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Restaurant Inspired by Indian Street Food Opens at Optimist Hall

Botiwalla comes from James Beard Award-nominee Meherwan Irani

December 15, 2020

Photo by Night Watch Crew

Botiwalla, a full-service restaurant serving Indian street food, opens this week at Optimist Hall. The first tenant in the hall’s upstairs restaurant wing, the spot comes from five-time James Beard Award-nominee Meherwan Irani. This is the third location for the concept, with prior locations in Atlanta’s Ponce City Market and Alpharetta City Center.

SPDP And Lamb Burgers. Photo by Night Watch Crew.

This 2,727-square-foot restaurant is currently in a soft open until Thursday’s grand opening. Per a release, the menu has “grilled chicken, lamb, and paneer wrapped in hot naan with fresh herbs, smoky Lamb Burgers, finger lickin’ chaat such as SPDP (Sev Potato Dahi Puri) and Masala Smashed Potatoes, and the cult-followed Desi Salad,” as well as “snacks and grilled meats, the restaurant features boozy slushies, afternoon high tea, and retail items including Irani’s own Spicewalla spices, roasted and packed by hand in Asheville, NC.”

Photo by Night Watch Crew

This is the first Indian restaurant for the hall, which has been building its roster of international options since opening last year. Soft opening hours for Botiwalla are 11 a.m.-4 p.m.; regular hours will be 11 a.m.-9 p.m.

Chicken Tikka Roll. Photo by Night Watch Crew.

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3 Picturesque Winter Hikes in Burke County, N.C.

December 3, 2020

Winter may be a great time to stay inside and cuddle under warm blankets, but what happens when dreaded cabin fever starts to creep up on you?
Hiking can be exactly what you need to get your blood pumping and your sense of adventure peaking.
Head just 1.5 hours west of Charlotte to Burke County, North Carolina, and experience the outdoors the way it should be: less sweat, no bugs or snakes, and few leaves to get in the way of the amazing views you achieve. The crisp air and bright surroundings will be sure to wake you up from the haziness of the holidays.
After a day of hiking and exploring the mountain winter wonderland that is Burke County, nearby Morganton’s award-winning restaurants, breweries, and bottle shops make it easy to sit and relax for a while.
While you’re in town, pick out a Christmas Tree up the mountain near Jonas Ridge or Pineola.
For hiking in the area, we recommend the following areas but there are many more to visit as well.

3 Winter Hikes To Try in Burke County, N.C. 
1. Fonta Flora State Trail

Fonta Flora State Trail near Lake James is popular for good reason: the pet-friendly trail’s scenic lake vistas are made even better with your furry friend by your side. The trail currently winds 15 miles around Lake James, and it will eventually connect Downtown Morganton to Downtown Asheville.
 
2. Shortoff Mountain Trail/Pisgah National Forest

For more of a challenge, try the moderately-rated Shortoff Mountain Trail that climbs up from WolfPit road to the summit of Shortoff Mountain. On this trail, you’ll find remarkable views of the Linville Gorge plus far away peaks once you climb up the 2,400 feet across 2.5 miles.
 
3. High Shoals Falls Trail and South Mountains State Park

Another moderate trail, this one stretches for two miles round trip in North Carolina’s largest state park, offering creekside trails with wooden steps crossing the creek. The cascading waters are a haven for nature photographers.

Hiking these few trails are just one of many outdoor activities you can do this winter in Burke County. Click here to explore more fun ideas for a weekend in Western N.C.

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Fresh Take: A Visit to Mico at Grand Bohemian Hotel Charlotte

The spot merges spicy Argentinean flavors with Bohemian design inside uptown’s newest luxury hotel
The post Fresh Take: A Visit to Mico at Grand Bohemian Hotel Charlotte appeared first on Charlotte Magazine.

Steak 48 Opens in South Park Next Month. Here’s a Look Inside

November 17, 2020

Steak 48, an upscale steakhouse with locations in Phoenix, Philadelphia, Chicago, and Houston, opens at Apex SouthPark on December 18. The 11,500-square-foot space has an in-house butcher shop, raw bar, and 6,000 bottle wine vault. Chief Brand Officer Oliver Badgio calls it a “very sexy steakhouse,” with multiple dining rooms, outdoor seating, and six private dining suites with a view of the open kitchen. “It’s an honest kitchen,” he says. “You get dinner and a show here.”

Executive chef Heather King comes from Bern’s Steakhouse in Tampa, and general manager Chad Tucker was previously at Ruth’s Chris Steakhouse. Steak is the main attraction, but other menu highlights include crispy shrimp deviled eggs, corn crème brule, and a seafood tower. Badgio calls the seafood tower a must-try dish for first-timers, and says the meatballs are unbelievable. “We butcher everything in-house,” he says. “You can get a traditional steak and baked potato, or top it with black truffle Maine lobster.” He says the Charlotte location will also introduce a new signature cocktail called the Botanist.
To allow for social distancing, tables are six feet apart, and unused tables are marked with flowers and candles. The restaurant will open at 50 percent capacity and reservations are required. “Come here to celebrate a special occasion, or come on a Tuesday night,” Badgio says. “It’s approachable and unpretentious, like a newer version of a great American steakhouse.”

Steak 48 is located at 4425 Sharon Road in SouthPark.

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