Kathmandu Cafe: Felt bags and wool caps are all well and good, but the owners of Himalayas Import finally decided it was impossible to convey the whole of their native culture without dal, bhat and tarkari.
Manoj and Sushila Lama last month opened Kathmandu Café at 90 Patton Ave. the former site of Sugo. The menu includes curries, vindaloos and clay oven-baked naans.
"We decided to introduce our traditional cuisine from the Himalayas, ensuring that you will not miss even one single spice," the Lamas explain.
Kathmandu is open every day from 11:30 a.m.-2:30 p.m. and 5:30 p.m.-10 p.m. For more information, call 252-1080.
The Cellar Door: The Cellar Door in Black Mountain is re-opening this week with a new concept, new price point and a pair of new chefs.
Dave Rowland and Scott Schronce, the ex-Grove Park Inn chefs who last year set up a mobile food cart in Black Mountain, are leading the restaurant's makeover into a casual, family-style Italian eatery. In classic Italian-American style, guests at the reinvented Cellar Door will now find their tables set with warm bread and a carafe of red wine, charged on the honor system at $3 a glass.
"We wanted to offer our customers wonderful Italian food in large portions and at a great price," explains owner Sandra Ewing, whose family's been in the Italian restaurant business for more than two decades.
The Cellar Door's new menu will feature Caesar salad, fried calamari, artichoke hearts parmesan and linguine with clam sauce. Dinner entrees are priced at $10-$22, and include a soup or salad.
The Cellar Door is open for lunch Tues.-Sat., 11:30 a.m.-2:30 p.m., and starts dinner service at 5:30 p.m. Sunday brunch is served from 11 a.m.-2:30 p.m. The restaurant's closed on Mondays. For more information, call 669-9090.
Savoy: Savoy, the North Asheville eatery long known for its white-tablecloth cuisine and serious wine list, was exactly the sort of restaurant experts predicted would be hit hardest by the current recession. While meal deals and scaled-back hours helped Savoy stay afloat in 2009, even owner Eric Scheffer ultimately couldn't surmount its unshakeable status as a special-occasion place.
Savoy is set to close at the end of the month. Scheffer told the Citizen-Times that "being an upscale establishment, when we all went into this 'new normal,' as I like to call it, people's discretionary income shifted."
Scheffer, a Hollywood transplant, opened Savoy in 2000. In addition to being named a must-eat destination by an array of glossy magazines, including Southern Living, the restaurant received 10 Awards of Excellence from Wine Spectator magazine.
In the decade since Scheffer launched Savoy, he's opened and closed two counter-service joints: The Stick House Grille and Manny's Burgers.
But Scheffer's sticking with a casual approach as he reshapes the 641 Merrimon Ave. location that's housed Savoy into Vinnie's Neighborhood Italian. Scheffer told the Citizen-Times that entrées will be priced at $22 and less at the red-sauce-focused eatery.
Savoy will continue serving dinner through Jan. 31. For reservations, call 253-1077.