Food + drink guide: 14 splurge-worthy restaurants for life’s celebrations
Anniversaries, graduations, birthdays, promotions – you don’t want to celebrate these milestone occasions just anywhere. We’re talking about places where the ambience is as special as — in some cases, perhaps even outshines — the food. And with the holidays approaching, what better way to host out-of-town friends and family than by taking them to one of Charlotte’s swankiest spots? Here are a few local favorites for toasting your most special occasions. Be sure to also checkout our guide to SouthPark and cozy restaurants around town.
photographs by Justin Driscoll
The lauded Plaza Midwood restaurant in a former church is known for its elevated family-style dinner menu with clever nods to a church potluck, expertly crafted cocktails and stylish setting. Recently, Supperland debuted a weekend brunch buffet ($65 per person, not including beverages) that’s a feast worthy of a special celebration. From the honey-charred pineapple delivered tableside upon arrival to the lobster deviled eggs and spicy shrimp and grits, you’ll want to pace yourself to take it all in.
There’s the buffet table with ambrosia salad, Jello squares, cucumber and pimento cheese tea sandwiches, and bite-sized pastries. But there are also hot stations with frittatas, benedicts and skewers (grilled shrimp and steak), along with a few special treats — shrimp cocktail, oysters and heavenly cinnamon rolls with cream-cheese frosting — served throughout the meal. Order a round of mimosas for the table, or go spirit-free with mocktails like the refreshing G&T with nonalcoholic gin, strawberries, lemon and mint. Dinner nightly, Saturday and Sunday brunch. 1212 The Plaza | supper.land
More splurge-worthy spots
La Belle Helene, Limani, Steak 48
ARIA TUSCAN GRILLE, uptown
A pre-theater mainstay, Aria’s lively atmosphere, curated wine selection and modern interpretation of Tuscan comfort food make it ideal for special occasions, too.
Dinner only, Tues.-Sat.
100 N. Tryon St. | ariacharlotte.com
BEEF ‘N BOTTLE, South Blvd.
This top-rated, old-school spot is a Charlotte landmark, with cozy booths and classic steakhouse fare.
4538 South Blvd. | beefandbottle.net
Jim and Kay Emad moved their fine-dining restaurant from uptown to Piedmont Town Center in 2019 to be closer to their devoted clientele. What better way to celebrate than with flambeed bananas Foster, served tableside? (Read more about Bentley’s on Page 38.)
4620 Piedmont Row Dr., Ste. 110 | bentleysrestaurantnc.com
THE FIG TREE, Elizabeth
A fine-dining favorite for the most intimate celebrations, located in a historic 1913 Craftsman-style bungalow.
1601 E. 7th St. | charlottefigtree.com
Yes, it’s a drive to get there. And yes, the deliciously crafted, seasonal fare at Joe and Katy Kindred’s original downtown Davidson restaurant is worth it.
131 N. Main St., Davidson | kindreddavidson.com
LA BELLE HELENE, uptown
One of the most stunning interiors in town, with oversized chandeliers, antique mirrors and curved leather booths. The menu features French classics with a modern twist.
Dinner nightly, lunch Mon.-Fri. and brunch Sat. and Sun.
300 S. Tryon St., Ste. 100 |
This seafood-focused, Mediterranean-inspired restaurant at Phillips Place has a contemporary, airy feel, with soft blue furnishings and a stunning 360-degree marble-topped circular bar with a soaring domed ceiling.
Lunch and dinner Tues.-Sun.
6902 Phillips Place Ct. | limani.com
The rooftop location of this seafood-focused spot atop the Hyatt Centric does it for us. Start with drinks on the patio to take in the view, then on to the modern-yet-elegant dining room for robata wood-fired dishes, sushi and other shareables.
Dinner nightly, Sunday brunch
3100 Apex Dr. | mizu.restaurant
Airy and modern, with rotating fine art, plenty of shareable small plates, and a private mezzanine for intimate gatherings.
4620 Piedmont Row Dr., Ste. 170B | peppervine.com
THE PORTER’S HOUSE, Waverly
With three private rooms and a semi-private dining area, this chophouse from Rare Roots Hospitality can accommodate groups from 18 to 120, though it’s also a south Charlotte favorite for everyday gatherings.
7417 Waverly Walk Ave. | theportershouse.com
RH ROOFTOP RESTAURANT, SouthPark
Sipping Bellinis in a greenery-filled rooftop atrium dripping with sparkly chandeliers? It doesn’t get much more glamorous than this rooftop aerie atop RH’s 50,000-square-foot Charlotte showroom. The menu includes boards for sharing, burrata flown in from Italy, salads, and a 16 oz. charred ribeye.
Brunch, lunch and dinner daily
6903 Phillips Place Ct. | rh.com
STAGIONI, Myers Park
This Italian restaurant in a historic villa is simultaneously warm-and-cozy yet elegant enough for celebratory occasions.
715 Providence Rd. | stagioniclt.com
STEAK 48, SouthPark
This upscale steakhouse at Apex SouthPark has an upbeat, contemporary vibe with top-notch service to anticipate your every need. The seafood dishes and decadent sides are every bit as delicious as the steaks.
Dinner seven days a week
4425 Sharon Rd. | steak48.com SP