The Pinecrest Bed and Breakfast Asheville NC

Posts Tagged ‘Asheville Bed and Breakfast’

Chiesa a Great New Addition to the Montford Restaurant Scene

November 13th, 2014 by Stacy Shelley

Last Saturday evening my husband and I strolled down the street to try the new neighborhood restaurant. It’s awesome that we now have another fabulous restaurant guests can venture to just steps out our door.

Chiesa, Church in Italian, is a new venture by Robert and Melisa Willingham, seasoned restaurant owners from Baltimore.  The Willingham’s felt that Asheville was the perfect setting for their opening a home-made pasta-centered, neighborhood-style Italian restaurant.

What use to stand in the place of Chiesa was a rundown vacant Church.  It was very exciting to watch the amazing transformation of this old property.  The end result is a very comfortable interior and a great addition to this historical neighborhood.

And now to the food.  The menu is small but focused and features selections from local purveyors….such as Hickory Nut Gap Farm, Dynamite Roasting, City Bakery,  Blue Moon Water,  Ultimate Ice Cream, and Mountain Foods.  One of the best features is the House-Made pasta, but it was a difficult decision between that and dessert.

We started the evening with Pancetta Crisps with Goat Cheese and Pear. It was scrumptious, especially after we drizzled a little balsamic vinegar over it.  The featured pasta the evening was Fettuccine and it was delightful. I had the sautéed  (HG) Sweet Italian Sausage with Tri-Colored Peppers over  Fettuccine and my husband had the Braised Chicken Thighs with Saffron, Mint and Green Olives. Both dishes were delicious and not heavy. The pasta could not have been more tender and light. If you need that “stuffed” feeling you won’t get that here. The portions are just perfect and not overwhelming.

chiesa logoThere were also several options for vegetarians, vegans and gluten free dinners including  Sauteed Zucchini, Carrot and Squash Ribbons in a Garlic- Shallot Lemon Butter and Fettucini with Basil- Mint Pesto and Walnut Pesto. There were several salads and seasonal soups such as Sweet Potato and Thyme Soup with Toasted Pumkin Seeds and Roasted Cauliflower and Broccoli Soup.

For dessert we were treated to a divine Housemade Bread Pudding with a Carmel Glaze. Be sure to ask for a scoop of Madagascar vanilla ice cream from Ultimate Ice Cream on the side.

We found the prices to be very reasonable, especially considering the quality of the ingredients. The wine list features Italian wines and is also very reasonable.

Especially looking forward to Spring when the outside patio will be in full swing. Welcome to the Neighborhood! See your innkeeper at Pinecrest Bed and Breakfast for walking directions.

 

Best Fall Activities in Asheville

October 7th, 2014 by Stacy Shelley

Fall Foliage in Asheville North CarolinaThere’s no shortage of great fall activities in and around Asheville to keep residents and visitors busy in at this beautiful time of year in Western North Carolina. The question then becomes, what are the best fall activities? Here we’ve attempted to compile a list of the top 10 things to do near Asheville this fall. Check out our list:

  1. Tour the Blue Ridge Parkway and the scenic 193-mile section near Asheville for the best leaf peeping and mountain view this fall. Be sure to take a blanket, jackets and a camera as you set off to explore one of America’s most scenic roadways. Check with your Innkeeper for recommendations on the best overlooks and stop-offs. Check out not to be missed spots like Skinny Dip Falls, Chestoa View at Milepost 320.8 and the Folk Arts Center.
  2. Take in the views by zip lining through the wooded hillsides around Asheville. Navitat Canopy tours have been called “one of the best in the nation” by USA Today. Right outside Asheville, Navitat is the adventurer’s way of experiencing nature with a little adrenaline rush thrown in to keep it interesting.
  3. Head south for a day in the Town of Lake Lure. Try Trout fishing in the Rocky Broad River or rent a bike and check out the Town’s new trail system at Buffalo Creek Park. The best way to see the leaves is with a guided boat tour of the lake. Call the Lake Lure Marina for details at 828-625-1373.  Or check out the Lake Lure Arts Festival, October 18-19, 2014.
  4. Visit nationally acclaimed Chimney Rock State Park for a trail hike you’ll not soon forget. The trails range in skill level from easy to strenuous. Click here for Trail Maps. Just 25 miles south of Asheville and situated close to Lake Lure, the Park is located in Hickory Nut Gorge, home to 36 rare plant species and 14 rare animal species, making it one of the most bio-diverse parks in the state.
  5. Spend a day at the legendary Biltmore Estate. Tour the Biltmore house, sample your favorite wines at the Winery, have lunch at Cedric’s Tavern, take in a hike along the French Broad, a Segway tour,  horseback riding or just enjoy a peaceful stroll through the gardens. The opportunities are endless.
  6. Soak in the hot natural mineral waters in your own private tub at the Hot Springs Spa. Follow that up with a relaxing massage for two or other spa treatment. Sit in a rocking chair on the porch gazing at the mountains after you take in the waters and a massage. You’ll thank yourself later. It’s the epitome of relaxation.
  7. Take a tour of Asheville’s many breweries. Behind-the-scenes guided brewery tours are a great way to sample local beers and tour the area at the same time. You’ll learn about the nuances of different beer styles and get the inside scoop on the brewing process. Asheville Brew Cruise offers a range of public and private tours.
  8. Canoe, kayak or raft down the French Broad, Pigeon, Nantahala, or Nolichucky Rivers. Whitewater Paddling magazine named Asheville, North Carolina, as a “Top 10 Whitewater Town.” There are so many ways to get White water rafting Asheville NC lodgingout on the water and take in nature this fall, just pick your favorite river destination, select an outfitter that operates on that river and start paddling! All companies provide rafting guides, so no experience is necessary. A few to choose from are the French Broad Rafting, Green River Adventures and Nantahala Outdoor Center.
  9. Go west young man! West to the town of Cherokee, about an hour from Asheville. Cherokee is home to the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians and rich with tradition, history plus interesting museums and shops. The Museum of the Cherokee Indian tells the story of the Cherokee people and sets the scene for the Cherokee Heritage Trails. The nearby Oconaluftee Indian Village is a Living History Museum portraying life in an 18th century Cherokee Indian village.
  10. Check out one of the many fall festivals Asheville is famous for. One of our favorites is The Fall 2014 LEAF Festival, October 16-19, offering an unstoppable lineup of performing artists and a plethora of community dances to partake of including Salsa, Swing, the Waltz, contemporary, Contra; plus poetry and puppetry and a sampling of healing arts workshops and folk art exhibitions. This event sells out fast. For tickets visit http://www.theleaf.org/tickets/.

No matter what you do in Asheville this fall, make our Asheville Bed & Breakfast your home base. Enjoy a sumptuous, three course, home cooked breakfast made from locally sourced meats, breads, cheeses and more. Then let our amazing hosts Jenna and Stacy help you plan your daily adventures. We look forward to seeing you again soon. Visit www.pincrestbb.com for more information or click here for Inn Reservations.

 

Gluten Free Fried Chicken at King Daddy’s in Asheville – Oh My!

June 10th, 2014 by Stacy Shelley

Eating in Asheville just got even more remarkable, if that is even possible. Two cases in point: White Duck Taco, a wildly popular venue in the River Arts District, just opened a new downtown location on Biltmore Avenue. Also, Early Girl Eatery owners, John and Julie Stehling, just recently opened King Daddy’s on Haywood Road in West Asheville which pays tribute to the American soul food pairing of chicken and waffles.

white duckWhite Duck taco is well known for their delicious and creative tacos and may I say…cheap tacos. Their River Arts location is always bustling and you can usually expect a line, but don’t let that deter you. I’m not sure I have ever been there and not had to wait in line, but it does move very quickly and is always worth the wait. The downtown location is larger with more indoor and outdoor seating capacity, has a full bar and comes with the added bonus of being with walking distance of this Asheville Bed and Breakfast.

We visited the downtown location last week and feasted on Korean Beef Bulgogo with avocado puree and kimchi…yum, Steak and Cheese with pico, lettuce and mexican crema, Jerk Chicken with purple slaw and pineapple, Thai Peanut Chicken with tropical salsa, BBQ Pork Carnitas with bbq slaw and beans, and the Fish Taco. What’s hard to believe is that these delectable tacos are only $3.45 a piece. The BBQ Pork Carnitas is always my personal favorite. This is a great lunch spot, especially after eating such a big breakfast at our Asheville Inn. Sample a white duck2taco or 2 and wash it down with a seasonal Sangria, fresh lime Margarita or a locally brewed cerveza.

Early Girl Eatery, also a local favorite since opening its doors on Wall Street in 2001, has finally found the perfect spot (on Haywood Road) to fulfill their original vision. As the story goes, they had hoped to open a restaurant on Haywood Rd. in West Asheville back in 2001. For a host of reasons, they ended up downtown (which we are glad about) and tried to serve waffles and fried chicken. Unfortunately the electrical wiring in the downtown location was most uncooperative. Every time they plugged a waffle iron into an electrical outlet something else would shut off…..like the cooler. Since coolers are an essential appliance to the overall function of the restaurant, waffle dreams had to be put on hold.

In 2014 their vision has come full circle in an historic building with all the conveniences of modern electrical wiring. King Daddy’s offers all kinds of waffles; Belgian, Sweet, Pumpkin, Cracklin’ and Vegan/Gluten-free. To fully realize the dream, your light, fluffy waffle can be escorted by Fried, Heirloom, Habanero Sweet Potato, Korean, Grilled and Gluten-Free Fried Chicken. Of course they also have Chicken and Gravy, Biscuits and a bunch of yummy sides, salads and appetizers.

king daddysWe sampled the Sweet Potato Hush Puppies, which are gluten free and fabulous and the King Daddy Wings with all three sauces (Korean, habanero and sweet NC BBQ). They were really good! We even tried the Fish and Chips, which was one of the best offerings of this fried English dish we have found in the area. They give you a bowl of “chips” a.k.a. French fries as big as your head. We took the kids so they took advantage of what they now hope will be a part of a new family dinner tradition — the Belgian waffles with strawberry, chocolate chips and of course whip cream.

The waffles were light, airy and heavenly. I serve up a mean waffle at the B & B… so my guests tell me, but these were truly delicious. My husband feasted on the Habanero Sweet Potato chicken, which was juicy, spicy and also scrumptious. I had the Warm Sesame Kale Salad with beets and glazed pears. I can’t pass up a good Kale salad. I could live on kale, beets and more kale. Everything we tried was really good, fresh and applying the same approach as the Early Girl Eatery, locally sourced wherever possible. The atmosphere is very cool and casual and a very good use of the space. The service was stellar. My parents went the night after we did, in search of good quality fish and chips and had a very similar experience. I’d put this on the list of where to eat when visiting Asheville, especially if you have any dietary restrictions.

West Asheville is a hip part of Asheville and just a short 5 to 10 minute drive from this Asheville Bed and Breakfast. Call 828-281-4275 for Inn reservations.

Biltmore Estate is Blooming

March 7th, 2014 by Stacy Shelley

flower power2

Image Source: Biltmore Estate

Think it’s too early to visit the Biltmore gardens? Think again. A little bird told us that the tulips are already in bloom over at the Biltmore gardens looking as beautiful as ever. So don’t let the cloudy weather fool you!

The famed estate’s notorious display of spring flower power, once called the Festival of Flowers, appears to have been officially renamed Biltmore Blooms.  The spring event runs from March 20-May 23, 2014. If you’ve never been, you’re missing a real treat. How often do you get to see over 100,000 tulips in bloom? By the end of the month, the gardens will be full of blossoming tulips, hyacinths, daffodils and other spring time favorites. In late March and early April you can also catch blooming shrubs and trees like the forsythia, spirea, and magnolia. In mid-April visitors will see the hybrid Darwin Tulips at their peak, as well as dogwoods and redbuds.

In addition to the sheer beauty of the event (which is enough for me), you can also take advantage of these free special activities going on during the festival from March 20th-May 23rd:

  • Weekends from 11am-4pm, guests may visit “Ask a Gardener” stations in the Walled Garden hosted by Biltmore’s horticulture experts.
  • Gardener’s Place seminars; learn to create beautiful floral arrangements. Daily at 1:00 p.m., 2:00 p.m., and 3:00 p.m.
  • Live music offered daily at the Conservatory, Antler Hill Village or Biltmore House.
  • Rose Garden – International judging May 23rd
  • Grape Stomp at the Winery: Every Saturday and Sunday 2:00 pm. – 5:00 p.m.

The breathtaking grounds of the Biltmore were designed by America’s foremost landscape architect, Frederick Law Olmsted. When you go, be sure take a picnic lunch and a blanket for maximum enjoyment.

We highly recommend purchasing your tickets through the Biltmore Estate by clicking here. Biltmore offers tickets at a reduced rate when purchased 7 days in advance. Of course we can also assist you with obtaining tickets once you arrive and help you with your daily itinerary. For room reservations at our award winning Asheville Bed & Breakfast, visit www.pinecrestbb.com or call 888-811-3053.

 

Fire on the Rock Chef’s Challenge Dinner & Lodging Package

February 21st, 2014 by Stacy Shelley

Stay at our Asheville Bed and Breakfast and enjoy a gourmet breakfast, plus dine as a Gourmet Cooking Competition Judge of the Fire on the Rock Chef’s Challenge Dinner. Enjoy a 3 course dinner (6 dishes) using a secret ingredient.  Diners will judge the dishes and determine the winner.   This is statewide series of dinners taking place in Wilmington, Asheville, Greensboro, Raleigh and Charlotte.  A Grand Prize Dinner will take place Raleigh.

Who: The 17 Inns of the Asheville Bed & Breakfast Association are partnered with the following participating Restaurants in Asheville:  Strada, Videla, Isis, Seasons, The Gamekeeper, Ambrozia, King James Public House and LAB.

Where:  All dinners take place at the Lioncrest on the Biltmore Estate.

When:   Monday and Tuesday Nights 6:30-10PM in March.  3/10-11, 3/17-18, 3/24-25 (semi-finals) Package is not available for the final on March 31.

competition dining

Package includes:

  • (1) Night’s lodging at an Asheville Bed & Breakfast Association Inn (www.ashevillebba.com)
  • (2) Tickets to Got to Be NC Competition Dining Series “Fire On the Rock”
  • (2) Wine Glasses from NC Wine & Grape Council
  • (1) Bottle Cackalacky Sauce (sample size)
  • Free dessert for two @ Ambrozia
  • Free dessert for two @The King James Public House
  • 10% off lunch or dinner @ Seasons Restaurant
  • $10 off $25 purchase (alcohol not included)@LAB
  • One complimentary Chef’s choice appetizer with the purchase of a bottle of wine @Strada Italiano
  • Buy 2 Signature drinks and get your choice of 1 complimentary Tapas @The Social Lounge
  • Savor the Inns of Asheville:  Cookbook of the Asheville Bed & Breakfast Association (not available at all Inns)

Please contact Pinecrest Inn Bed & Breakfast directly for package pricing and availability.

Biltmore Village Dickens Festival & Biltmore Estate Christmas Celebrations

November 23rd, 2013 by Stacy Shelley

Looking for ways to put some nostalgic holiday fun into your next visit to Asheville?  Then don’t miss the enchanting display of lights and ornaments at the Biltmore Estate this Christmas.   Experience a magical visit to Biltmore during their Candlelight Christmas Evenings November 9 – January 4th. Take a stroll by firelight and candlelight and enjoy the bmcbeautiful display of over 50 Christmas trees and hundreds of poinsettias displayed throughout the estate.

To help you get into the holiday spirit there will also be choirs singing European carols, vintage ballroom dancers, and dramatic Christmas readings. The Front Lawn of the Biltmore House sets the scene with a sparkling holiday illumination of evergreens bathed in thousands of twinkling lights.

Candlelight evening ticket prices includes daytime admission to the estate grounds, winery, gardens and Riverbend Farm and nighttime admission to the Biltmore House Candlelight Evenings (by reservation only).  Book online at www.biltmore.com 7 to 14 days in advance and take advantage of discounted ticket prices.

For more holiday festivities in Asheville, join the revelry at the Biltmore Village Dickens Christmas Festival. Horse drawn carriage rides and period dressed carolers make this a very special holiday weekend December 6-8th.  Put these festive Asheville events on your must-do-list while visiting our Bed and Breakfast in Asheville this holiday season. For Inn reservations, call 888.811.3053.

Bakeries, Cake and Pies…Oh My! Asheville Bakeries Abound.

October 22nd, 2013 by Stacy Shelley

I don’t know if I’d go so far as to say there’s a bread movement afoot in Western North Carolina, but I just might! There seems to be an abundance of all things baked popping up in and around Asheville. Some of the bakeries are old time staples, while others are new on the scene, with emphasis on fresh, local and gluten free breads and cakes. Check out some of what our grand little city in the mountains has to offer.

strada bake houseStrada Bakehouse
http://www.stradaasheville.com/bakehouse/
New on the scene is the Green Certified Strada Bakehouse. Started by the same owners who run the über delicious Strada Italiano Restaurant, this European-style bakery serves up artisan loaves baked fresh daily. Melding old world techniques with modern flavors, the bakery uses a several hundred-year-old, three-step process that yields some amazing breads. One big bonus, they don’t use preservatives, conditioners, or chemicals of any kind. Only four basic ingredients can be found in these breads: flour, salt, water and leaven.

Daily Fresh Baked Breads include Peasant Batard, Red Pepper Cheddar, Sunflower Wheat, Ciabatta, Semolina Sesame, Roasted Garlic & Asiago, and Chocolate Cherry. Stop in any day of the week to pick up a fresh loaf – except Mondays, they’re closed.

West End Bakery
http://www.westendbakery.com/
It’s always nice to talk about one of our favorites in trendy West Asheville – the West End Bakery and Café. This all around great, go-to-bakery uses only 100% organic flour and the freshest ingredients available. Everything served at the West End is made from scratch, and whenever possible they use locally grown produce and organic products. Gluten-Free offerings include a variety of muffins in flavors such as blueberry, pumpkin chocolate chip, and raspberry almond.
They also offer sandwiches made with their famous Gluten-free breads, but they’re popular so you got to be quick to get them. Your best bet is to order a loaf of Gluten-Free Bread to take home so you have some on hand. They also offer a rotating selection of Gluten-free desserts like Carrot cupcakes and Chocolate Mousse.

The Well-Bred Bakery & Cafe

Pastries and Cakes at Well Bread Bakery

Pastries and Cakes at Well Bread Bakery

http://www.wellbredbakery.com/
Just ten minutes north of Asheville in downtown Weaverville, the Well-Bred Bakery and Café offers gourmet pastries, cakes, cookies, artisan breads and other fine delectable treats.  The 2013 Trip Advisor Certificate of Excellence winner boasts made from scratch confections such as Espresso Roulade, Chocolate Éclairs, Classic English Toffee, Tiramisu, Swedish Crème, Peanut Butter Pie and a host of other sweets like Key Lime Tarts, Chocolate Mint Mousse, Austrian Tea Cakes, Pecan Praline Cookies, and much, much more. Their beautiful pastry case is a feast for the eyes. If you’re like me, you’ll have a hard time deciding what you want, and instead, just get one of each – to go of course. Look for their new location in Biltmore Village, opening soon.

City Bakery
http://citybakery.net/
Founded in 1999, family owned City Bakery is an Asheville staple. The downtown bakery offers a wide variety of breads daily, specializing in traditional French breads made by hand and using as little yeast as possible for more complex flavors. Their amazing pastry staff creates croissants, danishes, éclairs, cupcakes and more – fresh every day.

Their sandwiches, cookies and other bakery treats are equally as good. You can find them at three locations including downtown Asheville, Charlotte Street and a new location in Waynesville.

World’s Best Carrot Cake

http://www.worldsbestcarrotcake.com/

It’s no small feat to be awarded as the World’s Best Carrot Cake by Fox News, but this small, unassuming bakery located on the edge of Asheville and Weaverville, has claimed this award. If you thought all carrot cakes were created equal, think again. It wasn’t enough to offer just gluten free, all natural carrot cake (a big hit by itself), the cake geniuses at World’s Best Carrot cake also created Gluten-Free Carrot Cake, Chocolate Gluten-Free Carrot Cake and Orange Citrus Vegan Carrot Cake.
Each and every World’s Best Carrot Cake is made by hand, from scratch, in small batches with care and love. It truly is the World’s Best Carrot Cake and best of all, it’s right here in our own backyard.

The Bake Shoppe
http://www.bakeshoppeasheville.com/
The Bake Shoppe, located in north Asheville, offers elegant and tasty cakes as well as other wonderful desserts. Run by mother daughter team Juanita Mantel and Heidi Bryson, these talented bakers have been creating award winning cakes for over 35 years. Their specialty is beautifully decorated wedding cakes, grooms cakes and anniversary cakes. They also offer a wide assortment of cakes and pies including German chocolate cake, pumpkin praline pound cake, cranberry pecan pie, coconut cream pie and more. Be sure to place your cake and pie orders in plenty of time before holiday guests arrive.

Now if reading this doesn’t make you want to head out and find a local bakery to satisfy your cravings, we must have done something wrong! If you aren’t fortunate enough to have a bakery near you, be sure to visit one of ours the next time you stay at our Asheville Bed and Breakfast. We are so proud of our local bakers. If you need a recommendation for where to go for your favorite baked treat in Asheville, just ask our innkeepers Janna and Stacy.

For more information about our Asheville B&B, visit www.pinecrestbb.com.

Spring Flowers Blooming in Asheville, NC

May 30th, 2013 by Stacy Shelley

peonieThe spring gardens this year are magnificent at our Asheville bed and Breakfast. Everywhere you look flowers are blooming.  We have been cutting peonies (my favorite flower) all week for the Inn.  The scent throughout the house could not be lovelier.  I will be so disappointed when we see the last of them, which unfortunately is going to be soon.  I won’t be sad too long because next up to bloom will be the Hydrangeas, another favorite of mine.  As of today, we still have blooming rhododendron, azeleas and Mountain Laurel.  In the perennial garden there are hostas, astilibe, Bellflower, Green and Gold and native Jacobs Ladder just to name a few.  We have a slope of iris and blooming rose bushes that will continue through summer.

Our perennial garden is way out of control and will need some love and care this fall.  We will be doing a lot of separating and replanting in the fall.  There is no shortage of space for us to keep expanding the perennial garden.

azaealasWe have had a lot of rain this spring which has been a blessing and a curse. The yard is really green and lush but the gardens have been plagued with a lot of weeds.  It seems the 20 yards of mulch we laid in April has been of little help keeping the weeds at bay.   Almost every day you can find my dad out in the yard on his knees working away pulling weeds. He use to maintain the entire yard and gardens, but  it’s become a little too much for him to handle so, Jose our “yard guy” has  been doing a great job keeping up with the  almost 2 acres of gardens and yard.

Just a few blocks away from this Asheville inn is the Botanical Gardens of Asheville. There you will find a collection of 600 species native to the Southern Appalachian Mountains.   The Garden is home to 50 species that are considered uncommon, rare or endangered.  Within the ten acres that comprise the Gardens, a walking trail forming a half-mile loop leads visitors across bridges spanning streams, through meadows, and over a woodland ridge to a wildflower cove. At this time of year the slopes are covered with thousands of flowers such as Trilliums, Crested Dwarf, Spring-beauties, Wild Geranium and Foamflower.  As we move into Summer the gardens will be full of members of the Aster family such as Joe-pye Weed, Blazing-star, Goldenrod and Coneflower. For a full description of blooming flowers by month, please see their website. Admission is free but a donation is recommended.

blooms- 6It’s also a great time to visit the North Carolina Arboretum.  The 434-acre public garden in the Pisgah National Forest is located at the entrance to the Blue Ridge Parkway, just a 10 minute drive from Pinecrest Bed and Breakfast . There are over 65 acres of cultivated gardens and 10 miles of hiking and biking trails. For a short but beautiful hike we recommend the Azelea Collection Trail (.5) mile. The trail takes you through the National Native Azelea Collection and the Fern Loop. The Fern Loop takes you along a natural mountain wetland where you will encounter a Rhododendron thicket. Admission is 8.00. For more information visit their website.

Although spring and early summer are a gardener’s paradise, natural beauty abounds all year round in Asheville.  All of the pictures were taken at this Asheville B & B. Please visit our website www.pinecrestbb.com or give us a call 888-811-3053 for more information or booking your reservation.

 

 

 

Winter Holiday in Asheville

January 10th, 2013 by Stacy Shelley

Happy New Year ! This year marks our 10 year anniversary as owners of this Asheville Bed and Breakfast. It’s hard to believe how fast time has flown by and here we are starting the New Year off much like last. The weather has been very mild, no snow and quiet. Even though January and February are usually slow months, it’s a great time to visit. The Biltmore Estate is still magnificent and less crowded. You can purchase your 2 day ticket for $35.00 from this Asheville Inn. Guests receive a complimentary audio guide with purchase. Children 16 and younger enjoy free admission.

Asheville’s restaurants are calmer – making reservations unnecessary on most nights and giving you some extra flexibility in your schedule. With temperatures expected to continue to be mild this year, outdoor hiking and activities are abundant. Strolling the streets of Asheville is a more leisurely and relaxed experience.

Here at Pinecrest Bed and Breakfast, our rates are reduced through March 31st. We also allow for one night bookings on the weekend, except certain holidays. This year we are offering an additional 5% savings if you book 2 weekend nights (Fri, Sat, Sun) through March 31st in the Grace, Thomas Wolfe or Wible suites.

Valentine’s day falls on a Thursday this year and we expect that the weekend following Valentine’s day to be busy, so you may want to start your planning your get-away now. We would really enjoy the opportunity to host you during your visit to Asheville. Please call our toll free 888-811-3053 for additional information or book online.

Exploring the River Arts District, Asheville NC

October 1st, 2012 by Stacy Shelley

This past weekend we explored the up and coming River Arts District. It’s been a while since we ventured down there in the evening and “wow” has it grown. There are several new galleries, restaurants and even an electric bike shop. We met up with our good friends who happen to also own a Montford bed and breakfast just a few doors down from us on Cumberland Avenue. It’s always nice to have an innkeeper friend you can call on at five till 9 in the morning when you realize you are missing one of the key ingredients for your breakfast, like butter or eggs and even 2 slices of bacon. Thanks James and Susan. They have been great friends and a source of support in many ways.

We began our evening at The Magnetic Field – a bar, restaurant and theatre venue. This is a great place to catch dinner and a show. The plan included dinner and the first performance of the evening (at 7:30). On this particular evening, they were featuring “MILF the Musical” and later in the evening “No she didn’t…Good Girls Gone Bad and the Dances that Happen” — probably not a show that has been cleared for family entertainment.

I am usually a wine drinker and rarely venture down cocktail road, but our friends were very excited about a favorite drink that was fortuitously featured on this special evening out and so we all went along for the ride. Our friends first experienced this delicacy while visiting Peru and have rarely seen it on a menu in the homeland. So if you go…even if it’s not on the menu, see if you can order a Pisco Sour Cocktail. You won’t make any friends with the bartender – it is a high maintenance drink –but this concern will melt away after just one and you can restore the relationship with a decent tip. This cocktail was invented in Peru around 1900 and uses Pisco, a Peruvian grape brandy and “it’s to die for!” The brandy itself is a bit stark, but when skillfully mixed with the other ingredients (sugar, egg white, lime juice), it becomes a smooth, frothy refreshment pleasure. Avoiding the risk of damaging a long-established relationship with your favorite bartender, I am going to include the recipe at the bottom of the blog so you can try this at home.

The dinner menu is small but focused on quality and features local and seasonal ingredients. I had local trout that was on a bed of butter beans and sea island peas over a lovely cauliflower puree and surrounded by a brown butter sauce. The portion was the perfect size and just scrumptious. My husband enjoyed the flat iron steak with roasted fingerling potatoes, local shitake mushrooms, sautéed greens and a Cabernet demi-glaze. The meat was very tender and the sauce a perfect accompaniment to the plate. Our friends enjoyed a plate of local cheeses, crab bisque soup (which had a nice little kick) and peel and eat shrimp which were a good size and fresh and tender. The service was also “spot on”.

As can be the case with dinner theater, the dinner component can be quite lacking. This is not the case at The Magnetic Field. This restaurant can stand on its own merit. Everyone had a great meal and great fun at the “theater” portion of the evening.

Next on our list is the Junction (which is located just up the block from Magnetic Field) and is also focused on local and seasonal ingredients. It is rumored they just may have the best burger in town…as self-proclaimed experts on the topic; we’ll be the judge and let you know. For more recommendations on great dinner spots don’t forget to ask your innkeepers at this Asheville bed and breakfast.

Pisco Sour
• 1/4 cup (2 oz.) pisco (grape brandy)
• 1 tablespoon sugar
• 1 tablespoon fresh lime juice
• 1 teaspoon pasteurized egg whites
In a blender, whirl 3 ice cubes, Pisco, sugar, fresh lime juice, and egg whites. Whirl until smooth (you’ll no longer hear the ice cracking against the side of the blender) and serve straight up in a martini glass with a dash of aromatic bitters and a wedge of lime.

For more information or to book a room visit www.pinecrestbb.com or call 888-811-3053. We look forward to hosting you at our Asheville Bed & Breakfast very soon.

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