Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Zagat's ranks Charlotte's top 10 restaurants

Zagat's "America's Top Restaurants" lists the top 10 places in each of 45 areas, compiled from diners' votes and comments, plus a list of 10 "other noteworthy places."

Charlotte's top 10 in food rankings, according to Zagat voters:

Barrington's
McNinch House
Fiamma
Fig Tree
Toscana
Good Food on Montford
Bonterra
Carpe Diem
Capital Grille
Soul Gastrolounge


The rest of the list:
Bad Daddy's
Copper
Halcyon
Harvest Moon Grille
Luce
Mac's Speed Shop
Midwood Smokehouse
P.F. Chang's
Sullivan's
Zebra


Survey results released by Zagat at the same time have some interesting Charlotte numbers. Those voting on Charlotte restaurants:

* Say they eat out 3.2 times a week, compared to Houston's 4, Boston's 2.5 and the U.S. average of 3.1.

* Say they tip 19.5 percent, compared to San Francisco's 18.6, New Orleans's 19.7 and the U.S. average of 19.2.

* Top the list of all surveyed areas in one item: 34 percent say they follow restaurants and/or food trucks via social media. The U.S. average is 21 percent and the low is Long Island at 11.

* Are pretty close to national averages on how much they're going out to eat, compared to last year: 21 percent say more, 59 the same and 20 percent less (just a few points off averages), while 24 percent say they're spending more, 63 the same and 13 less.

* Are pretty tolerant, comparatively, of diners who text, tweet or talk on phones, or photograph food and/or companions. Fifty five percent (only Vegas and New Orleans were lower) find it "rude and inappropriate" to use cellphones, with 41 percent (second only to New Orleans) find it "OK in moderation." Connecticut folk just won't have it: 71 percent find it rude. U.S. averages are 63 and 34. On pictures: 70 percent find it OK in moderation and 18 percent perfectly acceptable. Easterners are an angry bunch on this count: 19 percent of Westchester and the Hudson Valley diners find it rude and inappropriate, and Connecticut, Long Island, New York City and New Jersey voters fall close behind, while 28 percent of those chill New Orleansians deem it perfectly acceptable.

Note: I assist in this book in this way: I synopsize voter quotes and help keep the list of restaurants current. Some restaurants don't gain enough voter comments to make the cutoff; some, such as Del Frisco's, are included in a national chain review. Voters decide all rankings and scores, and restaurants choose their own categories for cuisine (so you'll see, for example, "American," "Continental" and "Eclectic").

52 comments:

eater said...

P.F. Changs? Really? I can ignore the rest of the article I guess.

Anonymous said...

where's Burger King?

Anonymous said...

I am so with you on PF changs....you can't take this list serious after that...goodness..

Anonymous said...

I love PF Changs

Anonymous said...

I think Arooji's Wine Room should have made the list.

Anonymous said...

Am I the only one that doesn't get Mac's Speedshop? It's overpriced BBQ that's just ok, nothing special about it.

Anonymous said...

Yes, Aroojis should definately be on the list.

Anonymous said...

yea a bbq rest. that smokes it meat in electric cookers....garbage.

Anonymous said...

Where is the Queen City Diner on this list?

Anonymous said...

I can't handle MSG just to make something without flavor taste good.

Rahul said...

PF CHANG ????
Article ignored.

Anonymous said...

What about rating restaurants that are affordable for working man, as well as those that serve real food?

Anonymous said...

Took my bride to Good Food this past Friday glad to see it on the list.

Anonymous said...

How do you put PF Changs on this list and NOT Cowfish? Terrible! The Cowfish is easily one of the best new restaurants in town over the last year.

Anonymous said...

First off, P.F. Chang's, Capital Grille, and Sullivan's are all chains.

bluezoom8 said...

Please - PF Chang. I agree this list cannot be taken seriously. where are Custom Shop, Aria, Mimosa Grill, 300 East and the other really good restaurants.

Anonymous said...

No Georges Brasserie?

No Mimosa Grill?

PF Chang's?

Really?

NCdirtdigger said...

What about Waffle House? If PFChunks is good enough, so is IHOP.

Anonymous said...

Yes, including chains is very disappointing. There's more to Charlotte than generic chains.

Anonymous said...

Mac's Speed Shop. Holly Crap. Gotta be a misprint! ! ! !

Kbarris said...

Seeing Barrington's on the list and, being unfamiliar and always looking for a good restaurant in the Queen City, I went to their web site. Among the first things I check is the wine list. Goodness, whoever put it together must have been drunk at the time! Numerous misspellings ("burgandy" was my favorite). If you're "the best," don't you get these things right? Or do you think we're just a bunch of dumb hicks in Charlotte and "don't know no better"?

Anonymous said...

We are just a bunch of dumb hicks and we don't know no better.

811f7d96-ff55-11e0-a8a4-000bcdcb2996 said...

Mac's Speed Shop? You really know how to make us proud? How about an original, like Red Rocks Cafe, either Strawberry Hill or Birkdale location? Great food, great service, and unique to Charlotte.

Anonymous said...

pf changs? This my first post. There are Strip Malls with better chinese than PF Changs - is this for real?

Anonymous said...

What??? NO HOOTERS???

Cmon Man !!!

Anonymous said...

PF Chang's wasn't listed in the top 10, so why is everyone so offended to see them listed at all? It's a "reader" survey, not a "critics" survey. PF Chang's is very popular for a reason. Not one of my personal favorites, but they're a strong chain operator. I've eaten at 9 of the top 10 restaurants listed. I think the list is a nice representation of some of the best restaurants in town. I absolutely agree that Barrington's, McNinch House (flawless food preparation last time I was there), Fig Tree, and Bonterra serve wonderful cuisine and provide exceptional dining experiences. Fiamma, Soul, and Toscana are among my favorite more moderately priced restaurants (yes, I said "moderate" for those of you bitter posters who think nothing is moderately priced over $10). I need to check out Good Food on Montford.

Anonymous said...

If these ratings were to be taken seriously, they really need to exclude the national chains like PF Changs.

But Fiamma, Soul, and Carpe Diem definitely deserve their places on the list. I can't speak for the others but it gives me a few to put on the list to try!

Anonymous said...

If you havent been to Global, you are missing out on some fantastic food.

Anonymous said...

You all sound like Niles and Frasier Crane nattering on about the nerve to list P.F. Chang's

Anonymous said...

Arooji's doesn't even belong in business, much less on this list.

Anonymous said...

It is refreshing to see that I am not the only one with issues on Mac's Speed Shop. When the server gives you a dirty look when you ask to be able to control the amount of Bar-B-Que sauce on your sandwich by not having any on it
(all sauces aren't created equal), you know you have a problem. I just don't get the allure unless the people that flock there have NEVER had good Bar-B-Que before. Small restaurants are great places for it, but I'd take Jim N Nicks over Mac's any day of the week and twice on Sunday!!!

Anonymous said...

Y'all are right about Mac's: Nothing special. And electric smokers. Bleh. Midwood Smokehouse is MILES better -- best in town, easily.

Anonymous said...

Customshop definitely overlooked, glad to see Barrington's, Fig Tree, and my newest favorite Halcyon get the nod, but PF Changs? HA!

Anonymous said...

PF Chang's, Sullivan's, Capitol Grill??

What a lame list.

How about some actual local places: Comet Grill has the best burgers in Charlotte hands down, 15 North on Montford is way underrated and RuSan has got to be the most popular sushi place in town.

Anonymous said...

What about Global?

Anonymous said...

Everybody loves Showmars! And it shows!

Anonymous said...

The owner of Barrington's is from Boston! Didn't realize there were hicks there?

Anonymous said...

Where is Lulu?

This Eclectic Life said...

I thought the SAME thing when PF Chang's came up. The word that came to mind: invalid. Nothing else on the list matters. Guess I'll check the next survey for real ratings.

Anonymous said...

Mac's Speed Shop is the most overrated restaurant in the history of ratings and restaurants. Kudos to their marketing department.

Anonymous said...

De gustibus non est disputandum.

Anonymous said...

Cajun queen, vivace, chima..... Enough said!!! I want a new poll!!

lphooks said...

Wow, you guys are vultures! I agree that there are quite a few places missing that I'd love to see on the list. (Lang Van, Ben Thanh, Growler's, Le's Cafe, the Diamond, Brooks, Deejai Thai, Three Amigos, Revolution Pizza, Passion8 Bistro, HMG, Lulu, Price's, Chicken Box, McCoy's, Pinky's, Hickory House, Simmons, etc.) But I also think Mac's has good bbq, and some of the most delicious wings (smokin' burnout) in the city (in the running with Moosehead's and McCoy's) as well as awesome brisket. And Zagat usually includes chains for all cities (isn't Cosi Zagat-rated?). Also, there are quite a few delicious items at PF Chang's. I'm glad I'm not too cool for school, and can enjoy food from all of these places, rather than having my food snobbery prevent me from doing so!

Anonymous said...

Men's Club has great steaks and views!

Anonymous said...

Interesting lists. Missing from here is Lulu, Bistro La Bon & a few other local, independent restaurants. -

Anonymous said...

Rooster's. Nobody is even close to second for diversity of menu and wines. And one is coming Center City, soon. Noble's King's Kitchen easily trumps all the lesser check average options Zagat mentioned... Basil Thai while I am ranting.

Anonymous said...

OK nimrods. "the list" doesn't equate "the article". The list comes from Zagat. The article is produced by a local professional that is only trying to present the fact of the Zagat Guide's results. The owner of Barringtons is from RI and the kid building their web page only understands JAVA. Take it easy hyper critics!

Anonymous said...

My kitchen has them all beat...and much cheaper.

Anonymous said...

I was going to make a reservation with one of the restaurants on the second list but the person on the phone was so pompous & rude I decided to take my business else where. I told this person Congratulations on their mentioned and she said, "We should have been on the Top Ten list." No thank you, no nothing. So I went ahead with making the reservation and told her my wife and I were celebrating our baby on the way. She said, "So your wife probably won't be drinking & probably will be kind of a picky eater. Can we make your reservation early since you have special needs." I hung up. I will be celebrating at a restaurant NOT on this list!

Anonymous said...

"Reader" polls. Don't make us laugh. It's called advertise and influence. Because "they" say it's good, and Helen S "reports" this information, it must be true.

Anonymous said...

The poster above me me is a tool

Anonymous said...

Everyone is entitled to agree or disagree, but there is no way that Ilios Noche does not make the cut.