Asheville, North Carolina is home to a diverse treasure trove of eclectic cultural offerings. There are plenty of amazing Asheville restaurants nestled in the stunning scenery of the Blue Ridge Mountains. The special surroundings around Asheville have a lot to offer visitors. With a funky arts scene, laid-back feel, and conscious community, they have cultivated a thriving culinary landscape of over 250 restaurants.
Asheville has become known as one of the coolest small cities to visit in the country, and partly for their first-rate foodie scene. They have even been deemed America’s first Green Dining Destination, and certainly a foodie destination in North Carolina. It can be overwhelming to try and decide on a dining destination in this melting pot of hotspots, so we have compiled a list of the best Asheville restaurants for every type of cuisine available. If you partake in a meal in the foodtopia of Asheville, we bet you won’t soon forget it.
Best Asheville Restaurants to Dine at
If you are in the mood for: New American
Jargon is housed in an intimate, cozy space with an upscale, modern feel. They boast detailed dishes inspired by a variety of international cuisine with a gourmet American base. It maintains just the right amount of kitschy charm with tables made from reclaimed bowling alley lanes.
Both the atmosphere and the meals themselves add an artistic flare to the dining experience and combined make Jargon one of the best restaurants in Asheville. The menu is eclectic while still feeling intentional and all ingredients are locally sourced. If you happen to make a visit to the grand attraction of the Biltmore Estate, this eatery is conveniently just minutes away.
If you are in the mood for: Tapas
Curate is a trendy spot that can be found inside of a renovated 1927 bus depot. It is the best destination for small plates and quality cured meats. They offer unique and exciting Spanish wines to pair with their traditional Spanish fare. The name means to “cure oneself” and we recommend you do just that with a relaxing and nourishing meal. It’s truly a celebration of tapas culture, with each plate more divine than the next. It’s a great place to share an evening and a bite.
If you are in the mood for: French Cuisine
Bouchon serves up all the French favorites. Asheville is known as the Paris of the South, and what better way to celebrate this apt moniker. It’s definitely one of the beloved and best Asheville restaurants. It has an open kitchen giving it an upbeat and airy feel. Their patio is a charming space for outdoor dining and drinking. Everything is locally sourced and has the feel of home-cooked comfort food. It will undoubtedly transport you to a Parisian avenue with a glass of Bordeaux and a plate of pommes frites.
If you are in the mood for: Mexican
Nested in a quiet nook downtown, Limones makes modern takes on traditional Mexican cuisine. Go for an inventive margarita flavor and stay for the lobster nachos. The food is full of flavors with dishes that are as bright and robust as the culture they are reflecting. You can really feel the love of Mexican comidas cooked right into every dish. It’s a favorite of the area and it’s easy to see why it’s one of the best Downtown Asheville restaurants.
If you are in the mood for: Farm to Table
Corner Kitchen is located in a historic Victorian cottage and specializes in farm-to-table fares. It provides a warm and comfortable atmosphere to enjoy exquisite and inventive new American meals in. It is definitely a staple of the Asheville area as it’s been open for 17 years. They offer a stunning outdoor space and a varied menu with options for every palette. They are especially known for their seafood. The drink list is just as special with craft cocktails and plenty of local beer offerings.
If you’re in the mood for Caribbean Cuisine in Asheville
Nine Mile is a down-to-earth eatery with many healthy and organic offerings. It has a comfortable and casual ambiance that matches its menu. It is vegan and vegetarian friendly. There are three locations in Asheville so you will have plenty of opportunities to try it in your travels.
All of the dishes are Caribbean-inspired, meaning they are bringing fresh and flavorful energy to your table. They have a plethora of local microbrews to go with their mouth-watering Jamaican delights. They can accommodate for all nutritional needs and restrictions without sacrificing any taste. Trust us when we say tofu has never tasted better.
If you’re in search of truly tasty Indian cuisine, look no further. They serve up delicious chaat, which are flavorful street snacks, and delectable thalis, which are traditional family-style meals. In doing so, they bring you all of India’s best. Every dish is bold and bright.
Some dishes feature a bit of fusion as well, like the coveted fried okra fries. It has a hip and modern feel with funky artwork adorning the walls. The homemade sauces and chutneys add an extra special touch.
If you are in the mood for: Italian
One of the great Italian restaurants in Asheville. At Chiesa anything is pasta-able. It boasts a charming and rustic feel, complete with a flower-filled backyard space. The name means “church” in Italian, as it has made its home inside of a renovated chapel. We would even go one step further to say dining here will classify as a religious experience. It’s the perfect neighborhood joint for a nourishing meal.
It has freshly made Tuscan classics paired with the perfect wines. You will rave about the ravioli or fall in love with the eggplant parm. Their motto is food for the soul, and they absolutely deliver as a pillar in the community.
If you are in the mood for: Southern Comfort Food
When visiting Asheville, it’s important to partake in the scratch-made Southern comfort fares of the region. Tupelo Honey celebrates the traditional ways cooking in the area, such as pickling, frying, canning, and preserving. Everything is seasonal and fresh from the local farms.
They cultivate a friendly and playful atmosphere where you can really enjoy your food. We especially recommend going for brunch. They serve up all the classics with a wink and smile and offer vegetarian and vegan options. Try their Sweet Tea Roasted Chicken or Biscuits for a Cause, where proceeds go to any employees who are in need.
Farm Burger Asheville
If you are in the mood for: Burgers, Fries, and Shakes
Farm Burger Asheville aims to make ethical eating easy, and they sure do. This local burger joint uses all local and fresh ingredients, including humanely raised, grass-fed beef. It perfectly curates the ideal rustic, chic setting to enjoy a burger and a beer at the counter.
They have modern twists on the classics, with countless creative options to dress up your patty, whether it’s made of meat or veggies. They have a strong ethos of connecting people to their food and to the community through sustainable practices and definitely deserve their place as one of the top restaurants in Asheville.
If you are in the mood for: European Classics
Located right in the River Arts District, this establishment really reflects the spirit of Asheville. It is a sweet, small family-run spot that feels both friendly and familiar as soon as you walk in. You can enjoy your delectable dining of honest American food inside or outside.
They have a beautiful brunch as well. The menu feels inspired with a heavy focus on meats and seafood, presenting rich dishes like the roast pork belly. It’s an airy atmosphere that feels clean, relaxed, modern, and fun. It’s the perfect stop for a snack when spending the day strolling through all the Asheville art galleries.
If you are in the mood for: Local cuisine
Posana is a venue that is focused on sourcing sustainable ingredients for the food and then creating dishes based on what is available locally and seasonally. The menu is eclectic and always changing, creating a fresh and fun dining environment.
They use only unprocessed, high-quality, organic goods from 65 different farmers in the surrounding area. The menu is filled with healthy, modern options from around the globe with plenty of gluten-free, vegetarian, and vegan choices. The atmosphere is warm and inviting.
If you are in the mood for: Dim Sum
Red Ginger is the spot for delicious and interactive, authentic dim sum dining. They have an open kitchen that allows guests to be a part of the process and choose their plates after watching them be created. They offer the culinary Chinese classics, as well as sushi and some unique dim sum tapas. Since there are too many delectable dishes to choose from, it works out well that you can order a little bit of everything to taste. Trying the coveted pork buns is an absolute must.
Blue Dream Curry House
If you are in the mood for: Asian Fusion
Craving a curry? Blue Dream has them all. They serve an extensive selection of curries from Thailand and India. They pair these creamy creations with a selection of local beers. They are focused on positive community impact and sustainable practices as well. They celebrate international flavors while using fresh and local ingredients. Their walls are adorned with work by local artists. They live by the credo “kind spirits + elevated flavors” which is reflected in the entirety of the establishment.
Laughing Seed Cafe
Best Vegan and Vegetarian Restaurant in Asheville
This cafe contributes international vegetarian cuisine to Asheville. It offers all healthy options presented in creative and fun ways. Locals and visitors alike put this on the list of best Asheville restaurants. Everything is fresh and organic with a farm-to-table ethos. With an eclectic menu, there is something for every taste and preference. Each dish is memorable and good to the last drop, especially the favorite farmer’s pie or harmony bowl.
If you’re in the mood for Southern BBQ in Asheville
Luella’s is a favorite among the longtime residents of Asheville. It would be a food travesty to come to Carolina and not partake in the quintessential BBQ. Luella’s is the perfect place for this experience. With traditional home-made recipes passed down through generations, their smoked meats and sauces from scratch do not disappoint. They have a great selection of local beers as well.
The atmosphere is relaxed and comfortable. It is just as cute as you’d want a neighborhood BBQ spot to be. This is the authentic Carolina BBQ joint of your dreams, with all the fixins.
Jerusalem Garden Cafe
If you’re in the mood for Mediterranean Cuisine in Asheville
Don’t miss this Mediterranean oasis right in the middle of Asheville. They serve up all the Middle Eastern classics. The space is decorated with exotic flare to match the flavors, making the whole experience transportive. The shawarma is to die for, and the falafel does not disappoint. Try out the tent room with floor seating for an even more authentic experience. They feature local beers and wines from Turkey and Lebanon. It is family owned and operated.
If you’re in the mood for Hawaiian
For a true and tremendous Hawaiian feast, visit Rosabees. It is an authentic homage to the culinary triumphs of the tropical paradise. They bring all the best flavors with traditional fares such as tuna poke and spam sliders. An artful, themed decor awaits at this hidden gem in Asheville. A fun alternative to your average meal out, everything feels surprising and like exactly what you want at the same time.
Where to go to eat in Asheville for wood fired pizza
In our book, it’s essential that anywhere you go you know just exactly where the best pizza is. White Labs gets our Asheville vote every time. They have created an intersection between craft and science that makes for some yummy mouthfuls.
They make their own special yeast which they use for pizza dough and making beer on site. Both are exquisite. They suggest which pairings are best together and offer innovative combinations. While it’s hard to go wrong with a slice and a cold one, White Labs takes it above and beyond.
French Broad Chocolate Lounge
At the end of the night have dessert here
As always, we recommend you end your food fest with a sweet treat. A pop into French Broad is always a great idea. They are truly experts in the world of desserts with sugary creations of every kind. Whether it’s cakes, ice cream, or truffles, they pack in the essentials and some surprising takes on them as well. It has a warm and welcoming vibe to enjoy all your indulgent desserts in.