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Jul 22, 2008 08:23 AM

Charlotte: Pre-Theater Eats

Hey All,

We're heading uptown to see Avenue Q at the Belk Theater on Thursday. I'm stumped trying to think where I'd like to go to get a bite to eat beforehand. We'd prefer to sit at the bar for some apps/tapas and a drink. No chains please.

We'd also like something that is walking distance to The Belk Theater. Thanks!

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  1. Hi Lynn, If it were me, I'd pick Arpa probably. They open at five so it should be enough time.

    1. A fun pre-theater spot might be Cosmos Cafe.

      1. Arpa and Cosmos are both great recs and I would also consider Lavecchia's or Taverna(full disclosure: I have not been to Taverna). Not positive Arpa has a bar, it's been a while. Just keep in mind that on that end of the street, at that time of day, a lot of places can get very "banky" (not that there's anything wrong with that!) and it's tough to get served. Those places should be fine though. Enjoy!

        1. Thanks guys! See, I knew you folks wouldn't disappoint me. For whatever reason, my mind goes blank when I think of restos uptown. I guess I just don't get up there that often. I like both your suggestions. Cosmos is a great atmosphere w/ good food and sushi. I just checked out Arpa's menu and it looks great... I've never been so I may have to give it a try. Not to mention, serrano ham, manchego, figs, grilled octopus and olives.... please, that's right up my alley!

          11 Replies
          1. re: lynnlato

            ARPA definitely has a bar and it's comfortable and accomodating for tapas. It looks like they've totally updated the menu since I was there last but I can recommend the albondigas, the patatas bravas, and I liked the bread basket selection with a few cheeses and meats.

            1. re: HungryGrayCat

              Okay, you're totally making me hungry. Thanks everybody!

              1. re: lynnlato

                I look forward to hearing all about it. I was not thrilled by M5 a member of the Harpers Group Chain of restaurants as is Arpa.
                While very upscale I still felt like I was dining at a factory that was into mass production rather than a restaurant that practices the art of fine cuisine. Have a blast at Avenue Q!!!!!!!!!!

                1. re: GodfatherofLunch

                  Agreed. I've never been really impressed with any of the Harpers Group restaurants.

                  1. re: ickymettle

                    I've gotten the same odd feeling at some of their restaurants, Mimosa Grill in particular. Felt like I was on a set. But I still like Harper's in Southpark. And I still think M5 is one of the prettiest restaurants in Charlotte, for what it's worth.

                    1. re: southernitalian

                      Harpers in Southpark is a very consistent place and the food is not bad. As far as M5 goes the decor is a matter of taste. You like very modern I am not a fan of modern decor I prefer more traditional. I felt crowded at M5 the vibe just didn't happen for me. Oh well different strokes for different folks.

            2. re: lynnlato

              Based on the description of your alley and what's up it. Have you been to Las Ramblas yet. I'm pretty sure you will flip for the first class tapas and wine selection.

              1. re: GodfatherofLunch

                I haven't been to Las Ramblas yet but I want to go very badly! In fact, when I saw Arpa's menu it made me think of Las Ramblas. I've got to get there and soon!

                You know, now that y'all mention it I've never been big on The Harpers Group either. I never really liked Mimosa or Harpers.

                Oh, by the way, what chew been eatin' lately, GFL????

                1. re: lynnlato

                  The Harper's Group is not getting a lot of love on this site today. This isn't the only post. I hope they are aware.

                  1. re: lynnlato

                    Cluck,cluck,cluck - Lots and lots of chicken. Every which way but fried. Grateful Growers pork loin, Wild salmon, salads,fruits and this brand of greek yogurt called Fage. I have the 0 fat yogurt with fresh blueberries mixed in and it is superb. For breakfast most mornings I have a Trader Joe's Whole Wheat British Muffin with 0 fat cream cheese and smoked salmon. Add a cup of black coffee and Godfather is ready for anything.

                    1. re: GodfatherofLunch

                      How much have you lost? You seem to be quite determined. I wish I could garner up that will power.

              2. I've been to Arpa many times and it's always been very good. Good wine list as well. it may be easiest to valet there, eat and come back to get your car.

                1 Reply
                1. re: cltsavvy

                  Thanks for the valet suggestion. What a great idea.