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Six Pack Sunday: Asheville Eats!

December 11, 2011

Asheville: It’s a hell of a town.

Even though I was there for less than 24 hours (whoah, didn’t even realize that until now), I certainly didn’t go wanting for food during any of those hours.  My mother flew in on Friday night and, after whipping up a DELECTABLE cream cheese dip which we nibbled on and enjoying several cocktails, we hit the hay hard with alarms set for 7:30 am.

We drove across North Carolina in a few hours, and before I knew it, we were in the mountain hippy HQ, Asheville!

Quality State, that North Carolina

And while I’ll write more about the trip later, I figured a PERFECT Six Pack Sunday would be on the fantastic foods I enjoyed during my stay.

1. Corner Oak Chocolate

Mmm mm good.

Upon arrival at the Corner Oak Manor, our B&B for the weekend, we were welcomed with my FAVORITE of the Ghiradelli chocolate squares.

It was a perfect, pepperminty way to be welcomed to town.

2. Reuben Romance

Oh, it is love.

This photo truly doesn’t do the Turkey Reuben from Julian’s Gourmet Sandwiches in the Biltmore Village.  The hot turkey, the 1000 Island Dressing, the marble rye…. it was a dream come true. AND, in a true game changer, I actually liked the (not-so) sauerkraut. Our first meal in Asheville was served with Kettle cooked potato chips, and fueled massive amounts of shopping.

Wait, this one might do it justice.

Much better, good to the last bite.

3. Pretzel Pairing

Match made in heaven

So it’s not like I didn’t know this before, but something about pretzels and beers together just make both taste exponentially better.

My first trip to the legendary Bruisin Ales was timed right, apparently, as there was a tasting of Sierra Nevada beers.  Word on the street is that the West Coast brewery’s looking to set up shop on the East.  Well, I personally think that Asheville’s got Sierra Nevada written all over it.  Just saying….

4. Olive & Kickin’ (Get it?)

EVOO bar?! Yes, PLEASE!

Ok, after looking at that picture, I want you to read the description of my new favorite store concept.

Olive & Kickin’ sources the freshest extra virgin olive oils and balsamic vinegars from hand selected growers.  They are held in the store in stainless steel containers called Fusties that allow you to sample the individual flavors of each prior to buying them.

So basically it’s a store that sells Olive Oil and Balsamic Vinegar. And you can sample all of it. Chipotle EVOO? Garlic EVOO? Cranberry Pear Balsamic?

I wanted to gargle with it.

The women who run the shop, Karen and Vic, are nice as nice can be, and we could hardly control ourselves as we sipped gourmet oils and b.v. If you go to Asheville, do NOT miss this shop!!

5. Shrimp and Grits that Just Won’t QUIT!

Creamy, spicy, decadent, delightful

Tupelo Honey Cafe.

Recommended by more people than any one spot in Asheville, this establishment lived up to the hype.  Described by the restaurant:

Brian’s Shrimp and Grits » When your chef puts his name on a dish, he has to be pretty proud of it. Such it is with our shrimp and grits – seven large delectable shrimp served over Goat Cheese Grits and anointed with a spicy roasted red pepper sauce

It couldn’t get any better. The creaminess of goat cheese lent itself so well to the grits, and the shrimp, plump and fresh, were spicy in that way that demands you keep eating it.  Don’t worry, I did. I virtually licked my bowl at the end, and that last bite was like saying farewell to a best friend.

A best friend that you’re about to digest.

6. Putting the Breakfast in B&B

From Karen's Kitchen!

Corner Oak Manor was actually the first B&B I’ve ever been to, and I loved the Breakfast B just a little more than the Bed B. Creamy eggs with spinach, tomatoes, and feta served with fresh fruit and pepper bacon was a great way to fuel the long trip back to Durham.

It was a most delicious weekend, and rest assured, I’ll write more about the trip later. Now I’m off to digest and (hopefully) finish my applications.

Asheville, I’ll be back, I promise. And I’ll definitely come hungry.

16 Comments leave one →
  1. Jenny permalink
    December 11, 2011 8:49 pm

    I went to college in Asheville and its no wonder that when I left I was chubby and broke! The restaurants there are unbelievable–Tupelo Honey is by far my favorite. Check out Early Girl Eatery next time you’re there, you won’t be disappointed. A’ville has some awesome pubs too: Jack of the Wood, Westville Pub… Oh man, my mouth is watering and my heart is aching thinking about all my old haunts :) Glad you had a good weekend in Hippietown, NC!!

    • December 14, 2011 10:59 am

      Aghh if only we had enough time to scratch the surface of all the DELICIOUS sounding places recommended. Guess I’m gonna have to head back (also we went to Jack in the Wood and LOVED it, dancing and drinking and FUN!)

  2. December 11, 2011 8:58 pm

    Olive oil bars are super neat. I have seen a few, but the ones with the bread are by far the best.

    • December 14, 2011 11:00 am

      I think we wouldn’t have eaten anything else on the trip if the bread had been an option.

  3. December 11, 2011 9:16 pm

    I just went to Asheville last weekend but didn’t go to any of the restaurants that you tried. Although we did step into Olive & Kickin for a second.

  4. December 11, 2011 10:13 pm

    mother daughter bonding is my I hope you get a sierra nevada out there (even though I’ve never been to ours ha! i hear it’s awesome!) … the macy’s near our house had an olive oil bar near the pots n pans when i was growing up (it was pretty random but i always liked to snack on the bread + spicy oils for extra shopping mojo) it’s no longer there, sad.

    • December 14, 2011 11:00 am

      Tragic, but I imagine that if the store offered bread…. well, they’d probably have to go out of business just on affording oil and bread alone!

  5. December 11, 2011 10:14 pm

    is my favorite. I hope ***

    ^ distracted by a cupcake, sorry

  6. December 11, 2011 11:51 pm

    Yum, that shrimp and grits looks incredible. I wish you stole that sign for me.

  7. December 12, 2011 10:21 am

    All of that food looks amazing!

  8. December 12, 2011 1:32 pm

    Looks like your new camera is working out nicely :)

  9. December 12, 2011 5:37 pm

    I’ve heard Asheville is beautiful – looks like they’ve got great food, too!

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