Ivory Road Cafe & Kitchen, opened August 1st 2016, is the culmination of a life-long love of food and culture.
I’m Jill, the owner, and I grew up on the “real” Ivory Road, which gently winds through a small town in Maryland. Since then, I have traveled the world in pursuit of the exotic, the simple, and everything in-between.
I’ll never forget the first time I traveled abroad by myself. I was just weeks out of culinary school and found myself working as a pastry cook in a super fancy fine-dining restaurant in downtown Melbourne, Australia. The sous chef, in a particularly stressful minute of dinner service, barked at me to go fetch him a “capsicum” from the refrigerator. I instinctively turned and ran to the refrigerator, having not even the slightest clue what a capsicum was. There I stood, scanning the produce, pleading with myself that it would suddenly dawn on me. Had I studied this in Product Knowledge class? Did I write a paper on it at some point? I had not. And I did not.
This was the first realization for me that food is a life-long learning journey. In this particular instance it was in the literal sense, and later it would be in a more philosophical sense, but nonetheless it has been a never-ending learning experience for me.
From the original Ivory Road, all the way around the globe, and here to my new home in Asheville, I aim to bring everything I’ve learned about food to the table.
A capsicum, for the record, is what Australians call a green bell pepper.