Downtown Asheville is a food-lover’s paradise filled with some of the best restaurants in the region. Choose from award-winning Asheville restaurants with James Beard Award-nominated chefs or opt for more casual dining options, including classic American cuisine, global bites, Southern comfort food, and more, with vegan and gluten-free options. Asheville is known for its wealth of independent restaurants, serving up fresh, seasonal, scratch-made fare with top-notch hospitality. Feature image: Strada Italiano

Chestnut Asheville
Small plates being served at Chestnut

Come hungry and arrive early to get a good seat! Better yet, call ahead to see if you can make a reservation. Downtown Asheville's a great place to walk around, with many things to do. See our Downtown Asheville Top 30 for ideas. Start the day right with a delicious breakfast and a mimosa at one of our diners and restaurants. See our top picks for Breakfast & Brunch. Want a quick start to the day? Grab some freshly brewed coffee and a bagel from a variety of coffee shops and bakeries in town. See our Coffee & Tea guide to find that perfect espresso or earl grey.

Storm Rhum Bar & Bistro
Storm Rhum Bar & Bistro

Our “foodie destination” status creates quite the competition in town and deciding on what eatery to try for lunch or dinner can be tough. From international cuisine to old school Southern fare with grits and fried green tomatoes, downtown Asheville restaurants really have it all. Indulge in a wide variety of international delights like Spanish tapas, Indian street food and hot curries, wood fired pizza and more. If a burger and beer is more your style, see our Best Burgers guide or check out Asheville’s lively food truck scene. See our Top 10 Food Trucks in Asheville. 

End the day with a nightcap and watch the sun go down from a rooftop bar patio or savor a sweet bite from a local confectioner, bakery, or coffee shop.

Top Downtown Asheville Restaurants

Asheville Rooftop Bar Tours

 See the city’s scenic beauty and historic landmarks atop some of Asheville’s highly acclaimed rooftop bars! This fun guided tour in the heart of the city offers fascinating stories and photos… read more

 See the city’s scenic beauty and historic landmarks atop some of Asheville’s highly acclaimed rooftop bars! This fun guided tour in the heart of the city offers fascinating stories and photos from the city’s past while you sample cocktails (or mocktails) at three rooftop bars. Rooftop sunset tours, too. Tours are rain or shine, with covered and heated areas, including fire pits for year-round…

Storm Rhum Bar & Bistro

Find a warm, cozy atmosphere where the food and service will delight your senses. Enjoy handcrafted cocktails, ample wine offerings, a selection of local draft beer, an extensive rhum list, and of… read more

Find a warm, cozy atmosphere where the food and service will delight your senses. Enjoy handcrafted cocktails, ample wine offerings, a selection of local draft beer, an extensive rhum list, and of course, delicious food prepared by Chef Owen McGlynn. Free parking in their private lot downtown. 125 South Lexington Avenue. 

Tupelo Honey Cafe

Longtime favorite for both locals and visitors! This is where Tupelo began in 2000 as a destination for scratch-made Southern food rooted in the Carolina Mountains. Breakfast, lunch and dinner… read more

Longtime favorite for both locals and visitors! This is where Tupelo began in 2000 as a destination for scratch-made Southern food rooted in the Carolina Mountains. Breakfast, lunch and dinner served every day. Enjoy craft cocktails, specialty beers and famous honey dusted fried chicken at their new lounge, adjacent to original space. 12 College Street.

Isa's Bistro

Isa’s Bistro features a seasonally inspired menu, Executive Chef Peter Crockett brings culinary finesse to the table with an innovative Asheville twist to international favorites. Located downtown… read more

Isa’s Bistro features a seasonally inspired menu, Executive Chef Peter Crockett brings culinary finesse to the table with an innovative Asheville twist to international favorites. Located downtown, the pet-friendly, covered patio is perfect for outdoor dining and people-watching. The café at Isa’s features incredible pastries made daily in-house and pair perfectly with a latte or cappuccino.…

Rhubarb

In the heart of Asheville in Pack Square is this comfortable place for friends, families and strangers to simply lean in and enjoy each other's company. A place where food and drink is at its… read more

In the heart of Asheville in Pack Square is this comfortable place for friends, families and strangers to simply lean in and enjoy each other's company. A place where food and drink is at its uncomplicated best. Chef John Fleer's menu is inspired by seasonal ingredients and pays homage to the bounty of regional and American cooking. A wood-fired oven and grill complement the rustic creations.…

Carmels

With a prime corner location in the beautiful Grove Arcade in downtown Asheville, find superior local and organic produce and meats for a bounty of fresh flavors with contemporary style. Lunch… read more

With a prime corner location in the beautiful Grove Arcade in downtown Asheville, find superior local and organic produce and meats for a bounty of fresh flavors with contemporary style. Lunch features soups, salads, hand-tossed pizzas and burgers. Dinner offerings range from mussels and calamari to locally sourced steaks and pork, along with signature cocktails and local brews. Prime outdoor…

Jerusalem Garden

Transport your senses to faraway lands with authentic made-from-scratch Mediterranean and Middle Eastern dishes. On Friday and Saturday nights, enjoy belly dancing and live music. Lunch and dinner… read more

Transport your senses to faraway lands with authentic made-from-scratch Mediterranean and Middle Eastern dishes. On Friday and Saturday nights, enjoy belly dancing and live music. Lunch and dinner every day. 78 Patton Avenue. 

Chestnut

Located in the heart of Downtown Asheville, Chestnut offers their unique take on hand-crafted food and cocktails. Their palette is best described as Southern American with various ethnic twists.… read more

Located in the heart of Downtown Asheville, Chestnut offers their unique take on hand-crafted food and cocktails. Their palette is best described as Southern American with various ethnic twists. The menu changes monthly and features a wide range of local and seasonal produce and proteins. Open 7 days a week for dinner starting at 5 PM & Brunch Friday, Saturday, and Sunday, 10 AM-2:30 PM.…

Bouchon

A longtime French bistro with comfort food using local ingredients. A romantic, intimate and charming setting. Enjoy fresh mussels prepared multiple ways, Escargot, Burgundy’s signature stew Boeuf… read more

A longtime French bistro with comfort food using local ingredients. A romantic, intimate and charming setting. Enjoy fresh mussels prepared multiple ways, Escargot, Burgundy’s signature stew Boeuf Bourguignon and their famous fries. Dine al fresco along bricked walkways. Pair hand-selected French wines. 62 Lexington Avenue. 

Sonora

This casual cantina in downtown Asheville offers Mexican soul food in a friendly atmosphere. Taco menu includes shrimp, fish, steak, pork belly and avocado. In addition to your tacos, try the… read more

This casual cantina in downtown Asheville offers Mexican soul food in a friendly atmosphere. Taco menu includes shrimp, fish, steak, pork belly and avocado. In addition to your tacos, try the elote- grilled corn on the cob with lime aioli, chili seasoning, cilantro and queso cotija. 89 Patton Ave

Bear's Smokehouse Asheville

This smokehouse in Asheville’s South Slope offers award-winning K.C. Style BBQ with signature items like brisket burnt ends, smoked sausage, loaded baked potatoes, and more. They also offer vegan… read more

This smokehouse in Asheville’s South Slope offers award-winning K.C. Style BBQ with signature items like brisket burnt ends, smoked sausage, loaded baked potatoes, and more. They also offer vegan options like tempeh and Impossible Meatloaf and a variety of craft beer to enjoy!  Open 7 days a week with online ordering and delivery available. 135 Coxe Ave

Parking in Downtown Asheville

Parking Garages

The easiest solution to parking is using one of the five city & county parking decks. It's free for the first hour, then $1.50/hour. Get real time updates on spaces available in each deck!

  • Civic Center Parking Deck is entered from Haywood or Rankin (550 spaces) 
  • Rankin Avenue Parking Deck is entered from Walnut or Rankin (262 spaces) 
  • Wall Street Parking Deck (adjacent to Grove Arcade) is entered from Otis Street near Patton Avenue (232 spaces) - usually the busiest
  • Biltmore Public Parking Deck is at 51 Biltmore Avenue (412 spaces) 
  • Buncombe County Parking Deck at 164 College Street across from Pack Square Park (650 spaces)
  • Sears Alley Public Parking Deck at 40 Coxe Avenue with 664 spots- great for after 5 PM M-F and all weekend (near South Slope). Enter from Sears Alley. 

There are a couple of privately owned parking garages in Asheville downtown that are usually more expensive, but very convenient.

On-Street Parking - Free after 6 PM & Sundays

There are more than 700 on-street, metered spaces in downtown Asheville. All meters are for short term parking (two hours or less, as marked) at a cost of $1.50 per hour. All meters accept coins only or pay via the Passport Parking App. The metered spaces are enforced from 8 AM to 6 PM, Monday through Saturday. Parking is FREE each Sunday and city holidays: New Year's Day, Martin Luther King, Jr. Day, Good Friday, Memorial Day, Fourth of July, Labor Day, Thanksgiving Day, Friday after Thanksgiving and Christmas (3 days). So don't "feed the meters" on these days.

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