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Hello from Western North Carolina! This picture was taking at night, through the car window. I am sure I will have better ones in the next couple of days. We arrived in Asheville, NC around 4pm yesterday. Our flight took off about 45 minutes late, but we still landed on time – exactly to the minute. So, that was good. My in-flight entertainment: a magazine and homemade pb&j: sunflower millet bread, honey roasted pb, and orange fig jam.

Our final destination is not Asheville, but about 1.5 hours West in Whittier near Bryson City. My grandma has a house here in the mountains are that is where we are staying for the week. On the way there we were talking and ended up driving right past our exit (and the few following) we were 7 miles until Tennessee before we found a place to turn around. Haha, oops. We were scheduled to get back at 9, but it ended up being about 10.

Prior to our detour we checked about Asheville for a bit. After landing we headed over to the downtown area to do a little exploring and a little eating before heading further West into the mountains. I was dying to go check out the Wall Street area for food and shopping. All the pictures and things I had read about online made it seem so great.

Downtown Asheville did not disappoint! Wall street is really cute with fun shops and a great laid back atmosphere. It was Friday night, so finding parking was hard. We ended up in the garage where it was FREE parking for the first hour, and only 75 cents for every additional hour. That is crazy cheap! We are definitely not in New York anymore, Toto.

It was too funny that the downtown area had a like a “New York” theme. On Wall St, they had a Flatiron Building, and it was in the Battery Park Area. They had this funny little iron sculpture too.

Wall St. had so many options for dining. And everything looked good! I made Bryan and Grandma decide. They made a great choice and we ended up eating at The Market Place. All their food is local, sustainable, and made from scratch. This quote is taken from their website “There is no cuisine without gardens and farmers.

They even grow their own herbs in big planters all around the outside eating area. Here is some lavender (which smelled to pretty), basil, and rosemary.

Then there was the food! Bryan and I agreed best meal we’ve had in a long time. Even beat his Alaskan King Crab legs from Thursday night. Their chef went to CIA in New York. He even came over to our table to see how everything was. Bryan laughed when I said I wanted to get his picture.

I had a NC Red Fish, with a succotash made of fava beans, zucchini, yellow squash, tomato, and even beets! So.Good. And so colorful!

Bryan’s dish was amazing too. Coffee & cardamom rubbed local lamb shank, grilled asparagus, indian cilantro chutney, roasted fennel & potato mash. The flavor was fantastic. I love both coffee and cardamom. And the meat was ridiculously tender.

They even fresh make their bread every day. You can see them cooking in the window, and I definitely see some bread dough their!

I was blown away by the restaurant and the service. It was great. All through dinner we could here drumming in the distance. So after we ate, we had to go hunt down the music. We found a drumming festival in the park. So many people!

This city has such a fun feel to it. I already decided Bryan can work at Mission Hospital, and we can live in Asheville. I wonder what their winter are like – I’m sure nothing like NY.

This morning Bryan and I need to narrow down all the activities we want to do. I have a stack of books and pamphlets sitting next to me. So much to do and so little time! Hiking, Biking, Tubing, Art Festivals, Zip lining…how will we decide?!

Happy Weekend!

Have you ever been to Asheville/Western NC? Any recommendations?