Hi, I’m Chrissie!
(I’m on the left if you had issues figuring that out).
I introduced myself to you two years ago when I wrote my first post on Off the Eaten Path. At the time, I was new to the Queen City, had lived in Plaza Midwood for less than six months, and needed a hobby besides drinking free beer and margaritas at my apartment complex’s pool all summer long (but if you ask me, sipping cocktails poolside is an excellent hobby).
Off the Eaten Path turned two last week, and I full intended to celebrate my little blog’s birthday on the proper date. But then we got stuck in Milwaukee, it was a busy week at work, I drank some cocktails at The Punch Room, took in a Knights’ game, and had my first NASCAR experience. I also watched a lot of TV, and we’re currently putting in new floors in our house.
So I’m a week late. It happens. Off the Eaten Path is way cooler than I ever imagined it would be. My readership has grown (to more people than just my mom), I’ve met some really cool friends on the Internet (and have also just started approaching people at events and telling them I recognize them from Twitter), I was once on the news, I write monthly articles for the Charlotte Regional Visitor’s Authority, and I’ve eaten a lot of delicious food (and have somehow managed to not gain 200 pounds). I would say that’s a success.
I thought my two year blogiversary would be a perfect time to check in and say “hi.” Reintroduce myself for those of you who are new here and haven’t been with me since the beginning. You can find me at restaurants, bars, breweries and other events around the Queen City, likely taking a photo of my food. Yes, there once was a time where the lighting was too low in the restaurant that AJ (my boyfriend), two of the restaurant’s managers and our waiter shined their phones on our table so I could get the lighting just right.
(this one was snapped last week at a blogger event at The Punch Room. I’m in the pink. Totally in our element).
As always, I hope you enjoy reading Off the Eaten Path as much as I enjoy writing it!
Location: Charlotte, NC. The Queen City, The QC, Crown Town
By way of: A suburb of Washington, DC and Wisconsin (for college and law school). Go Packers!
A little bit about me: I recently moved (is five months ago recent?) and live with my boyfriend, AJ, and our four cats. Yes you read that right, four. Phoebe, Mr. Kitty, Brett Favre, and Purrty Purrty Princess Meow Meow (Princess for short). I’m a public defender, and I love my job.
Why did you start your blog? I was new to Charlotte and was looking for local recommendations of where to eat and hang out. I was looking for something beyond Yelp and Urbanspoon and while there were a few blogs out there (I’ve been a fan of Mary’s Fervent Foodie ever since I discovered it), I thought it would be fun to write something for people who were new to Charlotte (like me) or visiting Charlotte to learn more about the cool spots in Charlotte. Sorry that was a run on sentence. Through chronicling my adventures, it forced me to go out and explore my new city, which is truly what made me fall in love with it (honestly, it took me a while to warm up to Charlotte, and my blog really started my Charlotte love story). Plus I like writing, I was sometimes bored, I needed a hobby, and I didn’t have any friends (that last part is a lie, I was in the midst of developing really close friendships, but close friendships take time. I love my Charlotte friends!).
What’s it about? Food. Charlotte. Beer. Food in other cities. Sometimes cats.
How did you think of the name? It came to me while I was sleeping (does that happen to anyone else? In law school, I nerdily slept with a notepad by my bad when I was writing papers etc. in case I got a brilliant idea in my sleep. Usually I woke up the next morning whatever I wrote was gibberish). I was brainstorming puns on food, Charlotte and adventures. I love a good pun.
What’s the best part about blogging? Connecting with people! I’ve met a lot of interesting cool people through blogging and I love it when we get to hang out in real life and not just behind a computer screen. Charlotte is full of cool people. It’s nice to be a part of that community.
What’s the worst part? Writing when I don’t know what to write. My favorite posts are the ones that just flow out of me. Sometimes, that doesn’t happen and rather than forcing myself to write, you usually don’t see a post up here for a while until I motivate myself again (I’ve been trying to post regularly in May, and I’ve really enjoyed that at no point this month have I felt forced to write a post. Writing is fun!)
Favorite food: Pizza (get The Godfather at Pizza Peel). Cheeseburgers. Sushi. Ice Cream. Steak. Wings. Bagels and Cream Cheese. Mexican. A really fresh, delicious salad (seriously). Really good Italian food (lots of cheese). My mom’s spaghetti (this is a link to her chili, which is also delicious. Maybe she will share her spaghetti recipe with us soon!).
Other obsessions (I mean hobbies): Red wine, Charlotte beer (you can read about my favorites here), baguettes, football, cheese, yoga + other forms of exercise (I have recently gotten into Jazzercise and you can judge me all you want), road trips, the beach, exploring North Carolina, baseball games, hiking (AJ and I have taken two backpacking trips in the last year and have some hikes planned for the summer) happy hour, justice, reality television (my sister has gotten me addicted to The Real Housewives and I have no regrets), Bloody Marys and cats.
Favorite neighborhood in Charlotte: Plaza Midwood. It was a hard decision to leave Plaza Midwood (even though I’m very happy in my new and current living situation) because I lived there for 2 years and it was where Charlotte first felt like home. Plaza Midwood will always have my heart.
Favorite restaurant in Charlotte: There are too many, it depends on my mood. Soul, Midwood Smokehouse, Heirloom, Amelie’s, Sunflour, Azteca, The Liberty (poutine, yes!), Bistro La Bon, 7th Street Public Market (all of it), Central Coffee. There are so many more. You can see everywhere I’ve eaten here.
What restaurants are you dying to try in Charlotte? Brooks Sandwich House, Lupie’s, Passion8, The Fig Tree (again), Le’s Sandwiches, Cosmos Cafe, The McNich House, Barrington’s, Situl, The Asbury, Lumiere (again), Stagioni, The Summit Room, LittleSpoon, Customshop, Davidson Street Public House, Halcyon (again), Zebra, and so many, many more. What do you recommend?
Where do you hang out in Charlotte? All over the place. In the spring and summer you can find me anywhere with a great patio. Recently my go to are the breweries in South End (Sycamore and Sugar Creek are my two faves at the moment). The Whitewater Center (it’s River Jam Season y’all!). Mac’s in Steele Creek has a good beer selection and great nachos and AJ is a beer club member there. Elizabeth Billiards, Gallery 22, and anywhere else in Plaza Midwood. I love the Charlotte Regional Farmer’s Market and we go on Saturday mornings when we’re in town. Jeff’s Bucket Shop is always a good time. Also clearly at Charlotte restaurants, but again it depends on my mood (I usually get a feeling in my heart and my stomach).
Favorite spots outside of Charlotte: Duck, NC is probably my favorite place on Earth. We’ve been visiting there for over 25 years. I’ve really enjoyed taking weekend road trips with AJ: we’ve gone hiking in the mountains, backpacking in Cumberland Island, visited friends in Durham and Raleigh, and had a lovely time last year eating and drinking our way through Greenville, SC. Asheville is always fun to visit, and I’ve gone back to Wisconsin a few times, too. I have a few major trips coming up (to celebrate a friend’s wedding in Colorado, a bachelorette trip to Nashville, and another wedding in Mexico in January). I really want to find the time and money to go back and explore Europe.
Readers’ favorite blog posts:
People apparently love all you can eat crab (there’s a deal on Monday nights at Kennedy’s)
The Hornets Buzzworthy Concessions
Skyline views at Fahrenheit
Charlotte breweries and my favorite Charlotte beers
Burritos as big as your head at Chuy’s
Fancy drinks and snacks at The Punch Room (and of course, Bob Peters)
Finding a balance of work outs with ClassPass
Asheville chews (a look at some Asheville restaurants)
Subs that are on fire at Firehouse Subs
15 things to do in Charlotte in 2015 (it’s a great list if I do say so myself).
Do I work with other bloggers, sponsors, and/or advertisers? Yes!!! Let’s work together, I love collaborating! (be on the look out for a new series coming in June called Charlotte’s Best Bites. A collaborative dining guide of sorts. I’m so excited!)
I’m totally into feedback, so if you have restaurant recommendations, series recommendations, things you love, things you hate, you should let me know in the comments below, via email or on Twitter (if you reach out to me on Twitter there a high chance I will approach you in public and ask if we know each other from the Internet).
If you’d like to keep in touch, you can find me on Instagram, Twitter and Facebook. Or just ask me to grab a cup of coffee. Or a beer. Or a bowl of ramen at Earl’s Grocery. I love all of those things.