Best restaurants in Charlotte

No matter where you are in Charlotte, a fantastic meal is never far away. The city’s restaurant industry has grown both geographically and gastronomically. The menu at Midwood has barbecue and fried chicken, two tried-and-true dishes that every Southern city should have mastered by now. However, mobile eateries have sparked a food truck craze, and unusual twists on traditional dishes are popular in more recent establishments that keep opening up. The Queen City is also home to some genuinely creative locations that have attracted national attention, such as the multi-award-winning, constantly-evolving Kindred. Discover our selections for Charlotte’s top restaurants by reading on, then start making reservations.

Church and Union Charlotte

Church and Union is without a doubt Charlotte’s sexiest restaurant with its exposed ducting, black leather couches and stunning bar. Additionally, the chef, Jamie Lynch, is a well-known figure. In 2018, Charlotte Magazine awarded the “Top Chef” alum greatest chef.A tomahawk for two and yellowfin tuna tater tots, both offered in the ultra-chic boutique hotel The Ivey, are on his menu of dressed-up steakhouse favorites.Side dishes like Southern street corn and white truffle cheddar mac ‘n cheese are available and can be consumed as a full course on their own.


Stagioni, a quaint restaurant hidden inside a historic house in Charlotte’s Eastover neighbourhood, appeals with its cosy ambiance and peaceful setting away from the action. Bruce Moffett, a well-known Charlotte restaurateur, has created a beautiful Italian restaurant inside of which are cookbooks and wooden lamps. Stagioni is not your typical restaurant with red sauce. A few pizzas and pastas will be served, but they won’t be anything like you’re used to. Instead, plan on homemade ricotta and hot ‘nduja-stuffed tortellini, as well as gnocchi that has been seared in nettle pesto.


Zeppelin has a hip ambiance that blends in well with South End, replete with exposed brick and black subway tiling. The restaurant provides its bar snacks, like hog-cheek hush puppies, sweet miso pork buns, or barbecue-roasted Spanish octopus, a Southern twist by enhancing them with premium ingredients and global inspirations. Cocktails are the stuff of Instagram fantasies; even traditional drinks like dirty Martinis and Manhattans get a contemporary twist, like parmesan-washed gin.


Eating at Kindred requires a commitment if you won’t be in Charlotte for a long time because you have to travel to Davidson, North Carolina, about 30 minutes outside of Charlotte. But you must never allow a minor setback like that to deter you. Joe Kindred’s creative, frequently-changing menu and Katy Kindred’s painstakingly curated wine list have propelled their restaurant to the top of many lists of the nation’s best restaurants.

Midwood Smokehouse

The boisterous, energetic ambiance that barbecue restaurants are renowned for can be found at Midwood Smokehouse. The restaurant offers a casual atmosphere, which is helpful because you’ll want to leave that white dress shirt at home. It’s a fantastic option for families or large groups of friends. There are many traditional barbecue dishes on the menu, including as fried chicken sandwiches, pimiento cheese fries, burned ends, and Carolina pork. You might roll your eyes when tacos are mentioned on the menu, but they are absolutely worth getting. Don’t forget to order a nice Carolina beer from the tap as well.

Pinky’s Westside Grill

The restaurant is lively and enjoyable. With the dino in the parking lot and the VW Beetle on the roof, Pinky’s Westside Grill seems like the ideal setting for Guy Fieri’s “Diners, Drive-ins, and Dives,” and for good reason too—it has been on the show twice. The menu largely relies on the fryer: pimiento cheese-drenched waffle fries, three-pattied burgers, fried pickles, corn dogs, hush puppies and more. You’ll become the best parent of the year if you bring the kids and let them eat anything they want.

Alexander Michael’s

The 4th Ward’s famed Alexander Michael’s Tavern offers a distinct neighbourhood vibe. The traditional pub makes you want to sit for hours and talk to the person serving you about your problems despite the fact that it doesn’t accept reservations and has nothing particularly upscale about it. Diners there don’t care about formality or frills. They want to visit with some friends, enjoy a few local craft brews, and get a burger without shedding their clothes, thus they are here.

Good Food on Montford

You can order anything from fried sweet tea-brined quail to carnitas and pig buns on this menu, which combines regional and international cooking techniques. To make sense of it all, ask the staff for assistance. The wine list offers a wide variety of options by the glass and includes wines from all around the world. Additionally, there are seasonal cocktails, cordials, and cognacs, as well as local beer on tap and in bottles.

The Asbury

A spacious and well-lit dining area at The Asbury restaurant in the historic Dunhill Hotel offers a picturesque view of the street through its expansive windows.. Local artists’ works adorn the pastel-hued walls.Despite having only six major options, the menu is comprehensive, including everything from vegetarian options to braised lamb and a specialty burger. Shareable apps, such goat cheese-topped sticky biscuits and deviled eggs, are the ideal representation of the kitchen’s approach to contemporary Southern cuisine.

The Fig Tree

It seems like visiting a friend’s house when you enter The Fig Tree, which is hidden inside a Craftsman-style bungalow in the quaint Elizabeth neighbourhood. But the meal goes beyond what’s normal. The appetizers are bold, with fried oysters and chorizo-stuffed calamari, while the entrees are elegant and decadent, like the Stilton-topped fillet mignon.You should order something that is outside of your comfort zone here; you can’t help but want the elk over the horseradish spaetzle.

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