Mike Recker

General Manager


Photo by Lynne Harty

What is your favorite part of being a restaurant owner in Asheville?

Although I’m not an owner, I feel that the overall community and close-knit relationships we all have across the board as restaurant owners and family-owned businesses is special. Whether it’s a restaurant or not, the majority of local businesses strive to use the freshest, locally sourced ingredients (farm to table), and I feel like that’s incredibly special.

What is the background of your restaurant’s name?

Zambra means ‘Gypsy Dance”. This perfectly describes the overall ambience and vibe that Adam and Peter wanted to achieve. A relaxed, low-key, ambient environment.

What ingredient could you not live without?


What is your favorite dish on your menu?

Ask anyone… the Trout!

What is your favorite dish from a fellow AIR restaurant’s menu?

The Beef Short Rib from Jargon, are you kidding me? get outta here.

Why did you choose Asheville to open your restaurant?

Co-owners Peter and Adam both worked at Zambra already. They had bought the restaurant nearly 16 years ago and molded it into what it is today. The love of locally sourced produce and relaxed, charming location in downtown are two of the many reasons why Peter and Adam decided on Asheville.

What is your favorite chef’s tool and why?

Can’t go wrong with a Chef’s knife! Incredibly versatile and reliable. That or a wooden spoon.. Cooking with a wooden spoon just makes food taste better! Or so my grandmother always said…