Life is a great big canvas, and you should throw all the paint you can on it. - Danny Kaye

Monday, February 7, 2011

A historical trip with a side of grapes…

This past weekend was a very special one…no, it wasn’t an early Valentine’s celebration or a sporty ski trip (although either of those would’ve been nice, too), but instead it was a perfect weekend with wonderful friends. A girls weekend…a laid-back, low-key, deliciously tasty and historic weekend…well, sort-of. This weekend four of my dear friends and I took a trip to quaint and unique Asheville, North Carolina. Rarely do I get away with my girlfriends unless it’s for a bachelorette soiree or destination wedding, so this was a trip planned well in advance in order to get everyone penciled in.
DSC_0328     DSC_0329
After a delightful trip to the Grove Park Inn Spa and tasting out the local fare at Limones, we were ready to start our day of historical exploration with a tour of the infamous Vanderbilt and Cecil families’ Biltmore Estate. If you haven’t been to see the Biltmore House in Asheville it’s definitely a trip to take while you’re young…and maybe even again and again…worth it to just take in not only the history but also the mass of décor, collections of art, sculptures, tapestries, books and furniture, and the facts of how this exquisite chateau became the country’s largest privately owned residence.

There is something striking about this house but also even more about the family, the history and the stories left behind (including speculation on how much it actually cost Vanderbilt to build the home and what that would amount to today). At a time when our country was struggling to enter the 20th Century and entering The Great Depression, George W. Vanderbilt decided to build a home that would later become a famous tourist attraction and continues to be so to this very day.
Upon completing the self-guided tour of the 250 room mansion (no, you don’t get to see them all of course) my friends and I decided to take a few more photos on what was a very, very windy (beautiful) day and then headed to the Biltmore Estate Winery. Now I have done a few wine tastings in my time, (classy, right?) and I have to say, The Biltmore Winery was the best gig yet! Not only did they have 23 wines to choose from on their wine tasting list, but you didn’t have a limit!! Seriously, you could taste as many of those 23 wines as you wanted…and so I enjoyed…
No, no I wasn’t tipsy when I left (nor did I taste all 23), that would not be kosher, but I did enjoy some wine and so please ignore the comments if you can actually read them below on my wine tasting ‘notes page’…they may not sound so sophisticated. And we definitely planned ahead so we had a safe ride back to town…we made smart decisions.
To pair off our afternoon of “high tea” at the winery, we indulged at the deliciously modest Tupelo Honey Café…A-M-A-ZING... To say I stuffed myself was an understatement…and those homemade biscuits…a hit by all!
So to sum up the weekend I may have to say that I think we’ve actually grown up a bit. We relaxed, had some wine, enjoyed good meals, relaxed by the fire, toured historical locales and had good ‘ole conversation…just a good time with great friends.
Cheers to your trip to Asheville!


Lucas said...

How fun! Those are great pictures! I would love to re-visit the Biltmore. Its been a long time!

Kate said...

Gorgeous pictures! You must try to get by there at Christmas - it is unreal! We also got to see Alison Krauss and Union Station at their summer concert series.

Chase Irons said...

I love all of these pictures! Looks like yall had a wonderful weekend. I couldn't agree more about those heavenly biscuits!

Kelley Norris said...

Asheville is one of our favorite places - we got engaged there! It's such a short drive from Greenville, AJ and I go at least twice a year. Gotta love Tupelo Honey, it's soooo good! Glad you guys had fun!

Liz Bridges said...

looks like you had a great trip! My friends and I were actually just planning a girls trip! We haven't been on one in a while!

Charity said...

Looks like you guys had a blast! I love the idea of a relaxing weekend with girlfriends, don't get me wrong, I love a good bachelorette weekend, but good for y'all to plan a fun weekend to catch up! Great pictures!

Anonymous said...

SO much fun! Love all of the pictures!

Emily Lindsay said...

Cute Pictures, looks like ya'll had a blast!