Photo Credit: Tim Robison

Independent Restaurant Association Leaf icon

About AIR

Asheville’s Independent Restaurant Association


AIR is all about food in Asheville – delicious, locally-sourced, award-winning food. But we are also about making a difference in the kitchen, at the table, and in the community.

We began in 2003 with the spark of an idea formulated by four local restaurant owners who believed that by working together, Asheville’s independent restaurants could create a culture of collaboration and stewardship unique in the industry. Today, our 13-member board leads an organization of 150+ members, making us the largest not-for-profit (501C-6) organization of our kind in the U.S.

Our kitchens are cooking. The tables are set. We’re saving a seat for you. Come experience how AIR is food in Asheville…and so much more.

Pull up a chair. Take a taste. Come join us. Life is so endlessly delicious.
strawberry icon RUTH REICHEL: Food Writer, Magazine Editor & Chef

Board of Directors

Elizabeth Button, Katie Button Restaurants, Chair

Anthony Cerrato, StradaThe Social Lounge + Gemelli, Treasurer

John Fleer, Rhubarb + The Rhu

Dano Holcomb, Root Down Kitchen

Cathy Horton, AB Tech

Victoria ‘Vic’ Isley, Explore Asheville

Mike McCarty, The Lobster Trap, Vice Chair




Peter Pollay, Mandara Hospitality Group, Secretary

Sabrina Rockoff, McGuire, Wood & Bissette

Carolyn Roy, Biscuit Head, Former Chair

Vanessa Salomo, Chestnut + Corner Kitchen

Lisa Smith-Vann, Huli Sue’s 

Meghan Rogers, AIR’s Executive Director