About Chow Chow

Festival Overview

In early Appalachia, chow chow, a crunchy pickled relish traditionally put up each summer, brought welcome sunshine to dinner plates during cold months. The condiment added color, brightness, nourishment, and a bright piquant zest that transformed the seemingly ordinary. By fermenting the garden’s final summer harvests, chow chow was a creative way to harness the earth’s resources in a jar for future culinary inspiration. Its ingredients were determined by the creative maker filling each crock, no two chow chow recipes quite the same.  

Chow Chow: An Asheville Culinary Event celebrates the area’s unique community of makers, each adding singular ingredients to the city’s recipe for culinary identity. From nationally recognized chefs to multi-generational farmers to millers, bakers, potters, weavers, and brewers, Chow Chow shines a light on the ancient creative spirit of the region that continues to make 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.

Much like its namesake condiment, this unique festival is far greater than the sum of its parts.

Board of Directors


President: Katie Button, Chef and Owner, Cúrate and Button & Co. Bagels
Vice President: Jael Rattigan, Co-Founder, CEO, French Broad Chocolate
Treasurer: Meherwan Irani, Chai Pani Chef & Chief Chaiwalla, Chai Pani Restaurant Group
Secretary: Jessica Reiser, Co-Founder, Burial Beer

Aaron Grier, Owner, Gaining Ground Farm
Adrian Vassallo, DHG Wealth Advisors
Charles Hodge, Owner and Operator, Sovereign Remedies
Connie Matisse, Founder/Chief Creative Officer, East Fork Pottery
Dodie Stephens, Director of Communications, Explore Asheville, CVB
Elizabeth Sims, Owner, Elizabeth Sims Consulting
Jane Anderson, Executive Director, AIR (Asheville Independent Restaurant Association)
John Fleer, Chef/Owner, Benne, Rhubarb and The Rhu
Kevin Barnes, Owner, Ultimate Ice Cream
Peter Pollay, Executive Chef/Co-Founder, Mandara Hospitality Group
Stephanie Brown, President and CEO, Explore Asheville, CVB
Vanessa Salomo, Business Development/Co-Owner, Corner Kitchen & Chestnut

Festival Staff


Angel Holmes, Event Director, Sipindipity
Missie Porter, Event Manager, Asheville Event Co.


Latest & Greatest

Get Involved

Looking for ways to be a part of Chow Chow? Volunteer, sponsor, or be a featured maker and more. The opportunities are limitless.

Learn More

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