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Bostonians Visiting Asheville w/Toddler...?

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We'll be in the Asheville area for a week soon with our two year old. We'll have access to a kitchen. Looking for great eating out options of various ethnicities -- have read a few reviews but can't tell what is too upscale for a toddler, etc. (she'll eat a great variety of things...we're not looking for chain restaurants or anything!). Also, what are local foods we Must eat, and where are fun markets for using our kitchen?


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  1. for local markets see www.buyappalachian.org

    We have lots around Asheville.

    1. I think Tupelo Honey might be a good place to try. Try looking at the menu for Zambra...it might work, but may be a bit adventurous. Would probably work better if you went early in the evening. Stoney Knob would be good, although there have been several negative posts on here lately. Barley's or Mellow Mushroom would be good for pizza or a sandwich. Greenlife is a great grocery store on Merrimom Avenue jsut north of downtown.

      1. Tupelo Honey is great - sweet potato and pecan pancake...mmmmmm! Greenlife and Earthfare are great places to stock up on food.

        1. My family lives in Asheville and my daughter is now 11 and we take her everywhere, always have. You can usually tell if they are up for dinner out.

          Kid friendly places: Asheville Pizza & Brewing on Merrimon Avenue for different pizza flavors, beer, toys to keep the kiddo occupied. Cats & Dawgs down at the Grove Arcade has a wonderful Shrimp Po' Boy along with Catfish Sandwiches and hot dogs (they have a couple of tables on the right side of the restaurant as the rest is mostly bar and counter space.) Barley's and Mellow Mushroom are both good choices.

          I like to shop at FreshMarket and get things for what we call snack dinner: cheese, crackers, salads, blue crab artichoke dip, wine, maybe some shrimp, olives, mozzarella etc.

          1. Check out the farmer's market (although that will mainly get you produce and a few locally canned goods). Hint-if you can find any of Barbara Lackey's (that is how it is labeled) homemade strawberry jam it is the best (her other flavors are good too) you can find it only at the booth that sells fudge. If you are here on the weekend and can get over to the flea market, Smiley's, there is fresh seafood. I know not typical of the mountains but they have been coming to the flea market for 7 years selling their fresh seafood at good prices. Otherwise I shop at Earth Fare and Green Life (worth checking out). If you are looking for different ethnic food you may consider Cocina Latina (plantains are really good), Mila (Indian-good to go at lunch because of buffet), Little Bee (for order out Thai), Nona Mia (Italian-better at dinner because of price-same menu for lunch and dinner). I like Asheville Pizza too and you can try some local brew.

            1. If you come soon, you'll be just in time for ramps, (a gourmet wild garlicky onion), they taste really good scrambled up with some local free range eggs.
              You can find them at most of the farmer's markets around here, there are quite a few tailgate markets too. Which area of Asheville will you be staying?
              Most restaurants around here are kid friendly, even Rezaz's has been extremely polite with our loud one year old (Mediterranean cuisine, delicious, in Biltmore Village). You can get some great Carolina BBQ in a casual setting down by the river at 12 Bones (Monday-Friday day only), there are a lot of sides that a small eater will enjoy. Also for brunch we have many excellent eateries around here. Sunny Point in West Asheville, Early Girl Eatery off Wall St., and Cafe Azalea in East Asheville (Swannanoa River Rd. and Hwy 70).

              1. I don't live in Asheville but have visited every year for the last 10. Others have not been so enthusiastic about Pomodoros but I have always had friendly, good service and tasty food there. I think it is kid friendly. They have pizza on the menu which most kids like. Someone said it's a chain because they opened a second location. I don't call that a chain restaurant. I have only eaten at the original location east of downtown. There is outdoor seating if you prefer that. There is a bar inside.


                1. Hi,

                  Thanks for all your help! I missed a couple of these great suggestions before leaving but acted on some of the ones I did read in time! We had a great week there, rented a place up off of Town Mt. Rd. We (including 2 yr old) Really loved Early Girl and ate there twice. We had some good BBQ at the Fiddlin' Pig and my daughter danced up a storm. We got groceries at GreenLife and the Farmer's Market (okay, I admit I did not know until I cooked it that Side Meat is Not the same thing as bacon, lol). We had some very good "Frog Jam" from the market and also tried boiled peanuts (which we though tasted like black-eyed peas but sure don't look very appealing). We thought Salsa's was really delicious, too. We tried Tupelo Honey for bfast on the way out which was also good. Green Sage was so-so, but had a nice atmosphere, the Laughing Seed was much better. The truffles at Chocolate Fetish were Amazing. A burrito at Mamacitos one night was convenient but average. My husband had some seafood bratwurst at the Lobster Trap that was really good. I though the trout there was dry, though.
                  i love the area, and would love to come back and try more of your recommendations!

                  1 Reply
                  1. re: bee

                    Wow, you really did a great job getting around to some of our best restaurants and markets. Glad you had such a wonderful experience in Asheville.