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Wine Tasting Weekends in Asheville
March 11, 2008
Category: Vacation Planning Ideas
In the Asheville area, wine tastings, and wine pairing meals are quite popular. All of the wine specialty stores and two of the health food markets offer wine tastings on a regular basis. Most are free, but some require a fee. Often the wine tastings that require a fee include some light hors d’oeuvres to go with themed selections, and/or a wine expert who pours and describes the vintage. A wine tasting on Italian Reds or California Chardonnays would be examples of themed wine tasting events.
Included in this article, are reviews of some local picks for the best places for wine tastings in Asheville. There are also some places outside Asheville where locals and visitors can attend wine tasting events, but they are not included in this selection.
Generally, free public wine tasting events occur on Saturday afternoons. The phone number of each establishment is included for confirmation. Check the regularly scheduled listings with each establishment, phone them ahead of time, or visit their website, for the most current information about wine tasting events.
Asheville Wine Market (828) 230-0060, 65 Biltmore Avenue
For visitors staying in the Biltmore Estate area, Asheville Wine Market is convenient. It is located at 65 Biltmore Avenue, in the southern part of downtown Asheville, and offers free off street parking. The Asheville Wine Market sponsors free wine tastings each Saturday from 1-4 p.m. Their wide selection of 3,500 different wines is complemented by selection of cheeses and deli meats.
Vino Vino Wine Market: Boutique Wines (828) 258-2177, 1457 Merrimon Ave.
One of the newest wine markets in Asheville is Vino Vino. Located just north of The Wine Guy on Merrimon Avenue, this location is near the Beaverdam area of Asheville and Weaverville. Vino Vino has a wine tasting each Saturday from 12 noon to 4 p.m. They also serve appetizers from The Stoney Knob Café and offer attendees a 10% discount on wine purchases that day. Visit www.vinovinowines.com/calendar.html for more information on their events and wine pairing dinners.
The Weinhaus (828) 254-6453, 86 Patton Avenue, Asheville
The Weinhaus has been downtown for 30 years and offers a wide selection of fine wines. They have regular free tastings on the third Saturday of each month, and a featured wine theme is selected. For example, on April 19th Malbec from Argentina will be uncorked. For up-to-the-minute information about The Weinhaus Wine Tasting Dinners, download the most current version of the newsletter.
The Wine Guy, North Asheville (828) 254-6500, 555 Merrimon Ave.
The Wine Guy has been a local favorite in the Asheville area since the North Asheville store opened in 1999. In 2002, The Wine Guy opened a South Asheville location. The North Asheville store is managed by Dorsey and Rob Campbell, wine retailers from Atlanta, in the business for 15 years before coming to Asheville. The Wine Guy North offers reception style wine tastings, where visitors may drop in for a sample (usually on Saturdays from 4-6 p.m.), and wine tastings that are themed and require reservations. Visit www.theashevillewineguy.com.
The Wine Guy, South Asheville (828) 277-1120, 1200 Hendersonville Rd.
In South Asheville, The Wine Guy is managed by Steve Nelson, a longtime friend of the Campbells. They sponsor wine tastings with reservations and without. Just check the monthly calendar on their website to confirm dates and times. Both locations of The Wine Guy also offer wine pairing dinners with local restaurants. Visit www.theashevillewineguy.com for up-to-date information.
This round up of wine tasting venues in Asheville does not include two other favorite weekend destinations: the health food markets Green Life or Earth Fare. On a Saturday afternoon visitors will also find wine tastings in progress at their in store wine departments. A visit to one of the health food stores is a great way to take in the local flavor of Asheville and celebrate the grape at the same time. Cheers!