Stu Helm: Food Fan
Stu Helm: Food Fan
Good Morning, Friends...

Good Morning, Friends...

A Massive Feast & Food News
ABOVE: Podcast - It’s the Food News with Micah Molinari. Micah makes me cry.
BELOW: Newsletter (may contain adult language) - GMF, A Feast Eight (for One)


Y’all, I was in downtown Asheville last night, Wednesday November 17th, and it was SOOOOO nice! The city put the lights in the trees last week, and so many of the restys have outdoor seating now, that there are party lights and fairy lights all over town. I strongly urge the locals to get on downtown now, while there’s fewer people, more parking, and less traffic. I know a lot of you avoid downtown for those three reasons, so now’s your chance! The food is awesome! The city is beautiful, and the locals restaurants would love to see you!


Chef Shane Crumpton from Iconic Kitchen & Drinks invited me to try his new dinner entrée menu, and uhhhh… I didn’t know that he meant the WHOLE menu! LOL! If ever there was a day when I needed Rick, Paddy, Luis Carlos, aaaaany of my usual food junket partners, it was this day! Good lort, save me, I did the best I could and wow! So much awesomeness…

above: Before the entrée train started rollin’ a couple of appetizers came out. I will admit that I was skeptical of these “Caesar Salad” deviled eggs, but daaaang, they were very good! They had that tang of Caesar salad dressing, with all the fixin’s. The crunch provided by the crumbled-up croutons was a very nice touch! below: Yes, this dish tasted as good as it looks in the picture. It’s basically a pot of marinara with melted goat cheese on top, served with charred Texas toast-style bread. It was piping hpt, very tasty, and if not for the fact that I knew more food was coming, I would have crushed it al by myself. I still had no idea just how much more food was coming…

above: Chef seemed eager for me to try this salad, and it was great! I’ve been getting more and more into salads, and this one had all the things I look for, in terms of a wide variety of ingredients, which means a variety of textures & flavors, it was fresh & crisp as can be, and had just enough dressing, that was already tossed onto the salad. I give it high grades, it’s a salad I would order again!

above: I am a huge fan of Shepherd’s pie, and this version of it was very tasty and filling!!! Made with lamb, fresh peas, and loads of mashed taters, this is a people-pleaser for sure, and a fill-’em-up dish for sure. The flavor of the lamb stew was smooth and savory, and I’ve got some in my fridge waiting to be reheated for lunch! below: When this dish came out, I kinda looked at the chef, and was like, “I’m just one small person…” This plate of pasta was also a people-pleaser in my opinion. It was cavatappi pasta, with a very nice, slightly spicy, “cajun Alfredo” sauce on it, w/ fresh sautéed broccoli. It came with toasted garlic bread, and on the menu, you can add blackened chicken, which I can imagine would go very well with this dish.

above: I love steak, and this steak was frickin’ great! It was tender and flavorful, served bistro style, with frittes, and cooked jehhhst right. It came with a ramekin of chimichurri for dippin’ in, and it was all perfect. If you’re like me, and you enjoy a good steak frittes, you’re gonna love this. Super delish. below: Wow. The term “best for last” came to mind when this rack of lamb hit the table. It came out PIPING HOT, which was great, and when I cut into it, I could tell right away that this meat was cooked perfectly. It was tender AF on the inside, with a nice crust on the outside, and just enough herbs to give it character, but it was mostly about the flavor of the meat, which was on point. It came with candied yams, and a side salad w/ the house-made Caesar dressing, which bookended this meal nicely for me. Or should I say These meals.

Now, if that seemed like a lot of food to you, IT WAS! And, just for the sake of time & space, I haven’t even mentioned the blackened pork chop, the 1/2 chicken & the dang meatloaf in this post! They were all very tasty, especially the meatloaf, and I’ll be sharing pictures of those things and all of the other pictures I took, on my Facebook page soon, and then most of that will make it over to Ashvegas.

Chef Shane and his crew really busted it out for me! O _ O I was overwhelmed, but not in a bad way. LOL Their hospitality was great, I was able to chat with the chef, and meet the staff, all very nice people. I know they’d love to see you, the local Asheville eaters, and they asked me to let you know that all healthcare workers and 1st responders receive a discount every day they’re open, and that same discount is extended to ALL locals on Mondays.


Update: I shared some of the leftovers with my mom, who agreed that it was excellent, and she was especially impressed with the rack of lamb.

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