French Broad Chocolate Lounge

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Do you love food and going out to great restaurants? Well, Asheville, North Carolina is paradise for those who love local, non-chain restaurants. And If you have a sweet tooth, love Southern chicken, or enjoy fine dining, you must check out the following seven sinful eateries in Asheville.

Carrot Cake

French Broad Chocolates – I know what you are thinking.. Chocolate!, yet  be prepared for what I am about to recommend… carrot cake! The moist, melt in your mouth carrot cake from French Broad Chocolates is the best carrot cake I have ever tasted. As a chocolate connoisseur, it is hard for me to admit that I would choose this selection over the heavenly chocolate items. Indulge in a slice of heaven, visit the lovely café dream come true for Dan & Jael Rattigan. One more thing, this beautiful couple is committed to the cacao – from bean to bar, which makes their story even cooler!

Rocky’s Chicken Shack – It’s a local favorite and off-the-beaten path from a typical tourist route; however, it is something every visitor to the impromptu city of Asheville should enjoy. With two locations, West Asheville and South Asheville, it’s close enough to Asheville landmarks to make a stop. Why is it sinful? The mouth watering chicken with your choice of heat! (I prefer mildium) No matter what you order, you can’t go wrong! And I hear rave reviews about their Coca-Cola chocolate cake, but I have not indulged. I’m always too full after eating my favorite menu item, the pimento cheese chicken BLT.

Golden Fleece – This hidden gem sits amidst the Grovewood mountainside next to the famous Omni Grove Park Inn. It’s Greek menu features perfectly prepared lamb dishes slow cooked over a crackling fire. The rustic ambience invites, and owner Giorgios Bakatsias said it best, “One thing about Asheville that I recognized, and I think it happened to me as well, people fall in love, and they stay in love there.” Share Golden Fleece with the people you love.

Trout Crudo for James Beard Foundation Dinner

The Market Place Restaurant – Chef William Dissen has created something special on Wall Street in downtown Asheville with his farm-to-table seasonal menus. I enjoy the wood grilled steak, yet you can never go wrong with a local trout dish (if you like trout of course). The presentation of the food sets the stage for the happy dance of your taste buds. The bar is fully stocked with the best bourbons and whiskeys around. The Market Place and Chef Dissen’s work with sustainable seafood is commendable, and their relationship with No Taste Like Home and mushroom forager Alan Muskat is cool. Go out on a foraging excursion and bring back your mushroom finds to be prepared for dinner at The Market Place Restaurant. This is a rare treat, and a must!

Stoney Knob Cafe – Located in Weaverville, approximately 10 minutes north of Asheville, this eclectic, one-of-a-kind restaurant is perfect. It’s the kind of place that makes you feel good as you’re welcomed with a big hug by the Greek family that owns the place. The menu offers American fare with a Mediterranean twist, and I have never tasted a dish I disliked. Stoney Knob serves the best fish dishes in Asheville, hands down. With a thin chocolate ganache on the crust, the coconut cream pie is their secret weapon. This place might just be the place I want to have my last meal on earth, it’s that good.

Bouchon -Providing the feeling you are sitting in French Café, Owner Michel Baudouin has created something special with his menu of French comfort food. One of my favorite indulgences is having a glass of rosé and an order of papas fritas (the famous fries sprinkled with herbes de provençe & served with red pepper aioli), served with all you can eat mussels – available Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday night. Looking for lighter fare or drinks only? Visit sister restaurant, Creperie Bouchon!


Sierra Nevada – Yes, Asheville is known for its beer, and Sierra Nevada is still fairly new on the brewery scene here. The food menu in their taproom is small, yet completely sinful with an order of duck fat fries.  Their selection of craft brew is a force to be reckoned with. This is by far the most well-thought-out and welcoming brewery in Asheville. Don’t miss a chance to sit by the fire outdoors, or enjoy live music in the outdoor amphitheater. Plan a few hours for your visit here. It is conveniently located near the airport, so if your flight gets delayed, you know where to go!

This popular foodie destination rivals Charleston, South Carolina in its offerings. This small mountain town is forward thinking about supporting the local community and farms to create its culinary delights. The art and passion behind the chefs in Asheville deserve recognition. This impromptu city will give you a new perspective on sinful indulgence.

Miranda Allfrey is a freelance travel & lifestyle writer, marketing mastermind and cancer survivor. Her captivating story-telling adds magic to descriptions of destinations, cuisine, experiences, and products. And her passion for writing is as contagious as her passion for life and cloud surfing (aka flying). To learn how she can help your company surf to the top,click here: Work with Miranda.

 Written for The Huffington Post –

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