Chef Kyle Lee McKnight’s need for new sneakers landed him in a restaurant and he’s been running around in kitchens ever since. As a teen, he needed money for a pair of Adidas and landed a job washing dishes in a local restaurant. Two decades later, the Johnson and Wales graduate continues to earn his stripes with a scrappy, can-do attitude.
McKnight’s culinary career includes stints in Europe, Charleston, Miami, St. John, and Argentina, and he’s cooked with acclaimed New York restaurateur Tom Colicchio, legendary Charleston chef Phil Corr, his childhood best friend, D.C.’s Chris Edwards, and some French guys. He was named a Best Chef America 2012 to 2015 for his commitment to the slow food movement and his advocacy of local farmers in both Wilmington and Hickory, North Carolina. He also earned a Good Food Award with Bev Eggelston in 2013 for charcuterie and his own with Dusty Foothills table sauce in 2018. Under McKnight’s direction as Executive Chef at Highland Avenue, Southern Living named the Hickory, N.C. farm-to-fork restaurant as one of "The South's Best Restaurants'' in 2015. In 2016, he was a featured chef at the acclaimed James Beard House in NYC and still to this day is the only chef to serve his food with a tall boy of beer from Fullsteam while others served wine. He later went on to establish Fullsteam's food operation in Durham. In 2020, he began working with long time friend Casey Mckissick of Foothills Farm and Butchery in Black Mountain and Asheville as a consultant.
Chef Kyle Lee McKnight has been tantalizing tastebuds and minds for decades. He has shared many of dishes with paying and non, yet envisions every day roistering with only one. YOU.
Chef Stewart Lyon has been a part of Asheville’s outstanding food scene for thirteen years. Among the things he loves about his work are close relationships with local farms and chefs. And paying attention to the relationship between culture and cuisine is very important to his cooking.
Stewart graduated from Johnson and Wales University, in Charleston S.C., where he worked at S.N.O.B. His Asheville-area restaurant experience includes positions with Curras, Boca, Knife and Fork, and Sawhorse; he has also worked locally as a private chef. Elsewhere, he has worked with David Chang’s Ma Peche Momofuku in New York City and Fluxus Restaurant in Freiburg, Germany.
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