Food & Drink

Meet Charlotte's Cocktail Curator, Our Bartender of the Year

Published On 11/08/2016 Published On 11/08/2016
Colleen Hughes
Colleen Hughes | Courtesy of Crepe Cellar
Crepe Cellar Kitchen and Pub
Oyster Shooter | Sea Level NC
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1. Crepe Cellar 3116 N Davidson St, Charlotte, NC 28205 (Noda)

Located in NoDa's arts district, this cozy gastropub offers Euro-inspired cuisine that ranges from crepes and steak frites to pesto pasta and pan-seared Scottish salmon. You'll want to go for one of the savory buckwheat crepes (they're in the restaurant's name, after all), which come in varieties like ham & gruyere, spinach & wild mushroom, and turkey apple brie. The Crepe Cellar burger is a favorite, too, served on a soft potato bun, smothered in creamy garlic aioli, and topped with melted gruyere cheese and some onion straws for crunch. When it comes to beverages, you can expect a rotating list of craft beer, seasonal cocktails, French press coffee, and tea.

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2. Growlers Pourhouse 3120 N Davidson St, Charlotte, NC 28205 (Noda)

What it lacks in size, this corner bar makes up for in character. Order a local beer (many of the offerings are from breweries just down the street like Birdsong Brewing or NoDa Brewing Co.) and dig into the complimentary popcorn, or order a round of oysters on the half shell. And while it’s bustling on weekends, its flat screen TVs and laid-back setting make it a favorite spot to catch the game.

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3. Sea Level 129 E 5th St, Charlotte, NC 28202

Located in the Hearst Tower, the folks behind Charlotte favorites Crepe Cellar and Growlers Pourhouse bring you this sleek, contemporary seafood spot in Uptown, where the fish is top-notch and the incredible raw-bar menu changes daily. Feel free to call ahead to find out what oysters await you, but the quality never quits, whether they come from Cape Cod, Charleston, or somewhere in between. The menu also features sandwiches like a catfish reuben and a lobster roll, burgers for the land lovers, and a daily fresh catch. If you're brave enough, order an oyster shooter on the side (made with vodka, gin, or tequila).

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4. Abari Game Bar 1721 North Davidson Street, Charlotte, NC

For a gamer, what's the only thing better than 30 different arcade games in one space? Thirty different arcade games in one space with an impressive selection of craft beer, game-themed cocktails, and house-made sodas on the side. That's what you get with Abari Game Bar, which boasts classic pinball machines and old-school arcade games focused on multi-player ability, so you can go head-to-head with your friends as you sip on more than six craft beers on tap. Heads up: because Abari doesn't serve food, you'll be asked to fill out a membership application and pay a $1 fee.

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