A Carolina Heirloom 17

The Farm to Fork Eatery Offers Clean Carolina Fare

Heirloom: a valuable object that has belonged to a family for several generations; denoting a traditional variety of plant or breed of animal that is not associated with large-scale commercial agriculture.

Every year, we watch the seasons change on our plates, a colorful cacophony of flavors and textures, rooted from the ground and plucked from ripened stems. It’s a tale as old as life itself, the recipes and ingredients passed down from generation to generation, season to season.

It’s this timelessness of fresh fare that’s the focus of Heirloom, Charlotte’s favorite farm-to-fork eatery. “Locally sourced, globally inspired,” Chef-Owner Clark Barlowe offers a culinary experience that echoes those seasons and the richness of North Carolina’s offerings on his six-course tasting menu that changes daily.

“At Heirloom, we have a mission to source as many of our ingredients and products from North Carolina farms and producers as possible,” he explains. Those tenets are heralded both outside the kitchen and in it. “Our soap in the bathroom, salt on the tables, and obviously the food are all sourced from our partners throughout the state. This network allows us to offer some of the most fresh and innovative food found anywhere.”

The flavors are ones you’ll recognize, zingingly fresh and paired in ingenuous, resourceful recipes. Take, for example, his “Rotten” Tomato Sauce and Egg Yolk Pasta, which utilizes bruised, farm-fresh tomatoes in a new take on classic spaghetti. The Heritage Farm Pork Shanks bring together the flavors of the season, from local golden oyster mushrooms to spicy turnip tops, for a dish that’s both humble and inventive.

All of these seasonal, contemporary-but-classic recipes come from the mind of Barlowe himself. The Carolina native (he hails from Lenoir) has long found his calling in the kitchen. “From my first night in a professional kitchen I was hooked,” he remembers. “I loved the energy and the camaraderie. I couldn’t think of another career that would have given me the satisfaction I find in a kitchen.”

Nor the ability to represent his home state, as well as his adoptive hometown. “Truthfully, our dining scene is my favorite part of Charlotte,” says Barlowe. “I think we are on the tipping point of being known as one of the premier food cities in the country. It’s going to take all of us getting out and supporting restaurants who are truly supporting local farms.” Though Barlowe is a champion of supporting the local culinary scene, he shared his Heritage Farm Pork Shanks recipe for you intrepid chefs to try at home.