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Asheville’s Foodtopia For the People Dinner Giveaway & a Braised Bison Short Rib Recipe

(picture courtesy of Chef Adam Hayes)

I spend a lot of time traveling. A lot. It’s actually pretty darn great. But, in all the hoop la of boarding uncomfortable planes and fighting Customs lines and naturalization queries (because somehow agents wonder if I’m a U.S. citizen with a passport), it’s nice to enjoy some of those travel experiences at home.

Well almost.

While I’ve not even unpacked from my trip to St. Croix, the thought of being home for 3 weeks is so fantastic, I can’t even tell you. And, in those 3 weeks, I still get to see and taste other destinations’ hotness and deliciousness. More specifically, this and next week, I’ll get an additional dose of the good eating I did in Asheville last month during the Truffle Fest (whose post is just about ready).

This month, the culinary conscious people of Asheville, an organization better known as “Foodtopia for the People” is hosting one month of Asheville in Atlanta, a food celebration and transport of good eats, sustainable farming and one-on-one encounters with their chefs and farmers. Foodtopia is an authentic culinary experience every foodie needs to participate in.

(Friends in Asheville enjoy an al fresco Farmers’ Market. Image courtesy of Asheville CVB)

Right here in Atlanta.

As of earlier this month, the Foodtopia street team has been giving away all kinds of yummy goodies (artisan chocolate, homemade jams and preserves, cookbooks, Biltmore tickets, etc…) and hosting interactive activities like free hot air balloon rides to people that follow them on Twitter, Facebook and keep up with their hints directing them to Atlantic Station (host venue).

The month’s festivities will end with “Taste of Asheville: Meet the Foodtopians,” a fabulous dinner prepared by some of Asheville’s up and coming hot chefs. Among them will be my new and super cool (and a married cutie) friend, Chef Adam Hayes, exec at Red Stag Grill (he called me this weekend to give me an insider scoop of his menu for us-woot!). If you recall, Adam was the kind guy behind my ownership of 5 awesome truffles which I used to make this, this and this.

(Sunny Point Café. Image courtesy of Asheville CVB)

Needless to say, dinner next Wednesday, April 27th at Bradford’s at Bishop is set to be an amazingly delicious evening with winemakers, craft food makers, artisan producers, chefs and farmers. And, you need to be there!  In order to attend,  you have to win one of 30 pairs of tickets they’ve been giving away to foodies that can answer a daily food related trivia question via their FB page. Coincenditally, I answered one of the questions correctly two weeks ago and scored two tickets to the dinner!

But, I’m feeling generous and giving my tickets away to one lucky person!

But wait, there’s more so you have to keep reading! Dinner is great and all, buuuut, the grand prize is a vacation to eat, drink, be merry and indulge in the culinary culture of Asheville, an eclectic yet lovely town Fodor’s has donned one of the top must-see destinations in the world in 2011. Yes.you.must.go.to.Asheville.  My 3-day visit last month was too short but long enough to know I need ed to win one of those all paid-for vacations. So yeah, I’ll be at dinner with my sexiest stiletto on and rubbing pennies

Dinner attendees will be automatically entered to win one of the Asheville vacations.  Actually, they’re giving away 5 of these foodie heaven vacay’s. So, why wouldn’t  you play to win!? Come to dinner, have a drink, talk to the chefs, cross your fingers and wait for your name to be hollered!


All of you have to do is the following, which I promise is not too labor intensive or time consuming. It’s just a way to show me and the Foodtopian Society and the fab, fab city of Asheville some love!

1. Follow me on Twitter @BrenHerrera and tweet me letting me know

2. Retweet this giveaway and include my name and #Foodtopia so I know you tweeted it

3. Like me on Facebook at Facebook.com/BrenHerrera and Foodtopia for the People at Facebook.com/Foodtopian.Society

4. Tell me in a comment here what you love most about Asheville (if you’ve been); Or what you’d love to do in Asheville, if you’ve not trekked there!

To play fair, all four requirements have to be satisfied. These dinner tickets are hot and limited! You may enter until 11:59 pm, Est, Monday, April 25th. I’ll do a random selection via Random.org on Tuesday April 26th and announce it on Twitter shortly thereafter.  Please make sure to  include your email in the comment area so that we know how to contact you.

Finally, since Chef Hayes is my new bff colleague in Asheville, he’s been kind enough to share one his prized recipes with us! In fact, he’s so damn cool he went to his kitchen at ungodly hours this morning to make this recipe and sent me the picture, too! Get it, Adam! If you’re curious, this is what chef will be whipping up at the Foodtopia dinner. I know you don’t want to miss this! I had a slither of a tasting he did at the Truffle Fest, so I’m personally excited to devour in his goodness next week! You could be enjoying this, too!

Rules & Disclosure: You must be 18 years of age or older to participate and be eligible to win. Anyone in the Continental U.S. may enter even if you’re not in Atlanta, GA (you can give your tickets away to a friend in Atlanta). If winner is not in Atlanta but chooses to give them away to a friend in Atlanta, guest names must be provided to me via email no later than Tuesday, April 26th at 12 pm EST. I was not paid to talk about this nor was I compensated in any special way. I will be at the dinner as media which is why I’m giving my winning tickets away! Don’t you love all this legal stuff!?

Eat well, love unapologetically, pray with true intention, and take care of yourself.

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This is a technique recipe not an actual measurement recipe, so follow the procedures and they will come out great. — Chef Adam Hayes, Red Stag Grill


  • 25 % Carrots
  • 50% Onion
  • 25% Celery
  • Tomato
  • Beef Broth
  • Wine/beer
  • Thyme
  • Bay Leaves
  • Peppercorns


1.  Use carolina bison

2.  Season short ribs with salt and pepper

3.  Sear each side of the short rib on medium heat until golden brown and delicious

3.  Remove short ribs from the pan and add carrots, onions and celery.  Cook until carmelized

4.  Add tomato product and cook until a rust color is achieved

5.  Deglaze with Red Wine or a Hoppy (Asheville) beer allow liquid to reduce by 1/2

6.  Add beef broth, herbs and spices

7.  Cook on low to medium low for 3-4 hours.  Or until fork tender.

You may want to put them in a dutch oven and bake @ 275 for 3-4 hours or even the crock pot on low.

8.  Once short ribs are cooked, pull them from the liquid and strain the vegetables out.  Reduce  the sauce in a pot by half.  It should thicken into a nice sauce.  If not, add a cornstarch slurry to it and serve over mash potatoes or rice. Delicious!

47 thoughts on “Asheville’s Foodtopia For the People Dinner Giveaway & a Braised Bison Short Rib Recipe

  1. Oh! Your bison ribs look very tempting…what a nice meal…and I am waiting anxiously for more post about your trip. Hope you are having a great week Bren 🙂

  2. My Husbands B-day is coming up. Would love to take him on a golf trip and dine there. Yum!

    St Croix! Besides Puerto Rico, I love it there. There is a little coffee shop and pastry shop on a little st by Cristiansted.Was so much fun.Congrats on the Virgin Island News article!

  3. Welcome back! Hope you had fun in St. Croix. Thanks for sharing the recipe. Those Bison Short Ribs look good!

  4. Ah, would love to be there!! As for the recipe, those bison short ribs look great. Thank your fellow foodie for sharing.

  5. Juliana: thanks, lady, but they’re not mine. it’s a recipe courtesy of a really nice and good chef in Asheville. Can’t wait to really dig into his cuisine his week!

    LaVerne: I can only imagine that gold in A’ville is lovely. I haven’t seen any courses, but I can visualize it. The food I did have there was impressive.

    Rosa: It sure does and I’ll be having some this week!

    Laura: I’ll find out more about the table. The whole restaurant is very bohochic!

    Dullah: Would you eat them? And thanks! St. Croix was amaaaazing!

    David: Yea, Adam is pretty awesome for sharing! 🙂

  6. BTW, Asheville is a gorgeous (at least) 4 hour drive from Atlanta.

    I’m saying at least because there are plenty of routes with plenty of things to see on the way. You can stick to interstates for a while, swing through Greenville, SC, then turn up some highways lined with plenty of farm markets (in season). Or you can head up past Tallulah Gorge on 441 (if you hear banjos, drive faster), over through Sylva, NC (pick up a growler of great beer from Heinzelmännchen), etc. If you want a long drive, you could cut up through the Smokies and over, too, particularly now that I-40 is open again, or along the bottom stretch of the Blue Ridge Parkway. And the fall has all the leaves changing color…

    My inlaws are in SW Virginia, so I’ll be passing through Asheville this weekend for a visit. 😉

  7. I would LOVE to visit Asheville because I am a foodie in training and I have NEVER been. Since I found your site and the Foodtopia site…man oh man does that punch up the passion I have for food. I love to explore new places, new food and having a teenager and a toddler AT THE SAME TIME…..I sure could use the break with my hubby whose also a foodie in training (we aren’t scared of anything). Btw, just looking at those ribs makes my mouth water!!!

  8. Asheville is a gorgeous city! Trekking through some of the mountain trails during a light snow is probably one of the most fun things you can do. Or eat. Eating counts too right?

  9. i heart that that bison recipe. so fresh and so robust looking. i’d love to win tickets to the dinner next week, but i’m not on twitter so can’t tweet it out. something else maybe? good luck to everyone anyway. oh, and asheville is a great little town. i’ve been once but didn’t get to spend enough time to check out restaurants and shops. thanks to Jason above for the descriptive scenery!

  10. Food looks amazing. Can’t wait to plan my trip through the city. Great post, thanks for the insight and thank you for helping me pick my next mini vaca.

  11. Have really only been ‘thru’ Asheville a couple of times on my way ‘to’ somewhere else but I have to say that I love the whole vibe; i’d be spending my time getting checking out not only the food scene but the art scene as well – hope i win!

  12. Jason: wow. thatnks for the great description of the mountainous scenery getting there. I had a lovely time getting there and back. listened to Adele the whole time and really enjoyed what I saw. I should have stopped at some of the country shops I saw.

    Sherry: Yeah, my 1st time was just last week! It was incredible and I ate like a queen! The Inn at Biltmore Dining Room was stunning. I hope you checked out that review. Good luck with the foodie development!

    Duo Dishes: Eating always counts!

    A Foodie For Life: I heart it, too! Doesn’t it look divine and super succulent! Thanks for stoping by!

    Cuba Libre: You should! I think you’d really enjoy it. It’s so retro (well, kinda).

    Smith Bites: Thanks for entering! I love the whole vibe, too. It’s pretty special. I can’t wait to go back! 🙂 Good Luck!!!

  13. Wow! Braised Bison short ribs, it looks delicous and I’m sure it taste delicious! I would love one day to go to Asheville and be able to experience the yummy culinary.

  14. This is a great recipe and i can’t wait to try it. Also it is very nice of you to give your ticket away glad to know you will still get to enjoy the festivities!!!

  15. I love Asheville. Staying at a B&B downtown. Hit up a nice dinner at Table and then a show down the road at The Orange Peel! I also love to browse the art galleries and of course a trip to the gardens at Biltmore to complete a romantic weekend! Of course squeeze a wine tasting in there too 🙂

  16. de veras que esa comida se ve deliciosa .y el local me parece de un ambiente muy acogedor .me gusta mucho visitar Asheville es un lugar increible .y uno no se cansa de visitarlo gracias por la presentacion de ese plato tan delicioso gracias nuevamente chef

  17. Thanks to all that participated and entered! Check Twitter for winner later today!

  18. It was a great event and I was glad I made it out that night. The food was amazing and it made me realize what I’d been missing by never visiting Asheville. I got my fill to say the least and I didn’t even try all the dishes.

    I took a lot of cards from the various people that took part and I’ll make sure to plan to see them all when I get out there.

    Biggest surprise of the night for me = Riesling Ice Cream! (Yes, Riesling the wine)

  19. I want to go back to Asheville. Stunning and lots to do. These ribs? I don’t even eat meat (for the most part) and I would devour these! Hmm..I think we need to begin a barter system….your food for my sweets. 🙂

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