By Dasha Morgan- What makes guests want to stay at a full service Bed and Breakfast? That was the question asked by members of the Asheville Bed & Breakfast Association at a recent meeting. As more AirB&Bs as competition seem to be popping up in the area, the answer to the question was important. The fact that the guest receives a delicious breakfast in the morning seemed to be the answer. Guests like to sit and enjoy their morning coffee—speak with the innkeeper about the events in the area—and receive some extraordinarily yummy “treats” in the morning This just starts the day off right. A guest undoubtedly would enjoy Almond Streusel French Toast at the Lion and the Rose, a Savory Egg Soufflé at the Inn Around the Corner or Shrimp & Grits from White Gate Inn & Cottage. Much more so than fixing themselves a cup of coffee in their room or looking for a nearby restaurant. With this in mind, the Asheville B&B innkeepers have just published a new cookbook, Morning in the Mountains to exhibit their culinary skills. While the focus of the book features breakfast delicacies, they also have included recipes for appetizers, sweet bits and some delicious homemade cookies. It is a beautifully organized book with some very appealing photographs. Something to keep in mind as the holidays approach.
Last week at the Reynolds Mansion Bed & Breakfast Inn in Reynolds Village, a “tasting” of many of these recipes was offered to guests, friends, and the media. Each Inn brought their own specialty to sample. The pre Civil War mansion, once owned by the Reynolds family, hosted the event. Billy Sanders, an owner, had beautifully decorated each room for the Christmas holidays. He chose appropriate and tasteful decorations and spoke with the guests as they arrived. Everyone gathered around a buffet table with a plate to sample their preferred “goodies,” as well as a beverage. Susan Dosier of DK Communications Group spoke about the process involved in putting this book together—the cookbook committee itself, her editors and photographers. She had a very enthusiastic group. She thanked all those, who helped with the process. Then she introduced the innkeepers, who spoke briefly about their inn, the particulars of its location and specialty, and perhaps a bit about themselves.
Howard and Kristen Dusenbery, owners of the Dry Ridge Inn in Weaverville, brought their Oatmeal Crispies as a taster. “These cookies are just great, but adding raisins, red cherries, and/or nuts makes them even better. Guests love them as an afternoon snack with a tall glass of milk or a cup of spiced tea.” The Wildberry Lodge in Leicester talked about the construction of the main building out of red pine logs and the incredible mountain views their guests now enjoy—particularly as the leaves are turning. Each B & B has its own charm; and their locations vary—some near downtown, some further in the country.
One will find beautifully illustrated recipes from ASIS Bed & Breakfast Spa, The Sweet Biscuit Inn, The Chestnut Street Inn, the Carolina Bed & Breakfast, Pinecrest Bed & Breakfast, The Engadine Inn & Cabins at Honey Hill, Beaufort House Inn, and the Crooked Oak Mountain Inn. A total of 15 inns contributed to this book. Copies of the book were signed by the innkeepers, who offered a tasting of what they often give their visiting guests. They spoke about being able to enjoy their guests and offering them advice as to local attractions and current events. Copies of this appealing cookbook Morning in the Mountains can be found at the Asheville Visitor Center, the Chamber of Commerce shop, in many bookstores or on the website: www.ashevillebba.com/cookbook for $25.00 which includes shipping and handling. It would certainly make a wonderful Christmas gift with many recipes you might want to try yourself.