Rosetta’s Kitchen & The Buchi Bar

Rosetta's Kitchen: Asheville's Answer to Vegetarian and Vegan Soul Food
Local Expert's Rating:
4 / 5
The Bottom Line:

You don't need to be a vegetarian or vegan to enjoy a meal at Rosetta's. In fact, you don't even have to like soul food. You simply have to be open to trying something new and interesting. We can almost guarantee you that you'll be glad you did.

- The Local Expert Team

It should probably be stated upfront that Rosetta’s Kitchen is one of the best eating establishments we have visited in some time. That being said, let us share with you why.

One complaint we’ve heard from others is that the wait staff at Rosetta’s Kitchen is too slow and don’t turn tables fast enough. We found the laid back pace refreshing. Our server was happy to answer the 101 questions we had about the menu and very good about making suggestions, based upon whether we were vegetarian or not.

No, it may not be the kind of place you want to visit if you’re on a schedule and need to be out quickly, but it is definitely worthwhile when you have time to sit back, relax, and try something new.

The Buchi Bar
The downstairs level of Rosetta’s Kitchen is home to a full bar, along with a full service dining room. In addition to wine, beer, local mead, cider, and homemade soda, The Buchi Bar offers Buchi Kombucha on draft.

Kombucha is a tea, fermented with bacteria and yeast. It’s slightly alcoholic and can be a little fizzy. It is said that kombucha offers supposed health benefits. They carried six flavors of kombucha, including Roasted Roots, Ginger Cayenne, Mint Echinacea Pineapple, Coconut Pineapple Turmeric, Orange Mango Sea Buckthorn, and Coconut Blueberry Elderberry.

We recommend ordering a flight and trying a little of everything. If you’ve never tried it before, kombucha tastes tart and slightly sweet. A couple of the flavors were fizzy like soda. The others were not. The Orange Mango Sea Buckthorn was a definite favorite, while another member of our party found the Mint Echinacea Pineapple refreshing.

The Main Menu
Our server was eager to walk us through the menu and help us get everything sorted out. We opted to share plates so we could try a bit of everything.

Here were a few of our favorites:

Vegan Queso Basket
Whether you are vegetarian, vegan or none of those, we recommend this dish. It is surprising how delicious this creamy vegan version of queso is. The tortilla chips were perfectly warm and the queso did not feel like a compromise of the “real” thing.

Family Favorite
Stay with us here, because we know this entrée may not sound appealing to everyone. It consists of peanut butter-baked organic tofu, sautéed kale, and smashed potatoes with Granny’s Gravy. First things first, the smashed potatoes and gravy are fabulous. The beauty of tofu (other than the health benefits) is that it has no real flavor of its own so it absorbs whatever it’s cooked in. In this case, it is peanut butter and the results are outstanding. Seriously delicious. If you walk into this restaurant not being a big fan of kale, this meal is not likely to change your mind. Still, the peanut butter tofu and smashed potatoes make it a winner.

Beans and Rice Plate
This meal made our top three for two reasons. The first is that the plate of organic long-grain brown rice and organic pinto beans served with either tortilla chips or southern-style slaw is pure comfort food that also happens to taste amazing. The second is that this meal does not have a fixed price. The good people at Rosetta’s Kitchen believe strongly that food is a human right, and that everyone deserves to eat. For that reason, they simply ask that anyone who orders this meal pay what they can. There’s no right or wrong about what a diner chooses to pay. Anything over $6 allows the restaurant to “pay it forward” so others in the community can eat.

Rosetta’s menu is surprisingly large with something for everyone. It can be tricky to take meat-loving friends into a vegetarian restaurant, but this place makes it easier.

Insider Tip:
On a busy night, you might want to arrive early. Rosetta’s Kitchen does not take reservations.