Is it just me, or are out of town weddings the best? They are the perfect excuse to get away for the weekend, explore a new place, try some fantastic food, and to top it off, spend an evening eating, drinking and dancing with some of your best friends.
What could be better than that? Not a whole lot if you ask me!
This past weekend, Will and I had the privilege of attending our friend’s wedding in Asheville, NC. The charm of this mountain town won us over. Wrapped in a blanket of breath-taking scenery, and endless activities, it’s the perfect weekend getaway!
From any outdoor adventure you could think of, to the downtown area and its array of artsy shops and breweries, there’s something for everyone. Not to mention The Biltmore Estate was seriously one of the coolest things I’ve seen.
And the food you guys… the food. Like I can’t stop talking about it! By far, some of the most authentic, amazing food we’ve had! And we are some tough, self-proclaimed food critics.
I’m rounding up our perfect weekend getaway and sharing must-see things to do and places to eat!
Where we stayed
The only other time I’ve been to Asheville was for a girls weekend at The Omni Grove Park Inn. If you haven’t heard of it, I suggest you check it out immediately! The old charm and stunning mountain views make you not want to leave. They have an incredible spa that is one of the most relaxing places I’ve ever been. If you feel like treating yourself, or want a cozy, romantic getaway with your hubby, this is your spot! It is pricey though, so be prepared.
This time we wanted to explore Asheville and take in the whole experience of the town, so we stated at The Residences at Biltmore. (I could kick myself for not taking a picture!) This place was so beautiful and looked more like condominiums than a hotel.
I can’t say enough nice things about the place. The rooms were so clean, and the kitchen and bathrooms were beautifully updated. It was a great central location, close to downtown, and also very close to The Biltmore Estate grounds (which is where the wedding was).
I think that for the location and quality, the price was super reasonable. We would definitely stay there again if we didn’t stay at The Grove Park Inn. It just depends on what you are looking for!
What We Ate
Ahh, my favorite part of the trip, FOOD!
While I know, there are SO many fabulous restaurants in Ashville; these are the places we were able to try on this trip!
Let’s start with breakfast
(yes it’s exactly what you’re thinking!)
A delicious scratch made biscuit the size of your head! You guys, this place is one for the books, seriously. I’ve NEVER had a biscuit that delicious. And the food was just as incredible. There’s a wide variety of traditional breakfast items on the menu, as well unique combinations that left your mouth watering. There was something for the picky eater, the healthy eater, or the adventurous eater.
I ordered more on the healthy side, a quinoa egg scramble with spinach, tomatoes, and mushrooms… but don’t worry, I totally canceled that out with my biscuit and a side of bacon ;).
My husband went for the hearty, unique, brisket omelet. This thing was the size of his arm, seriously, and he ate every bite, HA! I didn’t even have a chance to get a picture before he devoured it!
Our friend, Ronak, ordered eggs benedict. It was over a biscuit topped with, all sorts of delicious things like spinach and peppers. He’s a vegetarian and was ecstatic to see that they had a vegan chorizo side! All of Ashville was super conducive to vegetarian and vegan eaters!
If the biscuit the size of your head hasn’t convinced you, well brace yourself, they had a jelly bar! A jelly bar, are you kidding me? What genius thought of that!?
I washed all of this deliciousness down with a freshly squeezed glass of orange juice (which was fantastic) and a cup of coffee.
Get there as early as you can. The line quickly starts to wrap around the building. But it’s so worth the wait!
This little joint was right downtown! We sat out back in the cutest little patio area. If bloody mary’s are your thing, then you should try one here, or that’s at least what my husband told me, I personally don’t like them. They had a bloody mary bar where you could fix it just the way you like! Will’s are always so spicy, I would have heartburn for days!
I ordered the Ashville Scramble. A delicious egg scramble combination that came over crunchy hash browns, topped with goat cheese. Gosh, it was so good!
We also ordered some beignets. I hadn’t had any since the last time we were at Cafe Du Monde in New Orleans, so that was a nice treat! They were delicious little airy pillows of heaven, sprinkled with powdered sugar. Yes, please!
Wondering why we skipped lunch? To be quite honest, we were so full from breakfast both days that we couldn’t eat lunch! Call us crazy, but we just weren’t hungry!
This Mexican inspired cuisine was so unique.
I will start by saying I had one of the best meals of my life at this place! Bold statement, huh? Well, that’s how much I enjoyed this restaurant.
Lobster Enchiladas. Need I say more? There was such a unique combination of flavors and textures that my taste buds were on a rollercoaster of fun. Seriously. Pickled cauliflower, how had I never tried that?
Their specialty drinks included a huge list of homemade margaritas! I had pomegranate. I highly recommend this place, and it will be first on our list when we go back to Asheville.
Have you ever tried Indian food? Like real, authentic, Indian? I love cooking with Indian spices like curry, garam masala, and turmeric. However, I’d really never had authentic Indian cuisine. As soon as our friend, Ronak (who is Indian) saw the menu, he said this place was the real deal! SCORE!
Thankfully, Ronak ordered for us and introduced us to some amazing dishes. I’ve honestly been craving all of them since then! If you like Indian food or the flavors from Indian spices, then this place is a must!
Here are some places we missed but hope to try next time!
What we did
Aside from eating ourselves into a coma, we enjoyed several activities!
Chimney Rock was our first adventure! It was about a 45-minute drive from Asheville located in a really cute town. It reminded me of a little, mini Gatlinburg, so adorable! And there was a beautiful creek along the drive.
Chimney Rock State Park has all sorts of activities. It especially seemed kid friendly! The main attraction is Chimney Rock, which is a beautiful rock formation at the top of a mountain. The views are breathtaking. We did treck up 500 stairs to get there, but it was so worth it.
There is actually an elevator that can take you to to the top; however, it was under construction the day we were there. SO 500 steps it was! Which was actually great, I needed the exercise after my huge breakfast!
I will admit, for years when we would drive to the beach my mom would always beg to stop at the Biltmore. I was never on board with the idea, I was just ready to get to the beach!
Now I understand what the fuss was all about. It was absolutely amazing!
When I called the woman to get our tickets to The Biltmore, she said that we could stay on the grounds until 8:00 pm. I thought is this lady crazy, why would we stay at this house until 8:00 pm? I honestly had no idea the magnitude of the grounds and what all you could actually do there!
First of all, the tour of the Biltmore house was incredible! We did the self-guided audio tour, which was great! You walk through the house at your own leisure while listening to an audio that explains each room and stories behind them. I was enthralled with the history. It was so fun imagining what it may have been like during that time era.
One of the rooms that struck me as most interesting was the library of Goerge Vanderbilt. It had over 10,000 books that he personally selected. The audio told a story about how Mr. Vanerbelt created this library for everyone to enjoy. Often times when they had guests in the house, they would select a book from the library to take back to their room to enjoy that evening.
Aside from touring the Biltomore house, there are countless other activities on the grounds. Horseback riding (which I plan on doing next time), Segway tours, wine tasting, and spending time in the garden. We went to the vineyard and had a blast sampling their great wine selection!
And just driving through on grounds was such a treat. We came across this stunning sunflower field and I had to take a photo op! There were several people out having picnics and enjoying the beautiful day.
We will definitely be going back to The Biltmore Estate. I feel like there’s so much there to explore and we only scratched the surface!
Amongst all the eating and adventuring, let’s not forget the reason for the trip in the first place! The wedding!
Dancing with this guy is never short of pure entertainment, HA! There may or may not have been a Snapchat video posted that was rather embarrassing for both of us. It’s a long story, but basically, we lost a bet. That’s what happens when you bet on UK to win at football!
Our friend, Rachel, seriously had one of the most beautifully decorated venues I’ve ever seen. Just look at those flowers!
And can we talk about that backdrop? Just gorgeous!
My cup is overfilled with blessings. Traveling, exploring a new city, and celebrating a wonderful couple, it just doesn’t get better than that! Asheville was absolutely amazing, we’re already planning a trip back.
Best wishes to our wonderful friends on their marriage!
Have any of you guys been to Ashville? If so, what are some of your favorite spots?