by Caitlin Saniga | photos by Joel Hawksley
I visited: The Gourmet Chip Co., a rustic-looking nook in Asheville, N.C., known for its fresh-made chips and paninis (in that order). Servers fry up a small variety of thinly sliced root vegetables and fruits: potatoes (like The Napa, with lavender honey, blue cheese and sea salt), sweet potatoes (The Belgium, with Belgian dark and milk chocolates and coarse vanilla sea salt), plantains (The Cuban, with applewood smoked sea salt and chocolate fondue) and taro root (The Nori, with seaweed, sesame seed, can sugar and salt). You can add on dips or drizzles like red chilli aioli, salted caramel and jalapeno creme freche for an extra $.75.
I tried: The Italiano — a heaping portion of fresh-cut and fried paper-thin potato chips seasoned with Parmesan, sun-dried tomato, dried herbs, salt and a drizzle of balsamic vinegar — served in a parchment cone.
Why it stood out: We watched our server take every single step to turn raw potatoes into chips, which was cool.
I liked that once the chips were fried, we were able to watch him season everything and could therefore have a bit of control. “Light on the salt,” we could have said, but didn’t. The chips turned out to be nicely seasoned and blissfully crispy.
It cost: $4.75
Find out more:
Gourmet Chip Co.
43 1/2 Broadway St.
Asheville, NC 28801