This past weekend I was in Cornelius, North Carolina for the opening night of my uncle’s (Chef Tim Groody) restaurant. And it was awesome. The atmosphere of the restaurant, called Fork!, is really cozy and comfortable. From the outside it just looks like a normal house, although they do have outdoor seating and a really nice area with a couch to hang out with some friends. On the inside, however, it has a nice modern look but without that cold feeling that sometimes can come when people try to be too modern. There’s a bar area, and then three other rooms for eating. It’s small, but somewhere I can see would be a cool place to meet some friends after work on Fridays for drinks. I took some pictures with my phone which won’t really look that great, but just to give an idea as to what it looks like (unfortunately I took a lot of these before it was open for customers when I was just taking a tour, so forgive the chairs on the table and a little mess).
And the food was delicious. The style of food is Farm to Table with a lot of small plates and things like that. I had a chicken dish, and it is the best chicken I’ve ever had (not even being biased). So juicy. They also had bison steak which had great flavor, even if it was a little fatty, and a lot of seafood, which I didn’t try (I don’t like fish). Besides the chicken, my favorite thing was probably the Olive Oil Mashed potatoes. There was also Macaroni and Cheese using goat cheese (tasty, if you like goat cheese), Spicy Chicken Spring Rolls, Blue Cheese Ravioli (intense blue cheese flavor but they were good if you ate them with the ragout) and I even tried asparagus. And it wasn’t bad. There was lots of other things that I didn’t get to try too, like a peaches wrapped in Serrano ham and a pork loin. The desserts were delicious too. We had peach and blueberry cobbler and key lime cheesecake. Had to make room for it even though I was stuffed after dinner from having to try everyone else’s dishes. Here are some pictures of the food. Sorry I’m not the best food photographer.
We hung out most of the night until the customers left, and then came back for brunch in the morning. I got Ham and Pesto Benedict, which was Eggs Benedict with ham and the Hollandaise sauce had pesto leaves. It was my first time ever having an Eggs Benedict dish, and I found that I liked it. I’m not a big egg yolk person, so the idea of a dish with poached eggs was not that appealing to me but I was very happy with it and the hash browns were amazing. I also tried cod for the first time, which wasn’t too bad. Like I said, I’m not a big fish eater, but it was a sandwich and there was an Asian slaw on top that was really good. My brother got a cheeseburger with roasted chilis and chipotle Gouda cheese and I was scared to try because it seems like it’d be really hot and I’m not a big spicy food eater (mild salsa makes me sweat), but it was actually delicious. My brother is 5’9″ and weighs like 130; he doesn’t eat a lot. But the burger was so good that he actually ate the whole thing, plus the homemade potato chips. The other dish I tried was Baked French toast with peaches which was full of cinnamon and was so good. I don’t usually eat french toast either but I was almost wishing that I had gotten that.
I’m pretty sure that I gained probably 5lbs from this weekend alone, but it was worth it to eat all of the tasty food we had. And it feels really good knowing that it’s coming from local farms and shops instead of being shipped from one side of the country to another. My uncle has been a chef for many years and has worked in a lot of successful restaurants and has always wanted to open his own, so it’s really cool and I’m proud of him for finally doing it. But even if he wasn’t my uncle, I would be recommending this place to anyone who is near Cornelius, North Carolina (it’s near Charlotte and Davidson University). The food is great and it’s just such a fun atmosphere to be in. So go!
There’s a picture of the cheesecake and cobbler, plus one of my family with the chef himself!