The Dish

News, notes, and gossip about the restaurant scene.

Openings from Augusto

Augusto Conte is expanding his collection of Italian restaurants. He could already claim Toscana, Luce, Coco Osteria, and Il Posto. Now he's adding Positano Osteria, in the old Pike's spot in Birkdale Village. Positano will be on the more low-key end, like Coco. And sometime this month, he should be opening Mezzanote, a casual spot serving pizza out of a wood-burning brick oven and family-style pasta, at Providence Plaza, the shiny new center at Providence and Sharon Amity roads.

Southern Eats

The hub of Plaza-Midwood is becoming a hotbed of Southern eats. With its classic breakfasts and waitresses who call you "honey," John's Country Kitchen has long held down the fort on Central Avenue. Within a couple blocks, there's meat-and-three Diamond Restaurant, the hip retro Penguin Diner, and funky Cajun/low country Dish. And now, on Central across from No Grease barbershop, is Zada Jane's. It serves breakfast and lunch for now; call it New Southern. There are biscuits and bagels, and omelets with Southern and southern Indian flair. For lunch, look for salads and sandwiches.

Elizabethan Shakeup

The revived Elizabeth Avenue has suffered a setback in its bid to become Charlotte's newest restaurant row. Volare, which offered one of the city's great dining experiences in its old Myers Park location, closed early this fall. Co-owner Fabio Salazar says he never regained his customer base after moving to the new, much larger location. Salazar has since taken over the kitchen at Solera, a newish Mediterranean spot near the intersection of Caswell Road and Seventh Street in Elizabeth.

Morrison Adds Eateries

Near SouthPark, the Morrison complex continues to fill out. Yama Asian Fusion was scheduled to open in November. Owner Paul Wu also has restaurants at Lake Norman and in Charleston, both called Osaka. Look for Chinese, Pacific Rim, and Japanese cuisines. The sleek, modern interior will feature artwork from local artists. And Firebirds Wood Fired Grill will open in the spring, opposite Capitol and Chezelle boutiques.

Categories: A La Carte