Get a sneak peak into my long weekend in Asheville, filled with lots of good eats (biscuits!!) and gorgeous hikes off the Blue Ridge Parkway.
Hi guys! I know today is usually my day for a #wellnesswednesday post, but after a crazy three of weeks of travel, client work and wrapping up not one or two but THREE big writing projects (phew!) my brain just isn't in the mood to get deep into intuitive eating, mindfulness or really anything that requires more than 15% of my brain cells. Actually, I was really looking forward to a light day of working from home, catching up on some mindless tasks until a HUGE storm came through last night and blew out our internet with this crazy lightning strike. So instead I'm here at the office. Womp womp.
I know I've already shared a few recaps of trips to Asheville (one and two), but what's one more? I ate at a few new restaurants I must tell you about and did a couple new hikes, so alas, here's Asheville recap numero tres?
The trip started as a quick-mother daughter Thursday overnight to go to a craft fair, then a few of my friends decided to tag on a trip to the backend, so we rented a house and stayed the weekend.
First stop in Asheville: food. Duh. My mom had been talking about this restaurant called Biscuithead for well over a year, so I was pumped to finally check it out. They specialize in biscuits (shocker) and all sorts of fancy jams and butters. There's even a condiment bar (!!!!) filled to the brim with different hot sauces, jams, compound butters and honeys. There was an old deadhead sitting next to us at brunch literally doing shots of the chocolate blueberry. They have a ton of biscuit sandwiches on the menu, so my mom and I shared the fried green tomato biscuit sandwich with brie, poached eggs and tomato hollandaise and the fried chicken biscuit with sriracha slaw.
Then it was off to the Southern Guild Craft Fair, which turned out to be a bit of a disappointment. We had been years ago and really enjoyed it, but this year it just seemed really old fashioned. I'd say I was the youngest person there, but actually, I think my mom was too!
Since we were done with the craft show way early, we spent the rest of the afternoon exploring downtown Asheville, grabbing a glass of green juice followed by a glass of rose (normal), and then catching an indie film (The Innocents - highly recommend!).
For dinner, we met up with family from the area at Limones, a Mexican restaurant with a California spin. Didn't take any pictures, but we shared a bunch of appetizers and a few entrees - brussels sprouts with smoked bacon, beet salad, bbq shrimp with grilled watermelon, braised lamb with fresh pasta and a Mexican fish stew. It was really tasty and might have to make a special trip to Asheville for their lobster enchiladas....
The next day we hit up another popular breakfast spot, Sunny Point Cafe, where I had the second best heuvos rancheros in the nation (aka the best breakfast of my life). Bonus points for the blackberry mimosa 👌
From there, we spent the morning and afternoon wandering around the River Arts District in West Asheville. If you haven't been there before, it's an Asheville must. Tons of really affordable art...and some pieces that made me consider selling a kidney on the blackmarket.
For a light lunch before my mom headed back to ATL, we went to All Souls Pizza. They had polenta pizza on the menu which I've tried (and failed) to make at home. Should have asked them their secrets! Ours was topped with kale, cremini mushrooms, fresh mozzarella, roasted garlic and red onion.
From there I waited around for my friends to arrive from Columbia at our airbnb. We stayed in a house in West Asheville. Have you stayed in an airbnb before? This was my second or third time and I'm a fan. Plus, we got to sleep with a pet beta fish in our bedroom so there's that.
Once our friends arrived from Columbia, we grabbed dinner at Gan Shan Station, a new Asian restaurant. You know those restaurants where you just sit there looking at the menu because the idea of choosing a single dish gives you major FOMO? This was that kind of place. We spit an order of pork dumplings and roasted cauliflower dumplings between the table and I finally settled on the spicy drunken noodles with shrimp. I sweat profusely just thinking about it.
After that it was off to my absolute favorite craft brewery, Wicked Weed. I’m recently obsessed with sours and saisons, which they have a huge selection of. I had a beer with beets and mango and a sour brewed in cabernet barrels.
The next morning we dragged ourselves out of bed for yet another breakfast at Biscuithead. I wanted a plain biscuit so I could fully indulge in the condiment bar. On the side (😉 ) I ordered their special of pimento cheese grits with roasted poblanos and eggs and the bacon of the day (strawberry jalapeno!). Which I then proceeded to douse in their smoked jalapeno hot sauce.
We spent the rest of the day driving the Blue Ridge Parkway and hiking. Our first hike was up Craggy Pinacle.
Then we took a drive to Mount Mitchell, the highest point east of the Mississippi. Sadly, it was really cloudy and starting to rain, so we really didn’t get the full view. But we did get a really lovely flute solo from a shirtless guy in a beanie. Oh Asheville…
From there, we hiked Deep Gap Trail to Mount Craig, which was a pretty tough hike for North Carolina, but well worth the views. And the forest we hiked through was SO pretty – pretty sure it may have been enchanted.
After we got back and showered up, us ladies split off while the hubs went to a couple breweries, we visited the Grove Park Inn for wine and sunset. If you haven't heard of it, Grove Park is a historic inn from the early 1900s and it is GORGEOUS...but I'm also pretty sure it's haunted so for that reason (and the fact that it's crazy expensive) we don't stay there.
Afterwards, we met back up with our SOs and grabbed dinner at LAB. I wasn’t very hungry after appetizers at Grove Park and needed something green before I actually turned into a biscuit, so I got their kale salad with tahini dressing and roasted chickpeas.
The next morning, the rest of the crew headed back early but Scott and I wanted to hang around Asheville for a bit. Curate, a Spanish tapas place, is my favorite restaurant in Asheville. It usually has a long line so when we saw a couple empty seats at the bar we snagged them. It's my favorite spot to eat there anyway since the bar overlooks an open kitchen. We split a few small plates – fried potatoes with prosciutto and a fried egg, octopus in olive oil and paprika with potato puree, and a fresh green salad with compressed watermelon, goat cheese and heirloom tomatoes.
Before we hit the road back to Columbia, we had to make one last stop – French Broad Chocolate Factory! It’s essentially Willy Wonka’s chocolate factory for adults! They have a huge menu of chocolates – chocolate truffles, chocolate cookies, chocolate cakes, chocolate drinking truffles, hot chocolate...you get the point. I usually get their Xocolatl, this frothy, bitter chocolate drink made with almond milk that I’m obsessed with, but it wasn’t on the menu. Waaaah!! French Broad, if you're reading this, do something about it! Instead, I ordered their Mexican spiced hot chocolate and the hubs and I split a mint chocolate chunk brownie and I felt slightly better!
Have you been to Asheville? If so, I'd love to hear any new restaurant recs? Any amazing hikes we missed?