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.

Restaurants
(Raleigh)
Sitti
Modern versions of Lebanese dishes served in an airy room with a communal table & art deco bar.

IMG_1150Cowfish
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.

IMG_1138
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.
Poole’s
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.
Coquette
French dining in a traditional brasserie setting with tiled floors, banquettes & sidewalk tables.
So•ca
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.

IMG_1147
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.

IMG_1153
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!

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

IMG_1145
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.
Viceroy
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

IMG_1139

Lucettegrace
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
Vidrio

IMG_1149
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!

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Author: wanderlustpig

I'm a wandering foodie. Nomad SGF/CHI/STL/RDU Culinary/Pastry School Grad Hungry Traveler Pigging out on food across the country!

6 thoughts

  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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