Not all foraged: Plenty of food will be available all weekend at the Firefly gathering. Photo courtesy of the Natalie Bogwalker

Small Bites

A pig secret What do mystery supper clubs, feral pigs, musicians and world-class chefs have to do with one another? Michael Moore, the North Carolina native who founded Blind Pig Asheville, an “underground supper club,” is about to reveal the commonality of these elements. Moore moved here from San Francisco in 2003, and has since […]

He screams: Jesse Griffith holds a cone of goat cheese and cherry ice cream from the Ultimate Ice Cream Company on Charlotte Street. Photo by Chris Wood

Small Bites

It’s hot! But plenty of local chefs are making it easier to bear the heat this summer. Not content with simply making homemade ice cream, local frozen-treat artisans are turning out rather unique flavors this year. Here are just a few: Hop to it! Say what? Zambra now makes some pretty interesting ice cream. “We […]

Getting the munchies: The Westside Munchie Machine delivers everything from beer to fine meals from West Asheville businesses. Photo by Jonathan Welch

Small Bites

What to do when you have the westside munchies You're sitting at home, drinking with friends. You need more beer. And maybe a seven-layer burrito — or maybe a cheese pizza would hit the spot. Who do you call so that you don't have to hit the road after tying one on? Call Bethany Evens, […]

Seeds of change: Leslie Armstrong, Jason Sellers and Alan Berger are opening a new vegan restaurant this summer where Beans and Berries used to be on Merrimon Avenue. photos by Jonathan Welch

Small Bites

Planting a different seed It didn't take long for the building at 165 Merrimon Ave. recently vacated by Beans and Berries to get snatched up. Longtime Laughing Seed chef Jason Sellers is joining former Rosebud Video owners Alan Berger and Leslie Armstrong to open a completely vegan restaurant there that they’ve decided to call "Plant." […]

Au chocolat! Elizabeth Foley makes one of her chocolate sculptures at The Chocolate Fetish.

Small Bites

Where's the beef? The Chop Shop Butchery is coming to Charlotte Street sometime later this summer. Karen Fowler is partnering with Josh Wright to open the old-school, full-service butcher shop directly next to the Blue Water Seafood Company, making the Charlotte Street corridor a hot spot for home chefs. The Chop Shop will sell local […]

Caffeine a go go: The Ursa Minor Coffee truck serves pastries, coffee and tea on Swanannoa River Road. In Portland, Ore. they have these trucks “every 10 feet,” says owner Eli Masem. Photo by Halima Flynt

Small Bites

More food trucks Vegetarians craving world cuisine take note. Food trucks are on your side these days. We have GQC Street Food serving vegetarian falafel at the Bywater, in West Asheville and now across from the Dripolator on select days, and now we have a Venezuelan food truck on Patton Avenue that serves vegetarian cuisine. […]

Heart of Weaverville: Jack of Hearts is a big, friendly, warm tavern, newly opened on Weaverville’s Main Street. Photo by Anne Fitten Glenn

Small Bites

The perfect storm There are a few recent restaurant openings of note. Storm Rhum Bar was watched with interest as it neared completion early this year, mostly due to the credentials of the business partners involved in the venture. The restaurant is a collaboration between Tom Israel, David LeBoutillier and silent partner Jerry Scheer, all […]

Oh, honey: There’s plenty of produce at the West Asheville Tailgate Market, but there’s also local honey, King of Pops ice-pops and Hardcastle Handmade Hot Dogs, among other things. Photo by Mackensy Lunsford

Small Bites

Eat out, give back The popular fundraiser Dining Out For Life is back. What’s not to like? By eating out (at a participating restaurant, of course) on Thursday, April 28, you’re raising money for the Western North Carolina AIDS project. That’s because those restaurants donate 20 percent of their gross sales from that day. You […]

Judges table: Everyone’s a critic at the WNC Chefs Challenge. Here, guests judge the Chef’s Table restaurant’s chicken-wing “lollipop” with arugula and microgreen salad and parmesan crisp. Photo by Camilla Calnan Phtography

Small Bites

Food fight! Did you know that the WNC Magazine Chefs Challenge is still in full swing? The competitions take place every Monday at Cucina 24 on Wall Street in downtown Asheville. In the event, teams from two WNC restaurants go head-to-head over a secret ingredient, a la Iron Chef. The audience gets to be the […]

Corner market: Bryan Kimmett and his wife, Annie, will open Restaurant Solace this May in the former Flying Frog space on the corner of Battery Park and Haywood Street in downtown Asheville. Photos by Jonathan Welch

Small Bites

Finding Solace Bryan Kimmett, formerly of The Swag, an upscale inn located near Waynesville, and one-time employee of the L'Enfant Plaza Hotel in Washington, D.C., has signed a lease on the former Flying Frog Café on the corner of Haywood Street and Battery Park Avenue in downtown Asheville. Kimmett and his wife, Annie, (whose credentials […]

A decade of dough: Lewis Lankford, Krista Stearns and Cathy Cleary started the West End Bakery ten years ago, when West Asheville was still up and coming. Photos by Jonathan Welch

Small Bites

A decade of daily bread Ten years ago, West Asheville was a very different place. While it wasn't exactly a tumbleweed-filled ghost town, there was no U-Joint, Admiral or Desoto. The West End Bakery, however, put down its roots in a spot that would eventually become a social hub for the community — an anchor […]

Piece of cake: Amanda Krueger outside of her Wall Street baking supply shop. Krueger and staff are hosting a benefit for Japan on Saturday, April 2. Photo by Jonathan Welch

Small Bites

Bake it Pretty raises money for Japan Bake it Pretty opened in early fall of last year in downtown Asheville. The Wall Street store carries kitschy-cute cake decorating supplies — think whale cookie cutters and little beer stein cupcake toppers. "We used those last year for Oktoberfest cupcakes," says owner Amanda Krueger, holding a handful […]

Go fish: William Dissen, owner of The Market Place is one of the celebrity chefs selected by the Monterey Bay Aquarium for their Cooking for Solutions event in May. To learn more, visit cookingforsolutions.org. Photo by Michael Muller

Small Bites

The Market Place mixes it up The Market Place, a downtown institution for over 30 years, will reopen on Tuesday, April 5, after undergoing a makeover to update both the look and feel of the venue. "Any business goes through evolutions," says chef and owner William Dissen, who took over The Market Place from Mark […]

Cupcakes for a cause: These coffee-stout cupcake, from the French Broad Chocolate Lounge, were stars at last year’s Cupcakes for Cures. Photo courtesy of Eric R. Howell

Small Bites

Cupcakes for cures Eat cupcakes for a good cause? Yes, please! Cupcakes for Cures returns to the Grove Park Inn on Saturday, March 26. It's a cupcake lover's dream — a frosting-scented ballroom stuffed to the gills with the tiny creations of professional bakers competing for prizes and recognition. Amateurs and kids can get into […]

Baker Aker: Modesto baker, Jennifer Aker, pulls a sourdough boule from one of Modesto’s wood-fired bread ovens. Photo by Jonathan Welch

Small Bites

Modesto gets a bakery Asheville has a new source for French pastries, breakfast breads, cupcakes and some of the only wood-fired bread in town. Hector Diaz has opened a bakery window on one side of his Grove Arcade Italian eatery, Modesto. Inside the tiny kitchen, Johnson-and-Wales-trained bakerJennifer Aker and Fulton Forde turn out classic desserts […]

Runs in the family: Anthony Cerrato, owner of Fiore’s, with his father, Fred. Photos by Jonathan Welch

Small Bites

Fiore's expands Fiore's Ristorante Toscana, Anthony Cerrato's classic Italian restaurant, is opening a second location in Arden at 2310 Hendersonville Road. But don't expect to see a carbon copy of Ceratto's downtown eatery. "It's going to be pretty different, actually," he says of Fiore’s South: Italian Comfort Food. For one, even though the menu will […]