This is not supposed to be just a food blog, not even primarily so. But “Food” IS a specified Category and I haven’t addressed it much so far, save a trip to Waffle House.
So, with 4 days in the Asheville area, which is known as a foodie town, I decided to get down to business. Consulting my trusty Wine Spectator app that shows restaurants that have achieved recognition for their wine list, I located Seasons at Highland Lake Inn as the most likely nearby candidate. After finding it on Google Maps, checking out the menu and making a phone call, I headed over there.
Looks promising, yes? Since the idea came from Wine Spectator I took a few minutes to peruse their wine list. Not a big one, but decent representation of varietals and regions. And then my eyes landed on this:
They had it by the glass so I had to have it. Dopff & Irion is the first winery I ever visited in November 1971. Being in Alsace it’s mainly known for Riesling, but pinot blanc? Good enough for me! In all the years since I went there I have seen the label again maybe once, even though I look for it every now and then. Very minerally, vaguely citrusy with honey on the finish. What a surprising find, to say the least. And, as an added bonus, it paired brilliantly with a spinach salad.
I couldn’t bear to give it up, so ordered a second glass, which also went quite well with the shellfish risotto.
Both dishes were quite good, though the risotto lacked a little bit of something. Their dessert list was very appealing.
I went with the semifreddo. Not a mistake in the least.
Thumbs up to Seasons and thanks for the walk down memory lane!
I drove into Asheville for breakfast to Sunny Point Cafe, recommended as a funky spot with a good vibe.
I had to park on the street 4 blocks away, which I took as a good sign.The description held: funky indeed. And the food was up to it.
Now that right there is a damn fine breakfast! Bacon and grits and coffee all ranked highly. The biscuit would have been improved with a dollop of gravy. OK, who am I kidding? Four or five dollops of gravy. Pretty good home brew hot sauce too. Shout out for the tout to Barry Baucom.
After touring Biltmore House (more on that in a later post) I had lunch on site at Stables Cafe. They also had some interesting desserts. The rice pudding bowl was quickly emptied.
A “blueberry fruit leather”. Interesting, very flavorful.
After lunch I headed over to the Biltmore Winery. Now I know Biltmore has been making wine for a number of years. But still: North Carolina and wine? My inner wine snob says “pfft”, but I am more open minded than a snob, so bring it on! The tasting room was busy, rightfully so: free tasting of up to 5 different wines (out of 20 or so to choose from). They claim to be the most visited winery in the country. But alas, I gave up after 4 wines (sauv blanc, gewurztraminer, a zinfandel rosé and syrah). They all had an artificial aftertaste. Reminded me of diet soda in the saccharine days. Chalk one up for the inner wine snob.
Meeting a college pal for dinner tomorrow night at an Indian place I don’t know the name of yet. Suffice to say, more food to come from Asheville.