Spring is my favorite time of year to lunch with my girlfriends. Actually, who am I kidding, I can find an excuse to lunch any time, any day! It’s such a great escape from my daily grind and it gives me some coveted “ME” time, which is so rare in my life right now. I’ve put together some of my favorite digs along with the help of my north and uptown Smarty representation.
Located in the heart of Dilworth, this has been my favorite lunch spot since moving to Charlotte 14 years ago. How’s that for customer loyalty? Their soups are awesome, their menu is diverse and eclectic but mainstream enough for even a picky friend. Some of my favorite menu items are the black & blue salad and the black bean chicken tortilla. Y-U-M!
Incredible thai food and perfect for the power-lunchers uptown!
No explanation necessary. Love their pizza, salads and the patios! Locations all over Charlotte: Uptown, Blakeney, Dilworth and Foxcroft.
Cabo Fish Taco (NoDa)
This is my favorite, favorite restaurant in all of Charlotte, lunch or dinner. It’s always fun to scoot just outside of town for a fab lunch. For first-timers, you HAVE to get the fish taco (hence the name) and you must order it with blackened mahi-mahi. Trust me. You’ll never order anything else again. Oh, and you know I love me some queso, they have a different twist on it with homemade corn/black bean salsa that will rock your boat.
Crisp 7th Street Cafe
The. best. salads. ever. Nuf said. Located in Elizabeth.
Dean & Deluca
Locations uptown and in SouthPark. Awesome salads and soups. A little pricey for me since I can’t get out of there without sampling everything and then buying twice as much as I went in for. But delish nonetheless. Love their soups and hummus too.
Located in Myers Park, this is a nice spin on Thai. Great indoor and outdoor dining, not typical of your usual dark, Thai restaurants.
eeZ Fusion (Birkdale)
This is a delish lunch spot for a little Asian influence. Nice seating outside for people watching and enjoying the Spring weather. Their lettuce wraps are a fave of Ashley’s.
I know carbs are so 2008, but for those sandwich-lovers out there, we are lucky to have this deli in our city. We need more of ’em! Harrigan’s uses Boar’s Head meat, which is the tastiest, freshest deli meat you can buy. You’ll notice the difference in their sandwiches. Order the Dilbert sandwich and make sure you ask for lots of “special sauce” – it ROCKS! Located off South Blvd and Seneca just down from USA Baby.
Harris YMCA Deli
This is a hidden gem that only the workout buffs like myself know about (ha, ha!). They too use Boar’s Head meat. My favorite at this place is their chicken salad. We buy it by the pound and my kids love it. Simple, yet delicious!
Maddi’s Southern Bistro (Birkdale)
If you have a hankering for some superb, eclectic Southern cuisine this is the spot! Awesome food, great wine selection, Sunday brunch is the bomb and just a few doors down from Birkdale movie theater! Great girls day out spot!
What’s not to like about this hip lunch spot? Their salads are delish, the salmon salad is one of my faves, especially on a diet (dressing on the side, please!). Conveniently located on the 2nd floor of Nordstrom’s, you can always skip dessert and do a little shopping before hopping in carpool line.
North Harbor Club (Lake Norman)
A fave of Ashley’s due to the great location … right on
Lake Norman. Tucked away in Davidson this spot has well-appointed
nautical decor and is a great spot for cocktails and dinner by water.
Sometimes the food is hit or miss, but to feel miles away from city
life the location can’t be beat.
Again, for the power lunch gal pals. A lot like D&D but better sandwiches in Tracy’s opinion. Great “girlfriend-lunch-spot” atmosphere. They also serve wine. At lunch. Love:-)
This authentic Mexican hot spot packs some punch. Their menu includes only the freshest ingredients and they have the best queso dip in town. Nothing beats their traditional margaritas. Located in the Piper Glen shopping plaza, you could make an entire afternoon out of it. With Trader Joe’s and the new Run for Your Life, this plaza is on the up-and-up for sure!
Yama Asian Fusion
This is perfect for sushi rookies like myself. I am not intimidated ordering all by myself and I haven’t had a roll yet that I don’t like. Bring it! P.S. Watch out for their sake-tini’s (we imbibed one evening for a happy hour), they are super refreshing toddies, but be careful, they sneak up on ya!
Part of the Harper’s Restaurant empire. Great patio, a little more “upscale”, but not too terribly expensive. Tracy’s favorite mac and cheese ever! Zink is a perfect happy hour spot – $2 beer specials every day and 1/2 price wine on Wed! Yup, Tracy would know that:-)
Blakeney and Metropolitan Midtown
This is a great place to meet with the girls or take your whole fam. Everything is so yummy. My favorite is the steak and chicken roll-ups and hummus. Zoe’s is currently Smarty brainstorming lunch headquarters!
That should do it. Share your Smarty faves!
Don’t miss out on these reminders:
–Smarty Giveaway – Just in time for Spring family outings, our friends at Children’s Theatre are giving one lucky Smarty (4) tickets to “Goodnight Moon,” the Margaret Wise Brown family bedtime classic. So presh and perfect for all ages from 3 to 99! Click here to register for your family 4-pack. Giveaway ends Sunday, April 18th at 5p. Good luck, Smarties!
–Quack, Quack! The Kindermourn Hope Floats Duck Race is this Sunday! We’re trying to be the leading team of ducks for the second year in a row. Click here to read all about it!