On Saturday, Jan. 20, one of Asheville’s (and the nation’s) most hotly anticipated restaurants made its surprise debut — Ashleigh Shanti’s Good Hot Fish officially opened its doors at 10 Buxton Ave. The restaurant delivers an updated take on Southern fish camps, incorporating Black Appalachian cuisine throughout the menu.
Before opening the brick-and-mortar space, the Top Chef competitor and former chef de cuisine at Benne on Eagle had been hosting Good Hot Fish pop-ups in Asheville and beyond. Folks can find some of their favorite items from the pop-ups available on the permanent menu, like fish sticks and shrimpburgers, as well as new takes on beloved items like the sweet potato cabbage pancake. The chef-driven menu is focused on seasonal ingredients, so expect a rotating selection of items.
The counter-service fish fry spot serves up its delicious, piping hot plates on retro-style trays and Good Hot Fish branded frisbees. We tried the battered catfish plate with baked macaroni + cheese and stewed greens, the creamy and spicy hot crab dip with fried saltines, and the crunchy, texture-filled ranchovy iceberg — but we’ll be back soon to eat our way through the rest of the menu. Plus, don’t miss out on the trout bologna, served on top of a piece of crispy, griddled American cheese and sandwiched on a soft potato bun.
If it isn’t too packed, you can grab a seat at the front counter to peer into the kitchen to see Shanti and the chefs in action.
Eager to get a taste for yourself? Good Hot Fish is open Tuesday through Sunday from 11:30 a.m. to 7 p.m. at 10 Buxton Ave., right next to Burial Beer Co.'s music venue, Eulogy.