Uptown's Dandelion Market, spoons up or spoons down? | CLT Blog
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Uptown’s Dandelion Market, spoons up or spoons down?

Posted on 19 Jan 2010 by Shalu B

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Spoons Up, or Spoons Down?

118 West 5th Street
Between Church & Tryon Street
Charlotte, NC  28202

Dandelion Market adds a new element to uptown Charlotte’s restaurants, as a primarily small– plates restaurant with a warm and cozy atmosphere and most of its food being supplied by local farmers.

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3 out of 4 spoons up

The atmosphere, service, and potential on other menu items brought this rating up.

Here’s what I like:

It’s located in the old Latorre’s venue uptown, but is completely revamped! Apparently, it’s the same owner as Madison’s, Connelly’s, etc on that corner of Tryon and 5th streets. You walk into the main dining floor with dark hardwood, fully exposed brick on either side, and candlelight throughout the room to make you feel like you’ve walked into a cozy cabin in the mountains. When you walk upstairs, there is additional dining, high bar tops, and a wooden picnic table that accommodates large parties of about 1012. On certain nights, they’ll have music/bands play upstairs.

As for the menu:

Great deal on wine (especially uptown): $25 for any bottle and you can take what you don’t finish.

We had a few things I do not recommend:

  • Aged Cheddar and Ale Fondue: The baguette pieces were stale, and the fondue came in a classic cheese dish, so it got cold really fast–you probably need to use your fingers. The cheese had an “oaky” flavor, not what I would call “fondue” (our waitress, Kimmi was great though, and she brought up some pita bread as an alternative with apples).
  • the Grilled Chicken Wings ($5): Great smoky aroma and they looked amazing, but they tasted like fried chicken wings, and there wasn’t anything low-fat about them. I had to get an extra napkin.

 I do recommend:

  • Baked Potato” Croquettes ($5): Two fried breaded potatoes filled with warm cheddar, hickory bacon, and a scallion cream that made it perfection.
  • Cilantro Crab Cakes ($12): This was probably one of the pricier small plates they have, but it’s well worth it! They are a little bit spicy with their chipotle aioli, but the grilled pineapple on each of the four mini cakes counteracts the heat. I recommend asking for the Tabasco tarter sauce for a bit more flabor (if you like that). It’s excellent!

Deserts: Well, we didn’t get to have any, because it was about 20 degrees and the only two available were an ice cream dish, and an alcoholic milkshake. I’ll be back to try the Apple pies.

Footnote: If you’re looking for exceptional service, ask for Kimmi (tall brunette), and get a seat by the windows!!


  1. Rachel Taliaferro 26 Jan 2010 at 8:05 PM

    Thanks for this review…I was curious!

    By the way, I saw you at the ASC kick-off tonight. Live streaming video—fancy!