Out to Dinner: The Grove Park Inn

5 November 2010

I thought y’all might like to hear a bit about October’s dining adventure! As you may recall, my sister and my brother-in-law gifted J and I a $50 gift certificate to eat at the restaurant of our choice for twelve months. In September, we went to Vin Rouge in Durham, and last weekend, we ate at the Blue Ridge Dining Room at the Grove Park Inn in Asheville.

We love Asheville and have been there a few times, but have never been to the famous Grove Park Inn. We made a reservation ahead of time and were seated at a fabulous table looking out over the Blue Ridge Mountains just as the sun was setting. Gorgeous!

Photo by J

This photo looks just like where we were sitting:

On Fridays and Saturdays there is no a la carte menu; all guests choose from the prime rib buffet. The amount of food was staggering, and delicious! J had five courses, and I had four (no seafood for me!). My favorites were the garlic mashed potatoes and the chocolate peanut butter bars and chocolate cheesecake for dessert. Here I am in a blurry iPhone pic with the five bean soup we split (got to be conservative at the beginning of the meal, you know):

iPhone pic

The service was wonderful, as well: our server was attentive but did not hover, and everyone from the hostess to the chef that came to our table was warm and relaxed but professional, never stuffy. There was even a strolling violinist!

After dinner, we wandered the grounds a bit, and though it was dark at that point, the stone structures were still beautiful. I’m jealous of you Ashevillians (Ashevillains?) that have the option of getting a hot apple cider and cozying up in front of the GPI’s massive stone fireplace any evening you’d like!

We also visited Tupelo Honey and Mayfel’s while we were in Asheville, and I’d recommend both highly. The buttermilk biscuits with blackberry jam they serve as a starter at Tupelo are TO DIE FOR.

iPhone pic

And just so you know we did things other than eat, here are a few photos from atop Chimney Rock, where we hiked up and down 960 steps (yes, we counted). The weather was perfect!

Personal pic

Personal pic

Any fun weekend plans, friends? J and I are going to be competing in a “diamond dash” in Raleigh tomorrow. For those of you not familiar with this concept, a jewelry store has hidden a $15,000 diamond ring somewhere in the city, and teams solve clues to find it! It’s pretty much the ultimate scavenger hunt, and we’re really, really excited. Wish us luck! :)

Unless otherwise noted, photos are from the Grove Park Inn site.

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