Rick Erwin’s Deli: To Die For

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I’m a lucky girl. Lucky and blessed in many ways, I get the opportunity to take a mother-daughter trip in early October to Quebec for a week. Being the youngest of three, and being the only girl definitely has its bonuses. A week with my lovely mom shopping, touring, and strolling through the streets of Quebec in the dawning stages of fall is a dream come true.

In a family dominated by men, it’s pretty appropriate that I get to spend quality time with my mom, and in a place as picturesque as Quebec, I am going to steep myself in its culture and scenery like a bag of green tea. Marinate in its beauty like some summer barbeque.

Quebec is pretty much a smaller, more accessible version of Paris and I am so eager to break out my infinity scarves and my pea-coat and make an adventure of it. Not to mention I will have total anonymity, something so refreshing and very much welcomed. I can be whoever I want to be. Yes, Quebec is Canada and not anywhere near Europe but its roots remain deeply entrenched in France. So my European flair may just take over. Chi Chi.

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What I am most looking forward to about our girls’ getaway is all of the patisseries I will get to behold. I think my eyes might just glaze over. I am a lover of  carbs and desserts and the thought of endless croissants and nutella banana crepes gets my mouth salivating.

Inspired by my upcoming trip, I decided to have a relaxing lunch at Rick Erwin’s Deli, a French deli and market located on Camperdown, with enough character to make you feel like you were actually in a French bakery. They also have the best macaroons I have ever tasted and my friend, Sarah, and I made a date to try as many flavors as we could. I don Rick Erwin’s Deli as one of the best lunch spots in Greenville and the pictures will most certainly confirm why.

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Piece of advice- don’t go at noon because the place is packed with young professionals on their breaks. A late lunch may be more suitable to really sit back and take it all in.

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Sarah was brave enough to try the “green olive” macaroon which doesn’t necessarily tickle my fancy but the amount of sugar in these babies makes the flavor subtle enough to enjoy, regardless of if it is savory or sweet. She also ordered the strawberry and chocolate macaroon while I opted for the pastel palate, choosing pistachio, rose, and lemon. Choices coincidentally indicative of our wardrobe colors…and our purse colors.

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But as any good mother instructs, you must eat dinner before dessert. Sarah ordered a pastrami, bleu cheese something something on marble rye and I fixed my sights on a salad with bleu cheese, almonds, dried cranberries, and a healthy smattering of thick, creamy, balsamic vinaigrette. Oh, and a side of Gazpacho to round it out- make a balanced meal.

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The croissants that they serve with most salads here are the flakiest, airiest I have ever tried. Let’s only hope that Quebec can top these.

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Scrumptious!

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Do yourself a f(l)avor and give this place a shot. You will not be disappointed. In fact, you will be pleasantly surprised with how sophisticated and urban our little Greenville can be.

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Tupelo Honey: The Bees’ Knees

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Holy goodness!

That is my ecstatic exclamation in response to Tupelo Honey’s opening in downtown.

Now I know this restaurant isn’t necessarily authentic Greenville because it started in Asheville and just happened to trickle down to our sweet and dainty city, but it is indicative of that smooth as molasses lifestyle we have going on here. That whole mason jar, fresh dandelion, distressed wood, southern essence that pervades much of this region.  I’m guessing you could say it’s a chain, with five locations, but as it originated in a neighboring city, only forty minutes North, we might as well claim it as our own, right? No one really has to know.  And the fact that I have frequented this joint three times in four days is testament that it’s worth dedicating some viral space.

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I’ve only been to Tupelo once before it opened in Greenville, in the downtown Asheville location, where I had some smashing sweet potato pancakes after a day spent shopping with my girl Kristen, but it was memorable all the same. For the longest time I thought it was “Two Pillow Honey” and I always chimed in on the restaurant decision making, saying I wanted to go to “Two Pillow Honey.” That’s not as bad as the couple who came into Anthropologie the other day, which is conveniently located next door (the best combo on the planet- shopping at Anthro and brunch at Tupelo), who asked me where “Triple Honey” was. So the name is going to take some getting used to. But the food….that will charm you as soon as it hits your taste buds. As soon as the complimentary roll is passed under your nose, hot and flaky, complete with blackberry jam and in-house honey. Best part of the meal in my opinion. Like having dessert before the main course.

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I’d describe the food here as home cookin’ but in a refined, polished sort of way. Although a generous amount of butter is probably used in their food, I wouldn’t say it’s used excessively. But can there ever be too much butter in food??? I described it to someone as a Cracker Barrel but elegant. Although they scoffed at my portrayal, I would say it’s pretty accurate, minus that bemusing triangle game and large checker board that appear in every Cracker Barrel.

The three times I have stopped in I have ordered the same thing, the veggie plate, which consists of four side item choices served up pretty and speedily I might add. You could get in and out of here in under an hour if there wasn’t any wait time. Which there usually is because it’s just so darn yummy and such a novelty right now.

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My choice of sweet potato fries, fried okra, parmesan corn, and smashed cheesy cauliflower were seriously heaven on earth. My friend, Meg, described the corn as tasting like “movie theatre popcorn.” And the pickled okra that comes with each meal is the perfect garnish to round out a truly fabulous meal. They served me a very large portion, which I ended up eating only about half of, so I took the rest home for leftovers. I then proceeded to eat them two hours later. You know you’re gluttonous when…. Do not judge. I needed something to munch on while the Mad Men season finale aired.

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The raspberry iced tea was mighty fine and pretty refreshing too. Not too sickly sweet and overpowering but just the right dosage of tea and fruitiness. I usually try to be a healthy/frugal girl and order water when I eat, but this tea and also the mint lemonade were worth those extra calories. And all that picking up my fork and picking up my glass must have burnt some amount of calories ;)…. However, judging by the way my summer white jeans hugged my stomach after I left, maybe not.

And the distinguishable décor that adorns the inside of the restaurant, just too cool. You remember this restaurant not only for its delectability but also for its nifty tea cup and spoon chandelier, multi-colored renovated wood, and cozy sitting area in the “Pickled Okra” bar. It has a little bit of that granola, artsy, hippy lovin’, peace on earth, feel of Asheville.

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How remarkably original and creative. This visual aesthetic of this particular restaurant is phenomenal and your commenting on it will take up any wait time you may have for your food. It’s so unique and creates such a hospitable environment to gorge yourself in. And believe me. You will gorge. It’s too enticing not to.

I will rave about this restaurant to anyone who will listen, but that is not to say it wasn’t without a few glitches. They forgot the hot sauce. They ran out of to-go boxes. They mixed up our credit cards. They didn’t put any ice in my drink. There were a few pieces of meat mixed into my veggies which makes an extreme vegetarian choke. They overcompensated for the wait time.

But it has only been open less than a week so I’m sure those will shortly be sorted out.  And the wait staff and all the employees were more than welcoming and kind. And it doesn’t change my opinion anyway. I just care about the food and what it tastes like honestly. As long as it’s served hot!!! I do not eat to live. This girl right here lives to eat!!!!! Full belly, happy heart.

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This picture is from the first night I was in attendance (and awe) of this restaurant with my cutie girlfriends, Meg and Katie Jo, two of the best teachers in town. Thought they deserved a shout out for contributing to this post. And the third time I went, last Sunday to be exact, was with Noelle and Brittany. I was in good company both nights and loved having these cherished friends around and getting to try what they ordered as well. It gave me a chance to expand my palette and try some marinated tofu (Thanks Meggie) and some goat cheese grits.

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Miss Brittany

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I love my Noe!

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Noelle and Britt playing Vanna White

So go give it a try! It’s the bees’ knees. See what I did there..? Tupelo Honey….Bees’ knees…..

https://tupelohoneycafe.com/

Fun at the Rock Quarry Garden

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Located close to Cleveland Park, this is a wonderful place to take pictures. I pass by all the time and there are engagement photos and baby modeling sessions taking place. I have even seen a few weddings happening here as well.

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Adore this shot. This place is green, green, green.

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I had too much fun with my weekend visitors, Kathryn and Anna Laura. I hope these photos document our joviality!