Good Eats: Asheville
Updated: Jan 13
When it comes to southern food, I thought I knew all there was to know: pulled pork on a bun, fried okra and mashed potatoes with gravy. However, Asheville's eclectic twist proves there is more than one way to do southern cooking.
My family and I started our weekend visit to Asheville at the Stable Cafe at The Biltmore Estate. The cafe lives inside refurbished stables next to the house. Walking in, there are tall windows and wooden booths inside each stall. The ceilings are high, filled with wooden rafters.
We ordered BBQ Brussels sprouts to start. They were covered in bleu cheese crumbles, crispy onions and apple bourbon BBQ sauce. I'm always looking for new ways to cook vegetables, so this was a hit.
For our entree, we ordered the Stable Cafe Sampler: smoked beef brisket, pulled pork, roasted chicken, mashed potatoes, homemade pickles and heirloom acre peas. This blend of meat and veggies complimented each other perfectly.
After a tour of the house, we visited the Biltmore Dairy Bar. The ice cream was home made and creamy. Of course, you can't go wrong with moose tracks.
We continued our day shopping and exploring the multitude of stores downtown. In the evening, we met up with family at French Broad Chocolate Lounge. The line to get in was out the door and down the street -- for good reason! I ordered a dark chocolate, vegan hot chocolate. The drink was warm and inviting, just like the lounge.
The following day, we went on a food tour with Asheville local and food critic Stu Helm. This seven establishment brunch tour was anything but ordinary. We tried everything from Italian to Indian, from Southern to sweet. Here are my top three:
2. AUX Bar
Following our brunch tour, we ate dinner at Juicy Lucy's. They're known for their cheese-stuffed hamburger patty. This was another new thing for me -- biting into a burger and having cheese drip out. It was different, but beyond delicious.
Asheville was the perfect place for my first food tour. It was food I was familiar with, with an added twist.
All I have to say is... bring on the next one!