Nothing Could Be Finer … Than To Be In The Carolinas In The Spring!
Carolinas High Country to Low Country Culinary Learning Journey Asheville, NC to Charleston, SC April 17 – 21, 2016
DAY 1 – Sunday, April 17th – Asheville Arrival, Aloft Hotel, Downtown
‘Carolinas High-Country’ Culinary Journey
Asheville is that type of unique, special place that lingers sweetly in your mind and memories for years to come. The city’s rich architectural legacy with its mix of Art Deco, Beaux Arts and Neoclassical styles is the perfect retro-urban backdrop to the edgy energy that emanates from the locally owned-shops and art galleries, distinctive culinary & craft spirits culture, and eclectic live music scene…and, of course, the awe-inspiring scenery of the Appalachian Mountains.
Known as an art colony, a healing resort and a home to notable luminaries, statesmen and bohemians, Asheville is one of the most welcoming, vibrant cities in America. A bastion of cutting-edge art and technology in the Blue Ridge, the city also prides itself on its fascinating Appalachian past customs and traditions.
Just Past Noon
NC Mountain Cheese Trail A stroll to Farmsteads, and artisan cheese producers for a tasteful sampling of Appalachian artisanal cheeses from savoury chèvre, to soft-ripened, and aged raw milk cheeses
Since NC is the largest apple producer in the southern U.S., a stopover to Noble Apple Cidery is a must. It wouldn’t be hospitable if we didn’t take y’all for a sip of White Lightnin’… Appalachian Moonshine is as old as the hills, and brought up to date at the Asheville Distilling Company, watch out for Ernest T. Bass!
Forest Forging for Dinner
Ready to go Wild? We’re “off the eaten path” where you’ll learn how to safely gather edible wild plants, mushrooms, and other “extreme cuisine.” Celebrate the miracle of life à la forestière, with fiddleheads, ramps, morels, creasy greens, chickweed, waterleaf, and sochane and — if we’re lucky — wild turkey. It’s time to eat the neighbors!
Evening Dinner & Desserts
Forged Dinner prepared by Local Top Chefs
‘Hands-on’ & ‘Hands-off dinner prepared by (2-3) award-winning local chefs. Creative dishes from our forest-forging, along with their own signature items.
Downtown Asheville Dessert Crawl
Sweet Stops at delightful bohemian dessert cafes, and chocolate lounges.
DAY 2 – Monday, April 18th – High Country Adventures
‘Prepare to be transported into the Gilded Age’
Biltmore House & Gardens is the largest privately owned home in America…still owned by Vanderbilt descendants. Biltmore is a full-functioning and sustainable estate encompassing 8,000 acres. Our day begins with tours of the house, focusing on the ‘Culinary & Dining’ aspects of 1890’s Biltmore. A stroll through the Gardens to see what’s blooming.
Stopovers>Agricultural, & Farm to Table operations.
After a Picnic Luncheon along the Blue Ridge Parkway, we’ll return to Biltmore for optional outings; Horseback Riding, Fly-Fishing, Archery, Clay Pigeon Shooting, Rafting, Trail Hiking, or Shopping.
North Carolina ‘Pig Pickin’ Roast
Everyone knows North Carolina is the ‘Cradle of BBQ’ in the U.S.
So, why are there (3) styles of BBQ pig, and (3) types of BBQ sauces in the state?
You’ll find out what has divided the state for centuries…Eastern, Lexington, and Western styles of Pork BBQ.
Put on your bib-overalls, grit your corncob pipe, and fetch your pet possum.
DAY 3 – Tuesday, April 19th – Heading ‘Down-East’ on the Piedmont towards Low-Country
Early start with a Continental Breakfast on the bus.
First stop is Sunburst Trout Farm a family-owned business for more than 60 years. Third generation brothers are carrying on
their family’s tradition of raising the highest quality mountain trout in its natural habitat, with no additives or growth accelerants. Restaurants around the country vie for their products, which include their highly lauded caviar and protein-packed trout jerky.
Next…Manchester Quail Farm, the oldest, most respected, and largest producer of farm raised quail in the United States. Known for decades to upscale caterers for their European-style Semi-Boneless Qua
Charleston, South Carolina
Charleston Arrival- Planters Inn
Begin…Carolinas Low-Country’ Culinary Journey
Doin’ the Charleston…
Carriage Ride ‘South of Broad’ to ‘Cocktails on the Veranda’, by the Battery
Historical Nat Fuller Dinner, circa 1865. a legacy of African-American slave cooks-turned caterers.
Fuller (1812-1866),a slave, was one of Charleston’s first caterers, and an “entrepreneurial broker of wild game”. He became owner of Charleston’s finest 19th century restaurant, The Bachelor’s Retreat.
His spring 1865 dinner – was a mixed-race celebration commemorating the end of the civil war.
We’ll enjoy this Gullah-Geechee cuisine dinner, prepared by chefs from the Culinary Institute of Charleston. Plus stories about Charleston’s First Top Caterers…Sally Seymour, Eliza Lee, Théonie Rivière Mignot, etc
DAY 4 – Wednesday, April 20th
Charleston City Market ‘Culinary Tour’-Pralines, Benne Wafers, Grits & More SweetGrass Basket Ladies
Drayton Hall Plantation
This is the real thing, frozen in time. Located in “Lowcountry” along the Ashley River. First fully executed example of Palladian architecture in North America, built in 1742.
Middleton Place & Gardens
a National Historic Landmark and home to America’s Oldest Landscaped Gardens.
Luncheon at Middleton Plantation
Charleston Tea Plantation–Exclusive tour of tea fields and production
Located on Wadmalaw Island in the heart of the Lowcountry. Wadmalaw provides the perfect environment for propagating tea. With its sandy soils, sub-tropical climate and average rainfall of 52 inches per year, Wadmalaw possess idyllic conditions for the Camellia Sinensis plant. This plant is currently used to produce both black & green teas and exists in over 320 varieties on the 127 acre grounds.
High Tea Tasting with cookbook author Nathalie Dupree
‘50 Shades of Earl Grey: High Tea with Nathalie Dupree’
The Grand Dame of Southern Cuisine does a high tea Southern style. Cold and hot tea-infused cocktails will keep the celebration cheeky!
In the style of CLJ Final Night Dinners… imagine the extraordinary!
DAY 5 – Thursday, April 21st – Charleston Wrap
1) Good Morning or Goodbye Breakfast@ Hominy Grill…End of Carolinas CLJ, Phase 1
for Shrimp & Grits or Fried Chicken on Biscuit with Sausage Gravy. James Beard Award winning chef/owner Robert Stehling lets the Low Country’s unique cultural history and flavors guide his cooking.
2) Optional Day on Charleston Harbor, Visit to Fort Sumter, Confederate Tin-Pan Lunch, Shopping & Shopping, New South Dinner Party – Details/Pricing forthcoming.