New season for celebrated restaurant in Cashiers, North Carolina
Executive Chef John Fleer announces the season opening for Canyon Kitchen at Lonesome Valley in Cashiers, N.C. The restaurant, located in the Jennings Barn at the foot of Cow Rock Canyon, will kick off the season the weekend of April 4. John and his team will welcome guests to Canyon Kitchen on weekends through mid-May. The restaurant will then resume its regular seasonal operation of Wednesday through Sunday beginning the week of May 12.
“We’re extremely excited to be celebrating our sixth season at Canyon Kitchen and look forward to welcoming back our old friends and meeting new ones,” says Fleer. “Canyon Kitchen provides an exceptional restaurant and dining experience in a setting that is unique in the Blue Ridge Mountains. We offer a style of cuisine and hospitality that shines with a simple elegance and focuses on our guests and their experience in this special place.”
John has been named “Rising Stars of the 21st Century” by the prestigious James Beard Foundation and is a three-time finalist for the James Beard “Best Chef in the Southeast” Award. He is the former executive chef of Blackberry Farm in Walland, Tenn. and the owner and executive chef of Rhubarb in Asheville, N.C. He is known for transforming local ingredients into world-class cuisine. He and his culinary team use fresh produce and organic selections from Lonesome Valley’s own community garden and the surrounding area of western N.C. to create extraordinary farm-to-table menus. Sample menu selections include smoked Sunburst Trout cakes with charred tomato vinaigrette; garden lettuces and summer stone fruit with honeyed goat cheese, spiced pistachios, and blackberry-lavender vinaigrette; rhubarb glazed Heritage Pork tenderloin; and blueberry and brown butter tart with creamsicle sherbet, white chocolate, and thyme crème chantilly.
Canyon Kitchen’s culinary team, Restaurant Manager Audra Thomas, Chef de Cuisine Mitch Sheppard and Pastry Chef Chelsea Raby, have worked with Fleer at Canyon Kitchen for the past two years and are all delighted to kick off the 2014 season.
Nestled in the majestic Blue Ridge Mountains of Cashiers, Canyon Kitchen is framed by forests and meadows, encircled by thousand-foot granite cliffs. The relaxed setting of Canyon Kitchen is complemented by the detailed craftsmanship of the Barn’s traditional post and beam architecture; large indoor and outdoor stacked, stone fireplaces; massive exposed ceiling beams; unique rope basket light fixtures; and multiple barn doors that line the walls and can be opened to enjoy the cool mountain weather. The restaurant is open to the public.
lonesomevalley.com/project/canyon-kitchen or 828-743-7967
UPDATE – 4/28/15
Canyon Kitchen will be opening for the season on Friday, May 1. Dinner will be served Wednesday through Sunday evenings throughout the season, which will extend through late October.
Chef John Fleer, recently named a finalist for the 2015 James Beard Foundation’s Best Chef: Southeast Award, continues to provide direction and support for Canyon Kitchen. John has overseen Canyon Kitchen since it opened in 2008.
The 2015 season brings exciting new additions to the staff. Adam Hayes, who was most recently the executive chef at Barnsley Resort, located north of Atlanta, will be serving as executive chef of Canyon Kitchen. For the past 15 years, the N.C. native has worked at several top restaurants and hotels throughout the state, including Grand Bohemian Hotel in Asheville. Adam has been a guest chef at the prestigious James Beard House in New York City and was the winner of Food Network’s “Cutthroat Kitchen.”
Ed Selle, who most recently served on the culinary staff at The Chattooga Club and Cornucopia in Cashiers, and Christopher Gianino have also joined Canyon Kitchen. Jorden Cruley, who previously worked with Adam at Grand Bohemian and was the assistant pastry chef at Biltmore Forest Country Club in Asheville, is the new pastry chef. Audra Thomas, who has managed Canyon Kitchen for the past three years, will continue to work with the restaurant again this season.
– Text & images courtesy Winther Communications