Thursday, March 13, 2014

Red Rocks Cafe Charlotte - Mommy's Favorite Thing to Make for Dinner is Reservations

Red Rocks Cafe, nestled in South Park, offers an extensive menu of upscale American cuisine. The ambiance at Red Rocks is posh, yet relaxed and welcoming to families. I adore dining alfresco, and Red Rocks has a beautiful patio that allows their patrons to enjoy the southern weather during the spring, summer and fall.

We got off to a great start as Red Rocks impressed the kids by giving them a pirate sticker activity set that kept them content as we browsed the menu selections.

Once we settled in we realized that our most difficult task of the night would be choosing the winning entree. In my mind there were about five that were major contenders. The menu options are seemingly endless, and they all sounded amazing. They offer everything from burgers and salads to surf and turf, with many unique treasures in between.

We decided to try the Scott Andrew's Crab Cake Sliders ($12) as an appetizer - they were perfectly seared with a tangy dill mustard sauce. Their light flavor and full texture were taste-bud pleasing. Even little hands wanted to try these pint sized appetizers (as you can see in the photo!).

I shared the Cesar salad ($5) with my husband and S. The lettuce was fresh and crisp and the portion was large enough to share, but there was too much dressing for my liking. This was just a preference issue for me - because S thought it was perfection. I'd recommend asking for it on the side if you are 'dressing sensitive' like me, because it was a great tasting dressing.

S wanted fettuccine alfredo ($6) - do you sense a theme here with her dinners? The kids menu only offered marinara pasta, but the waitress let us know that they could easily swap out the marinara for  alfredo, and S was content with her favorite cream sauced entree.

E tried their burger ($6), as did I, and it was juicy and tender. His latest obsession is ketchup (aka life blood as we call it) and he enjoyed dunking each piece of burger and french fry into his favorite condiment. I appreciate a restaurant that offers entrees that the kids will eat - and not complain about! Dining out should be a fun experience and picky kids with limited menus can pose a problem, luckily there was no such problem at Red Rocks.

Our patient, and attentive waitress visited our table and explained their specials and tried to help me narrow my top five to just one. Ultimately I ended up ordering the Eugene Robinson's Shrimp and Scallop Fresco ($18). I'm a fan of seafood, artichoke and sun dried tomatoes, and together they were served up together as a savory medley. The entire dish was tasty, but the scallops were phenomenal.

Jim's take:
I enjoyed the crab cake sliders and Cesar salad. For my entrĂ©e, I settled on Barry Giller’s Blackened Tuna Avocado ($23).  It featured two good sized portions of seared sushi grade tuna over a bed of red risotto, grilled asparagus, avocado, and pico de gallo.  The tuna was a little spicy (which is a good thing to me) and the accompaniments complemented it very well. For dessert we had the chocolate cake, which was three delicious layers of chocolate cake and frosting. This was a major crowd pleaser.

We didn't sample anything from the wine menu, but next time we visit without the kiddos I'll have to enjoy a glass of one of their many wines.

I was thoroughly impressed with the entire staff, one waitress even stopped by and asked if she could clean off the tidy tray that we bring with us everywhere that E had used. Our server was attentive and able to anticipate the needs (more napkins, don't put the drink in front of the baby etc.) of our family without fail. The restaurant was well appointed, clean and the bathrooms had the ever needed changing table in the women's room. Parking was a breeze and they take reservations (always a bonus when dining with the little ones).

Red Rocks Cafe has two locations, the one in South Park and then a second location in Huntersville in the Birkdale shopping center. You can like Red Rocks Cafe on Facebook, or follow them on Twitter. For more information about Red Rocks Cafe, to view their menu or make reservations at

Mom About Charlotte Disclaimer: In exchange for this review, our meals were paid for. However, our opinions are our own, and not influenced by the restaurant providing the meal free of charge.


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