Chef Ricardo Fernandez Battini and his wife, Suzanne

Over their 25 years as residents of Haywood County, Ricardo and Suzanne are well known in Western North Carolina culinary circles for launching one of the first farm-to-table restaurants in the region. Lomo Grill quickly earned a gold star on the regional gastronomy map for its award-winning fusion cuisine.

After retiring from the restaurant industry, Ricardo and Suzanne have spent the last few years tending to Wildcat Ridge Farm, as a Master Gardener specializing in growing and propagating peonies and having the largest planted varieties of peonies in the State of North Carolina.

Every year during the whole month of May the farm, is open free to the public for the “Festival of Peonies in Bloom”, when peony plants and blooms can be purchased.

In 2018, they built the first yurt in Haywood County on their property at the farm and is part of the NC Agritourism, allowing guests to enjoy their little slice of paradise and also be catered by Chef Ricardo with a special seasonal dinner menu. Click HERE for more information.

In 2015, the couple began offering immersive first-class luxury excursions, taking a small group of food and wine lovers to Ricardo’s native Argentina visiting the cosmopolitan city life of Buenos Aires, the highest vineyards in the world in Cachi, Molinos, and Cafayate, Salta, best wine making regions along the Andes in Mendoza, and San Carlos de Bariloche in the beautiful majestic Patagonia.