An Elevated Palate: 11 Asheville Restaurants You Shouldn’t Miss

An Elevated Palate: 11 Asheville Restaurants You Shouldn’t Miss

Nestled in the Blue Ridge Mountains, Asheville plays host to beautiful architecture, bountiful art, and of course, stunning mountain vistas. However, taking in all the area has to offer is sure to work up an appetite.

To satisfy your hunger, here are 11 incredible Asheville restaurants to keep your tastebuds as elevated as your altitude.

Best Asheville Restaurants For Tacos

If you’re looking for a quick, affordable bite between hikes, Asheville has a wealth of great taquerias to choose from. As a result, you have some decisions to make.

Taqueria Muñoz

Located on Patton Avenue in West Asheville, Taqueria Muñoz features traditional taco fillings including carnitas, cabeza and pastor served on made-to-order tortillas. However, if you can’t make it to their brick-and-mortar, head over to Zillicoah Brewing in Woodfin and visit their food truck. That location offers a slightly pared-down but still mouth-watering menu.

Zia Taqueria

Asheville restaurants like Zia Taqueria bring tourists from all over the world to the Land of the Sky.
Photo courtesy of Zia Taqueria

Another West Asheville gem, this Haywood avenue eatery celebrates the flavors of New Mexico. Grab some carne asada tacos spiced with New Mexico Hatch chiles, then cool off with a selection from Zia Taqueria’s sizeable margarita menu.

Taco Billy

Image courtesy of Taco Billy.

Taco Billy is where Asheville gets its breakfast tacos. Featuring a menu chock full of locally sourced ingredients, this welcoming spot has something for everyone. Try a Migas Taco for a filling brunch treat, or go the healthier route with the veggie-packed Good Lovin’.

Best Places For Small Plates

Sample from a wide array of flavors at these Asheville tapas spots.


Image courtesy of Zambra.

Head downtown to delve into the flavors of the Western Mediterranean in this atmospheric wine bar. Zambra’s rotating tapas menu allows for a unique and engaging dining experience each time. Pick a glass from the extensive wine list to tie it all together.

Chai Pani

If you're looking for Asheville restaurants with great Indian food Chai Pani is a good choice.
Photo by Chai Pani

Taking its name from the Hindi slang meaning, “a little something,” Chai Pani offers delicious Indian street food at an affordable price. Grab a couple order of bhel puri and chicken pakoras to split amongst friends, or go solo with your own paneer tikka roll.


Image courtesy of Limones.

Tucked in a cozy corner of downtown, Limones brings the flavors of California and Mexico to the Land of the Sky. With a number of innovative small plates and larger entrees to try, Limones has plenty of options to delight your tastebuds. Pro-tip: get the lobster nachos.

Best Asheville Restaurants For Lunch

Why wait for dinner? Explore these Asheville restaurants for lunch.

Tiger Bay Café

Image courtesy of Tiger Bay Café.

Nestled comfortably in the back of BattleCat Coffee Bar, this tiny restaurant packs a huge wallop of flavor. With a menu that’s equal parts casual and adventurous and accentuates the Latin and West Indian heritage of its owners, Tiger Bay Café is a delicious option for a mid-day break.

Rocky’s Hot Chicken Shack

You’ve already traveled to Asheville, so why not head a little further west (on Patton Avenue) and get a taste of Nashville as well? For the past 11 years, Rocky’s Hot Chicken Shack has served up a piping hot tribute to the famous Nashville dish. However, if you don’t like spice, their plain fried chicken is just as good.

Rosetta’s Kitchen

Image courtesy of Rosetta’s Kitchen.

On the other hand, if you’re craving a satisfying meal without the meat, look no further than Rosetta’s Kitchen. This long-running vegetarian haven offers simple yet delicious plant-based fare at an affordable price.

Best Spots For BBQ

However, no list of restaurants in a North Carolina city would be complete without the (un)official state cuisine, barbecue.

Buxton Hall BBQ

This South Slope BBQ joint doesn’t exactly reinvent the wheel. But, when your barbecue is this good, you don’t have to. Complete your trip to hog heaven with a pulled pork sandwich and a side of collard greens. However, If BBQ isn’t for you, try one of Buxton Hall’s other delicious offerings such as the smoky fried catfish or a double cheeseburger.

Luella’s BBQ

Asheville restaurants like Luella's attract just as many people as the scenery.
Image courtesy of Luella’s BBQ.

A mainstay of North Asheville, Luella’s BBQ offers a wide variety of Southern cuisine classics. It’s not just their tangy Eastern NC-style BBQ either. In addition, Luella’s offers other regional favorites including pulled chicken, beef brisket, and smoked turkey breast. Don’t forget the sides!

Looking for more dining guides to help you plan your next weekend or night out? Keep an eye on our Lifestyle section for dining recommendations, road trips, and more.

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