We’ve been back to Charlotte seven times in the past few months. Seven. I blame the trips to Charlotte for the fact that my jeans are getting a little tight. I can’t help it, though. The local food scene in Charlotte just keeps getting better and better. We’re headed home again this coming weekend for a wedding, and thankfully it’ll be the last trip for a while. Maybe then I can finally lose some weight.
This weekend since we’re spending a large bit of the weekend at the rehearsal dinner & the wedding, there won’t be as much time for awesome dinners. There will of course be a lunch stop at JJ’s for a hot dog, and we’re going to have brunch with some other friends on Sunday, but that’ll be it.
So, in honor of Charlotte’s fabulous food scene, here are some delicious eats from our last trip home. We started, of course, with hot dogs for lunch at JJ’s. The very first one I ever had there was one of their amazing dogs of the week. That one happened to be the dog of the week again this most recent visit. ‘The Big Cheesy’ is hot dog topped with pimento cheese, bacon & jalapenos. This dog is so good. I never liked pimento cheese until I ordered this hot dog last year. Now I can’t get enough of the stuff. This dog was perfect, as usual, and the fries and pickled veggies from the condiment bar were winners like usual. (Try pickled okra if you have the chance. I don’t like okra, and I love it!)
My BFF turned 30 this past Sunday, and since we didn’t get to celebrate my birthday back in May, we decided to get together for a girls night. She wanted to go someplace different, so I picked someplace neither of us had been. Her only request was recognizable food & an excellent cocktail list. Nan & Byron’s in South End came highly recommended by friends & local media, and they did not disappoint.
We started with the Train Wreck Fries. These were amazing. The delicious fries were covered in chili, poblano cheese, sriracha ranch, scallions. We completely killed this platter of fries. We didn’t finish them, but we made a pretty significant dent in them.
Before our dinners came out, we also enjoyed our cocktails. I had the ‘Farmhouse Lemonade‘ which was Bacardi Limon, Strawberry Vodka, Limoncello, citrus juices, muddled fresh strawberries and lemon. Our table wasn’t quite outside, but we were close enough that it was pretty hot. This is was super delicious and so refreshing.
Brittany had the ‘Nightshade Martini‘, which was Pearl Pomegranate Vodka, POM Pomegranate Juice, muddled mint and fresh cucumber. I didn’t have any of hers, but she loved it. Her only change would have been that the cucumbers should have been soaked in the cocktail.
We both LOVED our dinners. I typically go for seafood, but everyone raved about their red meat entrees. They were in the process of changing their menu, so the prime rib I had planned to get wasn’t an option. So, I went for the Delmonico. It was 10 oz. spice rubbed and served with crushed Yukon potatoes, crispy onions, and a red wine sauce. This was absolutely delicious. The meat was tender and full of flavor, and the potatoes had a really cool texture. Different from mashed potatoes and smashed potatoes, and very tasty. The cloves of garlic that came with it were also a perfect little flavor surprise.
Britt had the meatloaf. It came with sriracha ketchup, but she wasn’t sure if she’d like it, so she asked for it on the side. I didn’t try any of this, but she loved it. I couldn’t get over the size of the portion. It was a HUGE serving of meatloaf, veggies and potatoes.
Unfortunately we both finished our meals, so neither of us had any desire for dessert. Well, there was a desire, but there was no room. At all. But we made up for it the next day…
Britt’s mom & husband threw her a surprise 30th birthday party. We didn’t get to stay the whole time, because we had to get back to Virginia, but we definitely made an appearance. Once I saw her birthday cake, I was even happier that we had time to stop by.
This cake was ridiculous. I don’t care for the bakery it came from, but this cake was delicious. That middle layer: SOLID. LAYER. OF. FROSTING. I only managed to eat half of my slice, but seriously, it was delicious.
So, another fatty weekend in Charlotte is in the books. After the wedding this coming weekend, we’re not heading back home for a while. We’ve got lots of places around Virginia we’d like to explore, so we’re going to spend the rest of the summer doing that. And maybe no more trips home mean I’ll finally lose a few pounds…