Filo

Any time I’m in East Asheville (usually for a doctor’s appointment) I make it a point to try to get coffee and some sort of treat at Filo Pastries.  You know those rare places that, even though they aren’t expensive, and even though they aren’t even all that far away, they still seem like a rare treat and delight when you go there?  Filo is like that for me.  Maybe it’s the the seriously cool building–old, rock, with an amazing entry door made of thick wood and metal bars.  It has what feels like a little moat to get from the driveway to the door, even though it’s really just decking of some kind.  Outside, there are amazing flowers, trees and bushes with edibles on them.  And inside, it’s Old Europe exotic and artsy and relaxing, with music that makes you just want to melt into a chair and stay forever.  Ahhhhhh….that’s what I mean when I say that the place feels like a treat.  And we haven’t even broached the subject of the food and beverages yet!

The food just makes the “treat” part better.  The cakes are glorious, the other desserts are inventive and fresh and delicious.  Oh, yeah–and they have savory lunch items, too!  (Sometimes I’ll cheat and get a lunch item for breakfast, just so I can experience half of it again later, when it’s actually lunch…)  Today, I had the “Stuffed Veggie Baguette” which was a delightful combo of delicious fresh baguette stuffed with mushrooms, onions, peppers, zucchini, artichokes, herbs and an unexpected  lemony tang.  It’s unusual to have something so tart baked into a baguette, and I really enjoyed the pleasant surprise.  (I also enjoyed a chocolate croissant to go along with it, but in my defense, I did take half the baguette home to Sean.  And ate the chocolate croissant first.  Naturally.)  There are usually veggie choices galore, including authentic Spanokopita, Tabouli, Hummus, usually a veggie quiche, veggie strada, veggie pizza, etc.  They also make their own Greek yogurt, which I haven’t tried yet, but want to.  They even have an entire “Greek Desserts” section, with items I haven’t seen since my days working at Taverna Nikos in Durham, one of the most authentic Greek places I’ve ever been to.

Gluten-intolerant folks, take note:  they offer lots of choices in that department too, including creme brulee, vegan cookies, and gluten-free cupcakes.

And I’m really just scratching the surface here.  I didn’t even mention all the awesome coffee, tea, and wine.  There’s lots of free parking, and it’s in a pretty easy location, right on Tunnel Road, close to the East Asheville Ingles and across the street from the VA Hospital.  Do yourself a favor, and head over there the first opportunity you have to enjoy a leisurely, exotic, relaxing morning with a cup of coffee or tea and the delicious pastry item of your choice.  Other bakeries in the area might get more love, but my money’s on Filo.  Trust me, you’ll be glad you treated yourself.  And you’ll probably find that you want to do that a lot more often!

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