Asheville restaurant Rhubarb offers ‘family meal’ on Thursday


John Fleer, chef at Rhubarb in downtown Asheville, is following up on his pledge to offer communal seating options at his restaurant. He’s following up on an idea he describes simply as the family meal. The option is coming up at 5:30 on Thursday. Make a reservation by calling 828.785.1503.

Here’s how Fleer describes it on Rhubarb’s website:

I understand it is the nature of my profession that dinner at home with my family will not always be in the cards. When I took the job at Blackberry, I was married, but I had no children. When I left the Farm and looked up, I had three amazing boys ranging in age from 15 to 6. My saintly wife had managed to feed and parent these young men while I fed the guests at Blackberry and “raised” the family of wonderful people who made Blackberry what it was.
Now I have the chance to do it my way. If I can’t be at home for dinner, I want to create an experience at Rhubarb that replicates that feeling of going home for dinner for others, and selfishly, for me. My hope is that it will be the best of both worlds: Our Rhubarb family meal will be an important part of our Rhubarb family and our traditional restaurant day. However you define family, my hope is that you will reserve a place at Rhubarb’s family meal and join a larger community and our larger Rhubarb family. Our goal is to make it easy, delicious, and conducive to a little chat & chew time together. Who knows? Maybe my own family will get to come every now and then. And yes, maybe I want to evangelize on behalf of the family meal, the value of passing food, sharing stories and listening. Maybe children and restaurants don’t always mix perfectly, but families, however you define them, mix perfectly at the dinner table. That’s how I hope everyone will see that time and space.

Here’s the menu:

Thursday, December 19th 5:30 PM


Two Appalachian staples meet in a simple soup thickened with cornbread and and attempt to woo Colleen Cruze to visit Rhubarb.


A tribute to Rhubarb’s Savannah native, Chef de Cuisine, Dean Neff and our recent guest, Molly O’Neill who sought the origins of this Southern via Britain and India specialty for the New York Times.



Pastry Chef Ashley Capps’ family favorite.