Before I even arrive at a new location on a trip, I’ve already planned out what I want to eat. Maybe it’s neurotic, maybe it’s over-the-top, but one of my favorite things about going to some new place (or someplace I don’t get to go to often) is that I get to try exciting new food. Last year, I got to explore what dairy-free Asheville spots had to offer.
Besides enjoying a lot of beer and wine (Asheville is nicknamed “Beer City” — how much more comfortable can someone from “Brew City” be?), I had some amazing food. Before my list gets way too long, and I get way too hungry, here’s a quick round-up of some of the best places I visited in Asheville.
I don’t know what it is about vacation, but I’m always hunting for donuts and cupcakes when I go somewhere new. Asheville did not disappoint. Vortex Donuts was a couple miles away from our hotel and had several vegan options every day. I even lucked out the first time and got double the donuts because they were BOGO! I gobbled those down before I could take a picture, but above, you can see the classic and the signature vortex donut. Despite their simplicity, they were very tasty. The coffee in the place is also legit.
Village Wayside Bar and Grill
When I arrived in Asheville after driving for way too many hours, a very helpful bellhop told me about Village Wayside Bar and Grill. The place has kind of a beachy vibe with its logo, but the food is all bar selections done right. I had a delectable veggie burger on gluten-free, dairy-free bread, and some irresistible sweet potato fries on the side.
Asheville Pizza and Brewing Company
Did you know that one of Asheville’s breweries is also a pizza place? And that you can get soy cheese? I stopped there for late-night dinner and was in pizza heaven! I even got my choice of crusts (mad love to sesame seed crust). I didn’t spend nearly as much time as I should have at the Asheville Brewing Company, but I do know that at one of the locations, you can catch cheap movies. What more could you want?
OK, I know. We’ve all eaten at those new hipster taco joints. I get it. But Tacobilly is seriously so good, and I’m not even biased because of the awesome goats on the bathroom doors. The chips and salsa are not messing around, there are tons of dairy-free and vegan options for breakfast tacos, plus they have Topo Chico. I got addicted to that stuff in Austin, so I try to enjoy it now whenever possible (I loved them so much I dug in before I was able to take a picture).
Laughing Seed is a haven in the heart of Asheville for anyone with a plant-based diet. The entire menu is vegetarian and I had no shortage of dairy-free options. I don’t remember much about the night I spent there because this was quite a few months ago, but I’ll never forget about the giant Harmony Bowl that was placed in front of me. They sure are generous with their portions, because it was enough to feed 3 people.
Rosetta’s Kitchen and Buchi Bar
One night when I was out and about in Asheville, I realized I got to late night without having any food! Luckily, I stumbled into Rosetta’s Kitchen and Buchi Bar, an awesome joint for music, food, and games! I got a falafel, played with a puzzle, and listened to a band playing from the bar. It was super random and fun and I loved every minute. If you’re looking for a place to put a smile on your face, stop here 🙂
Other Random Stops
- Asheville Pinball Museum
- Bookstores: Malaprop’s, Battery Park Book Exchange & Champagne Bar, Downtown Books, stopped at the local library
- Cocktail bar – Top of the Monk
- Half Peach in Louisville – Half Peach deserves a quick honorable mention for being a tasty find in the halfway point between Asheville and home. Big love to the nacho bowl and all of their desserts.