Michelle Edwards spent part of New Year’s Eve deep-cleaning the small storefront on State Street that previously housed Black Mountain Doughnut Factory. While the floors and counters are now spotless, Edwards and her partner, Joel Boggs, are only adding to the space’s sugary aroma with their recently opened Dough House Vegan Donuts.
Though the couple are new to the bakery business, both Edwards and Boggs are familiar names in the local food scene. The couple launched The Trashy Vegan in August 2020 in the parking lot of Fleetwood’s in West Asheville.
According to Edwards, six months into The Trashy Vegan’s debut, Boggs began searching for a brick-and-mortar location. But plans changed when he came across a post on Craigslist from the owners of Black Mountain Doughnut Factory.
“They were selling all their really nice equipment,” Edwards says. “Joel asked me what I thought about doughnuts.”
Admittedly, Edwards continues, she hadn’t thought much about the pastries. But the affordable rent, combined with the available equipment, seemed like too good an opportunity to pass up. “Who doesn’t like doughnuts and coffee?”
Dough House offers three classic flavors — glazed, strawberry and chocolate — as well as a daily special. The company has also contracted with Gallivant Coffee in Woodfin, which is supplying the doughnut shop with its roasted beans for drip coffee and lattes. Chill Wave Coffee iced products are also available for purchase.
As for now, Edwards and baker Wesley Lowrance are managing the shop’s day-to-day operations, while Boggs remains behind the grill at The Trashy Vegan, where Dough House doughnuts will soon be available for purchase.
Edwards says she hasn’t ruled out additional new menu options at the food truck inspired by Dough House. “We may try a burger on a doughnut,” she says with a laugh. “It’s been done, but not vegan-style.”
Dough House Vegan Donuts is at 601 W. State St., Black Mountain. For hours, visit avl.mx/b22.
The meal deal
The Asheville Chamber of Commerce debuted Asheville Restaurant Week in 2013 to support and spotlight local eateries amid the slower winter months. In turn, participating venues created special menus at discounted rates to spur traffic. While COVID-19 did not cancel last year’s gathering, many in the industry pivoted, offering more takeout-friendly options.
Such might be the case again for Asheville Restaurant Week 2022, taking place Tuesday, Jan. 18-Monday, Jan. 24. Among the restaurants signed up are Cúrate and La Bodega by Cúrate , Chestnut, Benne on Eagle, The Lobster Trap, Twisted Laurel and Sawhorse, where $40 will buy a three-course dinner for two including the buckwheat pancake and maple eclair.
For a full list of restaurants and menus, visit avl.mx/5k3.
On the lamb
Indian food is one of the few ethnic cuisines not on West Asheville’s restaurant map, but for two nights in January, chef Sunil Patel will be cooking a five-course pop-up dinner at West End Bakery. The first of Patel’s Indian suppers is Thursday, Jan. 13, with the second taking place Thursday, Jan. 27; both begin at 6 p.m. and are priced at $45. The menu for the initial pop-up includes fresh baked naan with spicy butter bhjai, lamb slow-simmered in savory yogurt sauce, an aloo corndog and a chocolate torte with cardamom and raspberry coulis. Wine pairings and a la carte beverages will be available for purchase.
West End Bakery is at 757 Haywood Road. For tickets, visit avl.mx/b27.
When Meherwan Irani’s Spicewalla collection cozied up to Ginger Frank’s Poppy Handcrafted Popcorn, the result was a quartet of sweet-savory-spicy-salty flavors that will be added to the Poppy line.
The fab four include three gluten-free, vegan options — piri piri, chai masala, and garlic and herb — as well as mustard and tarragon white cheddar, which is also gluten-free but not vegan.
Irani recalls that when he first introduced Spicwalla blends at trade shows, he used popcorn to showcase the spices. “In hindsight, it seems like a premonition, but we didn’t know what we were doing with popcorn,” he says. “We know who the popcorn professionals are, and that’s Poppy.”
Frank says her interest was piqued when she first received Spicewalla samples. But the onset of COVID-19 paused initial plans for the collaboration. And while Irani may not be an expert popper, Frank says he was right about popcorn being a perfect vehicle for flavor combos thanks to its nooks and crannies.
“The cool thing about this collaboration is that it’s everything that small businesses are supposed to be about — two homegrown brands creating a partnership where the sum is greater than the parts,” says Irani.
“We keep saying that this is our little love letter to Asheville,” Frank adds. “This community has been so good to us.”
The four new flavors will be available online and in stores carrying Poppy’s beginning Saturday, Jan. 15. To learn more, visit avl.mx/953 .
Dunk N’ donate
In observation of National Blood Donor Month, the American Red Cross has teamed with Dunkin’ to thank donors. Throughout January, those who roll up their sleeves at North Carolina Red Cross locations will receive a voucher for a free medium-sized iced coffee and classic doughnut, while supplies last, redeemable at participating Dunkin’ shops.
To schedule an appointment to donate blood, visit avl.mx/b2b.
Keep on truckin’
It’s one thing to dream about opening a food truck. It’s quite another to put those dreams on wheels, fire up the grill and roll on down the road. The Street Food Institute is here to help and will be presenting the one-week crash course, Food Truck Boot Camp, Monday, Feb. 7-Friday, Feb. 11, at Harrah’s Cherokee Convention Center in Cherokee.
The registration fee is $200 per business, which covers two individuals and includes over 20 conference sessions as well as an opportunity to meet with different coaches for one-on-one business consultations. Scholarships are available for residents of Haywood, Jackson, Swain, Macon, Cherokee, Graham, and Clay counties and enrolled members of the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians. Contact Jessica Mrugala for scholarship information at firstname.lastname@example.org.
For more information and to register for the boot camp, visit avl.mx/b2c.