Friday Fun Food Facts – March 21, 2014

Triangle Restaurant News

Triangle restaurant news…that not everyone knows. Impress your co-workers at the water cooler.

 Featured Restaurant News

  •  Had a chance to go out last night and sample goodies from the Triangle’s next edition of PDQ. It officially opens this Sunday at 10:30 a.m. near the intersection of 15-501 and Interstate 40 in the Gateway Terrace development in Durham. Bring the whole family out on Sunday as they will have activities going on all day for the kids. If you are not familiar with PDQ, they specialize in fresh hand-battered chicken tenders, made-to-order sandwiches, daily cut fries, hand-spun milkshakes and fresh salads. They also have locations in Raleigh, Wake Forest and Cary. Check them out here.

Wake County Restaurant News 

  • In some of the biggest news to hit the foodie newsstands in our market, we confirmed this week that Chef Daniel Benjamin, formerly of the Umstead in Cary, is planning to open a pastry shop called Lucette Grace in downtown Raleigh (235 S. Salisbury Street) later this spring. He will specialize in sweet and savory breakfast pastries, desserts, and light lunch. Get all the details here.
  • Got word yesterday from New Raleigh that Groucho’s Deli opened on Horne Street (just off Hillsborough Street) in the old post office building. Check them out here.
  • We found out this week that B.Good, a burger franchise from Massachusetts that touts itself as food made by people, not factories, is coming to the area with a location at North Hills. We’ll keep an eye on the exact location and opening date. Check them out here.
  • We had heard this rumor a while back, but we were able to confirm this week that Chubby’s Tacos will be opening a new store in Cary at Stone Creek Village. No word yet on an open date, but it can’t happen soon enough. This will mark the 6th Triangle area location. Check out Chubby’s here.
  • It was noted this week that Carlo Nicolaza, owner of Bella Italia on Durant Road in Raleigh, is going to open a barbeque concept called Butcher Block Barbeque in the same building. It is currently under construction so we’ll keep an eye on it for an opening date. In the meantime, check out Bella Italia here.
  • We’ve got great news for fans of the Salem Street Pub in Apex. They are in the early stages of an expansion that will take them into the adjoining building. Check them out here.
  • The News & Observer reported this week that Tavassum Rahmen, whose Indian takeout shop run out of a convenience store on Ten Ten Road in Apex had earned a growing following, has opened Cilantro Indian Café in MacGregor Village with her husband, Mustafa. Check them out here.
  • Got word this week that City Barbecue has set April 12 at 11 a.m. as their grand opening in this market at 1305 Kildaire Farm Road in Cary. This is the first North Carolina location for the Ohio-based chain. Get more details here.
  • Also in Cary, got word from the Virginia Cavaliers’ biggest fan in the Triangle, Tim Moore, that Jasmin Mediterranean Bistro has moved into their new (and bigger) digs right next door to their old location at 1624 Walnut Street in Cary. Check them out here.
  • We told you about this back in our January 10th edition, but we confirmed this week that in Cary at the Parkside Town Commons development at the intersection of Hwy. 55 and 540, Charlie Godwin, owner of Taziki’s in Waverly Place, is planning another location. Check them out here.

Durham, Orange & Chatham County Restaurant News 

  • In the rumor file for this week, we have been hearing rumblings for a while that Andrea Reusing, owner of Chapel Hill’s Lantern restaurant, has plans to open a second establishment, this one in downtown Durham. Those rumors got louder this week with the belief that the new establishment will be part of the new 21st Century Museum Hotel complex. The hotel will be in the renovated Hill Building, which used to house CCB and then SunTrust banks. Stay tuned. This is a game changer.

Closings 

  • Got a note from Katie Page that the Fig Café and Wine Bar in Wake Forest has closed. Related to that, they will have a liquidation sale this Saturday & Sunday (March 22 – March 23) from 8am – 4pm. Tables, chairs, furniture, accessories, dishware, flatware, glassware, pots/pans, 4-burner gas stove, 60 qt. Hobart mixer etc. etc. All sales are cash & carry and final.
  • And also got word this week that Henry’s Gelato in Raleigh’s Lafayette Village has closed their doors.

Food Trucks 

  • Thanks to a tip from The Wandering Sheppard, we were reminded that the Fairview Garden Center’s second annual Flora and Food Trucks Spring Series will begin on March 29 and will happen again on April 19th and May 17th. Get all the details here.
  • The Downtown Raleigh Food Truck Rodeo has just launched a kickstarter campaign for it’s upcoming year. A pledge of $25 or more gets you an “early bird” wristband for all 4 events this year. The dates are – May 11 (1-6 pm), June 8 (1-6 pm), August 10 (4-9 p.m.) and October 12 (1-6 pm). Throw your support their way here.
  • Got word this week that Dump Pho King Truck will be “unveiled” on April 5th from 4-7 p.m. There are a limited number of tickets for the general public. Get all the event details here.

Events

  • We are just one week away now from an event that has grabbed a lot of people’s attention simply because it focuses on beer and bacon. That’s right, the Beer and Bacon Festival is here next weekend at Cary’s Booth Amphitheater featuring at least 75 craft beers and 10 varieties of bacon (did you know there were 10 varieties?). The event will be held on March 29 from noon until 6 p.m. Get all the details and ticket information here.
  • And if you know you are going to feel guilty for eating all that bacon and “sampling” so much beer, you might consider taking part in Sola Café’s 1st Annual Sola Run/Walk and Fun Run on Saturday March 29th at 7:30 a.m. The goal of the event is to support our troops and their families by Remembering Freedom’s Costs. All proceeds go to the USO of North Carolina. Register here.
  • Get your tickets now for Serving Up Spring, a pop-up brunch benefit at HQ Raleigh’s new space at 310 S Harrington Street in Raleigh on Sunday, March 30. Enjoy a selection of crepes, fried chicken, potato salad, pastries, coffee and juice from Coffee & Crepes, Smithfield’s Chicken & BBQ and more. Online registration required. Dine anytime between 10 a.m. and 2 p.m. Stay to relax and socialize or just stop in for a quick bite. Get your tickets here.
  • Wake Technical Community College will host their annual Culinary Arts Showcase on Tuesday, April 1st from 4-7 p.m. at the Raleigh Convention Center. Tickets are just $8 in advance. Get all the details here.
  • And if beer is your thing, the World Beer Festival in Raleigh is on April 5th with two sessions to purchase tickets for. The festival presents you with the opportunity to sample from over 250 craft and specialty beers from around the world – they just announced all the participants. Oh, and there is food to help soak it up a little. Get the list of participants and all the details here.
  • On the evening of April 6th, downtown Raleigh’s Café Helios will be converted into a pop-up Japanese noodle restaurant called The Lucky. Matthew Bettinger and Zach Neuman’s concept is simple: A casual spot that offers counter-service of hot ramen noodles cooked in a pork-based broth. The Lucky is the first of six pop-up events, with each being its own entity. The next one will be at least a month after The Lucky. Everything begins at 7 p.m. and lasts until the noodles run out!
  • It was announced this month that the 2nd Annual East Meets West food and performance festival celebrating Morrisville’s diverse community will be on Saturday, May 17, from 11:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. Admission to the festival is free, tickets will be available for purchase to buy food, beer and wine. Get all the details here.
  • If good food and good movies is your thing, you’ll want to mark your calendar for Fridays in late May and June (May 23rd through June 27th) for a new series being put on in City Plaza in downtown Raleigh. In addition to the movies, there will be local/regional craft beer and food trucks. More details to follow.

Food Bank Corner   

  • The Pit’s 6th Annual ‘Cuegrass Festival returns to Raleigh Saturday, April 26, with a jam-packed day full of great food and music, with all proceeds benefiting the Food Bank! Get all the details here.

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