Mike and Terry Schneider already knew what it took to run a restaurant when they opened The Loop Pizza Grill more than 20 years ago. Previously the owners of Jacksonville’s neighborhood hangout Applejacks, the Schneiders wanted to create a pizza place that was both elegant and laid-back, just like the Queen of England in a tracksuit. At each of their 14 locations, they and their kitchen staff whip up a menu of specialty pizzas, fire-grilled burgers, and verdant salads with fresh, handpicked ingredients, serving each carefully crafted selection on real china.
In a casual atmosphere of dim mood lighting, excited chatter, and clanking wine glasses, the staff at Bistro B & Wine Bar serves up tapas that have caught the attention of the Winston-Salem Journal. The menu draws inspiration from Spanish and Greek recipes, resulting in tapas dishes such as ahi tuna ceviche and Angus beef tenderloin carpaccio with roasted peppers, shaved parmesan, and anchovy-caper drizzle. Greek pork and orange rind join together to create the Loukaniko ma Kritharakia, a Greek spiced sausage that chefs char-grill and serve with spicy red pepper orzo pasta.
Opening at 8 a.m. Monday through Thursday and at 10 a.m. on Saturdays, Shakespeare and Company's bookworm baristas infuse steamy espresso drinks and signature beverages with more than 40 flavors. A quintet of foamy medium lattes allows ample opportunity to sample sweet infusions individually, or opt for preselected concoctions, such as Juliet's Cup with a chocolate-cherry-amaretto kick or the caramel and cinnamon of a mug filled with Midsummer Night's Dream. Espresso shots, like the container of cotton balls at the doctor's office, are also yours for the taking at no additional charge.
The popular sandwich franchise offers an expansive selection of speedy snacks, including soups ($1.79–$2.79) and salads ($5.99). For a trimmer take, try a Torpedo ($4) or Bullet ($3), where longer, leaner baguettes get packed with yummy stuffings, such as mozzarella, turkey, and basil pesto in the Pesto Turkey or heaping stacks of meat (ham, salami, capicola, pepperoni) in the Italian. Other sliced bread standouts include sammies (flat bread, $2.99), signature sandwiches, classic subs, and deli subs ($3.99–$7.79). View a complete menu here.
The food at The Moose Cafe couldn't be fresher if it was served off the back of a tractor. That's because the café perches amid the bustling vendors of the Asheville and Greensboro farmers’ markets, affording its chefs a never-ending selection of seasonal ingredients. These bushels of corn, squash, and okra lend vibrant, farm-fresh flavors to the ever-changing menus of homey comfort foods, which stock tables at breakfast, lunch, and dinner. In addition to frying pieces of buttermilk-soaked chicken and hand forming burger patties with Angus beef, the chefs also churn fresh apple butter to accompany piping-hot biscuits. The café’s specials rotate daily, which allows the chefs to incorporate the markets’ freshest deliveries of produce and fine china.