Cúrate, Asheville, NC

We love visiting Asheville, and no trip is complete without dining at Cúrate. Executive Chef, Katie Button, can often be found on the James Beard nominee list but it’s the fantastic food that keep us coming back. After an internship at the famed elBulli in Spain, Katie returned returned to the States and uses inspiration from her time in Spain to create the most authentic tapas we’ve had outside of Spain. If you’re planning a trip to Ashville be sure to make reservations at Cúrate well in advance! And did I mention this is a vegetarian’s paradise?

Vegetarian Options:

  • almendras fritas – fried marcona almonds with sea salt
  • aceitunas cúrate – house curated blend of olives with lemon, rosemary and thyme
  • pan con tomate – toasted bread w/ tomato fresco; w/ manchego cheese
  • tortilla española – spanish potato and onion omelet
  • tabla de quesos – a daily selection of spanish cheeses
  • crema de calabaza – butternut squash soup with smoked Spanish paprika, candied pumpkin seeds, and pimenton oil
  • ensalada de otoño – salad of petite lettuces, baby beets, marcona almonds, pickled orange, and cured Spanish cheese with a blood orange vinaigrette
  • espárragos blancos – white asparagus tossed in a lemon vinaigrette & served w/ a house made “light as air” mayonnaise
  • patatas bravas – crispy fried potatoes topped with a slightly spicy “brava” sauce
  • berenjenas la taverna – fried eggplant drizzled in wild mountain honey, garnished w/ rosemary
  • pimientos de piquillo y queso de cabra – piquillo peppers stuffed w/ spanish goat cheese
  • migas – sauteed brussel sprouts, raisins, cauliflower, and a celery root yogurt mousse
  • setas al jerez – select mushrooms sautéed in olive oil with a splash of sherry

Pescatarian Options:

  • pan con tomate – toasted bread w/ tomato fresco; w/ anchovy & boquerones,
  • brandada de bacalao – traditional cod & potato purée served hot with crisp bread
  • pulpo a la galena  – galician style octopus served warm w/sea salt, olive oil, spanish paprika, and yukon gold potato purée
  • esqueixada de montaña  – a local version of this classic catalan dish, sunburst farms trout served raw w/ tomato fresco, black olive, sweet onion, lemon vinaigrette
  • ensalada de tomate y atún – kumato tomato salad w/preserved spanish bonito tuna, black olives, drizzled in extra virgin olive oil & reserve sherry vinegar
  • escalivada con anchoas – roasted red bell pepper, onion & eggplant, 30 yr sherry vinaigrette, and spanish anchovies
  • ensaladilla rusa – classic spanish potato salad w/ carrot, hard boiled egg, spanish bonito tuna, piquillo peppers, and peas
  • bocadillo gallego – roasted onion and red bell pepper, black olive spread, hard boiled egg, spanish bonito tuna
  • bocata de calamares – fried squid and housemade arbequina olive oil mayonnaise, a typical madrid standard
  • espinacas a la catalana – sautéed spinach, apples, raisins, and toasted pine nuts
  • rossejat negro – similar to paella but made with thin noodles, squid in its ink, garnished with all i oli and salsa verde, the essence of the ocean
  • gambas al ajillo – the number one tapa in asheville, sautéed shrimp and sliced garlic

Don’t forget to make reservations!

http://www.curatetapasbar.com

Bar Cañate

Bar Cañete was recommended to me by a friend who grew up just outside of Barcelona. I frequently travel alone and consider myself a very savvy traveler – I rely heavily on my instincts and intuition to help keep me safe. Granted, Barcelona is one of the safest cities in Europe. However, as I approached Bar Cañete on a small side street off of the crowded and over-stimulating Ramblas, I had a strong feeling to turn around. A group of intimidating men was huddled around the door – but Alex said this was the place to go so I pushed my way through and found a seat at the bar. The inside of Bar Cañete was very bright and cozy. The long bar faced the open kitchen – always one of my favorite places to sit when I’m dining alone as I enjoy the action of the kitchen and watching the preparation of the food. There was also what appeared to be a small courtyard in the back which brought in a lot of light. Groups of friends were gathered around tall tables enjoying a long lunch break. It had the feel of being a place were everyone knows everyone and those who dine there are regulars.

Bar Cañete serves seafood fresh from the Catalan seafood markets and locally grown, seasonal produce and the food is great. The prices were so reasonable that I decided to order almost everything on the menu that was vegetarian. It was a lot of food, but I wanted to try it all, even if it was only a few bites of each. Many of the dishes I had had before, but this is where I fell in love with Spanish Omelets and Padrón Peppers. 7 or 8 dishes, a couple of glasses of wine, and a cafe con leche later my tab was less than 30 euro! This is a great place to stop for some fantastic and authentic neighborhood tapas.

Vegetarian Options:

  • Diced vegetable salad with mayo
  • Fried eggplant with honey
  • Padrón Peppers
  • Spanish omelet with potatoes and onions
  • Grilled artichokes with romesco sauce
  • Cold tomato and bread soup
  • Green bean, parmesan cheese and pine nut salad
  • Burrata cheese in olive oil with plum tomatoes
  • Garlic, black chanterelle and poached egg soup
  • Tomato rubbed bread with sea salt and olive oil
  • And of course…cheeses and desserts!

Pescatarian Options:

  • Anchovies in olive oil
  • Lobster croquettes
  • Tuna, curly endive and spring onion salad
  • Rock mussels with citrus
  • Wild tuna tartar with marscapone and trout roe
  • Garlic seasoned lobster and monkfish stew
  • Artichokes with sea cucumber
  • Large soft shell clams grilled or in salsa verde
  • Oysters
  • Red prawns baked in sea salt
  • Fish fry with moray eel, baby prawns, and calamari
  • Fried lobster with romesco sauce
  • Fried anchovies
  • Scallop and vegetable Tempura
  • Grilled tuna au jus with lime
  • Monkfish and wild mushrooms
  • Cuttlefish with beans and romesco oil
  • Baked hake stuffed with bread, tomatoes, and aioli
  • And of course…cheeses and desserts!

http://www.barcanete.com/en

*Photo taken at Bar Cañete