Feb 17, 2021 - News

20 things to do, eat and drink in NoDa



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If South End is Charlotte’s Manhattan, then NoDa is Charlotte’s Brooklyn.

NoDa is artsy, super walkable and has a lot to offer. Here are 20 things to do, eat, and drink when you visit NoDa.

(1) Grab donuts from Reigning Doughnuts‘ walkup window.

On top of their staple donuts, they also have rotating daily flavors like apple pie, s’mores, and hot sauce icing with chicken skins.

Location/hours: 3120 N Davidson St. Ste. 100. They’re open Tuesday through Sunday from 8 a.m. to noon and 5-9 p.m.

reigning donuts

(2) Do brunch al fresco.

As the weather slowly begins to warm up, have brunch at one of NoDa’s many outdoor venues. The Goodyear House, Haberdish and Heist Brewery all have outdoor seating.

Location(s): 3032 N Davidson St., 3106 N Davidson St., and 2909 N Davidson St. Ste. 200, respectively.

patio at goodyear house in noda
Goodyear House

(3) Grab a legendary burger from Brooks’ Sandwich House.

Brooks’ has been serving up some of Charlottes’ best hamburgers and hot dogs since 1973. Regardless of what you choose off the menu, be sure to order it “all the way.” 

Location/hours: 2710 N Brevard St. Open Monday through Friday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.

[Read more about the legacy of Brooks’ here.]

burger at brooks sandwich shop in noda

(4) See a virtual show at Neighborhood Theatre.

Catch weekly performances by local artists through Neighborhood Theatre’s Queen City Streams concert series. The series showcases a wide array of genres including reggae, jazz, folk, hip-hop and more.

Location/hours: 511 E 36th St. (Temporarily closed.)

Neighborhood Theatre during Covid-19
Arts organizations and concert venues have been among those hit hardest by the pandemic shutdowns.

(5) Go on a DIY beer crawl.

NoDa is home to six popular Charlotte breweries including Heist Brewery, Protagonist Clubhouse, The Chamber by Wooden Robot, NoDa Brewing Co., Salud Cerveceria and Divine Barrel Brewing. Most are within walking distance and offer pandemic-friendly options like picking up beer to-go.

we make beer sign protagonist

(6) And if beer crawling isn’t your thing, go on a mac & cheese crawl instead.

A few must-try spots include Haberdish, Jack Beagles and The Goodyear House.

Location(s): 3106 N Davidson St., 3213 N Davidson St., and 3032 N Davidson St., respectively.

Jack Beagles’ mac and cheese.

(7) Sample local whiskey at Great Wagon Road Distillery.

GWR moved from its lower South End location last year into the former Bold Missy spot. Order anything with its award-winning Rúa malt whiskey.

Location/hours: 610 Anderson St. Open Monday through Friday from 4-9 p.m., Saturday from noon to 9 p.m., and Sunday from 1-9 p.m.

[Read more: See inside: NoDa’s first distillery, Great Wagon Road, soft opens on September 10]

great wagon road cocktails

(8) Browse local art at Tough Ass Crew shop.

A coalition of 60+ Charlotte creatives, known as Tough Ass Crew, turned the former Sunshine Daydreams space into a pop-up art gallery during the pandemic. The shop showcases a variety of local works all of which are available for purchase.

Location/hours: 3225 N Davidson. Open Tuesday through Sunday from 10 a.m. to 9 p.m.

Tough A$$ Crew NoDa

(9) Hang out at the Mac Tabby Cat Cafe.

This is a true cat-lovers paradise. Enjoy a coffee in the main cafe or reserve a 60-min Cat Lounge experience. Bonus: All the cats are adoptable!

Location/hours: 3204 N Davidson St. Open Monday through Thursday from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m, Friday and Saturday from 11 a.m. to 8 p.m., and Sunday from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m.

(10) Hang out at NoDa Company Store.

NoDa Company Store has one of the best patios in Charlotte with porch swings, plants everywhere, and ample seating. But what makes the bar-and-market combo special is their free lunches on Sunday (currently on hold because of the pandemic).

When they started hosting free lunches on Sundays, about 50 people would show up. As it grew in popularity, upwards of 250 people would stop in for food and fellowship. The weekly event will resume once the coronavirus situation improves.

Location/hours:  3221 Yadkin Ave. Open Monday through Thursday from noon to 9 p.m., Fridays from noon to 10 p.m., Saturday 10 a.m. to 10 p.m., and Sunday from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m.

noda company store new patio

(11) Get a cocktail made just for you at Idlewild.

With no set drink menu, the drink experience is completely customized for each guest. Enjoy a drink inside or order one to-go.

Location/hours: 424 E 36th St. Unit 2. Monday through Friday 5-9 p.m., Saturday and Sunday 4-9 p.m. 

cocktails at idlewild in noda charlotte
Cocktails at Idlewild

(12) Hunt for vintage wears at The Rat’s Nest.

This eclectic thrift store has all kinds of cool finds from vintage tees and windbreaker suits to retro gaming consoles and funky furniture.

Location/hours: 442 E 36th St. Open Wednesday through Saturday from noon to 7 p.m., and Sunday from noon to 5 p.m.

(13) Do ceviche at Roy’s Kitchen and Patio.

We may not be able to travel right now, but our tastebuds can. Roy’s serves up authentic Caribbean cuisine with signature dishes like oxtail stew, jerk rotisserie chicken and ceviche.

Location/hours: 3112 N Davidson St. Open Tuesday through Friday from 4-10 p.m., Saturdays from noon to 10 p.m., and Sundays from noon to 9 p.m.

Roy's Kitchen and Patio NoDa
Ceviche with plantain chips.

(14) Go mural-gazing.

It wouldn’t be NoDa if it weren’t for all the colorful murals that give the community its artsy flare. Walk along main street and check out all the cool works done by local artists (and of course, you’ve got to take a selfie or two).

Full guide: The definitive guide to 70+ Charlotte street murals, mapped

Da Baby Mural
Find this DaBaby mural by Garrett Mallekoote at 3224 Benard Ave.

(15) Spend a Taco Tuesday in NoDa.

Sabor, Cabo Fish Taco and Bargarita are all located on the same block. Overkill? Yes, probably. Fun? Yes, definitely.

Location(s): 3205 N Davidson St. Ste. 105, 3201 N Davidson St., and 3221 N Davidson St., respectively.


(16) Grab a drink at The Dog Bar with your pup.

This is a fun hangout spot for pet parents and non-pet parents alike. They have an extensive beer, wine, and liquor list and on select nights there are live music performances.

Location/hours: 3307 N Davidson St. Open Tuesday through Friday from 5-10 p.m. Saturday from noon to 11 p.m., and Sunday from noon to 10 p.m.

(17) Pick up local grocery items or plants at The Exchange at 36th.

This new market and bar concept is a convenience store you’ll want to hang out in. Stop in for a few groceries and goods from local vendors, or grab a coffee and stay for a while.

Location/hours:: 451 36th St. in the former Behailu Academy space. Open daily from 9 a.m. to 10 p.m.

[Read more: The Exchange, a new market and bar, opens this Thursday in NoDa]

The Exchange at 36th lounge area

(18) Shop fair trade items at Pura Vida.

A woman-owned business that focuses on selling handmade, fair trade, and ethically made clothing, jewelry, and home decor.

Location/hours: 3202 N Davidson St. Open Monday through Thursday from noon to 6 p.m., Friday and Saturday from noon to 7 p.m., and Sunday from noon to 5 p.m.

(19) Get a slice of pizza that’s bigger than your head at Benny’s Pennellos.

You’ll need two plates and two hands for a slice of Benny’s behemoth 28-inch pies.

Location/hours: 2909 N Davidson St. Ste. 100. Open Sunday through Thursday from 11 a.m. to 11 p.m., Friday and Saturday from 11 a.m. to midnight.

bennys pizza

(20) Support a local bar.

Bars have had a particularly hard time faring the pandemic. If you’re in the neighborhood, swing by Hattie’s, order a cocktail kit from Growlers Pourhouse and remember to stop by any and all local bars once the pandemic is over.

Location(s): 2918 The Plaza and 3120 N Davidson St., respectively.


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