If you live around Charlotte, North Carolina, and are a self-proclaimed foodie, then you are in luck! Every year, more than 140 restaurants participate in the Charlotte Restaurant Week by offering special dinner deals, so you have a vast array of delicacies and cuisines to choose from.
The Restaurant Week (also known as Queen’s Feast) offers great meal prices to some of the best food joints in the 10 counties around the metro area. You can choose a different place every night of the week. Make sure you head out on an empty stomach and join in on the fun!
How Does Charlotte Restaurant Week Work?
Restaurants across the city participate in Restaurant Week by agreeing to offer three-course dinners at only $30 to $35 a person. They create a prix fixe menu—which is a menu that offers a multi-course meal at a fixed price. Some restaurants may have multiple options to choose from within each of the courses, while others may only have one.
The best way to successfully participate in Restaurant Week as a customer is to make a reservation. While it is possible to grab a seat last minute as a walk-in, it’s always safer to reserve a table beforehand. These events are extremely popular, with people from all over the city joining in, so the restaurants are always stock full of patrons.
Take note that this only applies to dinner, though, not lunch. Menus are also subject to change without prior notice due to product availability. During Restaurant Week, most places don’t accept the use of additional coupons or discounts. If you have one that you would like to use, you should check with the specific restaurant.
When is Charlotte Restaurant Week?
Charlotte Restaurant Week occurs in the winter season usually during the third week of January. In 2020, it was held January 17-26. Restaurant weeks are usually held in winter and spring to help boost business sales during the slow season for restaurants.
This upcoming January 2021, there are unfortunately no current plans to hold Restaurant Week. Due to the rising number of Covid-19 cases in North Carolina and the rest of the United States, Governor Roy Cooper announced that more restrictions would be taking place.
Beginning Friday, December 11, North Carolinians are on “Stay at Home” orders. They will have a curfew and be required to stay inside their homes from 10 p.m. to 5 a.m. Bars and restaurants must stop serving alcohol at 9 p.m. and close at 10 p.m. These regulations don’t expire until the new year on January 8, 2021.
Why is Charlotte Restaurant Week So Popular?
This week is a great opportunity for restaurants to market themselves and attract new customers. They’ll offer deals and specials so that they can attract people to become regulars and come back often. It’s the best way to market their business without having to spend extra money on coupons, flyers, or advertisements. For a week in winter they have the opportunity to have a full house every night.
The idea with a prix fixe menu is that although they lose money on the checks, they make up in sales volume. This past January, they estimated that Restaurant Week generated almost $1 million daily between the contributing establishments. Just partake in this week-long event and reap the benefits!
The restaurant week is not only a great way for businesses to successfully market themselves to potential customers, but also for customers to experience foods that they might normally never try. Eating a three-course meal for $30 to $35 per person is a great bargain that you just can’t turn up. It also increases local tourism, too, as people from outside the city metro might drive in to experience it. It can help increase sales for hotels, stores, and other restaurants.
List of Restaurants That Participate in Charlotte Restaurant Week
With 140 restaurants to choose from, you’ll have an even harder time than usual deciding where you want to eat. If you want some advice, try someplace that you normally wouldn’t go to. Chain restaurants participate in Restaurant Week, but there’s so much more good food to try outside of what you already know.
Heirloom is a farm-to-fork restaurant that gets its ingredients from local North Carolinian farms. They offer fresh foods and ever-changing menus to keep you coming back. Expect to pay a lot of money on a regular date night, so it’s a great idea to go during Restaurant Week.
Lumiere French Kitchen specializes in French cuisine. You normally might not frequent a classic French restaurant, so this week is the perfect opportunity for you to try foie gras, duck a l’orange, or escargot. Normally you’d pay a pretty penny to dine here, but during Restaurant Week you can sample them all for a portion of the price.
-Recent Update: Now Closed 🙁
Aqua e Vino is the creation of Italian-born chef Gabriele Grigolon. Using his training and experiences, he brings the authentic taste of Northern Italy right to your table. He partners with local farmers to deliver fresh produce throughout the year.
Charlotte Restaurant Week is a city-wide event that both locals and visitors alike love. It benefits restaurants by increasing sales during the winter season, and locals have something exciting to look forward to with their friends and family. Unfortunately, for the first time in 12 years, a winter Restaurant Week might not occur due to the Covid-19 pandemic.
Many beloved and longtime participants of Restaurant Week have had to shut their doors permanently due to the pandemic decreasing their sales. Upstream, Carpe Diem and Luciano’s all have closed.
Businesses in the food industry are taking a hit, as are their workers. Although Charlotte Restaurant Week 2021 might not be able to officially happen, try to support your local businesses by ordering curbside and taking your meals to-go. Wear a mask wherever you go and maintain proper social distance. If we follow the rules together for a few weeks and get through this ordeal, then we will hopefully see the cases dwindle and begin reopening businesses.