Small Bites

The new Xpress dining guide: With the explosion of local bars and restaurants, how’s a hungry local to keep up with all their dining options? Here’s how: Pick up a free copy of the Mountain Xpress’ new annual dining guide, Asheville Eats & Drinks.

The handy, half-menu-sized guide is hot off the presses and will soon be appearing in boxes and on counters all over Buncombe County. The guide serves up detailed listings of the county’s more than 400 bars and restaurants, and that’s not all.

To add some spice to the guide, Xpress solicited help from more than a dozen local clubs and organizations. The groups—ranging from committed foodies to business lunchers to the Latte Republicans—told us where they’d go for the perfect cup of coffee, family-friendly meal, cheap eats etc. What’s more, we included several pages of your recommendations—the establishments readers cast votes for in Xpress’ annual “Best of WNC” poll.

Look for Eats & Drinks at establishments and info centers throughout our area, beginning late this week. In the event you can’t find a copy, give us a call, at 251-1333, and we’ll point you in the right direction.

German dinner: Hot dogs aren’t the only sausages that match well with summer: Bavarian Lodge wants local eaters to think homemade wurst. The Weaverville restaurant has partnered with the Weinhaus to host a seasonal German Food and Beer dinner on Thursday, June 26, at 7 p.m. Tickets are $45. To reserve your spot, call 254-6453.

Dinner and a show: Johnny’s Uptown Grill is hosting an edible appreciation of Driving Miss Daisy, North Carolina Stage Company’s current production. The downtown Asheville restaurant (on Battery Park Avenue) is offering a $75 package in conjunction with the performance that includes a show ticket, wine, a $30 donation to NC Stage and a Southern dinner. For tickets to the Thursday, June 26, event, call 350-9090 or visit www.ncstage.org.

Farm and garden tour: Tickets are on sale for the annual Mountain Farm & Garden Tour, which this year features 29 sites. Participants in the event, scheduled for Saturday and Sunday, June 28 and 29, are encouraged to bring coolers to store all the eggs, cheese, meat and produce they collect along the route. Tickets are $25 per car to visit all farms, or $10 per single farm entry. Visit www.mountainfarmtour.org to buy tickets. 

North Carolina wines: Five more North Carolina vineyards can now boast their own American Viticulture Area, a designation previously reserved for wineries in the Yadkin Valley region. The U.S. Treasury Department’s Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau—which has jurisdiction over such things—recently declared the Swan Creek area, which includes portions of Wilkes, Yadkin and Iredell counties, an AVA. The department pointed to the area’s “optimum precipitation levels; rocky, loamy soil and continuous breezes” as factors in its decision. The United States is home to more than 180 AVAs, with 100 of those in California. North Carolina currently ranks 10th nationally in wine and grape production.

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