Jun 21, 2023 - Food and Drink

How to spend 48 hours in Charlotte with local ballet dancer Shaina Wire

Photo: Courtesy of Shaina Wire

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This story is proudly presented by Charlotte Regional Visitors Authority – our partner in exploring the Queen City. Snag some itinerary inspiration for exploring and supporting Charlotte's local businesses here.

Your tour guide: Shaina Wire, who just finished her seventh season with Charlotte Ballet.

One thing every Charlottean should try at least once: “I’m obviously a little biased, but I’d say going to see a Charlotte Ballet performance. I also love heading to Boone and driving the Blue Ridge Parkway. And then you have to get a drink at Thirsty Beaver. That’s a must!”

What makes Charlotte special: “I’ve lived here for seven years and it’s been really awesome to see how much Charlotte has grown. I moved from Manhattan and I grew up in a really small town in New Jersey. I feel like Charlotte is a really good middle ground. There’s always something happening, but it’s not too fast-paced. It feels like home to me.”

Here’s Shaina’s perfect weekend itinerary for entertaining out-of-town friends or family.

Friday: Al Mike’s and drinks

We’d start with dinner at Alexander Michael’s in Fourth Ward.

  • Their “What It Is,” which is a cajun pasta, is just so good.
  • After that, we’d go to Caroline’s Oyster Bar in the J.W. Marriot.
  • We love their oysters, and their signature old fashioned is so good that my fiancé and I bought the bitters that they use so we can recreate the drink at home.

Saturday: Coffee, comedy and cocktails

Undercurrent Coffee in Plaza Midwood is my favorite.

  • I always get their vanilla latte and a breakfast sandwich.
  • They have a great patio, so we’d sit outside and do some people-watching.

Grabbing some greenery: Next, we’d head to Oakdale Greenhouse.

latte-at-undercurrent-coffee-plaza-midwood
  • I love plants, and probably 95% of the plants in our house came from there.
  • It’s a great place to shop around.

Time for some laughs: After that, we’d do The Funny Bus.

  • That’s my mom’s favorite thing to do when she visits, and anytime she brings a new family member she’s like, “We have to do it!”
  • It’s a great way to learn some history and see new places.
  • The bus always stops at Rhino Market, so we’d have their club (sandwich) for lunch.

NoDa for dinner and drinks: For dinner, we’d head to Haberdish.

via Facebook
  • We always get the fried chicken and the house pickles.
  • We also love their purple cabbage and the banana pudding.
  • Their Barrel-Aged Black Manhattan is excellent.
  • My fiancé gets the Spring Fever, which is a tequila-based drink.
  • After dinner we’d go to Idlewild or their sister spot Fairweather.
  • Fairweather’s Manhattan is made with chai and vanilla, which I love.

A Sunday send-off

food chicken haberdish noda in charlotte
Spread at Haberdish

On our last day, we’d head to Workman’s Friend.

  • I used to live right near there, so it’s always been a staple for me.
  • Their Working Man’s burger is great.
  • You have to get the chips — basically a massive bag of french fries.

This story is proudly presented by Charlotte Regional Visitors Authority. The editorial selection is not influenced or endorsed by this sponsor.

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