By Chef Adam Hayes

Canyon Kitchen in Sapphire

Canyon Kitchen in Sapphire

About Adam Hayes


Adam Hayes is the executive chef at Canyon Kitchen at Lonesome Valley, located in the Blue Ridge Mountains of Cashiers, NC. Hayes is originally from Asheboro, NC and has spent much of his career in western Carolina.

Canyon Kitchen at Lonesome Valley

Photo Credit: Volgel Boyer

Photo Credit: Volgel Boyer


When you pull into Lonesome Valley, the first thing you see is the largest box canyon east of the Rockies. You can start your night in the open-air elegant barn with crafty cocktails, local beers, and wines that are sustainable, organic or biodynamic. Southern hospitality is the heartbeat of the restaurant and our service style is polished, but not pretentious. The music playlist ranges from Hank Williams to Wu Tang Clan and the food reflects the playfulness of our culinary team, which are from different influences and cultural likes. Our menu changes often, but I highly suggest you try the tasting menu. It gives you a chance to really try it all. Some of my favorites include the fried chicken with honey and hot sauce, as well as the lamb rack with curry stewed okra, tomatoes, chermoula and Charleston gold rice. As for the names of our dishes, some are riddles, some running inside jokes, and some are named after song lyrics. It’s fun for some of our regulars to try and figure out the meaning behind the names.

150 Lonesome Valley Road, Sapphire, NC 28774
T: 828.743.7967



What I Love About the Area

What's not to love? You've got outdoor adventure, beautiful mountain views, culture, rivers, farms, delicious beer and great food. A big reason our family decided to migrate to the mountains was for all those reasons.

Coffee & Breakfast

Photograph courtesy of Crank

Photograph courtesy of Crank


I live in Brevard, so I can drop the kids off at school and then hit Crank for a great cup of coffee and a King of Pisgah Smoothie. I'll normally grab breakfast while I'm here -- they have delicious ham and cheese croissants.

112 Hendersonville Highway, Pisgah Forest, NC 28768
T: 828.702.1414 | 

Farmers Market

The Transylvania Farmers Market

It is pretty cool. It is a great inspiration for me to have such an awesome selection of small farms and artisans near my house. It's great drop by on Saturday mornings before I go to the restaurant and get some stuff for dinner that night. It really gets the creative process rolling for me.

Comporium, 190 East Main Street, Brevard, NC 28712
T: 828.548.0660 |


Slab Town Pizza

I'm a huge fan of Slab Town Pizza in Cashiers. These guys are so inventive and creative. The pizzas are great here, but I really enjoy the bolognese pasta and the fried chicken sandwich. I'm actually stopping right here on these questions to run up there and grab some lunch now... thanks!

7 State Road 1141, Cashiers, NC 28717
T: 828.743.0020 |

Photograph courtesy of Slab Town Pizza

Photograph courtesy of Slab Town Pizza


Photograph courtesy of Buxton Hall

Photograph courtesy of Buxton Hall

Buxton Hall

This is always a solid option. The special is the way to go here or get the pulled pork plate.

32 Banks Avenue, Asheville, NC 28801
T: 828.232.7216 |

Photograph courtesy of Luella's

Photograph courtesy of Luella's


Try the baked calico beans and chicken wings.

501 Merrimon Avenue, Asheville, NC 28804
T: 828.505.7427 | 


Photograph courtesy of Cream and Flutter

Photograph courtesy of Cream and Flutter

Cream and Flutter

They have really delicious cupcakes and it's a great place for me grab an afternoon coffee and sugar buzz before dinner service.

45 Slab Town Road Suite A2, Cashiers, NC 28717
T: 828.743.8844 |

Locally-Made Souvenir

Photograph courtesy of French Broad Chocolate Lounge

Photograph courtesy of French Broad Chocolate Lounge

French Broad Chocolate

I always get their truffles and chocolates because my wife loves them. I like the fact that The French Broad Blue is kind of like Tiffany Blue at my house. I just have to show up with a box of chocolates and well... let's just say I'm the man!

10 S Pack Square, Asheville, NC 28801
T: 828.252.4181 |


Photograph courtesy of Zia Taqueria

Photograph courtesy of Zia Taqueria

Zia Taqueria

It's delicious and very reasonably priced.  

521 Haywood Road, Asheville, NC 28806
T: 828.575.9393 |

Jaime's Creole Brasserie

You definitely don't want to miss the margaritas here. They also have a great wine list and the gumbo is off the charts good.

44 East Main Street, Brevard, NC 28712
T: 828.883.3388 |

Photograph courtesy of Village Wayside

Photograph courtesy of Village Wayside

WATERING HOLE | Village Wayside

Located at Biltmore Village, this is pretty much the best watering hole ever -- great people, drinks, and food.

30 Lodge Street, Asheville, NC 28803
T: 828.277.4121 |

CRAFT BEER | Innovation Brewing

This food truck has wonderful food which pairs perfectly with their craft brews.

414 West Main Street, Sylva, NC 28779
T: 828.586.9678 |

WINE BAR | Maggie B's

This is a delicious place to grab a bite to eat and they have a retail shop. You'll definitely want to try the pimento cheese and they do wine tastings on Friday nights -- you may even find me here!

10 S Main Street, Weaverville, NC 28787
T: 828.645.1111 |

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