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Bonterra Dining & Wine Room: Charlotte's Premier Fine Dining Experience

Updated: Apr 16

Bonterra is a restaurant that has been in Charlotte for over 20 years. I’ve said for a long time that any restaurant which can thrive for 20+ years in Charlotte is doing something right. Known for its great wines and food, Bonterra started out in the old Dilworth Methodist Church which was built in built in 1915. Owner and creator, JD Duncan, decided to sell the church property to the husband-wife team, Jeff Tonidandel and Jamie Brown, who are best known for their success with Haberdish, Supperland, and Ever Andalo. This power couple plans to open a new restaurant concept in this location. And Supperland is well known for being located in a church as well in the Plaza Midwood area.

Recently, Duncan rebirthed Bonterra in Phillips Place which is located just down the road from SouthPark Mall. While the setting and physical space has a completely different feel from its original location, the food and wine remain excellent. In addition to plenty of tables to enjoy lunch or dinner, it also offers a great area to enjoy a drink or glass of wine with friends.

Recently, we visited the new Bonterra with friends, Janet and Steve Heffner along with Phillip and Lisa Cope. Bonterra offers a seasonal menu and the servers are well versed in making recommendations of great wine pairings to accompany the food.

We began dinner with the calamari as well as the curried cauliflower which were excellent. The third appetizer was the burrata which, candidly, was weird. For entrees, Beth had the Chilean Seabass with a Lowcountry accompaniment while Steve and Janet each ordered this with the Asian accompaniment. In my opinion, Lisa, Philip and I out-ordered them with the Roasted Duck Pappardelle in a Carrot Curry Broth. I almost never order duck, but I am a sucker for any dish that comes with pappardelle, so I had to give it a try. And boy, am I glad that I did. It was outstanding - so much so that I ordered it again when Beth and I returned just a couple of weeks later.

For dessert, we ordered the carrot cake and the tiramisu. The carrot cake was very cold and not very flavorful. It seemed like it had just come out of the refrigerator. But the tiramisu was quite tasty.

Our service by Josh and his team was excellent. Josh has been working at Bonterra for a number of years which is a good sign. He was extremely attentive and knowledgeable about the menu and the extensive wine list. We were recently at another local restaurant which is also known for its expansive wine list yet had very few wines by the glass. I think that their attempt to get diners to purchase bottles instead. However Bonterra had lots of wines by the glass from which to choose for those who do not wish to buy a bottle.

The question that Beth and I always ask ourselves when we leave a restaurant after trying it is would we go back. AsI noted above, we did just that a couple of weeks later. And we will continue to return to Bonterra for the food and experience as well as it being 10 minutes from our house!

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