Charlotte is a vibrant city with a welcoming community that invites travelers from all over to discover what this exciting destination has to offer.
Indulge in a wealth of dining options for every palate, and then explore the city’s thriving arts and culture scene. From dinner at an art gallery to pre-theater cocktails at a rooftop bar to drag brunches that put the “Queen” in “Queen City,” center your Charlotte vacation around these culinary and cultural experiences.
Enjoy a feast for your eyes and your stomach at the Mint Museum in Uptown Charlotte. This 145,000-square-foot museum showcases an impressive collection of American, European, and African art. Immerse yourself in centuries of artistic expression, from decorative arts and furniture to thought-provoking contemporary collections and special exhibitions with unique perspectives.
The Mint Museum is conveniently housed in the same building as Mariposa, a “world-to-table” restaurant serving internationally inspired flavors. Get a taste of the Mint Museum when you make a reservation for the Culture & Cuisine Date Night. On Friday evenings, when you book a table at Mariposa, you will also receive two admission tickets to the Mint Museum to explore before or after your meal. Shareable dishes such as the street corn fritters, tuna crudo, and Carolina-inspired paella, are the amuse-bouche before embarking on an artistic journey through history and culture.
If you enjoy lively rhythms and rich harmonies, plan an evening out at Middle C Jazz. This live music venue in Uptown regularly hosts regional and national acts, from soulful solo performers to dynamic ensembles, all in an upscale club setting. With genres ranging from mainstream and smooth jazz, to contemporary, R&B and funk, Middle C’s shows appeal to a variety of musical tastes. This intimate and inviting space also offers a menu of sharable small plates, drinks, and delectable desserts from the on-site Dressler’s Improv Kitchen. Nosh on jumbo lump crab dip, paninis, cheesecake, and more, as you sip wine, beer, and craft cocktails throughout the performance.
Nearby, Blumenthal Performing Arts Center’s state-of-the-art facilities (Belk Theater, Booth Playhouse, and Stage Door Theater) maintain a jam-packed schedule of performances year-round. From mesmerizing touring Broadway shows to captivating programming from Charlotte Ballet, symphony orchestras, and contemporary concerts, these venues offer an array of artistic experiences.
Before your show, get a bite to eat at one of the many restaurants in Uptown Charlotte. Take your pick of fine dining establishments or Southern eateries with a contemporary twist, then enjoy a walk to one of these performing arts venues. The Blumenthal Performing Arts Center also partners with local restaurants to provide special discounts and offers when you present your event ticket.
After the performance, grab a nightcap at one of Uptown’s rooftop bars. These elevated drinking destinations, like Nuvole Rooftop TwentyTwo, feature spectacular skyline views complemented by handcrafted libations. End your night drinking in the dazzling cityscape, or make this a pitstop before heading to another bar or nightclub.
Of course, a trip to the Queen City wouldn’t be complete without attending a lively drag brunch. Get your dollar bills ready because biscuits and gravy, mimosas, and French toast pair perfectly with show-stopping performances from glamorous queens at local venues. These venues include All American Pub, Oh My Soul, Bar Argon, HiWire Brewing, Legion Brewing, and many more.
Another fun option is The Artisan’s Palate, a restaurant, bar, and art gallery in the NoDa neighborhood. They host monthly drag brunches that benefit local charities. These dine-and-drag performances have raised more than $60,000 for local causes that help the LGBTQ+ community, women’s health, and the arts. Order sharable items from the tapas-style menu, including meat and cheese boards, frittatas, and decadent brioche French toast, as the queens high kick and split for a good cause.
Now that you have a taste of what Charlotte has to offer, start planning your food-and-culture itinerary at charlottesgotalot.com