Asheville Wine & Food Festival Showcases Local Wineries, Chefs, Farmers & Food Producers

Founded in 2009, the Asheville Wine & Food Festival celebrates its fifth year as it highlights the area's Asheville Wine & Food Festivalviticultural success and farm-to-table roots of the popular local cuisine. The festival runs from August 22-24, with additional events which begin this week and lead up to the festival itself. This year's Asheville Wine & Food Festival is presented by the new restaurant at The Grove Park Inn, EDISON.

In the first year of the Asheville Wine & Food Festival, there were less than 1,000 people in attendance and only about 20 wineries represented. Today, the number of wineries has more than tripled to 125 with 400 varieties available for sampling. The crowds attending the festival now number in the thousands.

The Grand Tasting is held on Saturday, August 24, at the U.S. Cellular Center. It is one of the featured festival events and offers the largest gathering of its kind. Where else can you find the best of local and international wine distributors, local craft beers and breweries, regional distillers, restaurateurs, chefs, farmers and local food producers all in one place? Nowhere! Asheville Wine & Food festival Wineries

Take the opportunity to meet the artisans behind the wine and cuisine, in addition to enjoying the cooking demonstrations and the Amateur Winemaker Competition. The finals of the WNC Chef's Challenge also occur during this event. Don't miss this Iron Chef-style competition where local chefs face-off for the coveted title of Best Chef in Western North Carolina. The Grand Tasting runs from 1-5p.m. with VIP options available. You can purchase tickets here. General admission is $55 per person, VIP tickets are $75 for this event.

The other festival-related activities that lead up to Saturday's featured Grand Tasting begin with ELIXIR on Thursday night, August 22, from 6-8p.m at The Venue in downtown Asheville. This is a high-spirited competition that pits local mixologists against each other as they create unique craft cocktails for your imbibing pleasure. The craft cocktail that is selected as the winner becomes the signature drink of choice for Asheville over the next year. Tickets are $45 and can be purchased here.
Asheville Wine & Food Festival Sweets
On Friday, August 23, SWEET offers a smorgasbord of luscious desserts and confections served along with sparkling and dessert wines, specialty cocktails and other spirits. This event is held at the Grove Arcade and runs from 7:30-10p.m. You can also enjoy the chocolate competition that takes place here featuring edible works of delectable art from some of the area's best local bakers and pastry chefs. Tickets cost $45 and can be purchased here. Plan on spending a little extra time shopping for unique handcrafted gifts and one-of-kind treasures, too, since the shops at the Arcade are staying open late that night.

There are plenty of palate pleasers to delight all of your culinary senses, so gather up your friends, secure your tickets, and plan to attend. Why not make the most of your time here and stay locally at one of our downtown Asheville vacation rentals? It will keep you close to all of the Wine & Food Festival action, events and activities.

Are you going to the Asheville Wine & Food Festival? We hope to see you there! Cheers!

*Photos courtesy of the Asheville Wine & Food Festival.

Comment on this post!