Raleigh Restaurant Recommendations

Raleigh Restaurant Recommendations

I always love a little alliteration, don’t you? 🙂

One of my longtime readers, Jessica, (HI JESS!) inspired this latest post.  She’ll be in Raleigh this summer and was wanting a few restaurant and bakery recommendations.  I only lived in Raleigh a year and a half, but definitely ate my fair share of Rise Donuts and Goodberry’s Frozen Custard.  I miss Raleigh so much!  It was a great place to live and work, and it would be a great place to come back and visit.  Here are some recommendations for you. I’ve either been to these places or heard good reviews from friends.  Oh, also, I divided them up by each city.  The “Research Triangle” consists of three cities, Raleigh, Durham, and Chapel Hill.

Modern versions of Lebanese dishes served in an airy room with a communal table & art deco bar.

Gourmet burgers & sushi, & fusion combos of the 2, plus beer & spirits in a vibrant, colorful space.

The next three are all Ashley Christensen restaurants, so you really can’t go wrong.

Beasleys Chicken + Honey
Updated versions of fried chicken & waffles & other Southern classics in a modern setting.
Chuck’s Burgers
Understated setting for gourmet burgers, pickle fries, craft beers & other casual American bites.
Circa-1945 diner with seasonal comfort food, cocktails & house desserts in a retro-chic setting.
Bu•ku Global Street Food

Global street foods, including gluten-free options & a Sunday brunch, in a refined, casual setting.
French dining in a traditional brasserie setting with tiled floors, banquettes & sidewalk tables.
Sleek choice for cuisine from the Caribbean, Central & South America plus craft cocktails.
Cantina 18
Festive setup featuring Mexican fusion dishes made with local meats & fish, plus craft margaritas.
Char Grill
Local fast-food chain serving charcoal-grilled burgers, fries & shakes since 1959.

IMG_114342nd St. Oyster Bar
Casual seafood spot & raw bar dating back to 1931, with live music on Fridays & Saturdays.
Tupelo Honey
An all-day menu of Southern comfort food with a creative twist, plus craft beers & cocktails.

Brewery Bhavana
Maker-inspired hub for craft beer, dim sum, books & flowers in a stylish space.
Lilly’s Pizza
Casual stop for gourmet pizzas made with organic ingredients, including vegan & gluten-free options.
Humble Pie
Eclectic tapas & brunch, plus wine & spirits, in a polished, airy space with a patio & tiki bar.

Alpaca Peruvian Charcoal Chicken
Local counter-serve chain featuring a menu of Peruvian-style rotisserie chicken & Latin sides.
Moonlight Pizza Company
Unconventional pizza options along with casual Italian fare delivered in a family-friendly setting.
MOFU Shoppe
Airy eatery from a food truck team offering creative Asian fusion small plates & craft cocktails.
Snoopy’s Hot Dogs & More 
Old-fashioned hot dogs, burgers & BBQ sandwiches, plus floats (some locations window-service only).

Also, check out the new Morgan Street Food Hall opening up this month!

Pizzeria Toro
Buzzing, modern pizza parlor featuring wood-fired pies & a bar, plus an assortment of Italian wines.

Duck Fat Fries

Bull City Burger & Brewery 
Family-friendly microbrewery serving locally raised beef burgers & house beers in a casual setting.
Saltbox Seafood Joint
Local, seasonal seafood is the draw at this roadside shack with a chalkboard menu & picnic tables.
The Pit Authentic Barbecue
Pit-smoked free-range pork, Texas-style brisket & other BBQ staples in a smart-casual setting.
The Little Dipper: Fondue on Main
Relaxed fondue restaurant offering a variety of sweet & savory dipping sauces, plus Sunday brunch.
Classic Indian & fusion fare like curried shepherd’s pie served in an old-fashioned, English tavern.

(Chapel Hill) I’m not as familiar with Chapel Hill, unfortunately.
Al’s Burger Shack
Burgers, dogs & shakes are prepared with unique toppings in a snug space with a patio.
Crook’s Corner
Local artwork adorns this famed cafe serving Southern staples from shrimp & grits to cocktails.

Bakeries, Coffee Shops, & Bars


Industrial-chic bakery/cafe with French-style pastries & desserts, plus breakfast & lunch fare.
Yellow Dog Bread Company
Bright bakery with artisanal breads & Southern-inspired pastries, plus coffee/tea & outdoor seating.

IMG_1148Boulted Bread
Bright, rustic-chic bakery featuring pastries & loaves of bread made with local, organic grains.

IMG_1152Rise Biscuits & Donuts
Rise serves Southern Biscuits, Righteous Chicken and Sweet Stuff all day long, waitstaff-free and with a swift service line.

IMG_1151La Farm Bakery
Bakeshop & espresso bar with a full French & American cafe menu served all day, plus Sunday brunch.

IMG_1146Fresh Local Ice Cream
Independent shop scooping housemade ice cream in many flavors.
Goodberry’s Frozen Custard
Frozen custard specialist offering a rotating flavor of the day, plus lots of toppings for mix-ins.

IMG_1136Jubala Coffee
Airy, hip & cosmopolitan cafe known for its espresso drinks, breakfast bites & sandwiches.
Sola Coffee Cafe
Family-owned cafe & espresso bar serving up eats such as pizza & pastries, plus live entertainment.

IMG_1144Benelux Coffee
Low-key hangout featuring coffee & tea drinks, Belgian waffles & smoothies.
Morning Times
Bi-level coffeehouse serving light fare in a bohemian, exposed-brick space with an upstairs gallery.
Joe Van Gogh
Trained baristas make gourmet teas & inventive coffee drinks starting with house-roasted beans.
Cocoa Cinnamon
Chill coffeehouse for single-origin coffee, tea & drinking chocolate with outdoor seating.

The Green Light
Gallo Pelón Mezcaleria

Dram & Draught
Clouds Brewing 

IMG_1142Raleigh Beer Garden
Whiskey Kitchen

I hope this list helps some of you out who are visiting the Raleigh area, or moving there.  If you have any Raleigh food recommendations, I’d love to hear them!


6 thoughts on “Raleigh Restaurant Recommendations

  1. I have only had one short layover in RDU. I will need to find a way to get back there soon to try some of your recommendations. Thank you!

    Liked by 1 person

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