In April of this year, a new catering company and restaurant opened in Ballantyne. Focusing on simple, home-style food, with an eat-in location that’s open for lunch, Brown Bag delivers to events for a minimum of 10 people and offers bulk foods for pickup, like trays of chicken, salads or sides you can use to fill in the gaps for your holiday parties or for your own meal shortcuts. The food is healthy and wholesome, a welcome change from sandwiches and chips most catering companies offer small groups.
But this straightforward catering and café restaurant doesn’t just offer up solid, delicious food offerings. Brown Bag originally started in Knoxville and Nashville, with a small group of friends who grew it out of a home business, one serving at a time before opening its first Charlotte location. It’s a catering company with a purpose.
Called the Brown Bag Blessing, with 24-hours notice, you can call in a crisis and the company will donate a meal for up to eight people, using food left at the end of the day. In the case of a sudden death or hospitalization where you’re trying to figure out how to feed everyone who is coming together, all you need to do is call.
In addition to this service, there’s also an in-restaurant opportunity to pass along the goodness. A wipe-off board at the restaurant allows you to buy a friend a meal. Taking inspiration from bars that have similar concepts with drinks, Brown Bag lets you overpay for your lunch and write a friend’s name on the board, giving your friend a free lunch whenever they come by to eat.
5231 Piper Station Drive
Mon – Sat: 11 AM – 2:30 PM
Photo by Cody Hughes @clhughes21
- Stand on the intersection of Trade and Tryon in Uptown Charlotte and you’re standing at the birthplace of trade and commerce for this area. But it isn’t what you think. A large group of Loyalists (colonists who were still loyal to King George) decided to colonize the area that would become Charlotte because it was already the intersection of two Native American trading paths. These paths are now, you guessed it, Trade St and Tryon St.
- Did you know the original branch of the United States Mint was actually located in Charlotte? This was back in the gold standard days and in 1837, when The Charlotte Mint opened, it created more than $5 million in gold currency. During the Civil War, it was used as a hospital and military office for the Confederate government. In 1931, when the building was set to be demolished, a group of citizens came together to have it moved to its current location in Eastover and turned the building into the Mint Museum Randolph—the state’s first art museum!
- The Ballantyne neighborhood almost had another name. See if you can guess what it was going to be, based on the story. The development was first reported on in 1991. The area was farmland along the city’s planned outer belt. The plan was to transform 1,756 acres of mostly undeveloped land in south Mecklenburg County into offices, shops and residences in a community of 10,000 to 12,000 people. The second choice, “Ballantyne,” was also of Scot-Irish origin. Figured it out yet? It was almost named “Edinborough.”
- Ever wondered why our downtown is actually called “Uptown”? The Native American trading paths (now Trade St and Tryon St) was the highest elevation point in the city, so everyone had to go up to reach this point. Hence. . . Uptown. This never faded, but it wasn’t until the 70’s that the City Council decided that the shopping and business district in the center city area be officially declared “Uptown Charlotte.”
- The “Queen City” nickname comes from the name of King George III’s wife, Charlotte of Mecklenburg-Strelitz.
Would you like to go on a tour of some of the locations mentioned below? Feel free to contact me if you’re interested in checking them out in person!
Photo by Cody Hughes @clhughes21