Friday, June 15, 2012

A little delight for your afternoon

We have been some busy bees, ya'll.
I feel like every weekend of summer is booked already, but we have some exciting things ahead of us!

But today is a recap of a special visit from these cool dudes:

KBurd and the Regg came to visit over Memorial Day Weekend,
 as a belated birthday surprise for MW. 
I can't even begin to tell you how good of a liar I was for WEEKS. The Regg had contacted me about doing a secret trip and I was fully on board. Luckily, KBurd was too. 

If you aren't in the loop, our AC has been out all Spring, making for some fairly warm evenings spent under the ceiling fan (and even heat rash for me, when it got to be a little too warm). Regg and KBurd planned to come down for Memorial Day Weekend, which everyone knows is the kickoff for summer. Read: HOT weekend. 

To keep our guests from getting overheated, I pre-emptively booked a night in Asheville that could easily be cancelled if the weekend was cool or MW preferred to stay in town to do some kayaking. 

To give you an idea of how smooth I am, here's the run down. 

Starting on his birthday, I gave MW a hint every week leading up to the week of Memorial Day. These were the vaguest hints you can possibly imagine, but still fit the bill. I told MW that on Friday (scheduled date of arrival) I would be picking him up for lunch and we would be embarking on an outing. No, he didn't need to pack. I would take care of it all. 

Told MW I had a morning appointment, but would call him after to let him know when I would pick him up. I actually had the day scheduled as vacation, but went in anyway to call him from my desk phone (yeah, that's how deep I took this lie.)

10:40am- KBurd and the Regg arrived in Greensboro. 
I grabbed them from the airport and dropped their stuff off at home. 
11:30am- called MW and said I would be on my way around noon. 
11:50am- dropped Kburd and Regg off at Foothills Brewery
12:00pm- picked MW up from work and handed him his last hint: a Foothills Growler instructing him to ask the bartender for the "MW Special" (if you could have seen the look on his face). Notified Regg and KB that we were on our way
12:05pm- walking up to Foothills, I did my best to engage MW in conversation about what he was about to do. 
12:06pm- As we passed the outside seating I said "oh my god, who is that?" and indicated our guests. MW had no idea what was going on. Commence hugs, greetings, and tears. Ok, not really tears. 

I gave MW the option for staying in town or going to Beer City, USA and naturally he chose Asheville. So we spent the rest of Friday drinking, eating, and hanging out. 

We woke up earlyish and got on the road. 
After checking into our usual hotel, we nabbed some food from Clingman Cafe and headed to our favorite Asheville spot: The Wedge

We unknowingly came on during Asheville Beerfest, and Wedge was hopping! It had some home brewer's competition and beer tasting event going on. So we creeped past to the IPA door, got a pitcher and settled at a table just beyond the event. The people watching was incredible. 

After getting plenty of sun (and plenty of Ironrail IPA) we decided to move on and show these two some of our other favorite places. 

So we walked. 

And came upon Craggie's
Someday I think MW and I will have a place like this.

At Craggie's a band was playing. We figured we would sit and enjoy some fresh beats. 
And KBurd crushed hard on the drummer. 

Just chillin by some fermenters

Regg spots a bachelorette party.


After we had our fill of the band (Boys in the Well, I think was their name?) we hit the road again
This time to Greenman!

Greenman has pretzels and spicy mustard and I pretty much went to town on those bad boys.
All that walking, you know? Makes a girl hangry. 

They also have games and Star Wars Potato Heads.
Yes, I was childish enough to play with them. 

"I'm so thirsty!"

After Greenman, we raced back to the main drag and put in our names at Tupelo Honey Cafe. The original foodie restaurant of Asheville and one of our favorite places to dine. Regg and KBurd were in for a treat. We popped back to our hotel two blocks over to freshen up, since the wait is typically long. On our walk back, the buzzer went off right in time and we were seated quickly! 

All these photos are dark. But I'm not sorry because a) I was more interested in filling my face and 
b) it's dark in there and if you use a flash the whole places lights up and then you're that uncool person lighting up the whole dang restaurant. 

Happy to be eating, Finally!

So many beverages. 

KBurd and I ordered a Rosemary infused Peach Lemonade with Firefly. OH MY GOD Ya'll this was the most fabulous drink I've ever had. It would be my go-to bar order, if it were available everywhere. After one sip, MW raced through his beer to order one as well. We have plans in the works to make our own, don't you worry. I'll share that recipe once we do. 

Heavenly, delicious, fluffy biscuits.
These could be the best biscuits ever. 

Our Appetizers went fast. We ordered the Fried Green Tomatoes over goat cheese grits with fresh basil (naturally) and some Pimento Cheese and tortilla chips.
I could have died happy.

Screw no sugar, when I'm at Tupelo I'm having the Honey AND the blackberry jam. 

KBurd and I both ordered a Downtown Grill with Tomato Soup. 
There's just something I love about their tomato soup. Its so wholesome and GOOD. 
I also got a side of grilled asparagus because everyone loves asparagus and if you don't we pretty much can't speak again. I feel a similar way about The Beatles (uhem, Regg). 


MW pulled a pretty solid move getting a plate of sides. 
Fried Parmesan Corn on the Cob, scratch made Mac N' Cheese, and Benne Coated Asparagus. 

The Regg had a burger, I think. It went fast, just look at that face. 
Fully satisfied. We were all members of the clean plate club. 

We lumbered down to Asheville Brewing Company  (definitely not for pizza this time) for some after dinner drinks. However, we were all pretty full and sleepy so that endeavor lasted about 30 minutes before we lumbered back up the hill to the hotel where we barely spoke a word as we got into bed and were lulled to sleep by the sound of the blasting AC. Bliss. 
Some planking may have occurred as well...

We, of course, planned to go to Sunny Point Cafe for breakfast. We couldn't possibly go to Asheville without visiting SPC, especially with our food-loving friends in tow. 

This is my plate before I devoured the entire thing. 
Usually I would get the MGB (mighty good breakfast), but there was a special that intrigued me.
Sweet potato and regular potatoes cut and fried with jerk chicken thighs and two fried eggs topped with and pineapple salsa. 
YES PLEASE. Holy cow, the chicken thighs were what got my attention and this dish was completely worth the risk of straying from my usual order. I couldn't have been happier (or fuller).


(there's always room for a biscuit with jam, though)

KBurd got the Breakfast Sandwich. Here's the menu's description:
 Roasted tomatoes, maple black pepper bacon, a small sharp cheddar cheese omelette, and chipotle aioli. Served on a buttery croissant with stone ground chipotle cheese grits.
Sound good? it is. KB agreed.

MW got his regular MGB. Always solid. 

The Regg had this monstrosity: Huevos Rancheros
Savory black bean cakes served with Snow Creek chorizo sausage, feta cheese, roasted tomatillo salsa, and herb tossed red skin spuds topped with two free range eggs any style, cilantro crema, and crisp tortilla strips

After breakfast KBurd and I roamed around town to check out some shops while MW and Regg caught a beer at LAB

The open windows at the front of LAB are perfect for watching passersby. And for stealing a sip as we passed.

Our only group photo. 
My legs could use some sun...

We left Asheville after an awesome 24 hours of food, brew, and fun. 
Our little campers were pooped. (Transportation Narcolepsy)

Bah haha I love the arm cross. 

We stopped by Whole Foods on the way home and made an awesome salmon dinner thanks to our delicious salmon rub from our friend EMC in Washington!

The Regg pre-shipped a box of treats for MW before he came down including a Pliny the Elder!
MW has been anticipating having one for a long time.

MW is a good share-er. He gave me and Regg each a taste. 
What a guy. 

Monday (Memorial Day)
KBurd flew out from Raleigh that morning and we were sad to see her go. The Regg had business in NC and was staying part of the week. Since happenstance caused us to be in Raleigh, we called MW's sister and her boyfriend (J&J), who were coincidentally moving to Raleigh that day. We went over to see their new place, help with couch assembly, and drag them to lunch. It worked out quite perfectly!

Being so close to Durham, we couldn't resist going to Bull City Burger
These are the best Burgers in NC, hands down. I promise. 
It should be on Diners, Drive ins and Dives, its that good!

They also are a brewery

We got a monster

James had to put collateral in the basket in order to get this sucker. 
Then they swoop the basket back up to the ceiling on the opposite side of the restaurant.

Hard at Work

Love these smiles


The Regg is impressed. Joyful, perhaps?

My Burger had pimento cheese, tomato, lettuce, onion, and jalapenos topped with hot sauce
The french fries are thin and fried in duck fat. 

MW's had an egg on it. 

Full. Cloves. Of. Garlic.
James had smelly breath

This baby was good. And quickly gone. 

Know what else was quickly gone?
The monster.

There's a cute alleyway out back with picnic tables.

James pointing out that I'm a slow drinker

Carolina skies!

We also hopped over to Tyler's Taproom to break some chairs and have some samplers

(breaking chairs)

(having samplers)

On our way back to Raleigh, we hit up Lonerider Brewery for some serious ping-pong play.

We pretty much owned the space.
We just can't help but be rowdy.

Medieval-ish doors for an old west-ish brewery. 

Contemplating life's problems, chillin with some ivy

Obviously the more I drank and the sleepier I got, the less photos survived. But we had a great (long) day. We capped it off with some Mexican with The Regg before we said goodbye. Later that night I would regret either the mexican or the jalapeno/hot sauce burger combo. But that's another story.

For now, we head off to see my parents for the weekend!