Small bites: Noble Cider supports nonprofits with pie

A NOBLE TEAM: "The food fundraisers garner a lot of interest because it's a twofold thing," says Noble Cider co-owner Trevor Baker, far left. "You get to come and eat pie and raise money for Make-A-Wish." Additional owners, from left, are Lief Stevens, Robin Stevens and Steve Stinnett. Photo courtesy of Noble Cider

There will be pie. And, hopefully, plenty of it. Nobel Cider is hosting its inaugural Noble Pie Contest, Saturday, Aug. 28, to help raise funds for the Make-A-Wish foundation — the nonprofit committed to granting wishes to children diagnosed with life-threatening medical conditions. “We’re very keen about supporting the community,” says co-owner Trevor Baker. “In our opinion, everyone should be looking for ways to build community and help wherever they can.”

Since opening its taproom on New Leicester Highway last year, the cidery has made it a point to host seasonal fundraisers. In the spring, it launched the initiative with a chili cook-off, which donated its proceeds to Girls on the Run — a nonprofit that empowers girls through experience-based activities that integrate running.

The upcoming pie competition invites entries in two categories: fruit and nonfruit. Contestants can participate in either category or both. Three pies of each kind must be made for each entry to assure enough samples are available for all participating judges. “We don’t have master pastry chefs coming in to judge,” Baker notes. “It’s meant to be a ‘fun raiser,’ as I call it,” meaning the pies will be assessed by all in attendance.

If Noble Cider’s initial fundraiser is any indicator, there should be plenty of pies. “We were completely taken aback by the chili cook-off,” says Baker. “I thought maybe we’d get 30 people. We ended up having to turn people away at the door.”

Although some details are still in the works, prizes will likely include a commemorative rolling pin and gift cards to local businesses. Baker is hoping to partner with a local ice cream shop for the event. There will also be a cash bar for beer and cider.

“I hope people want to come out and eat some pie and put some money toward a good cause,” he says. “That’s really what it’s all about.”

The Noble Pie Contest begins at 4 p.m. Sunday, Aug. 28, at the Nobel Cider taproom, 356 New Leicester Highway. Contestants are asked to arrive at 3 p.m. Preregistration is not required. An entry fee of $10 will benefit Make-A-Wish. Admission for those not competing is $5, which includes access to samples of all pies. For details, visit

Claddagh Restaurant & Pub opens on College Street

Claddagh Restaurant & Pub opened its Asheville location Aug. 8. The new College Street eatery is an expansion of the restaurant’s flagship in High Point. The Irish pub offers 32 beers on tap (half of which are local brews) and 40 bottled beers, combining local, imported and national brands. Traditional Irish dishes are among the food items served, including shepherd’s pie, Irish chicken pie and bangers and mash (Irish sausages served over garlic mashed potatoes and topped with sautéed onions and gravy). Claddagh offers indoor and outdoor seating as well as a take-out menu.

Claddagh Restaurant & Pub is at 4 College St. Hours are 11 a.m.-2 a.m. daily. For details, visit

Buxton Hall Barbecue’s first anniversary

Buxton Hall Barbecue will celebrate its first year in business with a six-course meal, cocktails and wine. Dubbed the All Wood Luxury, the menu includes barbecued duck, rabbit, quail and more.

The celebration begins at 6 p.m. Sunday, Aug. 28, at Buxton Hall Barbecue, 32 Banks Ave. Tickets are $75 per person, $105 with wine pairings. Gratuity is not included. For details, visit For tickets, go to

Pacific Northwest Wine Dinner at The Farm

MetroWines, Grapevine Distribution and The Farm Kitchen are coming together for the Pacific Northwest Wine Dinner. The event will take place at the Chef’s Table, a new space at The Farm Kitchen. Chef Mike Ferrari will prepare the evening’s meal in front of guests with a menu that includes smoked Sunburst Farm trout and yuzu-infused melon caviar, crispy pig-ear confit, wild striped bass, lamb persillade and tiramusi cheesecake. Wine pairings will include 2014 Boomtown Chard, 2014 Pike Road Pinot Noir and 2013 Novelty Hill Royal Slope Red.

The pairing begins at 6:30 p.m. Tuesday, Aug. 30, at The Farm, 215 Justice Ridge Road, Candler. Tickets cost $50, plus tax and gratuity. For reservations, call The Farm at 667-0666. Reservations must be made by Friday, Aug. 26. For details, visit

Topping the lists

Bon Appétit recently honored Buxton Hall Barbecue not only with the No. 9 slot in its Top Ten New Restaurants for 2016, but also with the designation of Fried Chicken Sandwich of the Year. Writers Andrew Knowlton and Julia Kramer salute the restaurant’s technique of first smoking then frying its chicken. In an Aug. 9 story, Knowlton and Kramer also tapped Hole Doughtnuts’ molasses-bourbon doughnut as the Dessert of the Year. In the write-up, readers are asked to “close your eyes and imagine the greatest doughnut you’ve ever eaten. Now multiply its taste, texture and unadulterated pleasure by a million.” Meanwhile, Southern Living has included Buxton Hall and Local Provisions among the 25 eateries in its list of the South’s Best New Restaurants for 2016. Buxton was lauded for its whole-hog barbecue and catfish sandwich, while Local Provisions chef Justin Burdett was praised for his “refined approach” to Appalachian cuisine. The magazine also named Root Down as one of the South’s Best Food Trucks. Among the menu items highlighted in the story is Root Down’s pulled pork and pimiento cheese sandwich.



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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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3 thoughts on “Small bites: Noble Cider supports nonprofits with pie

  1. luther blissett

    Well, putting an “Irish” pub a few doors down from Jack of the Wood should turn out well. I’ll say “gone by spring.”

  2. Big Al

    I have never cared for Jack of the Wood and would welcome a competing “Irish” option, but what Asheville REALLY needs is a SCOTTISH pub!

  3. boatrocker

    Ugh- I don’t want to be the one to say this in print-

    Nobody (almost) cares about the difference between an English, Irish or Scottish pub here.
    Again, almost.

    As long as you can dress it up on a website or garner enough social media comments from ‘friends’,
    let the good times roll for opening yet another bar in town.
    The ‘connector towns’, aka Charlotte, Atlanta, Knoxville, Greenville, Chattanooga tourist $ are yours.

    Serve toilet water or dishwater, call it something punny after pouring it out of a tap and watch the rubes beg for it.

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