Asheville NC restaurant recommendations

Absolutely must go to Curate. That place is bonkers.

12 bones does not live up to the hype.

The Bywater is a must visit, you won’t find ambiance like that anywhere in the world (that I’ve been).

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Thanks! I think the small plates at Nightbell suit us better for dinner, because we’ll probably have a stop before. But Rhubarb looks great - looking at it. For lunch/brunch.

I think you’re describing their Sunday Supper which sounds wonderful! But we’ll leave before that, sadly.

Would love a trip report!

Am writing it up - so much food, so little time!

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(lots of pics - swipe to the right/left!)

Thank you for all your help - it was a wonderful trip, with many delicious meals!

We got in late via a scenic drive, so that put paid to plans for pre-dinner snacks + cocktails. And it turned out breakfast was included at the hotel, so that took out a few meals too.

Delicious cocktails - a spicy tequila one, a japanese whisky one, and a bourbon one. Lots of small plates - my favorites were the “deviled” egg and the seasonal fish, also the desserts - cola cake and butternut squash cheesecake. The mushroom was good but too sweet, and we also had the cornbread, fritters (apple), sweetbreads, and carrots.

Totally hopping, we had a wait in spite of a reservation and being slightly late ourselves.
Favorites - chicken croquetas, brandade, octopus, pan con tomate, and dessert - marcona tart and chocolate ganache. Also had an interesting sherry tasting though the festival ended the prior week.

All Souls Pizza
Wonderful crust, delicious toppings, lovely salad. We had the special of the day which was a maitake mushroom white pizza, and the spicy smoked shrimp from the menu. The shrimp was amazing, the spicy sauce that it came with was SO good. The mushroom was tasty too. Lots of bees interested in our drinks!

MG Road Lounge (ChaiPani)
We were starving and though some chaat would get us going, but ChaiPani was mobbed, so we went downstairs to the bar and had some snacks and drinks. Okra fries (amazing, not oily, perfectly spiced), they were unfortunately out of chicken pakoras, so we added a tomato-cheese dosadilla (really delicious even though it was an uttapam and not a dosa ;)) Cocktails were delicious as well.

Gingers Revenge Brewery
This was fun, especially the wide age range of people enjoying the afternoon out. We tried the tasting of ginger beers, though I was very intrigued by the shrubs after having made my own this summer!

The new spice enterprise from the ChaiPani folks was coincidentally adjacent to the brewery, so we went in and bought some to try. They were roasting Garam Masala - smelled so good! We got little tins of harissa, berbere and zaatar.

We’ll be back!


You ate well! I agree the Nightbell orange-glazed mushrooms are too sweet - they remind me of sweet and sour/General Tso’s chicken :joy:

Love that you made it into Spicewalla - on my list!
I have to try that shrimp pizza - thanks for highlighting.

I was very sad about the mushroom :smirk:

Re Spicewalla - it was such a treat! We got out and I thought - wait I know those guys! They aren’t really a store (or open to the public) but they were happy to sell us whatever was packaged at the front. Freshly roasted and ground smells amazing!

I will say that I wouldn’t buy my main spices there - way too pricey. But for small quantities of unusual spices or blends - yes!

Cool, I have to check it out. They have gotten a bit of local pressthe last few months. What did you buy?

The little 3-pack I posted a pic of. I was looking around thinking, you know what, I wish they had little tins of berbere and harissa - and I turned around and there they were with zaatar as the third :joy:

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All Souls might have been my favorite meal of the trip - thank you for sharing it!

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Nightbell closed. The chef, Eric Morris, moved on to helm the kitchen at Wicked Weed’s Cultura and his own pop-up series, ITER.

In Montford, Liberty House Coffee and the Waterbird are cafes worth stops. I’ve heard the small plates and cocktails at Waterbird are great - their pastries and espresso drinks hit the spot. I also hear raves about the reasonably-priced brunch at Golden Fleece out that way.

The local foods shop next to Bee Charmer had closed. There’s a great poké shop, Aloha, in its place.

Also worth checking out for brunch is Sawhorse, serving Canadian and Adirondack rib-sticking fare. Way better food and much less wait than any place downtown or in WAVL.

And finally: the staff at Calypso were assholes to us and visitors from out of town, so strike that recommendation.


It reminds me of bars along the river in Kreuzberg, Berlin. Very chill.

I read that the bar under a Chai Pani - MG Road Lounge - got reincarnated as something else - just checked the website, looks like it’s an event space now.

Yes, I read it was being turned into a waiting area/welcome bar. Not sure what is really the case, but bummer!

Bumping this out as non-foodie but good eater friends are headed to Asheville for a few nights at the end of the month. Any CURRENT recs for any/all meals? TIA!

Ask and ye shall receive!

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Thank you so much! Really appreciate it.

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Thank you for this! So helpful!

We are planning a 3-4 day food vacation to Asheville in the fall.
It seems Curate is a definite for dinner, with Chai Pani and Burial lunches and OWL for brunch.
Of the list on Yelp, anything absolutely not to miss to add? Looking to go high end for dinner, more casual for lunch/breakfast (hoping to find good BBQ for one of the daytime meals).

Also - is there a great hotel to recommend? We like contemporary…leaning towards the Foundry over the Radical but if I’m mistaken please let me know. Thank you so much!

I don’t know if you read my trip report upthread but in case you missed it