Small Bites

Appalachian Vinters: Parking shouldn’t be a problem at Appalachian Vinters, a new family-owned wine-and-beer shop behind Biltmore Fitness off Biltmore Avenue in Asheville. “We have a huge lot, and you don’t have to pay for it,” says Geoff Alexander, who runs the store with his brother Charles.

Photo by Jonathan Welch

The Alexanders hope the availability of free parking will encourage shoppers to spend time browsing at their 6,800 square-foot store, which features “high-quality, lower-priced wines and craft beers from all over the world.” As the name implies, the Alexanders also plan to specialize in mountain-made products, including art, microbrews and a variety of ritzy bar snacks to go.

“We’re talking to everyone from Spinning Spider Creamery to Hickory Nut Gap to Sunburst Trout,” Alexander says, reeling off the names of top local food players. “We also have a huge selection of North Carolina wines.” The Alexanders are veterans of Zebra, renowned in Charlotte for having the city’s longest wine list. “But it’s more our speed here in Asheville,” Alexander says.

Appalachian Vinters will celebrate its grand opening this Friday, Dec. 19, from 4:30-10 p.m. with a ribbon cutting, benefit auction and wine tasting. The store at 2-B Huntsman Place is open Mon.-Sat., 10 a.m.-8 p.m. and Sundays from noon-5 p.m. For more information, call 505-7500.

Bavarian Restaurant: “All You Can Eat” may become a more popular phrase as restaurants try to lure penny-pinching customers out to eat. The latest local deal comes courtesy of Bavarian Restaurant on Weaverville Highway, which is offering an AYCE homemade bratwurst special on Tuesday nights for a mere $13.99. “Just think, the best of the wurst,” owner Doc Homburg writes in an e-mail. So the staff knows how much food to prepare, reservations are required. “Seating is limited to 25 guest, so make you reservation right now,” Homburg urges. Call 654-8383 to snag your spot at the table.

Hungry Potato: Two local restaurants have partnered with a new service to sell their merchandise online: Jack of the Wood pint glasses and Early Girl Eatery t-shirts and juice glasses are now available at hungrypotato.com, billed as a “single-source outlet for original restaurant merchandise.” The site is shipping Asheville souvenirs across the country, as a testimonial from a Sherman Oaks, Calif., buyer attests: “I was so happy to find an Early Girl Eatery T-Shirt on your site,” Maggie M. writes. “I always wished I had purchased this shirt when I was visiting Asheville and now I have.”

Fiore’s And Fig On Christmas Eve: Two of the 10 Asheville Independent Restaurant Association member restaurants slated to stay open for Christmas Eve—check www.airasheville.org for a complete list—are marking the holiday with a celebratory prix fixe dinner. Fiore’s is offering a $30 “Feast of the Seven Fishes,” a traditional Southern Italian meal featuring as many seafood dishes as there are Roman Catholic sacraments (or so goes one popular explanation). For reservations, call 281-0710. Fig Bistro is pitching a five-course holiday menu, priced at $45 a person. To learn more, or to make reservations, call 277-0889.

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