UP IN THE AIR: Scott Thomas, left, and Mike Piroli, right, were hoping to open the Public School bar in the old Standard Paper Sales Co. building on Banks Avenue this fall, but city paperwork has kept the project from getting off the ground as scheduled. Photo by Cindy Kunst

The long hello: Permitting issues drag on for South Slope ventures

Driving by the old Standard Paper Sales building, you can see construction workers carrying equipment in and out and hear the sounds of loud machinery. Vortex had originally planned to open in the space in June, and four other South Slope businesses had their sights on the space for September. As the summer slips away, you can’t help but wonder what’s holding up those projects.

NOW POURING: A marquee displays the wide variety of beers available for sampling at New Belgium's Clips event. Photo courtesy of New Belgium Brewing Co.

Beer Scout: Clips is coming

A stop-motion movie featuring a banana, a taste of Coconut Curry Hefeweizen and donating money to Asheville on Bikes: It’s all part of New Belgium’s Clips Beer & Film Tour, which returns to Asheville on Friday, Sept. 5.  “The short films this year are really good,” says Jesse Claeys, one of the festival’s producers. “We’ve […]

Chef Ulfet Ozyabasligil Ralph, from the Culinary Vegetable Institute in  Charleston, SC, wins the Chefs Challenge. (Mountain Xpress / Jesse Farthing)

Taste of success: Regional chefs battle it out at Chefs Challenge

Crowds of people, people and more people — more than 3,000 — made their way to the annual Asheville Wine & Food Festival at the U.S. Cellular Center downtown on Saturday, Aug. 23. At the end of the evening came the highlight of the festival: the final competition in the annual Chefs Challenge, a cooking competition that pits regional chefs against each other in an Iron Chef-style battle.

The Biltmore Estate was one of the local wineries at the Asheville Wine and Food Festival. Photo by Kat McReynolds

Asheville Wine & Food Festival: The Grand Tasting

Hundreds of flavor enthusiasts gathered at the U.S. Cellular Center for four hours of wine, food, competition and camaraderie at Asheville’s sixth annual Wine and Food Festival Grand Tasting event, and only Southern hospitality could explain the extent of heavy pours that sloshed around inside the event’s beautifully branded keepsake cups.

Highland Brewing Co. employee Jay pours his favorite brew, the Gaelic Ale, for attendees of the 2014 Food Blog Forum. Photo by Maria McReynolds

Asheville hosts 120 hungry bloggers

Ashevilleans, more so than residents of many other cities, know where their food is raised, grown or picked and can often participate in the process with little effort. This reverence for cuisine afforded Asheville the honor of hosting Food Blog Forum’s 2014 conference, a three-day networking and educational event for 120 food bloggers from across the nation.