Xpress contributor Jonathan Ammons recently spent several days in New Orleans reporting on the annual five-day Tales of the Cocktail international cocktail festival. (Yes, it’s a tough job.) As the event wrapped up on Sunday, July 20, Ammons shared a backward glance at this year’s gathering of the worldwide spirits community.
On a rainy Friday afternoon in New Orleans, Louisiana, Asheville’s own Nicole Anhalt came in from the downpour to stake her claim in this year’s Sidecar by Merlet Cocktail Competition. Hosted annually at the country’s largest cocktail conference, Tales of the Cocktail, seven bartenders from across the country competed for a trip to the Merlet […]
Once a year, in the muggy heat of July, thousands of bartenders flock to New Orleans for the largest cocktail conference of the year, Tales of the Cocktail. It is estimated that this year 22,000 of the world’s finest craft cocktail nerds — including a healthy contingent from Asheville’s bar scene — have either […]
Farm-to-table agriculture has gone mainstream, but does it work as a sustainable model? Some local farmers and restaurateurs aren’t sure, even as they persist in trying. “Any good farming system has all the components of an actual ecosystem,” says Sunil Patel, who runs Urban Patchwork Farms, a progressive farming venture that seeks to develop inner-city […]
North Carolina has always had a peculiar relationship with alcohol. Despite being known as the home of American wine before Prohibition, the state beat the nation to the punch by nearly a decade, outlawing alcohol in 1909. In the 1920s, North Carolina’s Prohibition chief declared that the Tar Heel State led the nation in illicit […]
It is a balmy and bright Thursday morning, and over in Fairview, just outside the hustle and bustle of the city, Jennifer Perkins is unlocking the door to the small creamery she runs with her husband, Andy. The building is conveniently located next door to their house and 2-acre yard. “Our process is slightly different than a […]
By the time we come down from the clouds that cling to the mountains, and pull into Tryon, the rain is hot on our heels on a Friday afternoon. Not good news for the 73 competition barbecue cookers that have come from as far away as Texas and Missouri to try their hand at yet another trophy, this time at the recent Blue Ridge BBQ & Music Festival.
It is a crystal-clear day when I take my seat in the dining room at Grove Park Inn’s new Vue 1913, a more casual take on farm-to-table dining than the venue’s previous installment, Horizons. I’ve come here for a chef’s tasting, and the fact that the inn even has a chef’s tasting is a […]
Beginning Saturday, June 21, Seven Sows Bourbon & Larder will host a weekly late-night eats, drinks and dance party. DJ Ghostface Kahlua will be spinning disco, funk and old-school hip hop, and the always-creative restaurant’s late-night menu will feature some rather adventurous options. Highlights include cheddar funnel cake with foie gras gravy and crispy frog legs […]
“Write about the succulent glories of Tar Heel barbecue at one’s own peril,” advised Rosemary Roberts of the Greensboro News & Record, adding, “It’s much safer to take on the National Rifle Association.” Barbecue is North Carolina’s love, lust and food of choice. Heck, it might as well be our state religion. And if love, religion and food are the three most common causes of rifts, rivalries and wars, barbecue is also a battleground.
For most chefs, a two-hour microburst rainstorm at 8 a.m. does not create any significant hurdles in the workday, but for Michael Twitty, it really does. Twitty is not just a chef of pre-Civil War slave foods; he is an historian and an author, and when he cooks, he does everything as it would have been done by his ancestors
Charlie Hodge is no stranger to the cocktail scene. After helping to open Chestnut and developing their beverage program, he went on to head the bar at Bull & Beggar, developing the popular Monday “Recession-Proof Mixology” nights that target service industry workers. And that doesn’t include his incredible track record having helped open the legendary Clyde Common in Oregon and helping to organize the Portland Bartenders Guild. His newest venture is a farm-to-bar cocktail joint called Sovereign Remedies, which began demolition last week on it’s tiny 800-square-foot space at the corner of Walnut and Market streets.
While many were sipping fishbowl-sized margaritas and chowing down on fajitas during Cinco de Mayo, a few of us indulged in a different kind of Mexican food experience. Tom Leiner of Grapevine wine distributors teamed up with Marco Garcia, former owner and chef of Woodfin’s Curras Dom, to do a special Mexican-themed coursed dinner and […]
Running a wine shop isn’t easy. Margins are often surprisingly tight, something’s always breaking, vintages vary in quality, people’s tastes change constantly, and it can often seem impossible to compete with the prices in the big grocery chains that keep popping up all over town. A number of local wine shops have closed in the last few years, but Table Wine in South Asheville seems to be thriving.
Asheville is losing an icon. The sweet, fiery, exceedingly talented Cynthia Turner, our very own queen of the cocktail, is returning home to New Orleans, leaving behind a legacy built on quality, conviction and compassion.
In Asheville, there is no shortage of great patios upon which to sip a mimosa and cure your hangover on a Sunday afternoon. But Seven Sows announced this week that they will be bringing us yet another as they expand their hours in preparation for warmer weather. Previously only open for dinner, the restaurant will […]
Blind Tasting League brings wine appreciation down to earth Currants, bramble and boysenberry are among many of the somewhat inaccessible descriptive terms I’ve heard tossed around at lofty wine tasting events over the years. The world of wine can be a bit pretentious, a trait that often leads would-be connoisseurs to settle for “critter wines” […]
Photo by Jonathan Ammons. Restaurants have been popping up all over West Asheville this spring with a pace and vigor reminiscent of popcorn kernels heating up in a kettle. Now Early Girl Eatery owners Julie and John Stehling have thrown their kernels into the pot with the opening of their new venture, King Daddy’s Chicken […]
Haywood Road smelled of its usual cigarettes and fried food with the welcome addition of the scent of spicy garlic on Thursday night as Chef Aaron Thomas pulled his first batch of natty bread out of the oven at Nine Mile’s brand-new location in West Asheville. “Compared to our first opening [in Montford],” says Thomas, […]
West Asheville has been booming lately. Within the past year, Haywood Road has seen some significant changes to its dining and bar scene, the latest of which is the highly anticipated Buffalo Nickel, which opened March 18 to a packed house. (photo by Nathan Metcalf)
The highly anticipated King James Public House opened this winter on Charlotte Street to a jam-packed house, and the crowd didn’t die down for several weeks. The tiny, 45-seat restaurant and bar from Zambra owner Peter Slamp has seen lines out the door for considerably longer than the usual honeymoon period of a new restaurant. […]