Small Bites: The return of CiderFest NC

FRUIT OF THE HARVEST: Back for its second year, CiderFest NC is expanding to include more cider makers and welcome more guests in its new venue at the WNC Farmers Market. Photo courtesy of WNC Green Building Council

After last year’s inaugural CiderFest NC sold out days before the event, the WNC Green Building Council decided to go bigger for its second go-around. This year’s apple-centric fundraising bash, slated for Sunday, Nov. 2, will move from its previous home at the Echoview Fiber Mill in Weaverville to more spacious accommodations at the WNC Farmers Market.

To fill the larger venue, 650 tickets will be available — 250 more than last year — and a dozen hard-cider makers from the Carolinas and Virginia will be on hand to share samples of their wares.

Event organizer Nina Zinn says CiderFest began as an idea to hold a cider-and-cheese event for about 60 people. From there, says Zinn, the notion caught fire and morphed into what became the first hard-cider festival in North Carolina.

“There was so much enthusiasm from all the local cider makers, we ended up having a sold-out event for more than 400 people,” Zinn say. “What we have found is that the cider makers are very supportive of us organizing this event, which is promoting their craft product as well as bringing awareness of this rapidly growing industry here in our region.”

So far, participating cider makers include: Naked Apple Hard Cider, Saint Paul Mountain Vineyard, Black Mountain Ciderworks, Windy Hill Orchard & Cider Mill, Bull City Ciderworks, Fishing Creek Cider, Urban Orchard Cider Co., Noble Cider, Three Sisters Cidery, Bold Rock Hard Cider, Red Clay Ciderworks and Sourwood Brewing Co..

Local apple growers will offer fresh, organic nonalcoholic cider and Underground Baking Co. will make apple-cider pretzels for the occasion. Activities will include cider tastings with locally made artisan cheeses, bread and crackers; a cheese-making demonstration; Hard Cider 101; hard-cider evaluations and awards by the French Broad Vignerons; and autumn-themed activities for kids. Live music will be provided by the Jon Stickley Trio.

The event goes on rain or shine. Tickets are $30 for ages 21 and up; children and adults ages 20 and younger are free. Tickets go on sale Sept. 15 and are expected to sell out. All proceeds will support the WNC Green Building Council’s work to promote environmentally sustainable and health-conscious building practices.

CiderFest NC happens 1-5 p.m. Sunday, Nov. 2, at the WNC Farmers Market, 570 Brevard Road. Tickets:

Dough expands hours, menu

Dough, the multitasking eatery/bakery/market/takeout joint on Merrimon Avenue, is expanding its hours to include evening dinner service. Starting Wednesday, Sept. 3, Dough will be open until 9 p.m. weekdays, featuring a nighttime menu of soups, salads and oven-baked entrees, including pizzas, calzones and strombolis. There will be nightly dessert specials, and beer and wine will be available as well as a full coffee bar. Dough will also begin offering theme nights as follows: Mondays — Southern Comfort Menu; Tuesdays — Taco Truck Tuesdays (but without the truck); Wednesdays — Breakfast for Dinner; Thursdays — Old-School Italian Night; Fridays — Fish and Chips. On Friday evenings, kids will eat free with the purchase of one adult meal.

Dough, 372 Merrimon Ave. Hours are 8 a.m.-9 p.m. Monday–Friday, 8 a.m.-5 p.m. Saturday and 9 a.m.-3 p.m. Sunday.


Harvest Moon at A-B Tech

The A-B Tech culinary arts and hospitality management departments will host the annual Autumn in Asheville Harvest Moon fundraising event on Thursday, Oct. 2, to benefit the A-B Tech Foundation’s scholarship programs and the two departments. At the event, interactive food stations will highlight the skills of A-B Tech culinary and hospitality students, and guests can bid on vacation packages and other items in a live auction. Tickets are $75. Attendance is limited.

Autumn in Asheville’s Harvest Moon, 6-8:30 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 2, A-B Tech Community College Brumit Center for Culinary Arts and Hospitality, 340 Victoria Road.


Taste of Asheville

Asheville Independent Restaurants has scheduled its annual Taste of Asheville culinary event for 6 to 9 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 20, at The Venue downtown. The event will bring together 40 Asheville chefs to offer samples and tastings. Also in November, look for 2015 AIR Passports to go on sale. The coupon books offer buy-one-get-one-free deals at participating AIR restaurants

For details on Taste of Asheville tickets and AIR Passports, visit






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