Rye Knot - This unassuming establishment tucked away behind a strip mall, is a little piece of Asheville nostalgia.
Co-owner Ed talks of the building's roots, “It was originally an old disco called the Cosmic Ballroom. Some menu item names give a nod to their history.”
The restaurant has a covered outside eating area, cozy restaurant seating, and an eclectic bar with exposed pipe and a grid metal ceiling.
“It’s a whole vibe,” our host exclaimed seating us in a tufted leather booth and we agreed.
These comfortable booths flank the perimeter of the room, while high-top tables create the brewery atmosphere. Not to be outdone by the seating, the bar takes center stage in its beautiful and unique design.
There is an extensive libation selection with drinks such as the peach sour or Rye Knot barrel-aged dark rum. I can highly recommend the strawberry cosmo. The menu features 21-60 day cabinet-premium cuts of beef including tomahawk ribeye and t-bone, as well as lighter fare such as the fried green tomato napoleon with locally sourced goat cheese.
Our food, which we shared, consisted of smoked meatloaf (nominated best in Asheville 2021) with garlic mash, grilled zucchini and squash, truffled shiitake gravy, and fried shallots. I closed my eyes and enjoyed this sublime first bite!
Captain Bob’s fish and chips transported me to my childhood growing up on Cape Cod. Two large pieces of beer-battered fresh fish with red cabbage slaw, homemade tartar sauce, and tallow fries. Malt cider was offered which I dipped everything in freely. My mouth is watering thinking back on this perfect example of a seaside classic. It truly was perfection.
Dessert for us was a decadent limoncello 5” high cheesecake with fresh zest atop a light frosting.
Moe was an excellent cheerful server and the bartender personally brought our drinks to us. A Cheers-type atmosphere without the angst, where one could get used to the fine service, unique drink menu, and step-above-the-rest food experience.
This has been my #1 spot so far in Asheville for the best food in the area! Their address is 868 Merrimon Avenue. They are open Monday through Friday 4 PM to 10 PM, Saturday 11 AM to 10 PM, and Sunday 11 AM to 8 PM.
Go for the fine dining, come back for the feeling of being well-taken care of. The only thing lacking? A rotating disco ball.