Last weekend, Ginny and I went to Asheville, NC for a short vacay. I got tickets to see Alton Brown at the book signing sponsored by Malaprops Bookstore Cafe. Alton Brown has a new cookbook out, called EveryDay Cook, and since I missed the Edible Inevitable Tour and the Eat Your Science Tour, I was totally stoked to finally see one of my cooking gurus in person.
As always, one of the best things in Asheville is the food. There is a lot of variety here, but we almost always go to Avenue M, because it’s really good eats! We went there Friday night for dinner after we checked into our Air B&B in West Asheville. I got the “It’s Fall, Y’all” salad, which had apples, fennel, pistachios, and the dreaded Kale (blech) – which I had switched out for real lettuce, y’all. Ginny also got a salad, with tempeh for protein, and I got one of their starters, which was beef “medallions” in wine sauce with mashed potatoes.
On Saturday, we got up late and decided on Tupelo Honey for brunch. We’ve never been there before, because they’re always crowded as crap. This time was no different – they took our cell number and said they’d text when it was time to come back, maybe 45 minutes. Wow. So, we went to Woolworth Walk to check out the metal work while we waited.
There are several metalsmiths whose work I liked at Woolworth Walk. There was some really nice enamel on sterling, some mokume gane, and other techniques to which I aspire. Someday. Maybe. The jeweler whose work was most amazing was Harriet Smith. Only, the work wasn’t metal. It was polymer clay, of all things! Really beautiful color blends and patterns – quite lovely. Here are a few of her pieces.
So, they called us to come eat brunch. Ginny got something called the “Shoo Mercy Pancakes”, which was enough food for three people. I forgot to take a picture of it. For myself, I picked the Salt Roasted Beet Salad, with a side of Goat Cheese Grits and bacon. The grits and bacon were awesome, but the salad was disappointing, because I was expecting a bowl of salt roasted beets, pecans, goat cheese and pecan dressing. What I got was a bowl of the dreaded KALE, a small scoop of beet cubes, some pecans, goat cheese and pecan dressing. Everything but the kale was good, but I had to pick it out with a spoon. 😦
After wandering around downtown a bit more (we went back and finished seeing Woolworth Walk), we went back to the B&B for a nap, stopping at a taqueria that was recommended by the B&B hosts. On their list of local eateries, it said, “Taco Munoz – No English”. They weren’t kidding. I got a Sope al Pastor, which is marinated pork on a thick handmade tortilla, with vegetation and sour cream. Delish! They don’t have tea, so I tried one of the Jarritos sodas I have seen my Hispanic students drinking. That, I don’t recommend. It’s like a lime-flavor hard candy, with fizz – WAY too sweet. Here’s my Sope!
Other yummies of the day included tacos from White Duck after the Alton Brown show, but that’s another post.