Twin Sisters' 40th Birthday in Charlotte
My twin sisters are turning 40 next month, so the rest of the family would like to send them out to dinner with their husbands. None of us are from Charlotte, so we have little clue as to where to send them. They both have young kids, so they just about never eat out. Neither of my sisters are at all adventurous when it comes to food, so my sense is that something in the American/Southern vein would be best. Ambience and service are just as important as food.
Places that seemed promising were FIG, Barrington, and Ratcliffe on the Green, but I'd love to hear any suggestions.
Both Barringtons and Ratcliffe on the Green are good choices. These two spots are "fine dining". I would add Carpe Diem into this category also. Carpe Diem is a locally owned restaurant on Elizabeth St. Beautiful atmosphere and a very versatile and creative menu. I LOVE their seared sea scallops over an almond brie risotto. They always have a great duck entree too. http://www.carpediemrestaurant.com/
Another favorite is Lulu on Central Ave. This in a funky area of town known as Plaza-Midwood and is more casual, but the food is amazing. Again, a versatile menu that has something for everyone. I love their mussels & frites, and just recently had their morrocan spiced lamb chops over pimento cheese grits. Sounds mismatched, I know, but it was mind-blowing! http://www.luludinewine.com/
All four places are owne-operated and have a focus on local foods.
FIG is in Charleston South Carolina, not Charlotte, FYI.
Based on your description I think Fig Tree would be an excellent choice. Perhaps that is what you mean by fig.
The Fig Tree Restaurant at the Lucas House… serves Seasonal Continental Cuisine. It is located in a registered historic landmark home in the Elizabeth neighborhood. Both the food and the ambience are top notch and will make for a memorable 40th
The atmosphere @ Lulu is very casual, although the food is not.
I really like Ratcliffe on the Green, but I don't find it comfortable - its a bit stark for my tastes. The food is great, the prix fixe dinner is amazing and if you get it with the wine pairings, its actually a good value.
Carpe Diem, Barringtons or Fig Tree (as GFL suggested) seem to be good choices. Fig Tree is in an restored craftsman bungalow and is formal, yet very cozy. Good food and if they scored a table on the porch they'd love it. :) http://www.charlottefigtree.com/
I can't begin to tell you how unbelievably perfect Rooster's is for your event. Really great, but familiar, food, in a nice, but approachable atmosphere. Trust me. Rooster's is exactly where you want to go. It's not a food snob's paradise, but it is exactly what you are looking for. (no I don't have any connection to the place, other than as an occasional customer) http://www.roosterskitchen.com/