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Charlotte

101 expert recommended restaurants

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Mert's Heart & Soul

Barbecue 91 The TripExpert score is determined by calculating the general consensus of expert reviewers. Learn more →

Mainstays are shrimp and grits, fried chicken, barbecue, po' boys, and pork chops. But a mound of fixins...are the backbone. — BlackBook

This stylish yet down-home eatery offers patrons simple, savory Southern, soul and Lowcountry cooking: Think award-winng mac 'n' cheese or sweet cornbread sitting alongside fried chicken. — Where

Straightforward renditions of Southern classics, from collard greens and fried green tomatoes to tangy pulled pork. Pricing is fair, and the Southern hospitality is sugary sweet. — Frommer's

A "must-try", especially "if you're visiting Charlotte", say fans of this easy-on-the-wallet Uptown Southerner. — Zagat

Business executives and arts patrons make their way to Mert's—named for Myrtle, a favorite customer with a sunny disposition. — Fodor's

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The Cowfish Sushi Burger Bar

86 The TripExpert score is determined by calculating the general consensus of expert reviewers. Learn more →

Cowfish offers as appetizers such Asian standards as crab Rangoon and moo shu lettuce wraps with chicken or tofu in portions made for sharing. — Gayot

Love burgers? Love sushi? In addition to an extensive list of gourmet burgers and specialty sushi rolls, this innovative restaurant offers creative sandwiches made with sushi-inspired ingredients. — Where

"Not-to-be-missed ‘burgushi'" (sushi that uses burger ingredients and vice versa) joins other "delicious, creative spins". — Zagat

Trendy eatery caters to two popular items: burgers and sushi. — BlackBook

Feel like burgers? Feel like sushi? How about "burgushi?" There's an entire section of the menu devoted to this concept that blends, you guessed it, burgers and sushi. — Fodor's

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Soul Gastrolounge

Seafood 85 The TripExpert score is determined by calculating the general consensus of expert reviewers. Learn more →

Trendy spot for American, Mediterranean, Asian fare with attitude, all designed with sharing in mind. Spicy feta, babaganoush, hummus, tzatziki dips with pita chips, savory sashimi tacos. — BlackBook

Part Eclectic “tapas bar”, part “nightclub”, this resto-lounge in the heart of Plaza Midwood pleases a late-night crowd with its “clever” collection of small plates soundtracked by “great music”. — Zagat

The “lounge” part of the name is represented by moody lighting and the thumping of urban beats in the background music, but it’s the “gastro” part that keeps locals coming back for more. — Where

In Plaza Midtown, this sultry but welcoming speakeasy serves a globally inspired selection of small plates. — Lonely Planet

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Carpe Diem Restaurant & Caterers

Seafood 84 The TripExpert score is determined by calculating the general consensus of expert reviewers. Learn more →

The kitchen presents dishes with influences from around the globe, such as the Mediterranean yellowtail tuna with tahini lemon vinaigrette. — Gayot

Fine dining with art nouveau style décor. — BlackBook

Its "beautiful" art nouveau decor, featuring ornate woodwork, is "great for a romantic dinner". — Zagat

Intricate art-deco woodwork makes for a romantic, elegant atmosphere while menu stunners like beef carpaccio, hazelnut-crusted goat cheese salad and buttermilk fried chicken woo your palate — Where

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Cajun Queen

Seafood 83 The TripExpert score is determined by calculating the general consensus of expert reviewers. Learn more →

Nightly live jazz that's "very good" – and "very loud" – lends a "fun" "French Quarter" feel to this Elizabeth N'Awlins bastion. — Zagat

Proudly serving the Queen City for more than 30 years, this Elizabeth-based restaurant is a warm and friendly place for any occasion. — Where

Blackened or fried selections, whatever fits your forte. Three choices of crawfish, chicken, shrimp entrées: Diane, Creole or the ultra spicy-Etouffee. — BlackBook

This Elizabeth-area longtimer features the bold flavors and playful atmosphere of the Big Easy. Guests find another reason to smile when ice cold Dixie beer is poured. And when the fried... — Gayot

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Blue Restaurant & Bar

83 The TripExpert score is determined by calculating the general consensus of expert reviewers. Learn more →

A "great location" for those with tickets to the symphony or a show nearby. — Zagat

Mediterranean flavors of sundry origins shape the menu at Blue Restaurant & Bar. Chef Gene Briggs offers North African calamari, served crispy with fried olives and peppadew peppers,... — Gayot

An award-winning menu (don’t pass on the scallops) and stunning décor have taken the city by storm — Where

Executive Chef Gene Briggs combines seasonal ingredients with Mediterranean zest. Dishes draw influences from across the globe: Morocco, France, Italy, Spain and Greece. — BlackBook

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Upstream

Japanese 82 The TripExpert score is determined by calculating the general consensus of expert reviewers. Learn more →

Restaurateur Tom Sasser, the brain behind Mimosa Grill and other renowned eateries, bring us day-boat seafood with Pacific Rim-influenced dishes. L and D (daily), brunch (Su). — Where

You “can't go wrong with anything” at this SouthPark seafood spot serving “incredibly fresh” cooked fish preparations plus “great” sushi and “top-quality” oysters – and “save room for dessert”. — Zagat

A local favorite, Upstream offers a sushi and oyster bar, an extensive wine list, and a market-fresh menu of delights from the sea. — Frommer's

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Barrington's Restaurant

Pizza 82 The TripExpert score is determined by calculating the general consensus of expert reviewers. Learn more →

Bruce Moffett’s comfortable spot is tiny—reservations are recommended—but his work in the kitchen comes up big — Where

Intimate Barrington's features contemporary dishes that offer seasonality and the occasional regional note. — Gayot

The traditional-looking dining room is quite “small” but “cozy”, service is “top-notch” and the menu “changes just enough” for frequent visitors. — Zagat

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Price's Chicken Coop

Fast Food 82 The TripExpert score is determined by calculating the general consensus of expert reviewers. Learn more →

The line for this Charlotte legend often stretches down the block, but the lip-smacking fried chicken is worth the wait. Takeout and cash only. L and D (Tu-Sa). — Where

If you want to know where the locals eat, just follow the scent of oil to this storefront institution in the historic South End neighborhood, just across Interstate 277 from Uptown. — Fodor's

A Charlotte institution, scruffy Price's regularly makes 'Best Fried Chicken in America' lists. — Lonely Planet

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Customshop: Handcrafted Food

French 81 The TripExpert score is determined by calculating the general consensus of expert reviewers. Learn more →

“Creative” food issues from this New American “gem” in “hip” Elizabeth where “lots of love and care” show up in “interesting” dishes that draw inspiration from French, Italian and Spanish cuisine. — Zagat

Charlotte native chef Trey Wilson has been serving a seasonally changing menu featuring produce and proteins from local farms since before doing so was trendy. — Gayot

A warm and seductive interior is the setting for the innovative cuisine of Owner and Executive Chef Trey Wilson — Where

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Basil Thai Restaurant

Thai 81 The TripExpert score is determined by calculating the general consensus of expert reviewers. Learn more →

"Far and away Charlotte's best Thai" cuisine comes at this "higher end" Uptown spot. — Zagat

With its prime location, this Thai option offers boldly seasoned dishes and a sleek setting. — Gayot

Sleek modern interior with large windows to expose big city hustle and bustle at all hours. — BlackBook

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Aria Tuscan Grille

Italian 81 The TripExpert score is determined by calculating the general consensus of expert reviewers. Learn more →

Pierre Bader delves into classic Tuscan Italian cuisine with this Uptown venture — Where

Savory Italian fare and one of the city's best chef’s tables in this sleek staple enhanced by modern artwork. — Gayot

Posh Italian ristorante serves beguiling classics. — BlackBook

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Halcyon, Flavors from the Earth

American 81 The TripExpert score is determined by calculating the general consensus of expert reviewers. Learn more →

Within the Mint Museum Uptown, this contemporary American displays “beautiful” “eye candy” of its own, including artisan-crafted tableware and unique pieces like tables made from tree cross sections. — Zagat

Enjoy the skyline view and absolutely delicious farm-to-table plates at the Mint Museum's resident restaurant — Where

The food is international in its influences, local in its sourcing: rabbit saddle with melted leeks, bacon, horseradish, and local mushrooms; roasted scallops sided by "Forbidden Black Rice". — Frommer's

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The Asbury

81 The TripExpert score is determined by calculating the general consensus of expert reviewers. Learn more →

Past and present collide at this modern Southern kitchen inside Uptown’s historic Dunhill Hotel where the focus is on Carolinian cuisine made with seasonal and heirloom ingredients. — Zagat

Named for Louis Asbury, the Charlotte architect who designed its Dunhill Hotel space, this modern Southern restaurant serves up creative twists on classic dishes — Where

The real artistry is taking place in the kitchen. That's thanks to chefs who take Southern classics and upend them, coming up with dishes such as chicken and dumplings with pillowy gnocchi. — Frommer's

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5Church Charlotte

81 The TripExpert score is determined by calculating the general consensus of expert reviewers. Learn more →

A soaring arched ceiling, funky modern art, creative lighting and ornate, marble bathrooms accentuate the avant-garde vibe at this sophisticated American in a converted French Quarter church. — Zagat

The "see-and-be-seen" crowd enjoys imaginative dishes and specialty cocktails at uptown's swanky, multi-level 5Church. — Gayot

With its swanky atmosphere and extensive wine list, this uptown hotspot is sure to impress — Where

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Stagioni

Italian 81 The TripExpert score is determined by calculating the general consensus of expert reviewers. Learn more →

Italian for “seasons,” this Myers Park restaurant serves a fresh range of Italian standards—handmade pastas, wood-fired pizzas, slow-roasted meats — Where

Sharp choice for farm-fresh Italian fare — Zagat

Helming Moffett Restaurant Group's third establishment, chef Ashley Quick keeps the restaurant in its classic Italian mode. Stagioni, meaning "seasons" in Italian, is located in the... — Gayot

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Lupie's Cafe

Burgers 80 The TripExpert score is determined by calculating the general consensus of expert reviewers. Learn more →

Menu items are basic and portions gargantuous. Big juicy burgers (and a scrumptious veggie burger), nachos, soups, sandwiches, salads and other home-cooked grub. — BlackBook

This bohemian establishment has been popular in Charlotte for years—and is now famous for its chili, burgers, vegetables and banana pudding. L and D (M-Sa). — Where

Cincinnati-style chili blending sweet and hot spices is a big hit, and so is the vegetarian chili. Vegetable plates come piled with mac 'n' cheese, green beans, pinto beans and...a hunk of cornbread. — Gayot

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Mickey & Mooch

Seafood 80 The TripExpert score is determined by calculating the general consensus of expert reviewers. Learn more →

Steaks, chops, decadent desserts, and cocktails made right plus a vibrant atmosphere—that’s the timeless appeal of M&M. D (Tu-Su). — Where

You're “guaranteed to get a good steak” at these traditional, moderately priced chophouses say fans who also advise “save room” for the “outstanding” chocolate cake. — Zagat

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Gallery Restaurant at The Ballantyne Hotel

80 The TripExpert score is determined by calculating the general consensus of expert reviewers. Learn more →

This Forbes Four Star restaurant connected to the Ballantyne Hotel and Spa serves up some seriously tasty dishes, from monkfish to oxtail ragu. B, L and D (daily). — Where

Gallery Restaurant is a culinary gem tucked inside The Ballantyne Hotel & Lodge, just outside the city center of Charlotte, North Carolina — Forbes Travel Guide

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Vapiano Charlotte

Italian 79 The TripExpert score is determined by calculating the general consensus of expert reviewers. Learn more →

Vapiano is a hopping go-to spot for the after-work uptown crowd or families heading to the theater or a game — Gayot

This European-style restaurant chain opened its first North Carolina location here in Charlotte — Where

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