Mailbag: Top 40 feedback letters about Olive Garden nachos, rich millennials, Bang Bang and Cracker Barrel biscuit spot

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This is part of an ongoing series titled Mailbag, items readers submit via email or our feedback form. We get a ton of feedback, this is not close to everything (it’s about 2%), but it’s a good sample.


In response to: Holler & Dash, described as “Cracker Barrel for Millennials,” opens March 13 in South End

“Literally nothing epitomizes South End like a Cracker Barrel chain restaurant setting up shop. That area is quickly becoming the area of Charlotte known for box apartments that look like they were designed by a 4-year old with one set of tan legos, chain restaurants that people in Charlotte are too stupid to realize are chains, and middle-class white bread losers that think they are living in an ‘urban’ environment. Be better Charlotte. There are a number of actual locally-owned restaurants with great biscuits that would love to have your business.” – A

“Did somebody say avocado toast? Asks every basic millennial in South End” – J


In response to: I ordered the 1,520-calorie “Italian Nachos” from Olive Garden

“Real hard hitting reporting with that Olive Garden nacho story, you should be on the lookout for that Pulitzer any day now.” – F

“Why does Ted look 45 but writes like a millennial.” – B

“Cancel our res on Friday. New plans.” – M

“I’ll stick to outback – K

“Wontons are delicious, but a poor choice! Even the deep fried pita chip from a Blackfinn would have been a better choice!” – M

“Finally a story where Ted can’t squeeze in the phrase small plate or cocktail program.” – W

“Good luck with the squirts, Ted” – S

“If I wanted an update on Olive Garden I’d ask my f***ing grandmother” – T

“That looks like heaven” – M

“This is reminiscent of when the Charlotte Agenda crapped its pants over a Potbelly’s Uptown, which is essentially an airport sandwich shop that has been around for a decade” – M

“If you claim not to like the Olive Garden, then f*** you” – F

“Am I the only one who thinks these look repulsive?” – R

“I fondly remember the good old days when Agenda featured classy, trendy, interesting businesses… Wow, Olive Garden, that bastion of fine Eye-talian dining. Very edgy stuff.” – W

“Yum.. soggy meat sauce chips with huge chunks of jalapeños and peppers. Almost checked my calendar to make sure it wasn’t April 1st.” – I

“I look for Charlotte Agenda posts for cool, unique and interesting things pertaining to charlotte – not menu changes from terrible chain restaurants… you can do better.” – S


In response to: Details emerge on Bang Bang Bites, targeting a February 26 grand opening in South End. Here’s the menu

“They didn’t teach social media in culinary school but as it turns out, social media has a lot to do with a restaurant’s success. We broke the record for busiest day ever yesterday. We got our butts kicked. Friday was extremely busy as well.” – Joe Huang, Owner of Bang Bang Burgers

“Can’t be the best burger in Charlotte without a sesame seed bun!” – S

“I’m very impressed with Joe’s commitment to quality, willingness to experiment, and emphasis on employee relations.” – B

“PLEASE PLEASE stay open late!! Keep the kitchen open and we will come!! The late night people are tired of pizza and Midnight Diner!” – J

“Bang Bang  has the best burgers (and fries) anywhere!!! Sadly 2018 is my year with Weight Watchers but I just decided ( because of this article and pictures!!) that Jan 2019 I will make Bang Bang my spot to celebrate all my weight loss. Maybe by then more parking will magically appear at their original location!” – S


In response to: Why did d.d. Peckers do approximately 15,000 wings on Super Bowl Sunday? Because their wings are freaking delicious

“Hot Gold is the best sauce ever” – P


In response to: Here’s how to get into BackStage Lounge, the new speakeasy behind Southbound

“NO NO NO NO NO! Youre doing the speakeasies an injustice by writing about them.” – S

“I wanted to give the Agenda the inside info about the hottest new underground speakeasy in Charlotte. It is called Crawlspace and it is so underground that you can’t even stand fully erect inside if you are over around 5’10”. It is under my house. You enter by crouching and sort of squat-walking under my deck until you reach the hatch and let yourself in. Feel free to try some cool secret knock if that makes you feel good. It is a pleasant 50 degrees all year but there are no retro craft cocktails. Cell phones are allowed but the signal is not great. There are plenty of dark romantic spaces, some even mouse-free. It is members only. Annual fee of $8000 includes 2 guest passes per week.” – F


In response to: These 9 organizations are responsible for bringing new jobs to Charlotte

“Some of those salaries are astoundingly egregious. I’d love to see a follow-up to this story with the results they produce for those budgets.” – J


In response to: Cash Confessional – A week of spending in Charlotte on a pair of best friends’ identical salaries

“My mom pays for my ubers” ?!!! ‘I spend $6 at Starbucks EVERY DAY’?!!! Y’all need to kick these habits and FAST. Your high school car isn’t going to last forever, and you’re going to need to pay for insurance, phone, houses, etc eventually. If you don’t get it together, it’s coming back to bite you real quick. Say goodbye to those Neiman’s trips! LOL. Good luck, ladies!

These two women are children, and their parents are enablers to all of their irresponsible financial habits. – K

“OMG. I stopped reading after the Car Insurance. They’re 25 and 24…and out of the house. Yet…mom and dad are paying their basic bills. (And probably more *insert eye roll emoji*)… and Millennials (or “ME-llennials” as I like to call them) wonder why they get a bad rap. They haven’t learned how to be adults. And pay adult bills. With their own money. Smh…GenX 4 life (lol)” – L


In response to: Have you been to Raclette Night at Orrman’s Cheese Shop?

“Major raclette shortage at 7th Street Market tonight is evidence of Charlotte Agenda reach.” – G


In response to: Huge ice cream news – Jeni’s Splendid Ice Creams opening its first Charlotte scoop shop in South End this summer

“Pro tip for Jeni’s: skip the sundaes and single scoops and go right for a flight. 3 flavors plus waffle cone pieces for only a dollar more. The bonus? It’s extremely photogenic.” – R

“Now I don’t have to go to Atlanta!” – K


In response to: 16 things rich Charlotte millennials love to love — and I don’t blame them for it

“I shop at Trader Joe’s because it’s cheaper, make my avocado toast at home because it’s better (Everything But the Bagel seasoning is the secret). Shop at the Charlotte regional farmers market for local because it’s cheaper! Laugh at my peers for living in s***y overpriced apartments from the porch of my bungalow. At least I get mad when I get the tab for my $14 cocktails, the rule is drink one and then switch to Tito’s and soda. Not all Millennials #amiright.” – B

“The common thread seems to be that m********ls are choosing to (a) use their money to save time (see #s 6, 7, 9, 11) and (b) use that increased spare time to experience new things. Are a lot of those new things frivolous (see, well, just about every item)? Hell yeah, but the phrase “youth is wasted on the young” was first uttered almost a century ago, so this isn’t a new phenomenon.” – A

“I have to say, your stories are what everyone wants to talk about but nobody actually has the balls to! I LOVE IT.” – D

“The juxtaposition of your articles about social injustice and rich millennials is quite jarring, in my opinion. Decide what The Agenda aims to be. Commentary on social/political issues is greatly diminished when the majority of what you write about focused on life style subjects. I think if you want The Agenda to be taken seriously with important matters I suggest you include the serious stuff more frequently.” – T

“And the best thing is they spend ALL of that money on luxuries while their parents still pay for their cell phones and car insurance.” – R

“I don’t know who all these rich millennials are, because everyone I know is too far in crippling debt to pay for any of these things more than very occasionally. It’s lists like this that support negative feelings towards millennials when in reality a very small percentage is this boujie. Who the hell shops at Lincoln’s Haberdashery for groceries? Pretty sure the Publix and Teeters they’re opening all over the place beg to differ – I think they’re safe from the wrath of the millennial. I also have a few tips for all of you at the Agenda – instead of investing in things like blowouts, small plates, discovering the best French onion soup in the city, and putting together lists that will cause people to hate our generation even more, perhaps your time would be better spent investing in a program like Grammarly to catch your extensive grammatical errors that appear daily. Note: It’s free, so Ted will still be able to afford his crappy burgers!” – C


In response to: Showmars brings back table service as fast-casual push backfires in Dilworth

“This is hilarious. I didn’t know Dilworth was that pretentious and lazy. It’s Showmar’s! Do they demand a wine list at Moe’s?” – C

“We ate there last night and it was packed. We were prepared to order at the counter but were greeted by the hostess that escorted us to a new booth section. Nice change but still the same yummy food. We love Showmars.” – D


In response to: Bestie compound? 3 side-by-side homes off The Plaza listed together for $925k

“It’s all fun and games until your raided by federal agents. It’s not a cult. It’s a “bestie compound.” I swear!” – W

“It’s out of our budget, but this is the right setup for our friend ‘community’ and it’s in the neighborhood!” – C

“It’s just going to get bought by some corporate company and made into apartment complexes LOL” – E


In response to: As Charlotte battles social injustice, churches are stepping up to the plate

“You guys are saying churches are valuable now? And the millennials are driving the change? The churches in this area have always been the most giving of all and usually get attacked as divisive. They certainly have an open door policy and serve many of those lower socioeconomic groups.” – G

“As a member of Christ Episcopal Church and active community volunteer, I am passionate about and proud of my church’s outreach efforts. As my friend and head rector often reminds me, “the church” is actually outside the physical walls of our building. While there are obviously too many outreach programs to mention in your article, I wanted you to know that Christ Episcopal Church made possible the first (and still only, I believe) affordable housing in Myers Park. Christ Church owns 2 beautiful duplex houses on Providence Road in the heart of Myers Park, adjacent to the church, that it rents at affordable rates to 4 families on their way to finding permanent housing with the support services of Christ Church and Charlotte Family Housing.” – H

“Good article. How about the Agenda doing its part: promote/publicize volunteer opportunities. That would be a nice counterbalance to all the other events that you include in your emails.” – T

“We (Christians) often get bad press, and it was nice to see a positive article about the efforts of local pastors. After all, anyone who claims to be a Christian would recognize Acts 10:34-35 as truth “Then Peter began to speak: “I now realize how true it is that God does not show favoritism but accepts from every nation the one who fears him and does what is right” to show that all races are equal in God’s eyes. I attend Forest Hill Church, and I appreciate their efforts on always speaking the truth and standing up for what is biblically accurate.” – A


In response to: 18-second video: Coffee In A Cone has landed at Sunflour Baking Company

“Did anybody else think — How the heck does this not end up all over my clothes and shoes 30 seconds in?” – F

“Must have. This will make everything okayer.” – D


In response to: Travel guide to a weekend in Greenville, SC

GREAT job! BUT there was one restaurant that should have made your list, BiscuitHead. This is a restaurant that originated in Asheville, NC and they decided to open up a second location in Greenville, and MAN! The biscuits are heavenly. There are numerous menu options to choose from with each biscuit having its own southern charm, and have I mentioned the Ethiopian Goathead Coffee? With the chairs in the ceiling and little bit of the “weird” vibe, you can tell this was an Asheville creation but its grown tremendously in popularity over the past few months… I make my girlfriend get up and out the door by 9AM on weekends or we’ll be standing in the long line outside the door! – W

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Ted Williams
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Publisher, golfer, dad and magician (seriously).