Friday, January 15, 2010

Aria Tuscan Grill Opens in Uptown

Posted by Jarvis Holliday On 1/15/2010 No comments
I attended the grand opening of Aria Tuscan Grill last night. It's the latest venture from the successful Sonoma Restaurant Group, which also owns Sonoma, Press Wine/Food, and Pie Town--all in Uptown Charlotte.

Grand openings usually aren't the best times to do reviews, so I won't do it here. The place was packed, which says a lot because it's a huge space. The promise of complimentary cocktails and hors d'oeuvres always ensures RSVPs, plus I'm sure most people know Sonoma's track record and figured this was an event they didn't want to miss. There was an army of servers working last night and they kept the passed trays coming and wine flowing. The hors d'oeuvres consisted of bruschetta, eggplant parmigiana, braised beef short rib, antipasto, salads, cheeses, and some kind of fried mozzarella balls that I had to pick up every time a tray filled with them passed my way.

The owners spared no expense with the decor, and for a two-level space of its size it was surprisingly warm and inviting. I like the glass-enclosed "open" kitchen, and I can see the bar becoming a popular after-work spot. You have to salute anyone who opens a new restaurant in this economy, but in this case it more than likely means that a previously existing restaurant in Uptown needs to worry.

Aria Tuscan Grill is located at 100 N. Tryon St. inside Bank of America Corporate Center. For more info, visit


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