The Lowdown truck

Fighters: Nate and Cynthia Kelly. Specialty: We create meals that we have fond memories of, and it allows us to put heart and soul into every bite. Our truck Earl's specialty is his ability to get really bad gas mileage. Plan of attack: Letting the air out of the other trucks’ tires. We also plan […]

Tin Can Pizzeria

Fighters: Caroline Whatley and Kim Dryden. Specialty: Luscious pizza pies. Plan of attack: Salty, sweet, nutty, bitter. Super powers: Kim has unusually long orangutan arms, so she will be able to toss pies, woman the oven and plate dishes while standing in one place. Caroline, because of her conservative Catholic upbringing, has never smoked a […]

Our Taco Truck

Fighter: Marni Graves. Specialty: Authentic, Southwestern style red and green chili. Plan of attack: We might have to smoke the others out. Secret super powers: Taco fluffers. Favorite vegetable: An Anaheim pepper, roasted and peeled. If you've had it, you know why. Weapon of choice: Our trusty tortilla press. Any words for the opponents? Our […]

Flying Falafel Brothers

Fighters: Craig Schulz and Shaun Parcels. Specialty: Falafel — Duh. Plan of attack: Annihilate our opponents with ample amounts of 375-degree peanut oil. Secret super powers: Chickpea flour. Favorite vegetable: Tomatoes and peppers for umami and culinary versatility. Weapon of choice: Robocoup MMP or a 190 VV immersion blender. Battle song: “Champion” by Kanye West. […]

Pho ya Belly

Fighters: Capuchina Taylor and Josh Armbruster. Specialty: Savory food, fresh spring rolls, rich broth and tasty variations on pig. Plan of Attack: Have great ingredients, pair them with great local beer and don’t let anything get in the way.  Secret powers: Locally sourced foods, an awesome team of renegade cooks, a whole lot of pork […]

Quaff the magic dragon

Dobra Tea Room on Lexington Avenue remains a popular place to relax with a pot of hot tea, sure. It also makes for a perfectly quiet nook in which to cool down. Fans of matcha, the antioxidant-rich, metabolism-boosting powdered green tea, might want to try the cool and bracing Forest Dragon, a concoction that “provides […]

The Voodoo that you do so well

For meltingly hot days, the French Broad Chocolate Lounge offers up this striking little number, a perfectly civilized float that remains both caffeine-free and vegan. Even though the concoction of rose and hibiscus soda and fresh mango sorbet is light, bright and airy, the drink carries a mysterious name — the Voodoo. We asked owner […]

Talent show

The National Truffle Fest draws an incredible pool of talented regional chefs and other truffle experts: Shannon M. Berch is a research scientist for the BC Ministry of Environment, has co-authored six published works and serves as an adjunct professor with the University of British Columbia and with Royal Roads University. She is a consultant […]

Bye bye, foamed food

Jacob Sessoms, chef and owner of Table, thinks that avant garde cuisine/molecular gastronomy (or whatever you’d prefer to call it) is becoming a has-been trend. “As I begin to see foams on menus even in small towns all over the country, it makes me think this approach to food will be accepted into the larger, […]

Cider cocktail

Want a bubbly cocktail that won't pack too much of a wallop and has a local focus? Parris Benight of 5 Walnut Wine Bar recommends making cava-cider cocktail, an easy-to-throw-together drink that 5 Walnut sometimes serves on Sundays. "It's half cava (sparkling wine from Spain), half-pear cider, which has alcohol in it, and just a […]

Tips from the pros

Several local oenophiles offered suggestions for holiday wine. Les Doss of Vinsite wine shop located on 64 Broadway St. ( recommends the following bottles, which he and co-owner Kathy Taylor stock at the shop: For a sparkler, try a Gruet Blanc de Noirs sparkling NV ($15.99). "It's rich and toasty with juicy, light raspberry flavors, […]

Winter Squash Gnocchi

Ingredients: 1 small local pumpkin or winter squash Extra virgin olive oil 2 pounds Yukon Gold potatoes 3 egg yolks 1 ½ cups sifted flour ½ teaspoon salt ¼ teaspoon ground nutmeg Special tools: Potato ricer Method: Cut squash in half. Scoop out seeds and pulp. Rub surface with olive oil, salt and pepper. Bake […]

Fall for Local Food

How do we love thee, fall? Let us count the ways: local apples, beets, cheese, greens, lettuce, meats, pumpkins, radishes, turnips, winter squash … We could go on and on. How can you fall for local food, too? Take our advice, and it’s sure to be a heavenly cool-weather cooking season. Though a select few […]

Linked in, market-style

Want to connect with other local food lovers? Check out ASAP’s new community site, which makes its full launch this fall( Its goal? To serve as a central online space for the local food community to join in conversation. Visitors can share their favorite local food recipes, stories about their farm adventures, connect with ASAP […]

The Beat: Head to head

a href=”“The city of Asheville has named two finalists in its search for a new community-media project: Ponderwell, a Web-development firm, and Mountain Xpress. Both are based in Asheville. Ponderwell was founded by Michael Tracey and Martin Haywood. Xpress is an independent media outlet owned by Green Line Media Inc. The winning project, which will […]

Appalachia­n grown

Wondering what this special section is all about? All of the businesses that you see over the next few pages are Appalachian Grown Certified by Appalachian Sustainable Agriculture Project, which means that they purchase or sell certified, locally grown farm products. ASAP works to promote the businesses that support our local agriculture, which in turn […]

Growing minds by the numbers

ASAP’s Growing Minds Program received 40 cooking kits through Partnership for a Healthier America for this school year. They will go to 40 schools (1 each) with grades ranging from pre-school through high school. The cookware kits contain items like induction burners, stainless steel pots and pans, knives and utensils – which were generously donated […]

Mark your calendars

The Farmers’ Film fundraising events: Thursday, June 30, 5-7 p.m., at Highland Brewing Company’s tasting room ( Thursday, July 7, 6-8 p.m., at Black Mountain Ale House (669-9090) Both events offer the opportunity to see the movie trailer, meet the film’s farmers, enter to win door prizes and enjoy farm-fresh local food. Farm to School […]