Stu Helm: Food Fan
Stu Helm: Food Fan
Episode 144: Tour Food & Technical Difficulties

Episode 144: Tour Food & Technical Difficulties

PLUS: Controversy, Outrage & Unsolicited Advice

The podcast above features me and Chef Tom LaFauci from Twisted Laurel Downtown Asheville jus’ talkin’ ‘bout food while experiencing technical difficulties…

Podcast Contents

00:00 - 06:07 INTRO: Technical Difficulties & A Shout-Out to My Hairdresser
06:08 - 13:57 TOPIC: The Trouble w/ TikTok
13:46 - 20:50 UNSOLICITED ADVICE: Please Include Pictures… Good Pictures
21:00 - 35:32 WHERE’D YA EAT? Tastee Diner, French Broad Chocolates, Sweets & Seats, Izzy’s Coffee Den, Dos Gatos and Pierre’s Market in Johnson City, TN, plus Sovereign Remedies, Shay Brown’s Chef Michelle Bailey Pop-up at The Mule, La Bodega, and Manicomio Tour Food
35:33 - 36:19 MANNA SPOT: Please Donate to MANNA Foodbank Here.
36:20 - 47:57 CONTROVERSY: Flat Iron Outrage! Settle Down, Asheville
47:58 - 50:45 OUTRO: Bad Time Management & Technical Difficulties

PIZZA OF THE MONTH! Y'all, Chef Drew from Asheville Pizza South has done it again! The April "Pizza of the Month" is even more delicious, and more 420 adjacent, than ever! Yes, those micro greens look like tiny pot leaves, because they are 100% THC-free hemp micros! They are tender, delicate, slightly sweet, with a very pleasant though subtle flavor of super high grade weed. I've eaten something like 16 different specialty pies from Drew, and this was truly one of the most flavorful and delicious! The crust from AP South is always awesome, but the toasted hemp seeds made it particularly enjoyable this month!

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As always, I'll let the chef describe it...

Happy April!!! Our pizza of the month:
"The Weedeater"
Toasted and seasoned hemp seed hearts crust. Green Goddess dressing with Greek yogurt. Spinach and green peppers. Cheese blend. Finished off with fresh baby hemp greens on top. Its Daaaaank! Our hemp greens are FDA approved and contain no THC or CBD. Also more nutritious than kale and spinach. High in fiber, Omega 3 and Omega 6. Check out for more information

To order one for yourself, give Drew a call at 828-277-5775 or go online to

BURGER BLISS: My fave food event of 2024 so far has to be Shay & Company's Burger Bliss at Devil's Foot Beverage Co! It was so mellow & low pressure & delicious & super-filling! I went with my sister, and together we shared 7 sliders from all 6 of the tables, featuring Storm Rhum Bar & Bistro, Baba Nahm, Loott House, The Madness, Chef Eric Morris, & Juicy Lucy's (who offered 2 sliders).

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It was really different from any other big food event in that we were able to taste every single thing that was being offered, so when we left, we knew that we had tried it all, and that was a very satisfying feeling!

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Another thing that was different about this event was that there was no competition. This was not a battle of the burgers, it was just sort of a burger expo, and so there was no pressure to pick a favorite, or to fill out a form, or to wait around for a winner to be announced. My sister and I were in and out of this event in about an hour. We could have stayed longer, because it was, as I said, quite mellow and fun, but we had stuff to do.

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I'm really looking forward to the rest of Shay Brown's food events for the rest of the year. She's got one coming up for pizza, tacos, and even seafood! You can check her schedule to see when those are going to happen. Thanks, Shay! ❤️

LUNCH JUNKET! Paddy and I went on another Asheville Food Tours lunch junket, back to one of our all-time faves, Twisted Laurel Downtown Asheville, where Paddy devoured a bacon-mushroom pizza, and I tore into the Stoobie Award winning smash burger. It was flat-pattie perfection! We sat on the patio, and it was one of the most delicious and enjoyable junkets ever!

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Thanks as always, Twisted! ❤️❤️❤️

ALL DAY DARLING: My mom and I had an early lunch at All Day Darling Cafe last week and it was great! I've had a hankering for steak and eggs lately, and I was kind of surprised to see them on the menu, so I ordered them. I got my eggs over easy and my steak, medium rare and it was awesome! Good flavor, good texture, and cooked just right. It came with a couple of different salads, one seem to be some slightly pickled radishes, and the other was a more traditional little green salad. The dressing on the green salad was particularly tasty.

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My mom got a chicken salad bowl, and she liked it very much. She ate about half, and took the rest home to have later.

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The time of day that we were there, about 11 AM, it was pretty bustling and busy, but we still got a seat, and it was quite pleasant, if a little bit loud. Anyhoo, high recommendations for the steak and eggs at All Day Darling!

BURIAL BURGER: I got the burger and fries at Burial Beer Co. on the South Slope today on my way home from work, and it was real good! At first, I was like, "These fries are awfully pale looking," but I ate a few and they were super tasty, and familiar, and then it dawned on me, the kitchen must be trying to emulate McDonald's fries! I haven't eaten a Mickey D's fry in something like 25 years, but these whisked me right back to my early days in the work force, scarfing fries for my 1/2 hour lunch.

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The burger was also very classic and iconic and it might be modeled after a fast food burger. I always say that nostalgia is one of the ways that we enjoy food, so I enjoyed this meal very much, thanks Burial! And one thing I have to say about the breweries in Asheville, is that there's always a small herd of little kids running around, so I don't have to feel like I'm the only one in the whole joint who isn't drinking! 😂😂😂

BEN’S BACKDRAFT BARBECUE: My mom and I went on a strange, but awesome food adventure to... Mission Hospital in Asheville! A gentleman named Ben, who own's Bens Backdraft Barbecue dropped me a DM, letting me know that he would like for me to try his food. He does catering, owns a food truck, and has a passion for BBQ. He told me his usual locations, and the closest one to my house is in the Mission cafeteria, where he vends three days a week! My mom lives even closer to Mission than I do, so I invited her to join me for an early dinner at the hospital! 😂 She was game AF, so we went, and boy howdy are we glad we did!

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The food was excellent! We both got a 1/2 rack of ribs ( now that I think about it, we should have shared a whole rack! Cheaper. 😂😂😂) I also got a pulled chicken sandwich, and two sides: baked beans and mac 'n' cheese. My mom got slaw and cornbread. We both loved it all. The meat came alllllll the way off the bone of the ribs. Like, it practically fell off. The flavor and bark were perfect, we both agreed. My mom loved the slaw, but ended up giving me the corn bread (she decided to try going GF and there's usually flour in cornbread) and I thought it was great. Soft, moist, sweet and somewhat cakey. Yom. The baked beans were straight up backyard BBQ style, and hit some nostalgia buttons in addition to being tasty. The mac 'n' cheese was unique in that it used a cavatappi pasta (sometimes called "Scooby Doo pasta" for unknown reasons) and had a very creamy sauce that was super-goopy in the best way possible. I love all kinds of mac 'n' cheese, except dry mac 'n' cheese, and this mac 'n' cheese was any thing but dry! The food was very satisfying and delicious, and the atmosphere was surprisingly pleasant. We're already planning our next trip back to Mission for more Backdraft Barbecue! 🔥⭐️

ASHEVILLE FOOD TOURS: Y'all... we have a great time on Asheville Food Tours! Come take one with me, or with our other food tour guide Sarah Ray!

We (4 women from Southwest Florida) Truly enjoyed our afternoon with Stu Helm. We were pleasantly surprised that Stu knew so much about the local history and architecture. That was a bonus! His food choices were spot on, and we loved sampling the different types of cuisine. As we toured through the different spots, we could tell that Stu is a local celebrity, with many of the chefs coming out to personally greet us. I highly recommend doing the tour - it’s for people who are new or old to Asheville! - Karyn S.


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Stu Helm: Food Fan
Stu Helm: Food Fan
This podcast is mostly about food