Photo credit: Laura Ayres


MAY 6 + 7, 2017




asheville, north carolina


Celebrating local farmers, millers, and bakers – the first of its kind in the Southeast

Welcome to the 13th year of the Asheville Artisan Bread Bakers' Festival. Thirteen plus years ago, when Steve Bardwell + Gail Lunsford envisioned bringing together all of us bakers-- as a community-- to showcase our breads, we had no idea what would happen... People came. AND LOTS OF THEM. And they continue to come. All lovers of good B R E A D. Today, the festival draws over 1,500 attendees each year and the strength and vibrance of our bakers' community continues to flourish. . 

This year we will feature the talents of highly-respected BAKERS: Jim Lahey, Peter Reinhart, Lionel Vatinet, and Tara Jensen, and Kaley Laird.

This two-day event is an opportunity for bread enthusiasts and professional bakers to break bread together, to improve their baking skills, share ideas, and network within the artisan bread community.  According to Peter Reinhart, "Asheville and its surrounding area, with a very small population, supports more artisan bakeries than most states, so this really is an ideal setting for this festival. The bakeries are small but truly artisan in the purest sense of the word." Steve Bardwell adds "No doubt about it, this festival showcases many of best bread bakers and most innovative ideas in bread today."

On Saturday, May 6 from 10am to 2pm, over 15 local artisan bakeries will be sampling and selling their breads at the Magnolia Building on Asheville’s A-B Tech campus; hands-on workshops and lectures by the featured guest artisan bakers will take place from 10am to 4pm at the same location. In addition, two special workshops are scheduled: an on-site visit to the Carolina Ground Mill and a presentation by Stephanie Swane, publisher of  Modernist Cuisine. Tickets are required for all workshops and can be purchased here.

Saturday evening, the public part of the festival will conclude with a catered dinner with the bakers. The dinner brings together farmers, millers, bakers, and bread enthusiasts for an evening of bread talk and networking. The $50 ticket for the dinner and drinks can be purchased here.

On May 7, a six-hour “Master Class” for professional bakers will offer intensive instruction and discussion with Lahey and Vatinet. Professional bakers can inquire about tickets by emailing 

The festival is sponsored by local bakeries, the Bread Bakers Guild of America, Asheville-Buncomb Technical Community College, Lindley Mills (an organic flour mill in Graham, NC), King Arthur Flour, Carolina Ground Flour Mill, Ingles Markets, To Your Health Sprouted Flour Company, Rhubarb / Rhu Bakery, Carolina Farm Stewardship Association, and the Appalachian Sustainable Agriculture Project.