My son had attended Guitar Week at the Swannanoa Gathering hosted at Warren Wilson College, just outside Asheville. After a week of day time guitar classes and night time guitar concerts, the rest of the family went to pick him up.
We were happy to see him and he excitedly described a week filled with music, learning some new swing jazz stylings and fun. My son drinks a lot of milk and over the course of Guitar Week, he had none. He was interested in getting dinner at a place where he could get milk.
We headed down Tunnel Road towards Asheville, crossed under I-240 and found a big sign for the Fiddlin’ Pig. In surveying Asheville restaurants for the trip, I had spotted it and thought the mix of food and music would be enjoyable. It was located in an area of hotels and restaurants a few minutes from the downtown area.
The restaurant has a stage area for musicians, dance floor and large dining area on either side with seating under a wide covered porch. Music is piped out to the porch where we sat.
The band was good and their fiddle player was great. I had not counted on the cloggers. There were more than two dozen, dressed in the same uniforms and of different ages and sizes, clopping along. Our table was on the path between the dance floor and their bus and they made frequent trips back and forth during our meal.
The food was very good. I had a pulled pork platter that came with 8 ounces of well smoked BBQ. They serve it sans sauce and offered at the table eastern vinegar, Lexington catsup and mustard sauces. I liked the way the meat was pulled from the bone and served in nice bite-sized chunks. The meat tasted like at a pig picking where it sits in the cooked juices of the pig, so that as it begins to cool it gets a slightly greasier taste. I prefer my BBQ with the sauce cooked in, but this was good. It was served with a side of tasty baked beans and a large slab of cake-like cornbread.
My wife had the St Louis rib platter and raved about how good the ribs were. “The meat fell off the bone, it was so tender.” She also liked the sweet potato fries. My daughter had the fried catfish which she liked a lot. My son ate chicken tenders, but more importantly, he had milk, three glasses during his meal.
Our waitress at the Fiddlin Pig was Jennie and her service was great. She was very attentive.
After the meal, we returned to campus where we listened to guitar players late into the evening. Students, who were mostly older adults, had signed up to play a solo song at the outside pavilion. Afterwards, groups gathered and played song after song. It was a good night.