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Charlotte Restaurant Week

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Such a big hit, and to drum up business, Winter version of Restaurant Week Jan. 24-30.

Just saw this in Charlotte Observer...site for the event goes on line today.

www.charlotterestaurantweek.com

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  1. Looks like more restaurants this time too. I look foward to trying something new.

    1. We are in for GW Finns, Ruth Chris', Blue, and Oceanaire. Can't wait.

      2 Replies
      1. re: artlee

        It will be interesting how many of these restaurants are actually still open by the end of january. Morton's South Park closing is just the beginning. . .

        Sorry to be the nay-sayer but if you have gift certificate at a restaurant in Charlotte - use it. A few of the restaurants you mentioned are probably on the list. . .

        1. re: BDM1

          You may be right...especially if they aren't supported. This wil be a good time for them to get a little cash flow in a normally slow time anyway on top of whats going on.

      2. Where is everyone going/has gone for Restaurant Week so far? Customshop seems to have the best deal with the extra wine & side, but want to try a different place too.

        5 Replies
        1. re: SkinnyChef

          I did Carpe Diem last night and it was excellent. Here's the menu:

          http://www.charlotterestaurantweek.co...

          I had the grilled grape salad, the fried chicken breast and the creme brulee. Everything was excellent and the portions were generous given the price.

          I had early reservations (6pm) and the place was full with more waiting to be seated as we left. Even with the daunting construction project on Elizabeth, this promotion seems to be doing well.

          There is parking adjacent and across the street from Carpe Diem. Don't let the construction stop you from going there or to Customshop.

          1. re: SkinnyChef

            I'll be going to Cunstomshop. While I was not been blown away by the place the two previous times I went, the menu looked good, and it seemed to provide the best deal as SkinnyCef pointed out.

            1. re: SkinnyChef

              Mrs G. and I went to Copper Modern Indian Cuisine. It was a very positive experience overall. Here is the menu: http://www.charlotterestaurantweek.co...
              I started with the Peppercorn-Curryleaf Chicken -- Pernod Macerated Mangoes, Masala Papdi. It was deliciously spiced and my favorite item for the evening. Mrs G. started with the Cauliflower Bisque -- Asparagus Pakoras, Reshampatti-Javitri Oil. This also was a hit providing a comfort food beginning to the meal. For the main course I had the Masala Oil Poached Cod -- Lychee-Ginger-Cherry Vinaigrette, Kadhi-Chevre Fingerlings. The cod was moist and flakey, subtle in flavor and very simple. Mrs. G. had the Achaari Lamb Kofta -- Khumbh-Methi Malai, Khoya-Craisin Pulao. Ground spiced lamb cook in a kabob style, although good this dish was unremarkable and just like any other kofta kabob available in any mid eastern or kabob place.
              For desert I opted for the Trail Mix Halwa -- Rasmalai Sauce, Marinated Pear Sticks. It was a slightly sticky melange of nuts and fruits molded into a sweet rectangle of sugary goodness. Mrs. G. finished with Mocha Kulfi -- Chai Syrup, Toasted Cumin Sugar. Essentially this was espresso ice cream. It had great flavor but was frozen too hard to fully enjoy. This is not a place for big portions, rather very modern and artistic presentations. Even with this being the case I did not leave hungry as the 3 courses combined was plenty. The only area that fell short is the waiters ability to explain the dishes was almost non existent. The small amount of explanations he offered were usually not accurate. As many of these dishes and ingredients are new to many, I know I was not familiar with many ingredients and components, a better guide to the food is needed.

              1. re: SkinnyChef

                Went to Tria Terra tonight. I made a reservation last Thursday (the 22nd) for 8pm tonight, but they seem to have lost it. However, after arriving at 7:50, they got us seated by 8:15. Then we waited nearly 15 minutes before even getting our order taken, but we had the fabulous pesto sauce and breadsticks to munch on. Then our salads came out and I was surprised at how big of a portion it was. Mine had a generous number of blobs of tangy goat cheese and lots of pine nuts. I usually don't like balsamic dressing but this wasn't bitter at all.

                Both my dinner companion and I had the rack of lamb. One of my pieces was exactly right but another seemed a bit tough. (ordered it cooked medium). The sides (potato au gratin and baked apples) were fantastic. We were so full, so we took dessert to go, but the table next to us really enjoyed their cheesecake, chocolate souffle and a fruit-filled pastry so I'm sure we will as well.

                The waitress didn't charge us for our beverages (a soda and a glass of sangria) because of the wait - which was much appreciated.

                Definitely worth it. This was my 3rd restaurant week dinner (went to Frankie's and Upstream last July) and I have yet to be disappointed.

                We went to Fiamma a couple weeks ago - so we didn't want to go again for restaurant week - but I'll definitely recommend that, especially since I see in another comment on this thread that they're extending the queen feast menu for another week. I had sweet potato ravioli there, in a pistachio cream sauce, and it was to die for. The risotto was superb as well.

                1. re: nurit

                  I like Tria Terra - but haven't been in several months. Everything is reasonably priced and the food is typically pretty solid. Nice atmosphere too.

              2. My SO and I went to Oceanaire Saturday with friends. I had clam chowder, which was very good, and three of us had lobster thermidor since I don't recall having had it before. I was a bit underwhelmed as there was only two or three bites and not a lot of that was lobster. With apps,entres, and small appetites we were all sated, but Ratcliffe last year was more memorable. The bread at Oceanaire is excellent and the service and attention was very good. I think the next time I will go for a regular entre as they all looked very good.

                1. We went to Sonoma on Saturday and it was wonderful. They had more choices on their menu than most of the other places. I had never been there before and was a little surprised at how bright it is inside, but the decor was lovely, modern and comfortable.
                  I started with the lobster bisque, which was very good, and my husband had the kobe sliders, also very good. My entree was flounder, and it was delicious. Everything on the plate complimented each other so well. My husband had the scallops, and though they were good, he agreed that my dish was much better. The scallops were popular though because they ran out while we were there (8:30). For dessert we chose the chocolate hazelnut cake and a quince semolina cake. Both were good but the chocolate was out of the this world. I'd love to go back just to have more of that cake!
                  Our server was wonderful and she suggested a great wine that we both loved. They were offering select wines for 20% off for a bottle.

                  1. We went to Del Frisco's, I cannot figure out why steak on a plate restaurants are so popular. We had oysters on the half shell, they were delish. I think I will stick with cocktails and appts at the bar. Last night, we went to Sonoma, it was very nice to walk into a packed restaurant at 630p!!!!! It should be restaurant week every week!!!! It was tasty, service was excellent, but it didn't make me ga ga. I will remember it fondly, but have no desire to return. My $30 meal always turn into $100. How does that happen? haha

                    1. We opted for Fiamma last night and it was wonderful. The wait staff especially were great.

                      I started with the calamari which was a bit of a surprise, I expected it to come fried but it was more like a spaghetti with steamed squid instead of pasta. Good, but not great. I also tried the frito mixto from a friend - it was very good and the marina-ish sauce it was served with was outstanding. Mrs. friek got the insalata which was just beautiful.

                      For the main course I went with the lamb shank which was HUGE! It could have been spiced a little heavier in my opinion. The gnocci served on the side was delish. Mrs. friek got the veal and while the sides were good (especially the mashed potatoes, very smooth and perfectly cheesy - like me!) the veal was pretty bland. Aside from having no additional flavor, it didn't even really taste like veal, more like cardboard.

                      All of the desserts were very very pretty. I got the cheesecake and have to say it was the highlight of the entire meal. Incredibly light and a perfect way to finish a meal. The tiramisu was pretty but somehow managed to come off watery.

                      One of my biggest complaints, and it is pretty minor, is that Fiamma does not carry Jagermeister. I subbed in Sambuca and was happy enough with that.

                      After talking with our waiter he informed me that restaurant week has been such a success they decided to extend it for a week so if you didn't get your chance to try it, you have another week to do so! Definitely worth the $30.

                      1. Late post. Went to Ember Grille on Friday for a last-minute Restaurant Week dinner. It was pretty good. Food was better than the service. I had the seared sea bass, which was very nicely cooked and seasoned. Matchstick potatoes were forgettable with only 2 or 3 thin slices of leek, and the "tomato shallot fondue" or whatever turned out to be roasted grape tomatoes. But the fish with the vinaigrette was very good. My date had the beef tenderloin, which she said was cooked perfectly medium-rare. Also said the pan sauce was deeply flavored and complimentary. I tried her risotto, and the flavor was good but it was undercooked. Strangely they were out of chocolate desserts. Had cappucino mousse, which was good, served in a "Westin" chocolate cup which was not worth eating. All in all it was "pretty good" but I probably won't be back for dinner without another special.

                        1. I went to Customshop for restaurant week, and after two very underwhelming visits I was very impressed this time. I chose this place because they seemed to have a very good menu and offered a glass of wine with it. As it turned out, I had a great meal. For an appetizer I got the butternut squash gnocchi with shrimp, which was very tasty. My date got the arugula salad with goat cheese, beets and almonds, which was a good starter salad. For our entrees, I got the beef short ribs with black kale and caramalized cipollini onions and a side of brussels sprouts, while may date got the roast chicken with acorn squash, pears and pancetta, along with a side of pommes frites. All were delicious. The short ribs were cooked perfectly and full of flavor. My date said that she thought the pommes frites rivaled the ones at Lulu. I can't disagree. And the brussels sprouts had that awesome skillet-sauteed flavor. I could have eaten a large plate of those.

                          For dessert, I got the apple walnut brioche bread pudding. I'm usually disappointed when it comes to eating desserts at restaurants. Not this time. This dessert was out-of-this-world with just the right amount of sweetness and richness. It was perfect for a cold day.

                          I have to say, after this experience, I may now have to include Customshop among my recommendations to those who come to town looking for somewhere good to eat.

                          2 Replies
                          1. re: ickymettle

                            I may need to give them another shot. Your descriptions of the meals are making me hungry. This truly sounds like a memorable diner. Hope the rest of the evening was just as successful. :-)

                            1. re: ickymettle

                              Mmmm, all that sounds good to me too. Especially on this snowy, cold day!

                            2. Copper's is very good and there is an Ethiopian restaurant, Meskeran, like the one in NYC, same people. Very good, we had lunch and look forward to going bck for dinner.

                              9 Replies
                              1. re: moondance27

                                What do u mean by "same people"? Meskeran and Copper are owned by the same people? Just curious.

                                1. re: lynnlato

                                  There is a Meskeran Restaurant in NYC. I have no idea if they are owned by the same people.
                                  I think this is what moondance27 is speaking of.

                                  1. re: GodfatherofLunch

                                    I wondered if that is what they meant, but I thought I was misunderstanding their post. Interesting. Have u eaten there?

                                    1. re: lynnlato

                                      I tried it once and thought it was interesting. Mrs. G could not get past the sponge like bread. I kinda dug it. I would give it another whirl, Mrs. G. not so much.

                                    2. re: GodfatherofLunch

                                      according to the website, Meskerem is owned by the same folks as the restaurants in NYC.

                                  2. re: moondance27

                                    Is this the place off of Kings? If so, I went there once and while the staff was nice I thought the food was kind of underwhelming. I actually prefer red sea over meskerem.

                                    1. re: friek

                                      Yes the one on Kings. I like it better than Red Sea so there ya go :-). Probably because they have a good lunch buffet thats easy for me to get to from work.

                                      1. re: billyjack

                                        To each his own, fair enough! I do think ethiopian is one of the greatest group-of-friends eating experiences out there.

                                    2. re: moondance27

                                      I thought the food at copper was good but the service was well below average given the price point and atmosphere