Need a new look at dining out? Not sure what you’re hungry for? Looking for a change of pace?
I did, so I stopped by Stoney Knob Café in Weaverville, North Carolina. The restaurant, known locally for its eclectic décor and menu, is a favorite dining spot in the area.
I like the way the Stoney Knob Café website refers to itself.
A visit to Stoney Knob Café is an explosion for the senses. While the food and wine are the focal point, the atmosphere in which you’ll enjoy it is exciting and sophisticated, yet so chill. Funky. Local. Fun. It has the panache of a world café with the casual, intimate feel of one’s own living room.
That is if you collect Greek busts, golden Buddhas and Elvis paintings on velvet. This is among the unusual mix of ornamentation in the main dining room. The menu follows suit with various fonts and colors explaining the varied cuisine offered by the Chef. While it can be a lot for the senses to take in the staff make you feel relaxed and comfortable easily making recommendations to assist with your order from the large menu.
The restaurant was established in 1962 by Gus and Ismini Dermas after emigrating from Greece via New York City. Today his sons, John and Yotty, continue to work the magic that Gus began adding their own flare to the Café. Since 2000, the brothers have added the Red Room, the Mediterranean Room and the current diverse style.
Our four top ordered two appetizers to share for the table. The Southern Oysters ($8.50) offer about a dozen fried oysters that arrive hot and crispy with a delicious rooster chili aioli. Everyone loved them with the spicy aioli – this is a great dish to share. We also ordered the Duck Spring Rolls ($8.) which arrived in an unusual presentation shooting up from a bed of wasabi mashed potatoes on top of a small wooden platter. The crispy spring rolls were perfect with flavorful duck breast confit, parmesan cheese, Asian cabbage and hoisin plum sauce. For those wishing for a little more robust flavor, picked ginger slices were available beside the spring rolls.
|Duck Spring Rolls|
Two from our table order the Trota Rosso ($17.), walnut crusted fresh mountain trout filet with mascarpone whipped sweet potatoes, grilled asparagus and local organic honey-peppercorn syrup. While I did not get a taste of either one, I decided they must have been perfect since one was polished off and the remnants of the other were boxed to take home. The trout arrived a beautiful golden brown and smelled fantastic. I would guess that this is a locals’ favorite.
The Lamb Tacos ($16.) were recommended and I’ve heard from several that the Lamb Shank ($17.) and the Lamb Tacos are good items to order. The tacos feature local, free range, char-grilled leg of lamb in soft corn tortillas and Greek yogurt mint sauce, salsa verde, spring greens, feta and kasseri cheese. It just sounds good, right!? The dish consists of a very healthy sized portion of three tacos packed to over flowing.
I ordered ‘Yotty’s to die for Beef Short Ribs!!!’ ($19.) that I decided had to be good with an opening line like that. This is actually recommended from locals as well. The braised boneless beef short ribs are very tender and packed with mouth-watering flavor. They rest atop asiago stone ground grits and braised leeks that complement the entrée. I should have stopped and taken part of this home but I couldn’t stop eating it. It really is a wonderful dish that needs to be on your bucket list of items to order when you visit Stoney Knob.
|Yotty's to die for Beef Short Ribs|
I also need to point out that while the wine list is very short, you will find some beautiful wines with amazing prices. I was impressed at the value Stoney Knob makes available to its diners. An important aspect to note is that John and Yotty Dermas also opened a wine shop called Vino Vino Wine Market. Take the receipt from your dinner at Stoney Knob and receive a 15% discount off your purchase at Vino Vino – more value than ever!
Stoney Knob Café
337 Merrimon Avenue
Weaverville, North Carolina 28787
Vino Vino Wine Market
(828) 658.9463 (WINE)
178 Weaverville Road
Asheville, North Carolina 28804