Living Here Guide

What to eat, drink and do in West End and FreeMoreWest

Prominent in the left distance is the historic Henry J. Biddle Hall on the campus of Johnson C. Smith University in Charlotte.
Prominent in the left distance is the historic Henry J. Biddle Hall on the campus of Johnson C. Smith University in Charlotte. Mark Hames

To know: Located just outside of Uptown, West End and FreeMoreWest are comprised of some of Charlotte’s oldest African-American neighborhoods, like Biddleville, Seversville and Wesley Heights.

To eat: You can’t miss Pinky’s Westside Grille – it’s the one with the Volkswagen Beetle on the roof. Pinky’s is famous for its fried pickles, Pinky Dog (slathered with pimento cheese and chili) and Ding Dong-style burgers (with crunchy peanut butter, honey-cilantro slaw and hot sriracha sauce). The Burger Company specializes in, you guessed it, burgers. But don’t forget about The Open Kitchen, which has been feeding Charlotte its famous “pizza pies” since 1952, and Bar-B-Q King, the drive-in spot that’s been dishing out barbecue, fried chicken and more since 1959.

To drink: Draught is literally in the shadow of Bank of America Stadium, making it perfect for game days. Blue Blaze Brewing, the first brewery in West End, sits right off the Stewart Creek Greenway in the 100-year-old Savona Mill. Rhino Market has you covered with beer and wine – to stay or to go – along with deli sandwiches, snacks and coffee, and if you want to drink with your furry friend by your side, Lucky Dog Bark and Brew is an indoor/outdoor dog park with a sports bar.

To do: Explore the campus of Johnson C. Smith University, the private liberal arts university founded in 1867. Take a stroll or a bike ride along Irwin and Stewart Creek greenways, or head a bit farther south to Revolution Park, which features the 9-hole Dr. Charles L. Sifford Golf Course.

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