What to do in ASHEVILLE, NC

This past weekend my fiance and I took a trip to Asheville, NC with his parents. They had been planning on going for months and they knew we needed a little break from constant wedding planning so they asked us to go along. I’ve been to the Carolinas quite a few times but Asheville ranks number one on my list after this little trip.

Asheville is a a city that has such a at home, small town vibe. Everyone there was so warm and welcoming. Below I am giving you a glimpse at some of the things we did while down there from the food to the drinks to where to go to see the best views of those gorgeous Blue Ridge Mountains.

IMG-6904

WHAT TO DO IN ASHEVILLE, NC|

The Food|

If you know us by now, then you know that we LOVE us some food. My whole day is spent around what I want to eat next. Let me tell you, Asheville is the place to be for any foodie at heart (NO CHAIN RESTAURANTS!!)! I don’t want to exaggerate but the options were endless when it came to places to eat.

While we were down there, we stayed in West Asheville, about 10 minutes from Downtown and in that small area alone there were two dozen unique restaurants.

We got to Asheville on Sunday and the first thing we did was head to Wicked Weed, a restaurant/ brewery. Ethan’s parents had been there before and raved about the food. It did not disappoint. I got their pork belly sandwich and it melted in my mouth.

IMG-6662

After lunch we checked into the Airbnb we set out to find a bar where we could watch the Steeler’s game. They did not disappoint. Every bar we walked into had the game on the big screen which made this little Pittsburgh girl’s heart happy.

After walking around every square inch of the city, we decided to end the day with… PIZZA!!!

We asked a local who had the best pizza and they pointed us to Asheville Brewing. We ordered the Cheeseburger Pizza (my all time favorite type of pizza) and loved it so much that we ordered another one to go.

After a much needed night of sleep, we headed out Monday morning to find the best southern breakfast.

Right up the hill from where we were staying was the cutest breakfast joint, Biscuit Head. They specialized in well BISCUITS. From biscuits and gravy to the most delicious biscuit and bacon sandwich with a poached egg on top. I ordered the biscuits with fried chicken gravy and think I ascended into heaven.

IMG-6711

The icing on the cake was their bacon that was cooked to perfection and their array of homemade hot sauces from Sol Shine to Chocolate Habanero.

Monday rained until late into the afternoon. When I say rain, I mean torrential downpours that caused all of their rivers to flood and countless Silent Hill type of alarms to go off all afternoon. That did not stop us from exploring the outskirts of Asheville. We traveled down to Bat Cave and checked out the array of little shops along the stretch.

Once we were done shopping it was time for a late lunch. We couldn’t visit the south without trying out some BBQ. We found a little restaurant a few miles outside of the city called Creekside Taphouse. Their menu was limited so we tried… everything. Pulled pork, brisket, slow cooked beans, mac n cheese, potato salad, and cole slaw. Their homemade sauces made it even better.

IMG-6780

After lunch and a much needed nap, it was time for dinner. We checked out another restaurant that was close to where we were staying. A little taco place called Zia Taqueria. I usually eat twice a day so squeezing in another meal seemed like a tall order, but who can say no to tacos.

IMG-6781

Tuesday was our last day there and we ended our food adventure by checking out the Taproom at Sierra Nevada. Pretzels, Bangers and Mash, and fresh chicken wings ended our trip on a high note.

IMG-6834IMG-6836IMG-6837

The Drinks|

For Asheville being a city on the smaller side, it did not disappoint in their beer selections. There were dozens of breweries all throughout the cities ranging from the smaller ones like Wicked Weed and Thirsty Monk (both had brew pubs in the city) to the big dogs like New Belgium and Sierra Nevada. In our few days there we visited quite a few of them.

Sunday we visited a few of the smaller ones that were downtown. Wicked Weed’s industrial vibe reminded me of some of my favorite Pittsburgh spots. Thirsty monk had three levels with a different bar on each floor, Belgium style beers in the basement, American style beers on the first floor, and on the top floor a member’s only cocktail bar that had the most amazing view of the city.

IMG-6659

On Monday we had a brewery tour scheduled for New Belgium and no amount of rain was going to stop us.

IMG-6712IMG-6716(1)IMG-6717(1)IMG-6720(1)IMG-6731(1)IMG-6733IMG-6737IMG-6738(1)IMG-6741(1)IMG-6745(1)IMG-6763

Our tour guide was amazing, there were quite a few complimentary beers, and we even got to ride down a slide on the 90 minute tour.

Tuesday we took a self guided tour of Sierra Nevada before we headed home. It was amazing to see how different the two bigger breweries were. New Belgium was relatively new to the area and still in its growing stage while Sierra Nevada was a full blown estate with solar panels everywhere, a mile long driveway with intricate rose gold gates at the entrance.

IMG-6783IMG-6784IMG-6786

The Views|

The trip to Asheville took us around seven hours and views on the way were breathtaking (if you saw our instastories then you got a small glimpse of it). The leaves on the trees were the most beautiful reds, oranges, greens, and yellows. The mountains went on for miles.

On Monday we planned on going to Chimney Rock, but the rain stopped us at the gate where we were able to watch the calm rivers that turned into raging rapids from all of the rain.

IMG-6770

The sun came out on Tuesday and we were able to travel through the Blue Ridge Parkway and take in those beautiful mountains. IMG-6857IMG-6903IMG-6906IMG-6914IMG-6916

While our trip was short, I feel like we did so much. I have a new found love for this little city and I cannot wait to travel back next year with Ethan’s family for Thanksgiving.

If you have been to Asheville before, I’d love to know what you did while there!

As always,

Capture

Advertisements

Meal Prep Monday: Oct. 16th

 

The days are flying by until my big “I DO”! I told myself I wouldn’t wait until a month before my wedding to try to shed the last few pounds I am hoping to. To ensure I stay on track, I am going to start meal prepping every Monday. No more ordering pizza every night when I don’t feel like cooking.

To kick off meal prep Monday, I give a few of my new favorite recipes:

  • Vegan Coconut Curry
  • Curried Chicken with brown rice and garlic spinach
  • Rosemary Olive Oil Tilapia with brown rice and garlic spinach
  • From scratch veggie nuggets

 

  1. Vegan Coconut Curry|

FullSizeRender(362)

If you are like me then you have a serious addiction to Thai food. I can honestly never get enough. I’ve seen recipes circulate around Pinterest about easy curry recipes that were completely vegan! Now I am by no means a vegan but I am trying to eat less meat and figured why not try this out.

It did not disappoint!!!

VEGAN COCONUT CURRY |

Ingredients:

  • One can of coconut milk
  • 3 tbsp. yellow curry powder (more if you prefer a stronger curry taste)
  • 1 cup of peanut butter
  • Chili Powder to taste
  • Two cans of chickpeas
  • Brown rice

Directions:

  1. In a pan add the coconut milk, curry powder, peanut butter, chili powder, and chickpeas.
  2. On medium heat, let the mix simmer until it thickens.
  3. Serve the mixture on top of brown rice.

 

2. Curried Chicken|

FullSizeRender(365)

Following along with the addiction to all things Thai, I give you my favorite curried chicken.

Ingredients:

  • 4 chicken breasts
  • Yellow curry powder
  • Three cloves of garlic
  • One pack of spinach
  • Brown Rice

Directions:

  1. In a pan cook your chicken breasts and add curry to taste. I like a strong curry taste so I make sure both sides of the chicken are coated.
  2. In a separate pan, add a bag of fresh spinach, the garlic, and a splash of water. Cover the pan until the spinach reduces.
  3. Once the chicken is cooked, cut in half and place on top of brown rice with a cup of your garlic spinach.

 

3. Rosemary Olive Oil Tilapia|

FullSizeRender(364)

Ingredients:

  • Two pieces of fresh tilapia
  • Olive oil
  • Rosemary
  • Garlic Spinach
  • Brown Rice

Directions:

  1. Heat your oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Place the tilapia in a glass dish and coat the top of the fish with olive oil. Cover the fish in rosemary and place in the oven for 25 minutes.
  3. Place the cooked fish on top of brown rice and garlic spinach.

4. From Scratch Veggie Nuggets|

FullSizeRender(372)

Ingredients:

  • One head of cauliflower
  • One head of broccoli
  • One large carrot
  • One egg
  • A cup of bread crumbs
  • Seasoning of choice (I used hot pepper blackening season)

Directions:

  1. Chop your cauliflower, broccoli, and carrot. Once the veggies are chopped, place them in a blender or food processor until they are finely diced.
  2. Add one egg and half a cup of breadcrumbs to your veggie mixture.
  3. Form your mixture into nugget shapes then coat them in breadcrumbs.
  4. In a pan on medium heat add veggie oil.
  5. Fry both sides of your nuggets until they are golden brown (it took no longer than one minute per side).

 

What are some of your favorite meal prep items?

As always,

Capture

 

The BEST Strawberry Cucumber Detox Water

T- Minus 10 months until I GET MARRIED!!!!

We are in the full swing of planning and I realized that I have totally been neglecting my body. Meeting DJs at sports bars and snacking on junk while on the search for the perfect dress has left me drained of energy and a few extra pounds packed on.

To fix this issue I’ve decide to do different weekly detox waters (along with a weekly meal prep plan).

To start of our weekly detox waters I bring you:

The BEST Strawberry Cucumber Detox Water |

FullSizeRender(368)

  • 6 Ripe Strawberries
  • Two BABY cucumbers (this makes all the difference!)
  • 3 Cups of Water

FullSizeRender(371)FullSizeRender(369)

What makes this water so refreshing is the baby cucumbers that pack so much more flavor than their larger counterparts.

Slice the strawberries and cucumbers and place them in the bottom of your glass of choice (I love using a 3 cups mason jar so that I can track how much water I am drinking throughout the day).

FullSizeRender(367)

What are some of your favorite water combinations that we need to try? Check back next Monday to see what our weekly detox water will be.

As always,

Capture