Thursday, March 28, 2013

Free deep dish pizza

Jet’s Pizza will give one free slice of signature deep dish square pizza per person 10 a.m.-3 p.m. April 6 at its newest location, 8700 Pineville-Matthews Road. (There are Jet's on Montford Drive and Mallard Creek Church Road, in Huntersville and Matthews, too, and a Concord location is slated to open in April.) 704-544-7227;

New for South End

"Sizzlin' Saturdays" begin this week, with grilling aplenty in South End. Don't miss the last line of this poster: It gives you a sense of these guys...

Dan the Pig Man is Dan Huntley; find more about him here.

Matt is Matt Alexander, whose European travels convinced him to focus on crepes; find out more here.

And Dano is Dano Holcomb, a former Division I soccer coach turned food-cart-guy (with wife Julie); find out about their New Orleans-influenced fare here.

Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Jimmy V wine dinner

Upstream hosts a Clos du Bois wine dinner April 5, with a portion of proceeds going to the V Foundation, which seeks a cure for cancer and is named for named for former N.C. State coach Jim Valvano. (It was 30 years ago he and his team won the national championship, the college basketball moment of the 20th century, according to Sports Illustrated. If you're one of the few who've never seen his speech at ESPN's Espy awards, take 11 miutes to do it now.)
Among the dishes: pan-roasted halibut with preserved Meyer lemon and sea scallops with duck prosciutto. $75; 6902 Phillips Place Court; 704-556-7730.

Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Bits, crumbs and a $10.95 three-course meal

New at Mamma Lena's Trattoria in Waxhaw: a three-course dinner (salad, entree, dessert, plus bread) for $10.95. Also new: Choose among 15 dinner entrees for $9.95. 116 N. Main St., Waxhaw; 704-843-1988.

Savannah Red (at Charlotte Marriott City Center, 100 W. Trade St.) hosts Dan Cohn from B.R. Cohn Winery at a dinner March 27. $65; reservations: 704-363-8161.

The Wine Vault plans a Falcor brunch with "tiny little single production wines," April 6 at Vivace (in its upstairs room). Among the courses: melon and prosciutto with Falcor Rose; duck confit hash with Carneros Pinot Noir; short ribs with Bilancia (that's a Zin/Petite Sirah/Syrah blend). $50; 1100 Metropolitan Ave.; reservations: 704-548-9463.

New at D'Vine Wine Cafe: arugula salad with farro; garlic shrimp with charred pepper and tomato over grits; Poulet Rouge; red drum; new cheeses and more, plus "food flights": your own choice of small plates. 14815 John J. Delaney Drive; 704-369-5050.

Monday, March 25, 2013

Harvest Moon's Parsons at TEDxCharlotte

Watch Harvest Moon Grille's Cassie Parsons talk about farm-to-fork at the TEDxCharlotte event.

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Updated: Bunny alert

Easter tea at The Ritz-Carlton will be offered both March 30 and 31, from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. in the 15th-floor Urban Sip. Traditional and contemporary tea sandwiches, scones with fruit preserves and Devonshire cream, and favorite Bar Cocoa treats will be offered for adults at $32 per person; there's also a kid's menu of mini-sandwiches and holiday sweets for $12. Daily chocolate afternoon tea at Bar Cocoa will also be offered during Easter weekend Reservations: 704-547-2244; 201 E. Trade St.

Harper's at Carolina Place will host Easter brunch 11 a.m.-3 p.m. with specials and the regular brunch menu; 704-541-5255.

Del Frisco's offers brunch 11 a.m.-3 p.m.; 4725 Piedmont Row Drive; 704-552-5502.

The Palm offers both a three-course meal for $49.95 and its a la carte menu 5-9 p.m. 704-552-7256; 6705 Phillips Place Court.

Wolfgang Puck Pizza | Bar will be open for both lunch and dinner (11:30 a.m.-9 p.m.) on Easter, plus market specials for the holiday. 6706-C Phillips Place Court; 704-295-0101.

The Liberty offers Easter brunch 11 a.m.-3 p.m. with biscuits for everyone, and a three-course menu that includes options such as Southern ham, chicken and waffles, prime Montana beef roast and more. $24.95 ($9.95 for 10 and younger); reservations at 704-332-8830; 1812 South Blvd.

Mama Ricotta’s will serve a buffet 10 a.m.-3 p.m., with a fresh mozzarella bar, carving station and many signature dishes and desserts for $23 ($12 for 12 and younger). It will reopen at 5 for dinner. 601 S. Kings Drive; 704-343-0148.

Kabuto Lake Norman will be open 11 a.m.-2 p.m., then 4:30-9:30 p.m. A fixed-price menu will be $22.95 ($8.95 for kids), along with the regular menu. 16516 Northcross Drive, Huntersville; 704-655-0077.

The Melting Pot of Charlotte-Midtown and Lake Norman will be open noon-8 p.m., with an Easter four-course menu for $29.95. 16625 Statesville Road, Huntersville, 704-987-2201; 901 S. Kings Drive, 704-334-4400.

Passion8's brunch will be 11 a.m.-3 p.m. March 31: Three courses for $38 per person (kids 8 and younger free). 803-802-7455; 3415 Highway 51 N, Fort Mill.

The Ballantyne Hotel & Lodge offers:
* Easter Tea: In the main lobby at 1-5 p.m. March 28-30, with savories and sweets and your choice of looseleaf tea. $32 for adults and $16 for children 4-12. Reservations: 704-248-4100.
* Easter brunch: 11 a.m.-3 p.m., including salads, decorative displays, seasonal entrées, breakfast fare, carving station and desserts, plus live entertainment (including the Bunny at 11:30 a.m. and 1 and 2:30 p.m. $65 per person, $32 for children 5-12, and complimentary for children ages 4 and younger. Reservations required: 704-248-4100 or online at
10000 Ballantyne Commons Parkway; 704-248-4000.

Fleming’s will offer a three-course Easter brunch menu. 210 E. Trade St.; 704-333-4266.

Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Block & Grinder now open

Block & Grinder is open, with Jed Kampe (former owner of New York Butcher Shoppe on Selwyn) and chef Kent Graham offering both a menu and butcher shop goods at 2935 Providence Road. Among the dinner offerings now (the menu is slated to change seasonally): smoked Berkshire ribs with Cheerwine barbecue sauce and pickled slaw; butter-poached rack of Carolina rabbit with loin and leg roulade; seared magret (that’s the breast of a Moulard duck) with parsnip bread pudding; and more. Large plates run $14-$25; charcuterie and cheeses go for $7 or three for $19 (and range from a Molisana salame to Berkshire prosciutto to chicken liver pate with bourbon and fig compote). There’s also burgers (ground in-house) and “anti burgers” (lentil patty with roasted garlic aioli). This is in the former Panda Express, at the corner of South Sharon Amity; 704-364-2100;

Bits and chills

The last "Chill Chaser Evening" of the season will be March 22 at The Duke Mansion: 5:30-7 p.m., there's a cash bar (credit cards OK) and snacks from the mansion's chef, Harrison Booth. Reservations are requested: 704-714-4445 or 400 Hermitage Road in Myers Park.

Uncle Maddio's Pizza Joint, now open at Overstreet Mall, plans five new locations throughout Charlotte. The Atlanta-based chain lets you choose crust (white, wheat, gluten-free), sauce (six choices), cheeses (seven, including vegan) and toppings from a list of 47. 101 S. Tryon St.;

Monday, March 18, 2013

Charlotte Wine & Food Weekend kickoff nears

Charlotte Wine & Food Weekend’s kickoff April 20 has added a new event: a Champagne tasting with Laurent-Perrier, beginning at 11 a.m. at Bonterra (1829 Cleveland Ave.). The tasting will include Champagne Laurent-Perrier Brut Vintage 2002, Cuvee Rose Brut, Grand Siecle Multi-Vintage and other rare vintages. Wine expert Camille Cox hosts, and tickets are $75 at

That night, 6:30-11 p.m. at Founders Hall is MOTOWN@UPTOWN: wine, food by Aria, live and silent auctions and dancing to live music. Tickets are still available at $125 (party and parking) and $75 for those 21-35 (party only); the $500 and $250 categories have sold out; tickets are sold online.

The Weekend, an every-other-year event that's raised more than $4 million in its history, benefits this year the Council for Children's Rights; Pat’s Place Family Advocacy Program; and Second Harvest Food Bank of Metrolina Backpack Project for Kids.

Thursday, March 14, 2013

Charlotte chefs highlighted

The Braiser, a relatively new site from the Mediaite folks, takes a look at some Charlotte chefs through a flattering lens.

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Dyngus Day!

Lebowski's does its fourth Annual Dyngus Day celebration on April 1, which of course means live accordian polka music 6:30-8 p.m., a bratwurst plate with perogies, boiled cabbage and locally baked rye bread (5-9 p.m. for $8.95) and Polish beer for $3 a bottle. 1524 East Blvd.; 704-370-1177. (Dyngus Day is a traditional Polish and Polish-American celebration of the end of Lent and the joy of Easter.)

Show seeks grands

Do you know -- or are you -- a grandmother or grandfather who cooks? The Cooking Channel will be in Charlotte at the end of March to interview possible folks for the show "My Grandmother's Ravioli," hosted by Mo Rocca. You must apply to be interviewed.

Friday, March 8, 2013

4th anniversary for D'Vine

D'Vine Wine Cafe hosts a fourth anniversary celebration 2-5 p.m. Saturday with more than three dozen wines, food samples from the upcoming spring menu (including a "porkstrami" sandwich) and wine trivia games for prizes. $25 per person; 14815 John J. Delaney Drive; 704-369-5050.

Wednesday, March 6, 2013

Updated: Which barbecue places should be in the tournament?

Comments are now closed. Thanks! Bracket will be in paper of March 15.

Tell us which pulled pork barbecue places should go into our upcoming Tournament of Food. Places must be within 50 miles of Charlotte. We create a bracket of 16. then invite readers to vote on one-on-one matchups. No anonymous comments will be counted! Let the porcine madness begin.

Note: Lexington's outside the boundary for this. I'll stop taking nominees at 5 p.m. March 8.

UPDATE: I'm getting swamped by anonymous comments that won't count -- please get a screen name (it doesn't have to be your real name) and re-comment if you commented anonymously!

Passion8 tasting, dinner

Passion8 hosts a collaborative chef's tasting March 27, with Luca Annunziata cooking with Bistro La Bon's Majid Amoorpour. Six courses with wine pairings for $85. Also coming up at Passion8: March 28, a Januik-Novelty Hill vintner dinner with five courses and winemaker Mike Januik on hand: $150 per couple. 803-802-7455; 3415 Highway 51 N, Fort Mill.

For your Wednesday lunch break enjoyment...

Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Charlotte chef wins

Geoffrey Blount, baking and pastry program chair for Central Piedmont Community College, won the title of Southeast Pastry Chef of the Year at the American Culinary Federation's Southeast Conference in Louisville, Ky., March 1-4.

The N.C. chapter as a whole also won $10,000 from ACF's Chef & Child Foundation for outstanding work in childhood nutrition, including hosting Lunch Break for Kids fundraisers and outreach events for Childhood Nutrition Day.

Monday, March 4, 2013

Bits and crumbs

Travel + Leisure named Halcyon at the uptown Mint in its March story about museum restaurants with "artful food and design," saying, "Don’t be surprised if your server shares exactly which farm provided the ingredients for the day’s menu specialties. Halcyon’s design brings the outside in with lovely touches like a chandelier made from twigs and a trickling stone fountain. Adventurous eaters can add crispy pig ears to salads and pasta or enjoy a tour de force spice-lacquered duck ..."

The Showmars at 2601 Freedom Drive, with a grant from the city of Charlotte, put in energy conservation measures as it was renovating its building; it's added energy-efficient windows, replaced lighting with LED and updated its air conditioning to be more efficient, along with adding a dozen new dining spaces, revamping the kitchen and adding a stone face on the exterior.