Thursday, May 05, 2011

Visit Asheville: where to eat

One of our favorite things to do in Asheville is eat.  It's probably good that we never stay for more than a few days. 

If you visit the Biltmore Estate while you are there (which you totally should), all of the food on the estate is fabulous.  Most of it is grown right there on the grounds.  We haven't eaten at every single place, but we have tried many of them. 

The Arbor Grill is great and- hello!- it's under a beautiful arbor.  How could you go wrong?  They have odd hours though, so be sure to check on that before you get your heart set on eating there. 

There are several places to eat that are closer to the actual house, which is handy if you've just spent two hours touring the house and are starving.  I'm usually starving after I've spent two hours doing anything. 

The Stable Cafe is our favorite spot here.  It is actually a renovated 19th century stable, so the decor is very cool.  It's a great place for lunch and not too expensive.  Their chicken salad is fabulous. 

Also in this same area of the estate is the Bake Shop, which makes the best chocolate croissants I've ever eaten.  You will be sorry if you don't pick one (or four) up while you're there.  If I could have these shipped to our house, I would. 

Not to leave out all the great non-Biltmore dining, there are tons of fun places to eat in downtown Asheville.  Many of them have outdoor seating and you could spend an afternoon people watching and enjoying the mountain air. 

My recommendation for downtown dining is the Lexington Avenue Brewery.  They have a fun open-air patio, live music, and really unique, modern decor.  And they win the prize for coolest bathroom.  Try the free-range chicken sandwich or the fish tacos.  Apparently they also have good beer, so if you like beer, try that too. 

Also not to be missed downtown- the French Broad Chocolate Lounge.  You will find yourself wondering why you don't spend more time in chocolate lounges.  They serve up amazing truffles on silver platters and it is definitely worth your time to stop in for a bite. 

There is a super cute area of Asheville, right outside the entrance to the Biltmore Estate, called Biltmore Village.  It is full of shops and restaurants and cobblestone sidewalks and makes for a fun afternoon of strolling. 

For lunch, I recommend Chelsea's Village Tea Room.  The waitresses all wear long skirts and aprons and will call you "sweetie".  Personally, I love being called "sweetie" by older southern women.  There is a nice courtyard out front with tables and umbrellas and everything we've ever eaten there has been great.  Their quiche is always a hit. 

For dinner, you have to try The Corner Kitchen.  It is the cute little house with lights around it in the picture above.  We discovered this restaurant on our first trip to Asheville, five years ago, and would never dream of missing a chance to eat there.  My advice- go hungry and order something for every course, even if it means sharing.  They will bring a little "chef's surprise" out to your table for you to sample while you wait for your food.  It will always be delicious.  And don't skip dessert- as amazing as the food is, dessert is usually the highlight of the meal. 

Tomorrow I'll finish out the week with some ideas on what to do to work off all that food!


  1. Ok I know we've talked about your Asheville trips a lot but just reading these posts, especially this one about food (you know what i like to do ;) )makes me just want to hop in the car and drop the kids off with you and head to asheville :) No, seriously, I'd rather just come visit you b/c you cook like i'm at a chocolate truffle bar, you luscious lady you! Love you.

  2. I want to take a trip to Asheville!! Heck!, What am I talking about.... At this point I would take a night at the Super 8 within walking distance of the house!!!



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