At The Burger Company, no ingredient ever sees the inside of a freezer. That's because the eatery's cooks make a point of grinding Angus beef in-house each day and slicing fresh onions, tomatoes, and other produce for toppings. Patrons can order specialty handhelds such as the buffalo blue cheeseburger with celery or the black bean burger with cilantro aioli, or customize patties with preferred ingredients. Cooks also grill all-beef hot dogs and pimento cheese sandwiches, and bartenders pour an assortment of beers, wines, and cocktails.
Dark woods punctuated by electric-blue accents decorate the inside of Icehouse, where diners pair casual American classics with one of more than 200 beers. Throughout the space, complimentary WiFi and 20 flat-screen televisions and complimentary WiFi keep diners informed on the latest game scores, while upstairs a billiards loft entertains them during commercials. On nice nights, the crowd heads outside to the 100-seat covered patio for Carolina pulled pork sandwiches, sampler platters of sliders, and wings in one of seven sauces.
Start your cruise through Vinnie's menus with the pelagic flavors of one-dozen oysters, blackened and served hot and spicy ($10.99). For diners that are extra-hungry and in need of an odd hat, there's the big combo basket of all of Vinnie's fried delights: crispy oysters, butterfly shrimp, calabash shrimp, and fish fillets ($16.99). Vinnie's original fish sandwich with fries ($9.99) offers a handheld seafood option, not to be confused with the derivative fish sandwich—the chicken club ($8.99). Vinnie's seasoned chefs also put together wraps and entrees such as the shrimp and grits, which fuses ground-corn flavors with ocean-fresh shrimp ($10.99).
A new zombie horde rises, hungry for the packs of humans that flee in a desperate fight to see another day. This isn't a vision of a postapocalyptic future—it happens every fall at the Zombie Run Challenge, an event in which participants dressed as zombies chase down human competitors in a race for both survival and top prizes. After registering, competitors separate into the two factions, each with separate goals. In the course of up to two hours, zombies attempt to turn humans by capturing the flags attached to their belts. The living, in turn, try to complete challenges at four–five checkpoints, taking momentary refuge or healing at outposts scattered throughout the woods. All the while, a group of volunteer mercenaries armed with foam darts hunts down the undead attackers. Before the race begins, the special-effects gurus at Gregory F/X will provide zombie makeup to participants in exchange for a donation—100% of which goes to charity and won't be used to buy the zombies fresh brains at the local deli.
Bask On Seaboard’s executive chef Chuck Herrick and his collaborating crew artistically etch a seasonal menu of modern American delicacies crafted from fresh, local produce worthy of a spotlight on Charlotte Today. Small plates wallop taste buds with petite portions of intense flavor combinations, such as the roasted-garlic-and-black-bean blend in the hummus or the spiced cheese fondue served with the butternut squash fritters. Sweet potatoes and haricots verist dance across a large plate of North Carolina trout, entertaining tongues with fresh, savory flavor and astounding card tricks. Appetites unable to determine tummy cravings can hedge their bets with surf and turf, a platter overflowing with spicy shrimp and hanger steak aside creamed spinach with pecan orzo.