One of Bryson City’s oldest landmarks has been rescued from near obscurity to become the town’s newest showplace — the Bryson City Cork & Bean Wine Bar and Coffee House.
Owner Ron LaRocque, shown above with Rollon and Sherry Smith, completely renovated the historic Bryson City Bank, restoring many of its original architectural features. Even the original walk-in bank vault was converted into a wine vault where customers can peruse the restaurant’s selections.
Located at 16 Everett Street next to the old Courthouse, the structure was built in 1904 to house Swain County’s first bank. It was established by Stanley Black with just $5000 and was notable for having survived the Great Depression. Once it outgrew the space, the bank moved in the ’60s. Most recently, the building housed the Swain County Chamber of Commerce from 1987 to 2008.