Wine and Dine on Seasonal Gluten-Free Fare at Posana in Asheville
Posana is a beautiful contemporary American restaurant in Pack Square, right in the center of downtown Asheville. It offers a rotating and entirely gluten-free menu based on seasonal, locally-grown ingredients. It’s perfect for a date night, for families with kids, groups of friends, and it’s so dog-friendly that there is a dog menu!
The founders, Peter and Martha Pollay, started Posana in 2009, and the restaurant has been thriving since then, becoming a downtown Asheville landmark. The ambiance is elegant, warm, laid-back, and in tune with the vibe of downtown Asheville – so don’t worry about dressing up unless you want to. Ambiance aside, the food is the real jewel here.
Martha has celiac disease, so she and her husband created Posana with the idea that guests with gluten-related disorders or sensitivities could enjoy the same menu their company could. Posana started as a cafe and evolved into a full-service casual fine dining establishment offering one of the best downtown Asheville dining experiences.
The menu frequently changes to reflect the seasonal harvests, and 65 local purveyors and farmers provide the ingredients. You can expect creative combinations that will always taste whole, fresh, and delicious – all with a fun twist. All the bread is made in-house and gluten-free (definitely try the breadsticks!).
Think about dishes like a Compressed Watermelon Salad with pistachio labneh, lime gel, sumac rub, and finished with Swiss chard granita. Or a Sweet Potato Pie with a ginger snap crust, garam masala meringue, rum caramel, whipped vanilla coconut cream, and sorghum candied pecans.
The Kale Salad with Three Graces Dairy Manchego-style cheese, pumpkin seeds, currants, lemon, and Theros olive oil is a classic and a staple of the rotating menu. One thing is certain: whatever time of the year you go, you’ll find unique dishes made with the freshest, just-harvested farm-to-table ingredients.
Also, I’m from Argentina, where we have a significant Italian population, so I love pasta. Posana’s gluten-free house-made gnocchi are some of the best I’ve tried with their perfect texture, and you can’t even notice the lack of flour. For those who have no problems eating gluten – you would never know that the kitchen is gluten-free because you can’t even taste the difference.
Wine is a central ingredient of Posana’s dining venture. Its award-winning wine cellar has maintained Wine Spectator’s Best of Award of Excellence award since 2018, focusing on sourcing wine from small vineyards that use organic, sustainable, or biodynamic growing methods. Let the in-house sommelier and knowledgeable service team help you select the perfect glass or bottle of wine from the 350 choices Posana offers!
The customer service is outstanding. The last time I went, I was alone for an early dinner at 5:00 pm, and Asa was my server. I don’t remember having such a meaningful conversation with a server before. Posana’s slogan is “Feed Your Well-Being,” and I left feeling so well taken care of between the food, the wine, the amazing dessert, and the warmhearted customer service.
The best part? You can enjoy all of that in the company of your dog! Dogs are welcome in the patio area, which is the most fun place for people-watching in the warmer months (you can also watch the downtown action from the huge windows by the front of the restaurant).
The dog menu includes a starter, an entree, a dessert, and beer, of course, because this is Asheville! So what would your furry baby choose? The Bowser Beer, Cock-a-Doodle Brew or the Bowser Beer, Beefy Brown?
The outdoor patio is great for children, too, because there is always something going on in downtown Asheville, from street musicians and festivals to parades, scavenger hunts, and random fun “weird” things (remember that one of Asheville’s slogans is “Keep Asheville Weird”). There is a kids menu for children 12 and under, and they’ll love the house-made Italian sodas.
The bar has some of the best and most diverse cocktail menus in town, featuring an impressive whiskey selection. So how does a Black Diamond Margarita made with mezcal, Ancho Reyes Chile spirit, orange liqueur, house-made cocoa/blood orange simple syrup, lime juice, lemon juice, and chili salt rim sound? Or would you prefer a Bless Your Heart with rye whiskey, Campari, yellow Chartreuse, limoncello, and pomegranate juice?
Posana is one of the best Asheville restaurants, and it’s in the middle of downtown, which can get very busy, especially during the lush summertime and in the fall when visitors come to see the leaves change or take beautiful scenic drives. So, please make sure you make reservations by phone or online.
Are you an Asheville resident? You can take advantage of the special menu for locals on Wednesdays, Thursdays, and Sundays. Also, Posana has a private meeting and event space for larger gatherings. The recently renovated Mandara Gallery is perfect for rehearsal dinners, family receptions, or corporate events.
The patio can also be booked for private events or larger dining groups. Of course, you can reserve the entire restaurant to host your event of up to 120 guests. Think about an intimate wedding right in downtown Asheville!
The pre-theater menu is offered from Wednesday to Sunday from 5-6 pm. One of the many things to do in downtown Asheville is to attend a live performance. Posana is a couple of blocks from the Wortham Center for Performing Arts and the Fine Arts Movie Theatre (it features a good mix of trendy and indie movies) and is very close to the Asheville Community Theatre.
Besides supporting the local agricultural network since its beginnings (“local” has been a foundational element of the restaurant’s concept), Posana is also very involved with the community in other ways, participating in food events or donating food to local nonprofits that support those who face food insecurities. They also encourage their team members to go out and volunteer with one of the many Asheville nonprofits.