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“Delightful Downtown Dinner”

Carmel's Restaurant & Bar at The Grove Arcade
Ranked #70 of 793 Restaurants in Asheville
Certificate of Excellence
Cuisines: American
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Bar scene, Large groups, Local cuisine, Business meetings, Romantic, Special occasions
Dining options: Late Night, Breakfast, Dinner, Lunch, Reservations, Takeout
Neighborhood: Downtown Asheville
Mebane, North Carolina
Level 6 Contributor
307 reviews
172 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 333 helpful votes
“Delightful Downtown Dinner”
Reviewed July 2, 2014

We first found out about Carmel’s Restaurant & Bar at The Grove Arcade a few years ago on a foodie tour. My husband and I were told about how important that farm-to-fork was to this restaurant. The two of us have meant to go here again, but with so many wonderful restaurants in Asheville, we never were able to find time to have a meal here. Finally, this past week we have dinner with some good friends of ours who were in Asheville, too.
Carmel’s has a decent selection of Asheville beers on tap thus the Asheville Brewing Company’s Ninja Porter (5.60% ABV) was ordered. It was a smooth and delightful way to start our time outside. The tables are on the southeast corner of the Grove Arcade thus there is a lot of pedestrian traffic. For appetizers, we chose the fried green tomatoes, and their pimento cheese. The fried green tomatoes came with fresh mozzarella, arugula, balsamic-bacon vinaigrette, and a basil aioli. They did not last long. What lasted a shorter time was their pimento cheese – a house made blend of cheeses with jalapenos. It was accompanied by some freshly made garlic crostini. The pimento cheese was some of the best we have ever had! My husband tried to purchase some to take home, but apparently Carmel’s does not realize they have a gold mine with their pimento cheese thus none was taken home.
For my entrée, I had their Hickory Burger. It is local free-range beef from an excellent Buncombe County farm. The burger came with cheddar cheese, lettuce, tomato and onion. On the side were sweet potato fries. My best friend thought they were excellent as she took quite a few of them off of my plate. Despite the warm temperature outside, my husband ordered their meatloaf. It is grilled with Hickory Nut Grove farm meats, topped with a light and creamy mushroom sauce. Mashed potatoes and baby green beans were served on the side. As soon as the plate was at his place, my husband dove in to the bright and crunchy green beans. The green bean’s sweetness was in every bite, making for a gastronomical delight.
Carmel’s is not the best restaurant in town, but it is up there. It has some very tough competition with Cúrate, and Bull and Beggar being the two best in town (see our reviews for both). Since we are always in downtown Asheville, we will make sure that Carmel’s is on our list. Put it on yours, too.

  • Visited June 2014
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank MagyarNC
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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629 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
    Food
    Service
    Value
    Atmosphere
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Asheville
Level 6 Contributor
169 reviews
147 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 46 helpful votes
“Great place for lunch or dinner !”
Reviewed June 24, 2014

When our kids were in town to celebrate Mother's Day, we stopped at Carmel's for drinks and snacks. Our waitress was lovely and the food & drinks were fabulous! we have been back many times since. A new favorite!

  • Visited May 2014
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank BadNews1320
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Atlanta, Georgia
Level 4 Contributor
29 reviews
22 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 50 helpful votes
“Nice lunch”
Reviewed June 22, 2014

I came to Asheville on my first trip. I stopped by Carmel's for lunch as it has outdoor seating. The menu was somewhat limited, but I enjoyed my meal. The service was good. Overall, it was a good experience.

  • Visited June 2014
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
1 Thank EnjoyYourTrvl
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
mathewra
Level 6 Contributor
112 reviews
42 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 28 helpful votes
“Great (gluten free) pizza and patio”
Reviewed June 17, 2014

A perfect spot for lunch, a drink and watching the strollers in Asheville. A friend avoids gluten so I got to taste the pizza special of the day - on gluten free crust. One of the best pizzas I ever recall having.

  • Visited June 2014
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank matthewra
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Morristown, Tennessee
Level 6 Contributor
297 reviews
224 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 114 helpful votes
“Late night drinks a bit expensive”
Reviewed June 13, 2014

We loved the atmosphere and the service was great. My only issue was the $13 price tag for a drink. It was a fun spot for after dinner but even the late night snack was expensive and very small.

Visited June 2014
Helpful?
Thank TheSuze12
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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