Charlotte is full of corporate types. You know, the kind of folks that will do whatever the big boss tells them to do if it means that it might advance their careers. There is a lot of money in this town and a lot of networks are being developed at all times. People are, for the most part, genuinely friendly, but don't be surprised if someone introduces himself under the guise of friendship and then tries to get you to invest in something.
Harris-Teeter is a regional grocery store chain headquartered near Charlotte. Mark does most of his grocery shopping, with the exception of specialty international ingredients, at this store located at Cotswold Mall. Anything that won't eat you first. It's reasonably priced.
It is right cross the 6th St where Holiday Inn is located, thus a good choice to have a dinner after a late evening train.
What attracted me was the menu outside (not all restaurants post their menu outside in NC, unlike in NYC or many other places in the world).
This is what its own brochure says “ The heartbeat of uptown Charlotte (Mei’s note: uptown in Charlotte is the downtown of all other cities). This eclectic eatery offers nightly dinner features, mezes and tapas from around the world. Wood-fried pizzas, fresh sushi and delectable desserts are only a small part of the continental flair of this diverse menu. Peruse through the Microcosm Art Gallery or relax in the Thirsty camel Lounge, which showcases specialty martinis and fine cigars.”
The large dinning hall has two floors, at the tables upstairs, one can overlook the hall below (see the photo from the restaurant’s own postcard).
I was sitting at a small table at the window (per my request) watching people on the street (and being watched I guess!).
It is a very popular gathering place, especially it opens to 2 AM in the morning. But it was rather noisy.
M-F: 11 AM – 2 AM
Sat: 5 PM – 2 AM
It provides a take-out menu which not designed well with lots of redundancies – but it does give you a glimpse of the food it serves. The menu was rather interesting with some unique dishes. The restaurant serves from ordinary fare to Mezes and Tapas, as well as Sushi/sashimi etc.
I had was going to try their daily dinner special of red snapper, but they were out of it since ‘it was so popular’. So instead, I had the following:
- Brie en Croute $8.95
“Soft rippened cheese wrapped in oven baked flaky puff pastry, served with a pomegranate syrup and crusty French bread”. I love brie (such as Brie with pear salad etc). The pastry was excellent, the pomegranate syrup was good but a bit too sweet to me, as a matter of fact, it was so sweet it was hard to tell if it was made of pomegranate or raspberries.
- Roasted duck Pierogis $7.50
“Three homemade Polish style dumplings stuffed with potato, ***ake mushrooms and roasted duck, topped with a caramelized onion and sherry sauce.”
Believe or not, one can actually taste the fillings with mushroom and duck, they were not purred as in many restaurant (for this reason, I have been very cautious trying any ravioli kind of fare in many restaurants), instead, chopped to the point that one can still identify the flavor. I am no expert to tell if it is an authentic Polish dish, but the dough was thick and heavy and not much flavor. The sauce was nice (means, I do not have any special memory of it!)
Will post more dishes after I try in the future.
Price varies depends upon what you eat, a heavy dinner or a light one.
Is Morton's really "the best STEAK Anywhere" ?
This is a relatively large chain so I will not dwell on this tip but I must say that I tend to disagree with their motto, which claims that they have the best steak anywhere. Their steaks are good, the service is pretty good but sometimes seems a bit pompous, the furnishings are fabulous, and the prices are too high. For a better steak dinner experience go to Sullivan's on South Boulevard. Filet mignon. To get the best steak anywhere, you must start with the best steak cut. Again, it is very good but not "the best steak anywhere."
Lowe's Motor Speedway
While many come to Charlotte just for the NASCAR races, many are not fans. Even if you aren't, visitng Lowe's Motor Speedway is worth it, even if only to say you've been there. The speedway is a sprawling, gargantuan structure. Even if you're not impressed, your friends will wonder what it was that you saw.