Patio Season at Fireside

A new Cornelius restaurant gets fired up


Fireside Bar & Grill’s double-cut grilled pork chop is rubbed with herbs and garlic.


When longtime restaurateur and chef Tom Schiavone decided to open a restaurant in Cornelius—he’s in the midst of relocating to the area from his native New Jersey—he knew he’d found something special in the Fireside Bar & Grill spot. The space, which was most recently occupied by Pelican’s Patio Bar & Grill, has undergone a near-complete makeover. The former tenant’s kitschy island look is gone—with the exception of a large aquarium near the restaurant’s entrance—replaced with simple décor in shades of maroon and black.With its understated, upscale casual atmosphere, Fireside Bar & Grill may feel familiar at first glance. A large, open bar-meets-dining room means that the restaurant can be loud if there’s a crowd. But if it’s a sunny day or a warm evening, a seat on the patio feels worlds away. It doesn’t have lake views or a stunning vista, but it does have two oversized fireplaces, a large circular bar, and plenty of seating—making it a destination on its own merit.

The straightforward, family-friendly menu offers a few surprises. Created by Schiavone and executed by chef Josh Jones, it’s extensive, with a primary focus on sandwiches and steaks. The stuffed burger ($12), made with in-house-ground certified Angus beef and stuffed with caramelized onions, bacon, and smoked Gouda, is a signature item. It’s juicy and well-matched with a soft telera roll. A selection of steaks and chops rounds out the menu, from the black smoked salt-dusted filet ($27), to a double-cut grilled pork chop ($17), rubbed with herbs and garlic.

But there are Italian and Asian influences, as well. Hot & Fire Shrimp ($10) presents a pile of tempura shrimp in a tangy, sweet-sour sauce. Flatbreads are generously portioned and excellent for sharing, particularly The Garden ($14), topped with grilled figs, fresh pears and cranberries, smoked Gouda, and a balsamic glaze.

A sophisticated cocktail selection features drinks like the Gin & Ginger ($8), made with Tanqueray Rangpur, agave, ginger liquor, and club soda garnished with candied ginger. And all of the drinks pair well with the patio, especially when there’s live music and a festive crowd.

Edit ModuleShow Tags

More »Related Stories

Chefs' Top Turkey Tips

Thanksgiving is less than 24 hours away, so we asked some of Charlotte's best chefs to dish on their most used and most helpful turkey tips

Space for Your Soiree

From Spanish tapas to a biergarten to uber local fare, Charlotte can accommodate any taste and size for your holiday party

Catch On Wants To Be Your Neighborhood Fish Market

And you should probably let them

Speakeasy Surprise: The Cellar at Duckworth's

A new concept at Duckworth’s isn’t the craft beer and bar food you’d expect

We invite your responses and discussion. Please refrain from personal attacks, profanity, commercial promotion, or non sequiturs.

Add your comment: