With the countdown to Christmas close at hand, plenty of places are in Lake Norman to finish up Christmas shopping and sample some of the great food available in the area at the same time. Take the kids to visit with Santa, do a little shopping and grab a bite to eat, or if you finish shopping at a later hour, many area restaurants have late-night menu options with everything from appetizers to burgers to desserts.
eeZ Fusion and Sushi
Taking advantage of some of the extended store hours this season? Stop by eeZ Fusion, on Lindholm Avenue across from Regal Cinemas, on Friday and Saturday evenings from 11 p.m. to 1 a.m. and take advantage of the half-price menu. Patrons can choose one half-price item each from the appetizer, dessert and sushi menu. Kitchen items are served until 12:30 a.m.
16925 Birkdale Commons
Red Rocks, across from the Lindholm fountain area, also offers a late-night dining menu that can accommodate shoppers. The restaurant is open Monday through Thursday from 11 a.m. to midnight, and on Friday and Saturday from 11 a.m. to 12:30 a.m. Stop in for coffee and dessert after browsing the local stores, or sample from the late-night dining menu. Gluten-free options are available.
8712 Lindholm Drive
T1 Tapas is celebrating its second anniversary Dec. 9 with food and drink specials as well as door prizes. If you and the family decide to take a trip to Birkdale Village to admire the holiday decorations and dancing bears, make it a Sunday excursion, as children eat free on Sundays at T1 Tapas, next to Snip-Its. The whole family can test out the "connection" booths, which offer access to music, photos and videos through built-in touch-screen tabletops. Restaurant hours are Monday through Thursday, 11:30 a.m. to 11 p.m.; Friday and Saturday from 11:30 a.m. to midnight and Sunday from 11:30 a.m. to 10 p.m.
8625-C Lindholm Drive
Mickey and Mooch
If your search for the perfect gift takes you to the Northcross Shopping Center in Huntersville, Mickey and Mooch has an extensive menu of steaks, seafood, chicken, pasta and desserts. Due to high volume, particularly with holiday parties, it's best to make a reservation. It is open Sunday-Thursday, 5-10 p.m., Friday from 5-11 p.m. and Saturday from 4:30 to 11 p.m. Mickey and Mooch will also be open on Christmas Eve.
9723 Sam Furr Road
Lake Norman Cottage
Lake Norman Cottage, a waterfront wine shop and bar in Davidson, is also gearing up for holiday shoppers with gifts and special events. On Dec. 5, 11 and 12, parents can bring their children to "Breakfast with Santa" at 8 a.m. Menu items include chocolate chip pancakes for children and quiche and mimosas for adults. Children will paint a personalized picture frame to hold their photo with Santa, and the family can take a "sleigh ride" via boat on Lake Norman. Cost for the "Breakfast with Santa" is $20 per child and $25 per adult, which includes a wrapped gift for each child. The store will also have several sales going on so adult patrons can shop while their children paint and visit with Santa.
200-G North Harbor Place,