About Chow Chow

Festival Overview

Chow Chow: An Asheville Culinary Event celebrates the foodways of our Southern Appalachian region and the area’s unique community of makers, each adding singular ingredients to the recipe for a culturally diverse culinary identity. From nationally recognized chefs to multi-generational farmers to millers, bakers, potters, weavers, and brewers, Chow Chow shines a light on the creative spirit of the region that makes the Blue Ridge Mountains a delicious place to taste, to see, to explore and to experience through immersive culinary experiences.

Discover the alluring alchemy of mountain traditions, heirloom ingredients, and urban energy that inspire the James Beard-nominated chefs, sustainable farmers, innovative brewers, artisans, and foragers who commune at Asheville’s collaborative table.


Board of Directors

As a 501(C3) non-profit, Chow Chow Asheville is founded by a group of community-committed volunteers who believe in the unique connections between makers of all kinds—particularly as they gather in celebration of our creative food culture in Southern Appalachia. Learn more about the vision behind Chow Chow. 


President: Jessica Reiser, Co-Founder, CEO, Burial Beer Co., Forestry Camp Bar and Restaurant

Vice President: Jael Skeffington, Co-Founder, CEO, French Broad Chocolate

Treasurer: Jean-Paul Lausell, Founder, Zenbellum

Secretary: Vanessa Salomo, Co-Owner, Business Development, Corner Kitchen, Chestnut 

Past President: Katie Button, Co-Founder, CEO, Katie Button Restaurants

Gene Ettison, Chief Visionary Officer, The Ettison Investment Group

John Fleer, Chef, Owner, Rhubarb, The Rhu, Benne on Eagle

Murphy Horne Fletcher, Attorney, McGuire, Wood & Bissette Law Firm

Aaron Grier, Owner, Gaining Ground Farm

Meredith Leigh, Author and Consultant

Kyle Pedersen, Marketing Director, Wicked Weed Brewing

Peter Pollay, Co-Founder, Executive Chef, Mandara Hospitality Group

Dodie Stephens, Director of Communications, Explore Asheville

Jen Swanson, Communications Consultant

Mike Tiano, Co-Owner, Haw River Wine Man

Marilyn Zapf, Assistant Director and Curator, Center for Craft

Festival Staff

Rebecca Lynch, Executive Director, rlynch@chowchowasheville.com
Shay Brown (Shay Brown Events Management), Festival Director, shay@chowchowasheville.com



Latest & Greatest

2019 Schedule

Over 20 immersive signature events are featured throughout the weekend! Tours, dinners, parties, foraging and more await.


Plan Your Trip

This inspired, friendly and free-spirited food scene tucked in the mountains of Appalachia has been called “Foodtopia,” but the locals just call it home. Plan your trip now.

Start Planning


Learn more about the vision and values that guide Chow Chow's work to celebrate and enrich the foodways of Southern Appalachia.

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