Le MĂ©ridien’s Evoke Adds Distinctive Personality to Charlotte Culinary Scene
Itâ€™s no secret that Charlotte is but a small blip on the culinary radar of the southeast. This year, Charlotte got snubbed once again by the James Beard Awards, marking the 25th consecutive year that Charlotte went without even a nomination in the best chef and restaurant award categories.
But, ask any local foodie or restauranteur and they’ll tell you things are looking up. New and promising restaurants emerging on the scene shine a glimmer of hope that Charlotte will soon join the ranks of Atlanta, Charleston and Asheville as a culinary staple in the Southeast. The most recent addition? Le MĂ©ridienâ€™s Evoke.
Nestled inside the european modern lobby of the new Le MĂ©ridien and across from the Longitude 80 barÂ lies Evoke, an appropriately named 90-seat steakhouse with an upscale and chic ambience that Charlotte’s been so desperate for.Â Sleek furniture is complimented byÂ dark woods, floor-to-ceiling windows covered in gossamer curtains and walls adorned withÂ custom modern paintings.
Utilizing the highest quality products sourced both locally and abroad,Â Executive Chef Oscar LaFuente and Chef de Cuisine Robert ReinkenÂ set out to create social culinary experience with plates that can be shared and swooned over.
The menu features aÂ contemporary twist on worldwide favorites with a focus onÂ dry-aged steaks, house-made pastas and raw crudos. TheÂ wine list is impressive and innovative craft cocktails are named after their creators from Longitude 80.
I was fortunate enough to sample a little of each, in a truly memorable five course chef’s tasting.
As if the well-prepared and presented food wasn’t enough, the service was impeccable. Our server, Tyffanie and manager, Suzanne, well exceeded ourÂ expectations. Both were attentive and knowledgable and ensured that our meal was a memorable one.
While Evoke is still new and working out a few kinks, it certainly has a lot of potential and delivers a distinctive personality that Charlotte has very much needed.