Rumor has it that Asheville, NC is the biggest up-and-coming foodie town in the states. However, in my humble opinion, it's been a foodie town for years and is finally getting the recognition it deserves. (Yes, we serve more than beer here.) 

But the bottom line is, whether you're a local or a tourist, there are a few places in Asheville where you absolutely must eat. So, as any good journalist and food-obsessed local would do, I have created a list of some of the best eateries in the area.

This is a combination of research and my own opinion so don't be offended if your favorite restaurant didn't make the cut. There are a lot of phenomenal places to eat in Asheville. However, the following 20 places are not only some of my favorite, but have also been either locally or nationally recognized for their eats. Enjoy!  

1. Cúrate Tapas Bar

What to order: Rossejat negro (fancy squid ink rice that will knock your socks off), pimientos de piquillo rellenos (sweet peppers stuffed with goat cheese) and pretty much everything and anything else from their menu. 

#SpoonTip: Make a reservation in advance! 

2. Buxton Hall Barbecue

What to order: Buxton pulled pork plate, original buttermilk fried chicken sandwich and the banana pudding pie. 

#SpoonTip: Don't be stingy and order some sides to go with your meal. The collard greens and creamy coleslaw are not to be missed. 

3. The Nightbell

What to order: "Deviled egg", brown butter skillet corn bread, the apple brandy beef and bacon burger and any of the desserts (but especially the french broad chocolate mousse cake that is pictured above).

#SpoonTip: I didn't list any drinks in the "what to order" section, but don't miss out on any of Nightbell's fancy cocktails.

4. Biscuit Head

What to order: The Asheville Benedict, the fried green tomato biscuit and the pulled pork biscuit.

#SpoonTip: Be prepared to wait in line, especially on the weekends.

5. Farm Burger

What to order: Definitely build your own — but their vegan burger is the best I've ever had, so don't be afraid to give it a shot.

#SpoonTip: When visiting the Downtown Asheville location, sit on the stools by the window for the ultimate people-watching experience.

6. Chai Pani

What to order: Matchstick okra fries and the vegetarian or non-vegetarian thali.

#SpoonTip: Listed as #3 on Eater's "The 38 Best Restaurants in the South" so, yeah, it's that good. Also, lunch is usually seat yourself, but look for the hostess to be seated for dinner. 

7. Sunny Point Café

What to order: Our favorite breakfast sandwich (pictured above) and the carrot cake hot cakes.

#SpoonTip: Ride your bike and they'll give you 10% off your order! 

8. Gàn Shān Station

What to order: House made dumplings, pork or vegetarian ramen and the spicy drunken noodles.

#SpoonTip: Every Tuesday is ramen night and you can choose your own broth, protein and fresh veggies. Check out the one pictured above! 

9. Vortex Doughnuts

What to order: The Vortex, salted caramel, turtle and blackberry. (Their menu rotates everyday so check out their Instagram for the daily flavors.)

#SpoonTip: Every Tuesday from 12-5 p.m. all doughnuts are buy one, get one free! 

10. Nine Mile

What to order: Raggy road, negril nights and the cool runnings. 

#SpoonTip: For a healthier option, ask to substitute spiralized zucchini for pasta. (Pictured above.)

11. White Duck Taco Shop

What to order: Fish taco, roasted duck with mole taco, mushroom and potato taco, pork belly taco and the salsa trio.  

#SpoonTip: When visiting the River Arts District location, take a stroll around the local art galleries.

12. French Broad Chocolate Lounge 

What to order: The quintessential chocolate cake, the unadulterated carrot cake (no chocolate, but, dang, it's good!), milk chocolate liquid truffle and the coconut macaroon brownie. Everything is delicious so don't be afraid to indulge your taste buds.

#SpoonTip: Make sure you have your phone charged because they serve some truly Insta-worthy desserts

13. Smokey Park Supper Club

What to order: Start with the mini andouille corndogs and opt for either the beer-brined wood-grilled pork chop or the plancha seared Carolina fish for the main course. 

#SpoonTip: The also serve a killer Sunday brunch (not literally).

14. Local Provisions

What to order: Sorghum glazed pork belly (pictured above), local greens salad and the buttermilk fried quail.

#SpoonTip: There is a small parking lot next to Local Provisions, but make note that it is a pay-to-park lot.

15. Red Ginger Dim Sum and Tapas

What to order: The mushroom dumplings, salt and pepper prawns and the Red Ginger lobster. 

#SpoonTip: They do not use MSG in any of their food preparation. 

16. Limones Restaurant

What to order: The lobster nachos and the three cheese chile relleno.

#SpoonTip: This restaurant is rather tucked away, but it's just around the corner from the Fine Arts Theatre.

17. The Hop

What to order: Bulldog tracks, beet swirl or salted caramel.

#SpoonTip: The Hop has a full selection of both dairy and vegan flavors.

18. High Five Coffee Bar

What to order: Latte and the cinnamon raison flax toast. If you're feeling fancy, try the barista's choice. 

#SpoonTip: The Broadway location has ample outdoor seating and is dog-friendly. 

19. Sovereign Remedies

What to order: Any drink. Seriously. Just make sure you order one.

#SpoonTip: They're open for dinner every night, but also serve lunch Wednesday-Sunday and brunch on the weekends. 

20. Hole

What to oder: The vanilla glazed and their seasonal specialty. 

#SpoonTip: They were named Bon Appétit's Dessert of the Year in 2016. Watch this video to find out why. 

So there you have it, folks. From biscuits and gravy to classy cocktails, Asheville's got it all! Go forth and indulge yourselves.