees if they are ever in a time of need. We need more business who care the way these people. do.

  • Visited January 2014
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
3 Thank Libby P
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Elkin, North Carolina
Level 6 Contributor
131 reviews
114 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 78 helpful votes
“Diner with interesting history.”
Reviewed May 27, 2013

We finally got to eat at the Derby after several attempts where it was either closed or too busy. We were hoping the food was going to be great since it had been busy when we tried to visit. But, really the only thing interesting about this restaurant was its history. I had chicken and dumplings which were good but certainly did not taste homemade. The fried squash was good and fresh since there was very little breading like you see in most diners. We were ok with the meal as we like trying diners and know its not going to be a stellar meal. Everything was fine until my husband went to pay the bill and the owner was just a real grouch. Didn't say a word, just took my husband's money. Not the type of treatment we expect in NC.

  • Visited May 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
2 Thank Livewiretrading
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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