Despite being one of the biggest cities in the South, Charlotte, North Carolina remains a plucky upstart in the food scene. And while it might not yet be mentioned in the same breath as the region’s heavy hitters like Nashville, Atlanta, and Charleston, that will be changing. There's more than enough great food and drink to keep your stomach occupied. An interesting wrinkle to Charlotte’s gastronomic explosion though is the unmatched beer culture at its center. The city is now home to ten breweries and counting, most of which opened within the last five years.
The city’s expanding culinary prowess (beer included) was on full display at the latest installment of the Skyline Series—events exploring everything creative in Charlotte. At this month's gathering, panel speaker Linton Hopkins—James Beard Award winning Chef at Restaurant Eugene in Atlanta, GA – pointed out that a city can't really be considered a culinary destination "until you can dine [there] in more than one neighborhood. You gotta have the 'food journeys.'" After making my way around the city it seems that, by those terms, Charlotte has certainly arrived.
I've developed the perfect route for hungry visitors to Charlotte below. The best part is that this multi-neighborhood trip through the city won't even require you to set foot in the hectic "Uptown" area. Operating hours may vary, so the following itinerary is best on a Saturday: