Small bites: Chef Brian Canipelli launches a pair of new projects

ON THE MOVE: Chef Brian Canipelli's two new restaurants, Contrada and Forestry Camp Bar & Restaurant, offer rotating menus. Both recently opened, keeping the restauranteur on the move. Photo by Morgan Ford

James Beard Award-nominated chef and Cucina 24 owner Brian Canipelli has been fairly busy of late. In early September, the restaurateur launched Contrada, a small eatery two doors down from his original Wall Street restaurant. And on Sept. 27, he opened the Forestry Camp Bar & Restaurant near Biltmore Village as its food director.

The new downtown restaurant, says Canipelli, offers a rotating menu with an emphasis on antipasto dishes, including mozzarella, bruschetta, anchovies and porqueta. Contrada’s wine, cocktail and beer options are served via a tap system. Though drink selections will rotate, diners can expect to always find some variation of a Negroni and spritz on tap, along with Burial Beer Co. brews.

South of downtown, Forestry Camp Bar & Restaurant offers Spanish- and French-inspired cuisine made with locally sourced produce. There’s also international beer and wine, an educational coffee program and a curated liquor selection.

Burial Beer Co. financed the site’s restoration project, which began in 2015. The restaurant’s two-story structure is one of six buildings on the property. According to the brewery’s website, the camp was originally built in the 1930s by the Civilian Conservation Corps, a work relief program established by President Franklin D. Roosevelt. Burial Beer operates out of the additional buildings.

“It’s a good match,” Canipelli says of his partnership with Burial Beer. The brewery, he says, “looks at their craft in the same way that I look at mine. … They care about the ingredients they use, just as I do.”

Contrada is at 28 Wall St. Hours are 4-10 p.m. daily. Forestry Camp Bar & Restaurant is at 10 Shady Oak Drive. Closed Monday-Tuesday, hours vary. To learn more, visit

Butcher’s Table Dinner returns

Award-winning chef Kyle McKnight of Barrister’s at the Esquire Hotel in Gastonia will help launch Foothills Meats’ fifth season of the Butcher’s Table Dinner series, to be held each Thursday, starting Oct. 10. The weekly dinner includes a meat dish accompanied by seasonal vegetables, house-made pickled vegetables, local artisan and/or fine cheese and dessert. Chefs Elliot Moss of Buxton Hall Barbecue and Michelle Bailey of Smoky Park Supper Club are among future participating chefs. Tickets are $60 per person. Optional drink pairing add-on is $12 per person.

Dinner begins at 6 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 1,0 at Foothills Meats, 2 Huntsman Place. To purchase tickets, visit

Cub Scout Pack 17 barbecue fundraiser

Cub Scout Pack 17 will host its fourth annual barbecue fundraiser on Saturday, Oct. 12. The event will feature smoked Smithfield pork shoulders, baked beans, coleslaw and a drink for $8. Additionally, children 12 years old and younger can opt for an all-beef hot dog meal for $4. Homemade desserts will be available for $1. Funds raised will support the scouts, and a portion will also be used to buy flags for veterans’ graves.

Barbecue is served 4-8 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 12, at the Riceville Volunteer Fire Department, 2251 Riceville Road. To learn more, visit

Trial to Table

Franny’s Farm in Leicester is hosting a fundraising dinner for the Utopian Seed Project, a local nonprofit committed to supporting diversity in food and farming. The Saturday, Oct. 12, event will feature plates and beverages prepared by chef Steven Goff of Aux Bar, Jamie Swofford of The Chef’s Farmer and Keia Mastrianni of Milk Glass Pie. The menu will include okra kimchi, cowpea green chimichurri, sweet potato leaf kraut and okra seed sourdough and sweet potato bread among other dishes. Seating is limited. Tickets are $65

Trial to Table runs 5-9 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 12, at Franny’s Farm, 22 Frannys Farm Road, Leicester. To purchase tickets, visit

Family feast and pumpkin carving

Black Bear BBQ will host a fall family patio pop-up on Saturday, Oct. 12. For $30, groups receive a pound of protein (pulled pork, barbecued pulled chicken or barbecued faux chicken), two large family-sized sides and four pieces of cornbread or dinner rolls. Attendees will also receive a pumpkin to carve and s’mores prepared by chef A.J. Gregson.

The feast runs 4-7 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 12, at Black Bear BBQ, 800 Fairview Road, Suite C8. To learn more, visit

Dog costume contest at Bhramari Brewing

Bhramari Brewing Co. will host its second consecutive dog costume contest on Sunday, Oct. 13. Entry is $5. All proceeds benefit the Asheville Humane Society. Registration runs until 2 p.m. Sunday, Oct. 13. Dog-friendly prizes will be awarded to the top three contestants, plus there will be a prize for people’s choice.

The contest runs 3-5 p.m. Sunday, Oct. 13, at Bhramari Brewing Co., 101 S. Lexington Ave. To learn more, visit

‘Pawty’ with a Purpose

Additional funds will be raised for the Asheville Humane Society at the upcoming Pawty with a Purpose Tasting Event. Organized by Keller Williams Biltmore Village and hosted by Daphne at Twisted Laurel, the evening will feature a drink-paired food tasting, silent auction and raffles. Tickets for the tasting are $50. On the tasting menu are brisket slider with espresso barbecue sauce; seared tuna with honey-ginger glaze and wonton chip; and cauliflower steak with extra virgin olive oil, garlic, lemon, agave and chili flakes. Each item is paired with an alcoholic beverage. Additional bites will include calamari, wings and hummus.

The “pawty” runs 6-8 p.m. Tuesday, Oct. 15, at Daphne at Twisted Laurel, 130 College St. To purchase tickets, visit

Save Fractals Coffee Shop

Fractals Coffee Shop in West Asheville recently closed following a dispute over its lease, according to a Facebook announcement from owner Nicholas Altman. The business is currently looking for a new location. To help finance the move, Altman has started a GoFundMe campaign at


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About Thomas Calder
Thomas Calder received his MFA in Fiction from the University of Houston's Creative Writing Program. His writing has appeared in Gulf Coast, the Miracle Monocle, Juked and elsewhere. His debut novel, The Wind Under the Door, is now available.

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