The menu at Gàn Shān Station in Asheville, NC, may read like an introductory course to Asian cooking (mapo doufu, bulgogi, ramen, pho, massaman curry chicken, etc.), but the execution is anything but basic. Chefs Patrick O’Cain and Chris Hatchcock honed their chops at Charleston’s Xiao Bao Biscuit and Two Boroughs Larder, respectively, before moving north to team up on an eatery housed in an old filling station. Seasonal and local are their hallmarks, and they change the menu frequently to ensure they’re always serving the best stuff. The fish, for example, comes from Abundant Seafood in Charleston; it’s so fresh, it practically swims to your table. Lunch is a casual affair, with mains hovering around the $10-$13 mark. Dinner is pricier, but the “no holds bared” chefs’ table costs just $45 a person and seats up to six (48-hour advance reservation required). Our only rule: Leave room for dessert. O’Cain and Hatchcock have joined forces with AVL’s Ultimate Ice Cream to craft sweet-and-savory flavors spiked with gochujang, toasted rice, Szechuan peppercorns, and other unexpected ingredients.
143 Charlotte St., Asheville, NC; 828-774-5280.