Foodwire: Celebrate Day of the Dead and Firestorm relaunching

Third-grader Michaiah shoes off the skull she decorated during Hall Fletcher Elementary’s recent field trip to Short Street Cakes. Photo by Pete Lutz.

Short Street Cakes celebrates The Day of the Dead

Jodi Rhoden, owner of Short Street Cakes, knows that Halloween isn't only about the sweet stuff. “I just wanted to go beyond Halloween and into the deeper, underlying meaning of this time of year, which is really more about death and ancestors and spirits,” she says.

Since 2010, Short Street Cakes has hosted an ancestors’ altar with decorated sugar skulls in correlation with both Halloween and the Day of the Dead, a holiday that originated in Mexico and is celebrated throughout the world on Nov. 1.

It costs $5 to decorate a sugar skull, and completed skulls can be taken home or placed on the altar at Short Street Cakes until Nov. 1, when they will be moved to the Day of the Dead altar at Mayfel's restaurant downtown.

“[The skulls] provide a means for people to come together and create art that celebrates ancestors and loved ones who have passed,” Rhoden says. “You're actually basically inviting your ancestors back into your life for another year.” Some participants even make skulls with their own names on them. “It's also to recognize our own impermanence,” she says.

Proceeds from the sugar skulls benefit Coalición de Organizaciones Latino-Americanas, an organization that advocates for Latino immigrants living in WNC. “Latino culture is an intrinsic part of our culture, or it's one of the many cultures that is thriving here,” Rhoden says. “It's important to acknowledge that this is a part of how the South is changing.”

Short Street Cakes is located at 225 Haywood Road in West Asheville. For more information, visit or call 505-4822.

Firestorm relaunches

After a six-week hiatus, Firestorm Café and Books will reopen on Monday, Oct. 29. The store promises free coffee, discounts and balloons for the event.

The co-op café took a break in mid-September to renovate its space and evaluate its business model, which revolves around shared leadership.

Firestorm is located at 48 Commerce St. Call 255-8115 for more information.

The Weinhaus drinks to the Celtic meat harvest

The Weinhaus is hosting “A Bloody Red Halloween” wine tasting on Friday, Oct. 26. They’re slating the event as a celebration of both Halloween and its origin, the Celtic meat harvest, also called Samhain. Organizer Derek Rubio says the holiday twist serves mainly as inspiration for the tasting’s red wine theme. “Deeper reds, but not necessarily more tannic,” he says. “It will be a variety of juicier, dark red wines like zinfandel blends, all the way to more tannic big ones.”

The cost of the event is $10, which gets you light snacks and four tasting pours. The Weinhaus is located at 86 Patton Ave. For more information, call 254-6453.


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