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Good Eats

Our critics' guide to recommended restaurants in Charlotte

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The Cupboard, 3005 South Blvd., 704-523-9934. One of the busiest of Charlotte’s many home cooking restaurants. Great daily specials (don’t miss the chicken pan pie) and legendary coconut pie. B, L, D $

Don Quijote, Restaurante Espanol, 4640 South Blvd., 704-529-5959. Exceptional Northern and Southern Spanish cuisine. One could readily make a meal by choosing a variety of the 15 tantalizing Tapas items. And there’s more: paellas, fabulous fish dishes, Spanish wines, and a large deck. L, D $$$

Dragonfly, 5110-1G Park Rd., 704-527-3868. A cozy neighborhood Chinese spot featuring Sichuan, Hunan, and Cantonese dishes which are well crafted and entertainingly presented. $$

Harrigan’s Gourmet Deli, 5033-K South Blvd., 704-522-3550. Traditional cold cut sandwiches on round bread, specialty “Dilbert” sandwiches, homemade salads and daily specials. B, L $

Ilios Noche, 11508 Providence Rd., 704-814-9882. Small, but exceptional Greek Italian contemporary bistro owned by Culinary Institute of America-trained Chefs Stratos Lambos and Angelo Kaltsounis. Exceptional appetizers, wood-grilled entrees, pizzas, and house-made pastries. Opens at 9am. $$

Jaipur Indian Cuisine, 5909 South Blvd., 704-643-1421. Don’t let the exterior put you off. Inside you’ll find balanced Indian dishes from all parts of the subcontinent. Reasonably priced, too. A great weekday lunch buffet, and a great dinner buffet on weekends. L, D $$$

Luisa’s Brick Oven, 1730 Abbey Pl., 704-522-8782. Brick oven-baked pizza plus other Italian dishes. Pizza available with innovative topping alternatives. Take out orders prepared quickly. $$

Mai Japanese Restaurant, 5906 South Blvd., 704-522-1515. Sushi chefs produce deftly cleaved wondrous rolls that taste sparklingly fresh. Robata grill, too. $$$

Monsoon, Thai Cuisine Restaurant, 2801 South Blvd., 704-519-0066. The lush kang panang with chopped kaffir lime leaves and holy basil is a gift to the senses. The key to eating well here is going with friends and sharing a spate of dishes. $$$

Oneo Bistro & Wine Bar, 7725 Colony Rd., 704-544-1170. Chef owner Chris Zion focuses on seasonal New American cuisine in this small welcoming restaurant. $$$

Paluso’s Pizzeria, 10106 Johnston Rd., 704-542-4511. This take out/delivery only place is not to be missed. They offer New York style pizza with freshly made dough, an outrageous meatball sandwich, and one of the best Philly Cheesesteak sandwiches in town. $

The Peaceful Dragon, 12610 Steele Creek Rd., 704-504-8866. Chef Geoff Bragg, a Johnson & Wales culinary graduate, presents delightful Asian dishes, which are not only pretty on the plate, but good for you - in this vegan restaurant. $$

Pho 98, 5937 South Blvd., 704-643-1243. You may not find all the Vietnamese dishes you like here, but what is offered sparkles with freshness and flavor. $$

Portofino Italian Restaurant & Pizzeria, 5126 Park Rd., 704-527-0702. Wonderful rustic Neapolitan dishes at incredibly low prices. Served in a casual atmosphere. New York style pizza (large is 16 inch). Take out, too. $$ L, D $$

The Press Box, 1627 Montford Dr., 704-523-4981. With a pub-like interior, this meeting place is a Charlotte tradition for burgers, sandwiches and salads. L, D $$

Restaurante Mi Tierrita, 5033-G South Blvd., 704-525-5781. The place is simple. The food is simple and is, perhaps, more comfortable with village tradition. But this is a fun place to explore rural Colombian cuisine. $$

The Roasting Company, 1601-A Montford Dr., 704-521-8188. Rotisserie chicken that falls off the bone and melts in your mouth. Excellent cornbread. L, D $

Saigon Palace, 5215-B South Blvd., 704-529-0098. Delightful frothy tropical fruit shakes and hardy bowls of steaming pho are among the array of delicious items to try from the menu. Chinese buffet at lunch, but Vietnamese menu items are always available. $$

Sir Edmond Halley’s Restaurant, 4151-A Park Rd., 704-525-2555. Quaint neighborhood pub ambience, but the food here is good. Caters to beer savants pouring seven drafts including Watney’s and Whitbread. L, D $$

Situl Indian Restaurant, 540-B Brandywine Rd., 704-523-0037. Small Northern Indian spot producing a generous selection of big flavors in well-crafted traditional dishes, but served in a sparse atmosphere. $$

Sushi 101, Noodle & Sushi Bar, 1730-F East Woodlawn Rd., Shops at Woodlawn Rd., 704-672-0990. This upbeat spot offers a balance of conviviality, energy and informality with dishes that are uncomplicated and well-priced. Patio. Delivery available. $$

Tomi Restaurant, 7741 Colony Road, 704-759-1288. Brothers Kevin and chef Ben Cheng, who once owned KoKo’s in Dilworth, now bring healthy, fresh tasting Taiwanese cuisine to south Charlotte. Don’t let the small space fool you: flavors are big. Of particular note are the crispy alligator appetizer, the slow cooked pot roast, the shrimp and orange duck breast entrees. No smoking. $$

Villa Antonio, 4707 South Blvd., 704-523-1594. Old world style service and straightforward Italian dishes in this local favorite for dining and dancing. $$$$


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