Friday, November 30, 2012

North Asheville Tail Gate Market, Holiday Bazaar

Nearly every single Saturday when breakfast has been served and heartily enjoyed by our guests, the dishes are clean and our guests head out to their destination....Gary and I head out too.  The car heads ou, as if by design, looking for whatever treasures are available at the North Asheville Tail Gate Market. The atmosphere is charged with fun and a good time is always on tap.

Throughout much of the year this very popular market appropriates a well know to locals spot on the UNCA Campus and offers their wares.

December 1, 8, 15 and 22, 2012 from noon to four o'clock they will be putting on their 10th Holiday Bazaar. So whether you are in the market for crafts that support local artisans and make way better than mall Christmas gifts or the finest in available, locally grown organic produce- this is a find.
Hope to see you there tomorrow.  I never wait till the last Saturday!

Patti and Gary Wiles,  Innkeepers

Saturday, November 24, 2012

Christmas Gift Idea from our Asheville Bed and Breakfast

Thanksgiving  is over, the turkey sandwiches have started and I have a terrific Christmas Gift Idea from our Asheville Bed and Breakfast.  Nearly every discussion regarding the holidays makes some mention of the fact that despite the really fun aspects of making merry.....There is more than a small amount of stress associated with all the added responsibilities of gift buying, wrapping and mailing, entertaining and in general fitting way more into an already over bloated schedule than actually fits comfortably.

So, what is it that they say about laughter?  A merry heart doeth good like a medicine. Laugh and the world laughs with you and heaven knows how many other truisms.  In keeping with that idea.... After the stress of Thanksgiving travel or cooking of same,Christmas has been made merry and all that remains is to recycle the wrapping paper, take down decorations and face wintertime-Well, the whole thing may be a bit of a downer.
How about a bit of Seinfeld to look forward to? 

Jerry will be wowing them in Asheville on Feb. 22, 2013 at the U.S. Cellular Center at 7:00 p.m. and we think his very wry and completely identifiable brand of humor may just be a perfect "after the holiday"  perk and a Christmas present that will long be remembered and appreciated.

Patti and Gary Wiles Innkeepers At Cumberland Falls Bed and Breakfast Inn Your Asheville Bed and Breakfast

Monday, November 19, 2012

Cranberry Sauce from At Cumberland Falls Bed and Breakfast Inn

Thanksgiving is one of my favorite holidays as the focus is not in the procurement of more but rather focused on the appreciation of the ways we are already richly blessed.

In the spirit of sharing, I wanted to provide the recipe for Cranberry Sauce from At Cumberland Falls Bed and Breakfast Inn.  Before doing that, I must confess that for the bulk of my time in the kitchen in prep for the Thanksgiving holiday I, like countless others, relied on Ocean Spray to supply my cranberry sauce needs.  Hey, good sauce.  For today though, we are not discussing "good" sauce-We are discussing "great sauce."

My conversion began with a simple discussion with my friend Kim regarding our upcoming Thanksgiving prep duties in which she mentioned making her own cranberry sauce. I must confess my thoughts drifted to what complete insanity would drive someone to make more work for herself on a day when the entire day is already dedicated to cooking. Then she shared a small container of her sauce and the reason was crystal clear.  It was delicious! 

The Cranberry Sauce Extraordinaire:

Wash 3 sacs of whole cranberry (12 oz.) -Wash them well and pick out anything that is other than cranberries.  You will not want to cook that.

Put all the cranberries into a drainer allowing them to dry.

Get medium sized saucepan. 

Add 1 cup of freshly squeezed orange juice.  If I can find blood oranges, I use them.  They are not always available.  Second choice would be Valencia.

Add 1 cup of red wine or white wine.

Here is where you are going to need "personal taste" tweaking.
If you are more of a sweet-but tart connoisseur you will lend more toward the white wine.  If you are looking for a deeper and sweeter rendition, I found this better accomplished with the red wines.  I do not use cooking wine.  I also do not choose the most expensive wine but somewhere nicely in the middle. 

1-1.5 cups brown sugar (Very personal preference as to adding more but think everyone will want at least this much.)
The choice of dry or sweeter wine will also play into how much sugar you want to add. Before adding the cranberries to the sauce pan try and make solute of the sugar, the wine and the freshly squeezed orange juice.

Lime, lemon and orange zest to taste. You may also want to use some of this juice to get just the taste you want for your family.

2 tsp. vanilla

Place cranberries in pan.

Boil the cranberries in this mixture cooking about 10 mins. As the berries heat you will begin to hear popping sounds.  Taste as you go to ensure that the product at the end is a good mix for you.  When this mixture cools, it thickens so for you first time cranberry sauce makers, don't stress if it doesn't look thick enough! In cooling, all those delightful additions to merge into cranberry sauce heaven and the results, I promise, will delight you.

Happy, Happy Thanksgiving from Patti and Gary-with luxurious accommodations at our B&B in Asheville.

Patti and Gary Wiles Innkeepers At Cumberland Falls Bed and Breakfast Inn Your Asheville Bed and Breakfast

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

2012 National Gingerbread House Competition and Display

All across the United States gingerbread artists are already weaving their magic readying for the stiff competition they will no doubt face at the National Gingerbread House Competition and Display held at the Grove Park Inn in Asheville, North Carolina. 

From November 20, 2012-January 2, 2013 these spicy treats will entice visitors from far and wide and many Asheville locals as well vested in seeing exactly what creative ideas have inspired this years contestants.  Sun-Thurs 10A-10P these innovative entries will be available for viewing.  Some of them will inspire you with their whimsical nature, some their attention to detail, others their complete creativity akin to magic and some their completely "out of the box" presentations.  Always a treat for the eyes, a boost for the imagination and fast transit to the Christmas mood.
The entries are ranked by age of creators.  There will be entries of those exhibiting for the first time as well as many seasoned entrants making the sojourn to Asheville every year hoping to garner a win.

At Cumberland Falls Bed and Breakfast Inn is a mere 5 minute drive from the exhibition hall and we would be happy to host your Asheville visit. Maybe you will dream up a gingerbread creation of your very own. A seasonal favorite that we know you don't want to miss.  

Patti and Gary Wiles Innkeepers At Cumberland Falls Bed and Breakfast Inn Your Asheville Bed and Breakfast

Friday, November 9, 2012

Candlelight Christmas, Biltmore Estate

Sometimes in the face of a beautiful room of any kind, it is easy to get so involved in admiring it, taking note of how it was done and simply appreciating the spectacle of it all that "how this all happened" is removed from memory.   If you have ever been charged with decorating anything (your child's homeroom or a room in your own home) you know the labor involved. Every time we enjoy another Candlelight Christmas memory the amount of team work, effort and just plain hard work is completely evident everywhere you look.

Biltmore Candlelight Christmas is a massive undertaking requiring teams of people from all departments in Biltmore from floral to engineering.  This effort is more than 3 weeks in duration.  Trees are moved into place and decorated, garlands draped, lights strung, ornaments displayed and housekeeping follows closely behind so that all this magic creating does not disrupt the cleanliness of the area guests are actively engaged in enjoying. So into preserving the very best of Christmas displays-Biltmore actually puts their main tree in twice.  This so that whether you enjoy Christmas at Biltmore early in the season or later, the experience will be as lovely. The effort, attention to detail and care is apparent wherever you look. 

Our B&B in Asheville is located only 3 miles from Biltmore Estate and we would love to host your visit while you enjoy Candlelight Christmas.  We are happy to help you plan your entire evening, obtain your timed entry and even help set up your dining pleasure.  Beginning November 3rd, it is a perfect way to relish the start of the holiday season immersed in holiday magic, twinkling lights, strolling carolers and the beloved holiday music we all enjoy.  We hope to see you in Asheville!

Patti and Gary Wiles Innkeepers At Cumberland Falls Bed and Breakfast Inn Your Asheville Bed and Breakfast

Sunday, November 4, 2012

Voting in Buncombe County, Asheville

 There are many voices out there talking about the young adults of today and more than a few of them lack any kind of positivity.  When returning to the inn one evening about 10 days ago, I was delighted to see Voting in Buncombe County, Asheville assume the visage of two young UNCA students.  I noted these two young women right in front of our Inn.  They immediately approached me holding their clipboards making enquiries as to whether I was going to engage in early voting.  They launched into their rhetoric regarding some of the issues of our day, their evaluation of their candidate and the rationale upon which their impressions had been based.  They were clear headed, verbally proficient, absolutely involved and dedicated to the process of each citizen having their vote counted.

You know the thing is, they were for my candidate.  The true thing is-That if they hadn't been for my candidate as a woman and most especially as a Mother- I would have felt the same pride, happiness, hope and real confidence that as they become the leaders of tomorrow and their children the leaders after that... I have every faith that the same energy, belief in our system of government-fragile and flawed as it some times is, those same "dog in the fight feelings" that had them canvasing my neighborhood rather than partying the night away would provide a safe haven in which to place the future of my country.

To the anonymous girls I want to say, "Thanks, I needed that." 

Patti and Gary Wiles Innkeepers At Cumberland Falls Bed and Breakfast Inn Your Asheville Bed and Breakfast