By Jessica Isaacs
North Carolina’s High Country offers a multitude of restaurants and fine dining options, but it can be hard to give them all a chance when you’ve already picked your favorites. If you’re ready to try something new and learn about other establishments in the area, then you don’t want to miss the fourth annual “Taste of Avery” event on Thursday.
The Avery County Chamber of Commerce, together with Gadabouts Catering and 16 local restaurants, will host this ultimate night on the town from 6-8:30 p.m. at the Best Western Mountain Lodge in Banner Elk. Join in the fun for just $25 per person ($30 at the door) and sample signature dishes from chefs across the county.
The banquet rooms at the Best Western will be opened up to feature displays from all participating restaurants, plus six wineries and breweries, giving guests a chance to enjoy the best of Avery County establishments all in one spot. Live music provided by Bill Stevenson will top off this night of fun, food and drinks.
Avery Chamber Executive Director Melynda Martin Pepple said that participating businesses will show off their most popular and one-of-a-kind dishes.
“This event will lift up our exquisite restaurants, wineries and breweries of the area. We are very blessed to have such a wide variety of foods and excellent cuisine in Avery County,” she said. “It will show the uniqueness of each restaurant, giving them the opportunity to showcase a specialty that they want the public to know about. It’s a fun-filled evening allowing them to bring their favorites to the table.”
In addition to putting restaurants out in front of local consumers, Pepple said the event will also help guests learn more about the places they want to try or revisit this summer.
“It gives the public an evening of fun and a chance to find out for themselves what our area has to offer in cuisine and fine wine and beer,” she said. “If they’re having guests for the summer, it allows them to know ahead of time where they want to go.”
This year, guests will leave with a directory of participating establishments, which will include location and contact information for each one and an area map that will help them find each restaurant.
The breweries and wineries will be offering sampling of their products, your favorites of which will be available for purchase. A cash bar will also be available.
“We appreciate everyone’s involvement in supporting the chamber and our restaurants. We really appreciate Best Western and Gadabouts for opening up to accommodate our large crowd,” Pepple said. “They’re wonderful to work with and we really appreciate their support.
The chamber expects approximately 300 guests at this year’s event, which Pepple said sells out every year. Call 828-898-5605 to get your tickets in advance or stop by the chamber office located in the Shoppes at Tynecastle between 10 a.m. and 4 p.m.
For more information, visit www.averycounty.com.
Participating vendors will include: