I thought I had already posted on this thread, but I guess not! I'm actually from Charlotte as well, it's good to see some other Charlotteans on this board. Strangely enough, I was also originally from Louisiana until I was 7 (Harvey, LA).
As far as vegetarian restaurants, I hear The Peaceful Dragon is a great place to go, with lots of non-traditional vegetarian food. The Mellow Mushroom restaurants also serve tofu and tempeh subs, and there's a place called the Penguin Diner on Thomas Street that serves soy dogs, among other things.
I got my Master's degree from UNCC, did any of you go there?