Great reputation precedes opening of Seafood Connection

Great reputation precedes opening of Seafood Connection

Most new restaurants struggle to bring in a crowd and establish their reputation. Not so with Seafood Connection. That’s because chef and owner Jamie Walker has delighted diners for years with his Low Country-style seafood – long before he found a permanent restaurant home in University City. Seafood Connection opened in July at 630 University Center Blvd., overlooking West W.T. Harris Boulevard near I-85.   How popular? How popular is this place? Well, its Thanksgiving Sunday Seafood Brunch sold out in three hours, and Facebook says the Seafood Connection page has more than 44,000 likes! Yelp’s list top 10 seafood restaurants in charlotte ranks Seafood Connection at No. 3, and it’s only been open 5 months. How did Walker build this reputation? Through a pop-up restaurant. He started by serving food in parking lots, and then later at a church. For a brief time, he shared space with another restaurant on Albemarle Road.   Seafood Connection makes headlines You can learn much more about Seafood Connection and Jamie Walker from these three news reports. “Menu Hopping: Seafood Connection” – Spectrum News Charlotte, Oct. 12, 2018 “5 things you need to know about Seafood Connection” – Charlotte Agenda, April 24, 2018 “Is the best seafood in Charlotte served in a church parking lot?” – Charlotte Five, Nov. 1, 2016   About Seafood Connection 630 University Center Blvd., near McCullough Drive and West W.T. Harris Boulevard. Directions 980-498-6908 Open 11 am-9 pm Thursdays-Saturdays and Sundays 11 am-7 pm; Sunday brunch served 11 am-4 pm or until the food runs out. Website Yelp...
Chamber offers Speed Networking at the Speedway

Chamber offers Speed Networking at the Speedway

End your workday with an entertaining afternoon of relationship-building fun: Speed Networking at the Speedway, 4-7 pm Dec. 4 at Charlotte Motor Speedway. The Chamber’s North Chapter invites members and non-members alike to share beverages, appetizers and business connections at The Speedway’s Paddock Club. Haven’t seen the Speedway Christmas lights? By attending this event you will get a sneak peak of the light show and a discounted ticket to come back with friends and family! Cost for this great event is $30 per person. Two drink tickets and appetizers are included with registration for this event. The speedway is at 5555 Concord Parkway South. Directions   Register today Click here to register. If you have trouble registering, please email Derall Cargile or call 704-378-1351. For sponsorship opportunities, email Audrey Rowe or call 704-378-1356. Learn more about the Charlotte North Chapter, serving University City and other communities north of...
Brew pub is under construction at University Place

Brew pub is under construction at University Place

A veteran beer brewer with a unique product line is transforming a University Place retail building for a new brewery. Andrew Kalinoski, former head brewer of Sycamore Brewing Co., said his Armored Cow Brewing will craft and serve gluten-free beers, the Charlotte Observer reports. Renovations began in early September on 11,000 sf of space in the retail building at 8821 JW Clay Blvd., near the Guitar Center store. Few craft breweries nationwide offer a full selection gluten-free beer, which is brewed from grains such as millet, rice, quinoa and buckwheat rather than wheat. Kalinoski said that Armored Cow will also offer a limited selection of traditional wheat-based beers. Local architectural firm Redline Design Group, which has done four other adaptive reuse projects for breweries, created the design for Armored Cow brewery. The facility will include a taproom, brewing area and patio. Kalinoski hopes to open Armored Cow early in 2019.   Learn more Read the full Charlotte Observer Article Visit the Armored Cow Facebook...
Renovations giving Delish owner rare time to reflect

Renovations giving Delish owner rare time to reflect

The popular Delish Cakery at University Place closed recently for renovations and to finish repairs from a water leak last winter. Aryn Keogh, who launched Delish nine years ago, sees the temporary closing as a rare opportunity “to step back and think about what we are doing,” and perhaps to invent new flavors, she said with a laugh. Keogh, who turns 30 later this summer, began Delish Cakery out of her kitchen in 2009 by selling cupcakes, French macarons, cookies and other treats in the Innovation Park office park. She opened her bakery in the Lakefront Shoppes at University Place three years ago. These days, Keogh’s custom wedding cakes and party cakes are the big draw at Delish, along with her French macarons.   Delish has fans around the world You can see photos of Keogh’s tasty creations – 490 photos so far, plus many customers’ compliments – on Delish’s Instagram page. Keogh usually posts two to four new images a day. The Instagram page has more than 1,500 followers. “I’m really popular in Charlotte,” she said, “and the second biggest group is in Jakarta (Indonesia). It’s weird, but a lot of ladies over there like me!” With time off from daily bakery demands, Keogh is working on a fresh interior design for Delish and “more modern and chic designs” for her custom cakes. Keogh said she is not sure how long the renovations and repairs will take. “I will let everyone know when we are back open and running,” she said.   Stay in touch with Delish Delish Cakery is at 9009-6 JM Keynes Drive in the Lakefront...
Former Solectron – Flextronics facility may become offices

Former Solectron – Flextronics facility may become offices

The former Solectron / Flextronics manufacturing facility near IBM Drive could become a multi-tenant office building with up to 455,000 square feet of space, a rezoning petition for adjacent property reveals. The Charlotte City Council held a hearing on the rezoning request by Westcore Properties at the City Council’s May 30 meeting. The petition filed by Westcore Properties asks that 6.2 acres on Penninger Circle, currently zoned for institutional uses, be rezoned to allow a surface parking lot. The lot would provide additional parking for Westcore’s building and 51 acres of land on Solectron Drive.   Parking lot needed for office expansion In a community meeting for the rezoning, held in March, Nick Markos of Westcore Properties said that the former manufacturing facility has 150,000 square feet of office space and about 300,000 square feet of manufacturing and research space. Markos said at the March meeting that his company plans to rehab the building and convert some or all of the manufacturing and research space to office use, depending on the needs of the new tenants. To successfully lease the additional office space, he said, the building must have additional parking. Westcore plans to add even more parking on land it already owns beside the building, Markos said.   Long history as manufacturing facility comes to an end Global electronics manufacturer Solectron build the facility in 1982, about the time that IBM opened its plant nearby. One of Solectron’s competitors, Flextronics, acquired the building when it bought Solectron in 2007. Flextronics sold the building and land to Westcore the following year, then leased space in the building. Flextronics closed...
Firenza Pizza opens June 5 at Belgate

Firenza Pizza opens June 5 at Belgate

University City’s newest restaurant, Firenza Pizza, opens June 5 near IKEA in the Belgate shopping center. The Virginia-based chain offers dough made in-house daily, nearly 40 toppings, and a 5-minute bake time in an open-flame stone-hearth oven. The new Firenza is located at 6925 University City Blvd., Suite 420, midway between I-85 and IKEA Boulevard.   Grand Opening specials During the restaurant’s grand opening June 5-10, guests who donate $2 to either EmpowHERment or Safe Alliance Charlotte-based non-profits will receive their choice of a free “signature” 10-inch pizza or a free four-topping 10-inch pizza. In addition, the first 10 people in line on Friday, June 8, and Saturday, June 9, at the new Firenza location will get a free pizza for a year, says the restaurant’s grand-opening promotional materials on its Facebook page!   On the menu Firenza offers 10- and 14-inch pizzas including several signature pies such as the Firenza, made with classic tomato sauce, mozzarella and provolone cheeses, pepperoni, Italian sausage crumbles, artichoke hearts, red onion, a pepper medley and fresh garlic. Customers also can craft their own from their choice of nearly 40 toppings and  nine “finishes,” such as fresh basil or a buttermilk ranch drizzle. Gluten-free pizza dough is available. The restaurant also offers dinner salads, sides sand desserts.   Firenza is growing This is Firenza Pizza’s second Charlotte area location. The first opened in 2017 in the Northcrest Shopping Center near Northlake Mall. Franchise owner Emily Wagner plans to open a total of five Firenza Pizza restaurants in the Charlotte area. Firenza Pizza is in a new retail area of the Belgate Shopping Center,...