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June 3, 2006
From journal Chowin' Down Miami Style
Charlotte, North Carolina
March 11, 2005
The menu at the Hard Rock is standard American café fare and typically doesn’t stray from the ordinary, which is fine since I can try new things at other places. Like most other people, I come here to drink up the atmosphere and to take home a T-shirt. Here memorabilia from rock and roll’s best surrounds you. Here you will find records, drums, guitars, and costumes from the likes of such legends as Springsteen, Kiss, Sting, and Hendricks to bands such as Megadeth, Metallica, and local bands such as Savatage. As with most Hard Rocks, there is an Elvis spotting or two. When you first walk in, there is a motorcycle that belonged to Elvis on display. Again, Elvis and the South go together like milk and cookies.
Our waiter arrived at our table and greeted us with a, "How ya’ll doing?" Now, here’s just a quick lesson on a Southerner’s view of Floridians. While geographically the state is located in the South, those of us from the other Southern states do not consider Floridians to be Southern. Most of ‘em are transplants anyway. They do not use words like "ya’ll" or "hon" and leave the g on words ending in -ing. They also don’t considered sweet tea to be the beverage of choice like the rest of us. So when we heard ya’ll and doin’ instead of doing, we knew we had a real Southerner. It turns out our waiter, Leo, was from Charlotte! Leo provided excellent service, and this was one of the best dining experiences I have had at the Hard Rock. We went in during the slow time (about 3pm if I remember correctly), so the place wasn’t crowded. When Leo had the chance, he kept returning to our table to talk about Charlotte and what was new, a topic often discussed by Charlottians who have left.
I opted this time for the pig sandwich instead of the burger. While not horrible, it wasn’t the best. The main problem is that real Southern barbeque is pit-cooked, not cooked pork with barbeque sauce on it. But it was still a petty darn good sandwich. It came with a generous portion of fries, baked beans, and slaw. After we ate, we all wanted dessert, but no one had room for their own. So we all went in and got a hot-fudge brownie. The grade? Five drool pools. Oh my, this is heavenly and worth ever calorie. If you are in town during busy season, you may want to make reservations. You can do that at www.hardrock.com for up to 1 month in advance.
From journal Miami... Not My Cup of Tea!