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 […]
The Asheville Wine & Food Festival is full of fun and feasting for attendees, but for many local chefs and wineries, the event is all about the competition. And this year, the rules and prizes are a little different for the wine competition, thanks to local vineyard-industry organization, the French Broad Vignerons. Unlike last year, […]
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 […]
By 9 p.m. on June 20, most seats were filled at Off the Wagon’s first themed event: an Elvis-inspired Hawaiian luau. There were several large groups, one table of 20 and quite a few couples. But the minute dueling piano maestros Jess Mills and Eddie Hathaway started tinkling the keys, it was one big […]
Decide for yourself who makes the best Negroni in town and help raise money for a good cause by hoisting a glass at some favorite Asheville cocktail spots this week. As part of Imbibe Magazine and Campari’s international Negroni Week celebration and fundraiser, MG Road, The Imperial Life, Table and Top of the Monk will join bars around the world in […]
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.
There are only a handful of independently owned sake breweries in the United States (fewer than 10 at last count). So adding two within the Asheville city limits — within about a mile of each other, no less — is a pretty big deal.
When you watch bar manager Courteney Foster easily engaging her patrons and her colleagues while working her mixology magic behind the bar at The Junction, it’s not hard to believe that she spent her life in the restaurant industry.
In the last six months, dozens of Asheville travelers have visited Cuba, creating growing connections between the local area and the island nation. And on April 22 members of those local delegations are hosting an event that aims to help bridge the divide between our different cultures and communities. Featuring live Cuban music and art […]
Asheville takes on the beer cocktail On any given night in Asheville, people are mixing up their beer and booze, usually in the form of shots and chasers. But there’s a more refined way to enjoy the hoppy yumminess of a brew and the bite of liquor than by dropping a shot of Irish whiskey […]
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” […]
Spirit Savvy hosts Bar Wars: The daisy doesn’t sound like much of a threat. But its namesake cocktail is soon to become the centerpiece of a local mixed-drink war.
In the new, regular interview series Behind the Bar, Michael Franco talks to some of the talented men and women who keep the beer, wine and spirits flowing at some of Asheville’s favorite watering holes. Many a bar has been blamed for luring students away from their studies. But in Hank Fuseler’s case, the call […]
Ahhh tiki cocktails … those sunset-colored vacations in a glass. When done right, they warm your taste buds with exotic spices and unexpected flavors. When done wrong, they coat your tongue with sugary dreck and your head with one mother of a hangover the next morning. Fortunately, in Asheville, there are plenty of places making […]
Traditionally, everyone has a beverage in their hand to raise high when the clock strikes midnight on New Year's Eve.
Stop! Don’t throw away that cork. It could win you $100 worth of wine. The Wine Tunnel is hosting a cork sculpture contest (although screw caps and synthetic corks are also allowed). Enter your masterpiece at the shop at 148 Tunnel Road by 8 p.m. on Thursday, Aug. 29, to win. The grand prize is […]
Now in its fifth year, the festival brings together local chefs, producers, nonprofits, breweries, wineries and more for five days of dinners and events.
Maybe you're not big on planning, or you're doing the Zen thing, or your calendar has a really small space to write in. That's understandable. But occasionally, a good party merits planning ahead. Here are three reasons to mark your calendar, or update your iPhone, or adjust your sundial — whatever you do — for the […]