Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Road Trip: Asheville, NC {Day 2 cont./Day 3}

We hope you have enjoyed following us through Asheville and the Biltmore Estate on our road trip so far! 

After we left the Biltmore, our group headed to the River Arts District for dinner at The Junction. We were so excited to catch up and hear how days events went. The men had golfed and the ladies had hit up the Biltmore Village for some excellent shopping. 

The Junction was a fun restaurant with a farm to table southern twist. It had an industrial themed atmosphere and our waitress was both knowledgeable and entertaining. 

Besties S & B ordered a few meat and cheese plates as appetizers for the table and it was yummy. It even contained their version of "ants on a log". 

The men were excited to see that their beer came with koozies they were able to take home with them. By the approximately 9,589 koozies we have in our cabinet, clearly The Junction knows the way to a man's heart. 

Dinner was super delicious, and came in large portions making me thankful for wearing "stretchy" jeans. Most of the table ordered the brisket, the fried chicken, or the meatloaf hamburger. 

While dinner was yummy, the desserts were what will forever be in our memories. Bestie S and I split a piece of carrot cake.

Our husbands and Bestie L, were adventurous and tried their signature dessert...the pork rind. 

Did you fall out just there? I kid you not...a pork rind. 

The group could not wrap their mind around it each time they described it, and a few were brave enough to try it. Then it came to our table looking like this and we about died of laughter at the looks of everyone's faces...

Being the self proclaimed pickiest eater in the group, I took one look at that and happily spooned in another bite of my delicious predictably yummy carrot cake. 

I didn't get a photo of Bestie L's, it was even larger and equally impressive. The husbands devoured theirs and said that it was very good with a great mix of salty and sweet. L concurred but in a much more delicate manner. 

I took their word for it. 

After we wrapped up dinner we decided to hop over to the Grove Park Inn for some after dinner drinks and to spend the rest of our evening checking out the famous hotel. 

We were so excited to see that the gingerbread houses were still on display. There so many, and so fun to look at. It was an impressive sight to see. The talent behind each one, and their attention to detail, was out of this world. 

This isn't a statue. No, that is the grand prize winner gingerbread house winner!

If you get a chance to visit the area during the holidays I would definitely stop by and check it out. 

After gazing at all the gingerbread contest entries we made our way to the Grove Park's basement to visit Elaine's, their on site dueling piano bar.

It was so entertaining. The pianists were excellent in both skill and comedic act. The range of songs was impressive and our group had a blast singing along with them. 

After a few hours (and several Moscow Mules & and yummy drink called Georgia On My Mind), we looked around and realized we were the last group standing. We outlasted several bachelorette parties and birthday parties. Told you...parents know what they are doing. ;) 

After closing the piano bar down, we headed back upstairs to take in the breathtaking Christmas decorations one last time and enjoy the warmth of the famous large stone fireplaces. 

The night couldn't have been more perfect!

On Sunday, everyone woke up and each had their own itinerary for getting back home. The hubs and I originally planned to stay most of the day and take in just a little more of Asheville and the Biltmore. Unfortunately, mother nature had a different plan. It monsoon rained from the moment we woke up. 

We lounged a little bit, had another yummy breakfast with Carrie Beth and her hubby, and then made our way to the Biltmore. At the gate entrance is a little store and we stopped in to grab the Cute's some souvenirs, and a few thank you gifts for our babysitters. 

It was an adorable little store that was decked out for the holidays, and even offered what looked like wine tastings just like they do inside the Biltmore. It would be the perfect stop if you just want a quick "taste" at the Biltmore and it's history if you don't have the time for the tour. 

After our last gift was wrapped, we hopped in the car to head back home. As sad as seeing such a fun time end, we know that we will definitely be back to Asheville soon and we are so thankful for such wonderful friends and the memories we made over the last few days. 

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