Asheville Eats

June 5, 2011

It’s surprising that a small town in the NC mountains would have by far, the healthiest and most diverse restaurant scene in the state. As a vegetarian and a self-proclaimed food-snob, I’m never disappointed when eating in Asheville. I currently live in the largest city in North Carolina and it only has one vegetarian restaurant. I find that pathetic! Asheville is less than 1/10 the size of Charlotte and has at least two all-vegetarian restaurants. Furthermore, a vegetarian (or vegan) in Asheville can actually choose from several restaurants and know that there will be a handful of veggie-friendly options. And by veggie-friendly options, I’m talking about actual entrees, not just salads or freezer veggie burgers. As you can probably tell, I love my dining experiences in Asheville. Smile

When I found out Isaac was taking me to Asheville to celebrate our engagement, my mouth began to salivate. We visited a few of our favorite restaurants and tried out a few new places. Not a single meal was a #fail!

If you find yourself in Ashe-Vegas and want delicious, unique, and healthy food, I recommend any of the restaurants below:

Avenue M

Isaac and I had dinner at Avenue M on our first night in Asheville. I found it through Google, saw a picture of tofu and kale on the homepage, and was sold.


We ordered drinks upon arrival. Red wine for the lady (obviously) and some sort of ginger drink for the gentleman.


For an appetizer, we actually ordered the dish on the homepage, the Spicy Ginger Tofu.  Outstanding! I love when a chef actually knows how to cook tofu. The light and fluffy tofu along with steamed kale and carrots was a perfect start to the meal.


For dinner we split the Vegetarian Lasagna. I’m not positive, but I believe this dish was vegan. It had tofu ricotta and cashew parmesan cheese in between pasta layers and topped with a flavorful marinara. Splitting the appetizer and entrée was a good choice; I ate just the right amount of food.IMG_1754

The Green Light Café

The second morning of our trip, we ventured out for food around noon. By that time we were both ready for lunch foods and planned to hit up a usual favorite, Laughing Seed Café. On our walk to the restaurant we passed by a new place with an incredible menu and decided to give it a try.

The Green Light Café has an incredible ambiance and mood; it’s very calm and relaxing. The food is uber-healthy and eclectic, just the way I like it!

In addition to our chlorophyll water (which had a green tint), I enjoyed a mint iced tea and Isaac had a carrot, apple, beet juice. I may have stolen a few sips. Smile


We kicked lunch off with Vegetarian Spring Rolls. Rice paper, noodles, mint, cilantro, and baked tofu dipped in peanut sauce—what’s not to like?


For lunch Isaac had the Thai Vegetable Crepe. I believe it was the best thing I tasted all weekend.



At first glance, I expected the dish to be bland, but it turned out to be the most incredible combination of spices. I wish I could have deciphered the flavors because it would definitely be worth recreating at home. If you visit The Green Light Café and figure this recipe out, puh-lease let me know!

My dish was not as amazing as Isaac’s, but it was delicious in its own way. I had the Zeus Combo, a salad full of organic veggies, feta cheese, topped with homemade hummus, and it came with a piece of chewy, homemade bread. Light, fresh, healthy.


Rosetta’s Kitchen

It just so happened that a few of our good friends, Sean and Heather, were also in Asheville for the weekend. They came over to our hotel suite with some Firefly for cocktail hour. Then we all went to dinner at Rosetta’s Kitchen. Rosetta’s is amazeballs because it is an all-vegetarian/vegan restaurant with incredible food and even more incredible desserts. I’ve posted this exact meal before because Isaac and I are kind of obsessed with the Tempeh Rueben at Rosetta’s; we can’t help it. For us, a trip to Asheville is not complete without going to Rosetta’s.

To drink we had Buchi Fire on tap!! Buchi is an Asheville kombucha brewing company and many of the local restaurants have it in the bottle, some have it on tap. Lurve!



Dinner was, as I mentioned, the vegetarian Tempeh Rueben.


Dessert was a vegan Peanut Butter Chocolate Cheesecake. There are not words…


Dinner was capped off with drinks at a local favorite, Bier Garden. I had wine, of course.



Over Easy Café


On the last day of our trip, we ended up going to another favorite, Over Easy Café. The Over Easy Café is a small and busy restaurant that is an excellent pick for brunch. We had a short wait which gave us time to pick through the menu. Eventually I decided to go with the Organic Tempeh Scramble. It was sort of like a breakfast stir-fry with all sorts of veggies and a light salty/sweet sauce. Definitely hit the spot.


Isaac had Sweet Potato Pancakes topped with an orange cream cheese and walnuts. It was a very decadent breakfast and probably could have been eaten by two people. I had a few bites and could definitely feel it expanding in my belly. For those who love sweet potatoes, cinnamon, and pancakes, this would be a perfect breakfast treat.



As you can see, Isaac and I packed in a lot during our 3 day trip. The joke was that we needed to exercise more so we could get hungry again. There were still other restaurants and menu items I wish we had room in our bellies for could have tried. Luckily, Asheville is a short car trip away!

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