Becoming a Foodie with Eating Asheville

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Becoming a Foodie with Eating Asheville

As I started my blog in September 2013 and only became vegan in May 2016, there are several non-vegan posts pre-vegan era.  As an example of how someone can change their path in life drastically, I have made the decision to leave the posts up even though I am ashamed of them.  I hope you will take this example and think on it.  Also, see my animal activism page or travel page on ideas for ethical animal tourism and vegan food around the world.  My inbox is always open should you have questions about changing your lifestyle to better serve animals, our planet, and your own health.

Let me clarify by saying I love food – cooking it, baking it, eating it, shopping for it, whatever else you can do with it.  After visiting Asheville, North Carolina though I realized that maybe I need to broaden my horizons.  I think I sometimes will look at things on a menu and think ehhh, that doesn’t sound like something I would like and skip over it.  While I’m fairly adventurous, I tend to stick with things I know a lot.

While we were in Asheville, North Carolina, we took the High Roller tour with Eating Asheville Walking Tours and I fell in love with a whole other aspect of food.

asheville food tours

The Battery Park Book Exchange & Champagne Bar

I found one of my favorite bookstores ever at the Battery Park Book Exchange & Champagne Bar.  With loads of bookshelves to peruse while sipping on one of their 80+ wines on tap (an unheard of thing), who wouldn’t love this place?

This was where we met the rest of the group and the guide for our tour and was the first stop.

Here we had a small appetizer of two dips : pimento and goat cheese & smoked trout.

I would have never tried either of these things on my own, but I found I really liked the pimento and goat cheese dip.

eating asheville walking food tour


Cucina 24

Cucina 24 was the next stop on the tour and again was something I would have never tried before.  In fact, when they first said what it was, I was wondering how I was even going to manage to get it down.

Chilled carrot soup with peanut oil and mascarpone.

It was absolutely unbelievable.

Cucina 24 is a wonderful small-batch, handcrafted Italian restaurant where the menu changes on a daily basis.

eating asheville walking food tour


Table is another wonderful farm-to-table restaurant that also changes their menu on a daily basis.

Here we had a fried green tomato with avocado puree and brava spice.

Absolutely to die for.  I could have eaten like 20 of these things.

eating asheville walking food tour eating asheville walking food tour


Zambra was my absolute favorite stop along the tour and that’s saying a lot.  I talked about this place for days afterwards and even recommended it to the manager at our B&B.

Here we had their house sangria – the single best sangria I’ve ever had – and pomegranate grazed pork shoulder spring roll with avocado puree and a mango habanero glaze.  The pork was so tender that it literally melt in my mouth.  I dreamed of this spring roll.

eating asheville walking food tour eating asheville walking food tour

Isa’s Bistro

Isa’s Bistro was next on the tour.  Here they served us a poached plum with goat cheese, toasted walnuts and a bourbon infused vinaigrette.  I didn’t even know I liked plums or goat cheese.  Apparently, I love them.

eating asheville walking food tour

Strada Italiano

Strada Italiano opened my eyes to something I’ve never hear of before.  Poached egg with marina sauce and it was surprisingly very good.  They also have wonderful fresh baked goods for purchase here.

eating asheville walking food tour

French Broad Chocolates

French Broad Chocolates will leave you craving only real chocolate from now on.  You’ll never pick up that crap at the store anymore.  Just do me a favor right now.  Go to their website right now and order something, anything and tell me if I’m wrong.


I was provided the High Roller tour by Eating Asheville Walking Tours on a complimentary basis in exchange for this post. I retain full editorial control over all content on A Southern Gypsy and any opinions expressed above are, unequivocally, my own.

Traveler. Freelance Writer. Blogger. Vegan. Risk Taker. Voice for the Voiceless.


  1. Brianna

    August 2, 2014 at 9:22 PM

    I love food tours! They are a great way to try a lot of restaurants in a short amount of time.

  2. Mandie @ RamblingMandie

    August 3, 2014 at 1:07 AM

    I’ve always wanted to do a food tour! Such a great way to try things you wouldn’t otherwise. I’m totally hungry now…

  3. Sammi Wanderlustin'

    August 3, 2014 at 3:57 AM

    Take me to the Book Exchange!

  4. Chanel | Cultural Xplorer

    August 3, 2014 at 4:21 AM

    I keep hearing great things about the food in Asheville! I might have to make a trip down there to try some of the food myself – it looks absolutely wonderful!

  5. Amy Lynne Hayes

    August 3, 2014 at 11:42 AM

    I love the idea of a food tour! I’ve never done one myself, but I do love trying local cuisine when traveling. I’ve been to Asheville a few times as a kids to visit Biltmore, and I’ve heard really great things about the town. Need to get back up there one of these days!

  6. Brittany @ Paws for Beer

    August 3, 2014 at 12:17 PM

    I’ve never taken a food tour but I am thinking I should give one a try! These foods look delightful!

  7. Daisy

    August 3, 2014 at 5:11 PM

    I’ve been planning a trip through Asheville so this is bookmarked for it! Great post!!

    • Ashley Hubbard

      August 4, 2014 at 10:10 AM

      Thanks Daisy! I hope you have a great time – it’s a wonderful city! 🙂

  8. Penny @ Travelling Penster

    August 3, 2014 at 6:23 PM

    Mmmmm I love food posts! Great photos too! Are they all your own? Zambra looks like the place for me 🙂

    • Ashley Hubbard

      August 4, 2014 at 10:09 AM

      Penny, thanks! The photos are all mine – some of the lighting was difficult to work with. Zambra was AMAZING – try it if you ever get to Asheville 🙂

  9. Lisa

    August 3, 2014 at 6:39 PM

    That food tour looks fun. I have good memories of the B&B I stayed in there, as well as the brewery/movie theater. Cute town!

  10. Espen @ Nerd Nomads

    August 4, 2014 at 10:32 AM

    Now I am hungy 🙂 I don’t think I have ever tried any of these dishes, but they all sound delicious! I’d especially like to try that chocolate.

  11. Christa Thompson

    August 4, 2014 at 2:36 PM

    Hey, on behalf of Christa, Host of The Sunday Traveler, I was stopping by to check out your article and oh my, oh my… Looks like you had a wonderful time. That bookstore does sound pretty cool. And I definitely wouldn’t mind having a go at that fried green tomato. And the chocolate, oh the chocolate… I’m hungry 🙂

  12. Jessica @ Independent Travel Cats

    August 4, 2014 at 5:04 PM

    Sound like a delicious food tour in NC!

  13. Jess

    August 5, 2014 at 7:55 PM

    Food tours are my favorite way to get to know a place! I kind of want to skip straight to that chocolate shop, though.

  14. Adelina // Pack Me To

    August 6, 2014 at 2:54 PM

    Yummy! Did someone say sangria? All those dishes you tasted sound delish!

  15. SJ @ Chasing the Donkey

    August 7, 2014 at 4:22 PM

    Ohhhhhh you know me, I love my food. I’d jump on this tour in a heart beat!

  16. Diana - Life in German.

    August 8, 2014 at 3:34 AM

    I’ve never gone on a food tour, I think I should change that!

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