Jun 16, 2021 - Things to Do

25 things to do, eat and drink in Plaza Midwood

Thirsty Beaver. Axios archives

Axios archives

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Our Plaza Midwood guide is proudly presented by Wyndham Capital Mortgage. It’s hard not to love the eclectic vibes of Central Avenue. If Plaza feels like home to you, let Wyndham Capital help you actually make it home. Not only are they locally-based, but their home loan process is digital and seamless.

The free spirited east side neighborhood balances Uptown’s buttoned-up banker vibe with casual bars and eclectic shops. Here are the 25 best things to do in Plaza Midwood.

Plaza Midwood quick facts:

  • The median home price is $583,149, up 17% percent over the last year, according to Zillow data.

Where to live: 6 best apartments in Plaza Midwood

(1) Start the day with coffee and quiche at Central Coffee.

The quaint corner coffee shop has been a stronghold in the neighborhood for more than a decade. The cold brew is like rocket fuel and the quiche is family gathering worthy.

Location/hours: 719 Louise Ave. Open Monday through Saturday from 6am to 6pm and Sunday from 8am to 6pm.

(2) Or order the avocado toast at Undercurrent Coffee.

Fully embrace your inner millennial with a golden milk latte and avocado toast.

Location/hours: 2012 Commonwealth Ave. Open Monday through Thursday from 7am to 6pm, Friday from 7am to 7pm, Saturday from 8am to 7pm and Sunday from 8am to 5pm.


[Related story: Big coffee news: Not Just Coffee, Undercurrent teaming up for roastery and 4 cafés]

(3) Adopt your next plant baby at Grow.

Grow sells plants, planters and other accessories like candles and baskets.

Buy this: A red maranta. It’s a precious little plant with streaks of red throughout the leaves.

Pro tip: Check their “available” Instagram story to see which plant varieties they have in store.

Location/hours: 2008 Commonwealth Ave. Open Wednesday and Friday 11am to 6pm; Thursday from 11am to 7pm; Saturday from 10am to 6pm, and Sunday from 11am to 5pm.

grow plant shop

[Related read: 4 cool new plant shops in Charlotte]

(4) Try the grilled cheese and tomato soup from The Workman’s Friend.

The dark, cozy pub has Irish staples like Irish coffee, Guinness and Sheperd’s pie. If it’s nice out, find a seat on the back patio or in the breezy sidebar with open windows overlooking Central Avenue.

Order this: The Irish American grilled cheese. It’s made with Dubliner white cheddar, American and sourdough with tomato basil bisque on the side.

Location/hours: 1531 Central Ave. Open Monday through Thursday from 3pm to 2am (next day), Friday 11am to 2am (next day) and Saturday and Sunday from 10am to 2am (next day).

The Workman's Friend tomato bisque

[Related guide: Must-try soups]

(5) Sip drinks on the rooftop at Whiskey Warehouse.

Now that rooftop weather is upon us, this is where you’ll want to be sipping cocktails (or Mich Ultras) with string lights and skyline views.

Location/hours: 1221 The Plaza. Open Monday through Friday from 11am to midnight; Saturday from 10am to midnight and Sunday from 10am to 10pm.


[Related guide: Best rooftop bars in Charlotte]

(6) Play ping pong at Thomas Street Tavern.

The no-frills bar is the epitome of a classic neighborhood hang-out spot. At Thomas Street, there’s no theme, no gimmicks, no pretentiousness — just an easygoing atmosphere where anyone can have a good time.


Location/hours: 1218 Thomas Ave. Open daily from 11am to 11pm.

(7) Plan a fancy date night out.

  • Supperland is an entire dining experience. Start at the cocktail bar before making your way to the main dining room. (1212 The Plaza)
  • Order the pork belly tacos and stay for a DJ set at Soul Gastrolounge, one of the hottest spots in the city for small plates and craft cocktails 10+ years running. (1500 Central Ave., Ste. B)
  • Do jalapeño martinis at Bistro La Bon. (1322 Central Ave.)
  • Have dinner at KiKi then head to the small speakeasy-style bar Tattoo inside for a nightcap. (1500 A Central Ave.)
Pork Belly Tacos at Soul Gastrolounge

[Related guide: Best restaurants in Charlotte, ranked]

(8) Explore international cuisine along Central Avenue.

As you head east away from the city you’ll find a dense concentration of global food on the edge of the neighborhood including Abugida (Ethiopian), Pho Hoa (Vietnamese), Dim Sum (Chinese), Three Amigos (Mexican) and Euro Grill (Bosnian).

Abugida Ethiopian Restaurant Central Avenue Veggie Platter
Abugida’s vegetarian feast.

[Related story: 7 must-try international restaurants on Central Avenue]

(9) For classic American comfort food check out Dish.

This longtime neighborhood favorite has been serving Southern food since 2002.

dish pimiento cheese
Pimiento cheese with Ritz crackers.

Location/hours: 1220 Thomas Ave. Open Monday through Thursday from 7am to 9pm, Friday from 7am to 10pm, Saturday from 10am to 10pm and Sunday from 10am to 3pm.

(10) Practice your mini-golf swing at Stroke Putt

The retro-inspired, mini-golf spot and cocktail lounge makes for a great date night or outing with friends.

Stroke Putt, 1318 Pecan Ave Suite 101

Location/hours: 1318 Pecan Ave. Suite 101. Open Monday, Wednesday through Friday from 4-11pm; and weekends from 11am to 11pm.

(11) Order a burger from The Diamond.

This retro Greek diner dates back to 1945 and serves everything from burgers and sandwiches to seafood and salads.


Location/hours: 1901 Commonwealth Ave. Open daily from noon to 9pm.

(12) Find the coolest apparel and gifts at local boutiques.


(13) Order a burger and a giant beer from Moo & Brew.

Known for its burgers and beer, and that’s exactly what you should get here. And if you’re a UNC fan, post up on the patio with Moo & Brew’s version of a blue cup on game days.

Location/hours: 1300 Central Ave. Open daily from 11am to midnight.


[Related guide: Best burgers in Charlotte, ranked]

(14) Order a pancake flight at Snooze.

This Denver-based, retro-inspired chain won Charlotteans over immediately. Do the pancake flight with hockey puck-sized hash browns. Or, if you can’t do sweets for breakfast, try the Everything Bacon Sensation (everything spice brioche bun with green goddess cream cheese topped with an over medium cage-free egg, bacon, and citronette dressed arugula for $11.25).

snooze-pancakes at brunch

Location/hours: 1331 Central Ave. Suite 100. Open Monday through Friday from 6:30am to 2:30pm and weekends from 6:30am to 4pm.

(15) Pretend you’re relaxing on vacation at Bohemian Wine Bar.

The laidback, chic design of this place makes it feel like a resort. Split a bottle with your girlfriends (there are 120 to choose from) or opt for a glass of whatever’s on tap.

patio at bohemian wine bar

Location/hours: 1319 Pecan Ave. Open Wednesday and Thursday from 2-11pm; Friday and Saturday from noon to 11pm and Sunday from noon to 9pm.

(16) Go duckpin bowling at Pinhouse.

Sometimes it’s nice to have an activity to do while you’re drinking, like duckpin bowling. If you’re not familiar, duckpins are shorter, smaller, and lighter bowling pins that you try to knock down with a ball that’s a little bigger than a softball.

Location/hours: 2306 Central Ave. Open Monday from 4-11pm; Tuesday through Thursday from 2-11pm; Friday from 2pm to midnight; Saturday from 11am to midnight and Sunday from 11am to 11pm.

(17) Order barbecue from Midwood Smokehouse.

This place is one of Charlotte’s favorite barbecue restaurants. You can’t go wrong with a classic barbecue plate.

pig out barbecue tray at midwood smokehouse charlotte

Location/hours: 1401 Central Ave. Open Sunday through Thursday from 11am to 9pm; Friday and Saturday from 11am to 10pm.

(18) Tour the neighborhood craft beer scene.

Neighborhood breweries include Legion, Resident Culture, Pilot, and nearby Catawba. Burial and Southern Strain are also opening soon in the neighborhood.

Resident Culture

[Related Axios guide: The 5 best brewery crawls in Charlotte, ranked]

(19) Hang out on the patio at Common Market.

The market’s original location is buzzing at all hours in the heart of the neighborhood. Residents swing by for breakfast sandwiches in the morning and late-night snack runs. The best move is to buy beer and wine from the bottle shop and kick back on the front patio.

Breakfast burrito at Common Market.

Location/hours: 2007 Commonwealth Ave. Open Sunday through Thursday from 8am to 10pm, and Friday and Saturday from 8am to midnight.

(20) Treat yourself to a signature dual-top cone at Two Scoops Creamery.

It’s the perfect excuse when you can’t pick just one flavor, and Two Scoops’ colorful murals make for a prime Instagram moment (if you’re into that sort of thing).

two scoops ice cream

Location/hours: 913 Central Ave. Open daily from 1-10pm.

(21) Drink a PBR at the Thirsty Beaver Saloon.

The legendary dive bar stood firm against encroaching development and refused to move. It’s now surrounded by a behemoth of an apartment complex and is something of a Charlotte landmark.

Why it matters: The dive bar achieved local legend status for becoming a symbolic middle finger to the pressures of development.

Location/hours: 1225 Central Ave. Open Wednesday through Friday from 4pm to 2am (next day); Saturday from noon to 2am (next day) and Sunday from 2pm to 2am (next day).


[Related read: “No chance” the Thirsty Beaver is going anywhere]

(22) Eat breakfast at Zada Jane’s.

This diner’s forte is breakfast served all day. Go with Booker T’s East Side Hasher, with sweet potato hash browns topped with frittata-style eggs, sausage, melted cheddar, and green onions ($8.95).

Location/hours: 1601 Central Ave. Open Wednesday through Friday from 8am to 3pm and on weekends from 8am to 4pm.


[Related guide: Best brunch spots in Charlotte]

(23) Try not to buy everything at Charlotte Collective.

Charlotte Collective houses some of the coolest brands in Charlotte — from geo-clad cheese boards by Cosmic Creative to Pretty Honest Candles to size-inclusive, cute clothing at Worthy Figures.

Location/hours: 1222 Central Ave. Open Tuesday through Friday from 11am to 7pm; Saturday from 10am to 6pm and Sunday from 11am to 5pm.

(24) Do Asian comfort food at Warmack.

Owner James Nguyen and executive chef Nobuaki Ishikawa drew inspiration for the menu from dishes they grew up with.

Order this: Any of their bao buns. Options include chicken katsu, shitake tempura and pork belly.

Location/hours: 1226 Central Ave. Suite A. Open Monday and Tuesday from 5-10pm; Wednesday and Thursday from 5-11pm; Friday and Saturday from 5pm to 2am (next day) and Sunday from 11am to 10pm.

warmack plaza midwood restaurant dessert

[Related read: New Asian restaurant and bar called Warmack now open in Plaza Midwood]

(25) See live music at Petra’s or Skylark Social Club.

Charlotte’s Emily Sage performs at Petra’s in 2019.

Petra’s won’t reopen to the public until August 1, but Skylark Social Club has events posted on its Facebook page.

Explore more neighborhoods in Charlotte. Check out all of our guides here, including what to do in South End, NoDa, SouthPark, Uptown and more.


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