Long celebrated as an outdoor utopia and craft beer hub, Asheville has earned another distinction in recent years – culinary destination. A healthy and active population deserves to indulge extravagantly, right? Dozens of Asheville’s favorite eateries offer up thoughtfully curated menus, all teeming with locally sourced, farm-fresh ingredients and some of the country’s finest kitchen talent.
Beef lovers and sustainability lovers unite! Farm Burger embraces both with equal passion. These burgers come from grassfed, antibiotic- and hormone-free cows, all raised in the southeast. Don’t love beef? Farm Burger’s vegan burger is a favorite among Asheville’s plant-eaters.
Rocky’s Hot Chicken Shack
In a proud nod to “Tennessee-style hot chicken,” Rocky’s fiery bird has gained quite the North Carolina following. Don’t worry – with a wide spectrum of heat options, there’s something here for the shyest palates. Be sure to comfort those taste buds with a side of corn pudding or fried okra.
With a menu that represents all regions of Italy, imaginative pasta treatments, dreamy lighting and an expert chef in the kitchen, Strada is elegant and memorable, but casual enough for comfort. A menu highlight? The Pork Chop Milanese, with sorghum-balsamic reduction.
The wonderful thing about many Asheville eateries is that they don’t divide carnivores and herbivores. Avenue M is a wonderful example of that. The Moroccan Vegetable Tagine and the Grilled Garlic Rubbed Ribeye are equally remarkable. With a dog-friendly patio and a festive drink menu, this is the best place for your next friendly gathering.
Well Bred Bakery
Thanks to locations in Weaverville and Biltmore Village, there is more of Well Bred Bakery to go around. The housemade soups, quiches, salads and sandwiches should make it a little easier to justify indulging in one of Well Bred’s signature sweets – the ginger Florentines and pistachio cherry bars are two great places to start.
Thanks to effusive praise on customer review websites, a published cookbook, and a menu packed with flavors such as maple bacon apple, salted caramel and sweet potato spice, Short Street Cakes is a must-visit. Popular? Yes. Deservedly so? Absolutely!
Smooth and creamy, cold and sweet, Whit’s frozen custard is blended daily with nary an ice crystal in sight. Try a Blue Ridge Madness Sundae (Reese’s Peanut Butter cups, chocolate syrup and peanut butter drizzle), and you’ll be back to try the other eight dozen options.