You'll hear a lot about Asheville's South Slope in 2018. This area a little south of downtown is undergoing a big transformation from a sleepy industrial and warehouse district to a vibrant home of restaurants, breweries, shops and apartments. South Slope's district is roughly bounded by Asheland, Biltmore, Southside and Hilliard Avenues. You'll find many of the newest spots along Coxe, Banks and Buxton Avenues (see map below).
The city is calling this an "Innovation District" like the neighboring River Arts District. Some are calling this the "Brewery District" since there are eight breweries located or planned for the area. Biltmore Estate is just a couple of miles away.
Since the South Slope is in a major transformation, expect construction and don't expect pristine streetscapes complete with fully restored buildings (yet). It's fun to explore the area and watch the progress. Parking is a challenge, especially on weekends. Here's a list of current and coming attractions in this area:
Stop at Vortex Doughnuts for hand-made yeast and cake doughnuts throughout the morning with fresh, high-quality ingredients and topped with creative glazes, toppings and fillings. They source many ingredients locally and responsibly (check their board for the current local, seasonal ingredients). They are open 7 AM until 4 PM daily. 32 Banks Avenue.
Next door to Vortex, Buxton Hall barbecue restaurant transformed a former skating rink, created by Chef Elliott Moss with plenty of accolades.
Also at 32 Banks Avenue, Catawba Brewing sports a seven-barrel system, a bottling line, two bars and a courtyard. They have 24 taps at the front bar and another six at the back bar. They are open every day.
Asheville’s Burial Beer Co. at 40 Collier, has a ten-barrel system and tasting room for up to 200 guests, plus an outdoor deck and beer garden.
Nearby Wicked Weed Brewery has its Funkatorium barrel and sour brewery at 147 Coxe Avenue. They have an old-world Belgian-style tasting room plus seating outdoors. Read more about them.
Across the street, Twin Leaf Brewing at 144 Coxe Avenue features a dozen beers made in their ten-barrel brewing system.
Green Man Brewery was a pioneer in this area, opening a decade ago at 27 Buxton Avenue. As one of North Carolina’s oldest breweries, they produce iconic ales, loyal to traditional English styles, with an evolution of innovative flavors. Take a free guided tour on Thursday-Sunday with an optional paid VIP tasting after. Their new, three-story building has a retail store, tasting room overlooking the expanded production floor and an outdoor beer garden with views of the mountains.
French Broad Chocolate Lounge Factory opened next to Green Man in 2010 at 21 Buxton. Take a self-guided tour and sample their award-winning chocolate bars.
Hi-Wire Brewery at 197 Hilliard features four approachable, year-round beers, Prime Time Pale, Hi-Pitch IPA, Bed of Nails Brown and Hi-Wire Lager, plus a rotating selection of seasonals available only at their tasting room.
Asheville Brewing at 77 Coxe Avenue has a big and popular outdoor covered patio. Enjoy pub food and their famous pizza, along with fresh brews. Play a game of giant Jenga or a round of cornhole.
Ben's Tune-Up at 195 Hilliard Avenue is an American sake brewery and "Ameriental" restaurant with an urban beer garden.
Storm Rhum Bar & Bistro at 125 South Lexington Avenue is an American bistro with great cocktails.
Bhramari Brewhouse at 101 South Lexington Avenue features a brewery, taproom and restaurant a block behind the Orange Peel.
Tracey Morgan Gallery specializes in contemporary photography, painting, works on paper, sculpture and video from established, mid-career and emerging artists from the United States and abroad. Located at 188 Coxe Ave.