dilworth tasting room

Meet the new face of an old Dilworth neighborhood favorite.

Keeping true to the original structure and character of the longtime neighborhood pub of 35 years, Dilworth Billiards, you can tell the moment you walk through the front door that it has been upgraded into a beautiful and spacious new gathering place.

Owner Jaffer Kovic, and his father Hase, remodeled almost every inch of the interior. What you will notice first is the two large red leather couches facing one another, a long mustard yellow leather bench wrapping the street facing wall of tables and another huge black couch along the side wall. Secondly, you’ll see a gorgeous bar lining the back wall that is back-lit with vertical rows upon rows of wine bottles.

Kovic has extensive knowledge in the wine industry as an advanced sommelier. He also understands exactly what it means when a new venture just feels right. By chance, he and his family drove by a “For Lease” sign posted in front of Dilworth Billiards. Owner of the building, Eric Sprouse, was pleased to enter a leasing agreement with Kovic and is excited about what he has done with the space, keeping it as open and welcoming as it was before.

 

The Decor | The bar is custom made by Kovich’s father Hase, mahogany wood with handcrafted copper accents as well as the columns and wine racks. An exposed brick wall is adorned with empty square picture frames. Soft round light fixtures hang and fill the 2,800 square foot room. You will also find some artwork created by Kovich’s young daughter. A warm and comfortable atmosphere with a knowledgeable staff creates for a great night of learning and indulging.

 

The Food | Created by Ivana Bekavac to compliment the wine and beer menu, simple and elegant, and approachable.Heavy on superior quality meat and cheese, small bites and snacks like mixed nuts and burrata, four styles of bruschetta, three panini options and a plethora of combinations to choose from to create your own charcuterie spread. Keep an eye out for new additions as their supply will change on a regular basis.
My recommendations would be the Roasted Grape Bruchetta and the Burrata with Basil Pesto and Cherry Tomatoes.

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The Drinks | As written on Kovic’s business card “In every empty wine bottle is a story.” the drink menu was designed with you in mind. A craft beer list twenty-nine deep from around the world, fourteen white wines and twenty-four reds, plus a handful of champagne and sparkling wines. The staff is unbelievably knowledgeable and asks the right questions to help you find a wine that suits you when undecided.
I was graciously assisted by our waitress to find my favorite of the evening. She gave me three different wine samples so she could learn my taste. We found that Four Vines “Naked” Chardonnay from Santa Barbara County, CA 2015 was a winner.

 

The Patio | The original koi pond still exists. Lush trees and flowers surround private bistro table nooks with brick walkways leading to each around the pond. String lighting and paper lanterns shine above. This patio is the ultimate date spot.

Swing by Dilworth Tasting Room as soon as possible for a girls night, date night, quick drink and a light snack. You could also make a night of it with your family or coworkers visiting Charlotte, show them something new.

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o-ku pop-up

I’ve been to clothing pop-ups but never food pop-ups! When I heard of this event, I just had to be there. Two of my favorite things combined into one event, sushi + beer!

O-Ku Charlotte teamed up with Unknown Brewing for an exclusive 5 course dinner pairing. Specialty sushi + craft beer brewed for this event made for an evening full of flavor and happy company. I always enjoy seeing all of the familiar faces from the Charlotte social food scene at events like these. :)

O-Ku Charlotte

Based out of Charleston, SC O-Ku has expanded to Atlanta, GA and to SouthEnd’s Atherton Mill here in Charlotte. Their menu is traditional with a mix of contemporary sushi offerings. All can be accompanied by their craft cocktails and sake, meant to represent and celebrate Japanese culture.

They pride themselves in their ability to feature seafood from some of the finest fish markets in Hawaii and Tokyo while also using local and seasonal ingredients. Fresh, local & seasonal is what we like to see here in Charlotte #amiright?!

Unknown Brewing

Unknown Brewing is all about living a life of freedom, fun and going beyond your boundaries. Having a positive outlook stems from doing what they love… making really great beer. They aren’t afraid to try something new, unique or different when it comes to their recipes.

Step into the Unknown” and #livewithoutboundaries is the motto among the Unknown team.

For this event, they brewed some super interesting recipes! Sake Beer, a Wasabi Stout, Cucumber Kolsch and Sriracha Amber.

Sushi & Beer Pairing

Pre-Meal | Edamame + Pre-Game Session Ale
Course 1 | Spicy Scallop Hand Roll + Ginger Wheat
Course 2 | Salmon Lemon Roll + Wasabi Stout
Course 3 | Yellowtail Carpaccio + Cucumber Kolsch
Course 4 | Tuna Tataki with Asian Pear + Sriracha Amber
Course 5 | Spicy Tuna Hako Box with Squid Ink Rice + Sake Beer

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Samurai Show

For the last course pairing, we were treated with a short sword-fighting routine performed by Feint and Parry Stage Combat. Even though it was only a few minutes, it was an exciting way to end a night of great sushi and fantastic beer.

Two “actors” came out and started play-fighting as if one was training the other (pictured). It seemed as though everyone was thinking “Is this just a play about Samurai’s, what’s going on here?”. Then, the twosome left the stage and were replaced with professional looking Samaurai’s, face makeup and all. I understood them to be a representation of the future selves of the other two. They were very serious and had legit metal on metal sword fights. I was sitting front row and had my fingers crossed the entire time that they kept tight grips, yikes!

It was such a fun evening, a huge thank you to everyone! A special shout-out to Aly and Laura from Phase3 Marketing, you two are awesome.

Connect with O-Ku Charlotte and Unknown Brewing to see what’s next!