Slideshow: Spring has sprung in downtown Asheville

Spring is in the air, and with it the aroma of food (We know this because we finally have our windows open over here). And with warm weather comes al fresco dining — and drinking (yay!). Around town today, people are eating dosas on the Chai Pani patio and sipping pints in the sun at the Mellow Mushroom. At Boca, they’re dining to the sounds of fiddler Matthew Heckler and in the Crêperie Bouchon courtyard, set a bit back from the suddenly bustling Lexington, they’re eating in rather subdued quiet. (Curious about Heckler’s music? You’re listening to it, recorded live in front of Boca today.)

At the surprisingly serene — albeit tight — courtyard of Heiwa, where we found a few people eating sushi amidst the bamboo, there’s plenty of sunlight, but the packed patio of the Laughing Seed is breezy and shaded for most of the day. Also open for outdoor dining downtown (among others): Sazerac (starting at 3 p.m.), Modesto and Chorizo.

Zambra tapas restaurant has its windows thrown open, as does 5 Walnut and Dobra tea room. Santé‘s patio is also open after 4 p.m. Also, don’t forget Carmel’s, Posana Café, Scully’s or the Dripolator.

Click the slideshow to get a taste of Asheville’s warmest day of the season.

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