A passion project from the folks that had a hand in bringing you The Admiral and Table, Bull and Beggar is a rustic gem of high dining (with a side of Burger Mondays) in the River Arts District. We could go on about the $100 caviar service or the basil fed snails, but what we really care about are the cocktails, the happy hour snacks and the vibe!
The Old World feel to Bull and Beggar is both intriguing and familiar. It has all the rustic charm you could ask for with exposed bricks, fresh flowers and a dimly lit chandelier. You get a feeling that you’re somewhere special with someone special. Folks huddle around the cozy bar area, enjoying cocktails and conversation while the dining guests are served their plates with a back drop of flickering votives. And yes, it is actually that romantic.
We knew coming in that Bull and Beggar’s cocktail program would be exceptional with nods to old-school cocktails, as well as new, inventive concoctions. The bar was stocked with ripe, uncut citrus fruit and fresh herbs like mint and rosemary. Our bartender, Palmer, was fun to watch as he mixed drinks and patted the herbs to bring out their aroma.
We started with the Cannery Row, a cocktail our bartender recommended. The fresh lemon and ginger were pronounced while the aroma of the rosemary lingered around your sips. It read a lot like a Moscow Mule with a rich frothiness and a sweetness from the orange. It was a delight to drink and was a clear favorite between me and my date!
The Beggar’s Bitter was so visually satisfying, it was hard to take that first sip. But that raw sugar lined rim… The sweetness hits your lips first, followed by the rich bitterness of the Fernet Branca. The fresh mint and sugar compliment the bitterness of the cocktail, making for a perfect storm.
Beggar’s Bitter- Angostura bitters, fernet branca, ginger, lemon, raw sugar. The Golden Daquiri is kinda like the cocktail version of “golden milk,” an ancient drink made with milk, turmeric and other spices. The turmeric gives the milk it’s orange, golden-like hue and is known for its detoxing properties. The cocktail combines full-bodied rum, herbsaint (absinthe-like), lime and turmeric for a unique and vibrant elixir!
All of these lovely cocktails had to be paired appropriately with a dozen fresh oysters! We love that Bull and Beggar has a Raw Bar Happy Hour where you get 1/2 off of oysters and clams Mon-Sat, from 5-6pm. The oysters were fresh and delicious, served with mignonette, which I’m still craving.
Not an oyster fan? The Ploughman’s Platter includes five charcuterie with three cheeses, an easy choice for a happy hour snack that’s both filling and decadent.
Then again, you can go all in on a “Burger Monday” and enjoy their burger and a side of fries for just $9.99. I have to say, I have a life-long love affair with burgers and this one was easily in my top 5 favorite burgers by the time we left. And the cherry on top were the house made pork rinds that arrived with our bill.
All in all we loved Bull and Beggar’s happy hour vibe! From the ambiance to the cocktails and the snacks, er… burger- it scored high on our happy hour bucket list.
Know before you go:
Parking is easy, but be sure to book a reservation through their website! They do take walk ups, but why wait if you don’t have to?
Bull and Beggar
Mon-Thurs: 5:00 – 10:00pm
Fri-Sat: 5:00 – 10:30pm
Sunday Brunch: 10:30am – 2:30pm
Seafood Happy Hour: 1/2 off raw bar 5:00-6:00pm, Mon-Sat
Burger Mondays: $9.99 Burger & Fries
37 Paynes Way
Asheville, NC 28801