After moving to Greenville for my new job, we had a weekend free before I started work to explore some surrounding areas. Neither of us had been to Asheville, which is less than 1.5 hours away, so we decided to take the short trip, with a stop in Hendersonville, NC.
The drive to Hendersonville, NC was super easy. It took us about 45 minutes to reach the Main Street. Upon arrival, we headed to 2nd Act Coffee - a coffee shop that serves coffee, wine, beer, pastries, and breakfast sandwiches.
Justin and I ordered two lattes and shared a bagel sandwich. It was absolutely delicious.
After breakfast, we decided to walk around Main Street and see what we could find to explore. We walked around a local museum and then found a really cool Arcade Museum.
The best discovery though was McFarlan Bakery - which dates back to the 1930s. We still can't stop talking about this bakery. We shared two cookies and two other pastries. I cannot wait to go back to taste some more items. Everything looked absolutely amazing.
After spending about an hour in town, we got back on the road to go to the Biltmore Estate. The Estate was the family home of George and Edith Vanderbilt. The grounds are huge. There is so much to do and see. We only had a few hours, so we focused on the gardens, the outside of the home, and, of course, the winery. We really enjoyed tasting several of the wines and even took three bottles home. I also felt like Peggy Bundy as I devoured Biltmore's bonbons.
After exploring for a few hours, we headed to our hotel in Asheville. We stayed at the Four Points Sheraton, which was very convenient for walking and quick ubers.
We had an early reservation for dinner, so we changed and headed to dinner at Rhubarb. The chef at Rhubarb is a five time finalist for the James Beard "Best Chef in the Southeast" award and he also was a personal chef to Mary Tyler Moore.
For dinner, we shared the Goat Cheese Burrata, the Shrimp Pirloo, the Ricotta Gnocchi, and the corn bread with prosciutto. All of the dishes were superb and beautiful. My personal favorite was the gnocchi.
After dinner, we had no plans, so we started walking around. Justin spotted a school bus with rowdy music coming from the other side of the street, so we crossed to see what was happening. It happened to be a comedy ghost tour on a bus-- LaZoom. We thought it would be very lame, but the actors were so talented and we had a blast.
After the comedy show, we decided to grab drinks at Sovereign Remedies - which was highly recommended. Our bartender was hysterical and it was the perfect end to the night.
The next day, we woke up fairly early and needed coffee immediately. We found a small coffee shop called Summit Coffee and their lattes were really tasty.
After the coffee, we drove around the South Slope and River Arts District and explored. Then it was time for brunch.
We had a reservation at Tupelo Honey - another restaurant that came highly recommended. Their brunch was spectacular. We started with the Famous Fried Green Tomatoes (Justin's favorite), and also shared the Mac-N-Cheese Waffles with Asheville Hot Fried Chicken (with actual mac & cheese inside the waffle) and the Southern Shakshuka (my favorite).
After brunch, we knew we had to see the Omni Grove Park Inn, which is a historic resort hotel on the western-facing slope of Sunset Mountain within the Blue Ridge Mountains. The resort is very unique and huge. The views are also beautiful. Because it was too cold to sit outside, we sat by the fireplace inside and enjoyed a few cocktails.
At some point during the trip, I found out that there was a cheese trail around Asheville, so, of course, we could not leave the area without trying at least one of the creameries. We decided upon Looking Glass Creamery. The service there was absolutely amazing, there was a great view of the mountains, and the cheese boards hit the spot.
After so much food, we knew we needed an activity. After some research, we found a hike that not only had a waterfall, but also the famous Chimney Rock, where certain scenes of Dirty Dancing were filmed. Although it was very windy at the top, it was well worth the view.
As always, we managed to do a lot of activities in just one day. If you find yourself in these areas, now you know what to do and see.
Don't forget to see the world, and eat the food.\