Friday Fun Food Facts – December 6, 2019

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

Featured Restaurant News

  • He’s back! Got the great news over the Thanksgiving break that BBQ pit master Ed Mitchell, along with his son, Ryan Mitchell, have joined Lou, Joy, and Amber Moshakos of LM Restaurants (think Carolina Ale House, Vidrio and Taverna Agora to name a few) to open a BBQ restaurant called The Preserve at the site of the original Carolina Ale House at 512 Creekside Drive in Midtown Raleigh. The restaurant is slated to open in the Spring of 2020. You can follow their progress on Facebook here.

Wake County Restaurant News

  • The News & Observer shared this week that A Place at the Table, the pay-what-you-can cafe concept in downtown Raleigh, will celebrate its second anniversary in January and is currently in the midst of a major expansion. The restaurant is adding 2,000 square feet, 50 more seats and a commercial kitchen, with a stovetop, oven and hood. Currently, the menu is limited to only what can be made with toasters and waffle irons, or served cold. The expansion, taking over the space that was Alli boutique, should be finished by the spring, in March or April. In its first year, they gave away more than 8,000 meals. By October of their second year, they had already provided 11,000 meals. Get familiar with them here.
  • A bit of a change-up over in Cary. Got final confirmation this week from Paul Scott with V Pizza out of Jacksonville, Florida that they are bringing their concept to this market after it was announced that they just bought out LaStella Pizza on Kildaire Farm Road in Cary. This will be their first location outside of Florida and they will be looking to open the middle of January. Self-described as authentic Italian pizza, they also feature award-winning wings and this location will feature 40-50 NC craft beers on tap. And this won’t be their only location, as they begin to explore other options in the Raleigh and Charlotte markets. Get to know them here.
  • And speaking of good pizza, the News & Observer shared the news this week that Ashley Christensen’s Poole’side Pies is now open a few more hours in the day with the addition of  lunch service from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Wednesday through Saturday. Check them out here.
  • Also in downtown Raleigh, the folks over at Brew Coffee Bar posted that they are indeed closing their location at Seaboard Station and moving it a few miles down the road to the redeveloped Gateway Plaza. Look for that to happen these first few weeks of December. Visit them here.
  • And if that is not enough downtown Raleigh news for you, the folks over at ITB Insider shared some updates on happenings going on over on West Street. First up, progress is being made at the Rainbow Building at 911 N. West Street where permits were recently issued for the Rainbow Luncheonette, a small, old-school diner that will offer breakfast and lunch all week, and dinner on the weekends. Jason Howard, of The Cardinal and The Atlantic Lounge, is behind the “25-seater” that will offer standard breakfast and lunch fare. Think of it as a reincarnation of sorts of the old Finch’s Restaurant. There is no exact timeframe, but expect it to be at least 90 to 120 days out.
  • Howard also shared with the ITB Insider that a little further down West Street, at 303 North West, he plans on opening Friendship BBQ in the Topps Building right beside the train tracks. Stay tuned on both of these developments.
  • And before we “leave” downtown Raleigh, I share in ITB Insider’s excitement that $100k in renovation work was recently approved for the Krispy Kreme location at the corner of Person and Peace streets. Don’t know exactly what the work entails, but solidifies the belief that they will be around to fulfill their 20-year lease. It also looks like it will include a new 4’ LED exterior wall sign as well that no doubt says, “Hot Now!” Visit Krispy Kreme here.
  • Carrie Brogren with Chapel Hill Carrboro Foodies shared via Facebook that Cinnaholic is opening soon in Cary at 1209 Parkside Main St. where you can create-your-own cinnamon rolls and other sweet treats (like made from scratch brownies, cookies, and cookie dough). Customers can choose from over 20 frosting flavors and a variety of toppings. All of their products are fresh-baked and 100% vegan, dairy and lactose-free, egg-free and cholesterol-free. Get familiar with the yumminess here.
  • Over in Wake Forest we got word that chefs Serge Falcoz-Vigne and Horacio Rodriguez, both formally of the award-winning Saint Jacques French Cuisine restaurant in Raleigh, have taken on ownership of Bodega, Tapas, Wine, and Rum. Former owner and chef Nunzio Scordo says that Falcoz-Vigne and Rodriguez are the perfect candidates to take on his vision of Bodega and make it their own. They are located in downtown Wake Forest at 110 South White Street. Check them out here.
  • And down in Johnston County, looks like they will be getting into the “food hall” game when they open Old North State Food Hall next spring according to the News & Observer. The project will turn a corner of the old JR’s outlet into a dining destination for interstate drivers (as well as local residents), becoming the first interstate food hall. It will have 10 vendors, plus a craft beer taproom called the North Carolina Craft House specializing in small breweries from around the state. Larry Lane says to expect a nationally known chef among the vendors, as well as some North Carolina barbecue and a breakfast all-day concept (and notably will not have any national chains). Get familiar with them here.

Durham, Orange & Chatham Restaurant News

  • In Chapel Hill, Deli Edison, the Chapel Hill deli concept from partners Dan Obusan, Sam Suchoff and Pete Wagner will open next Monday, December 9th. Deli Edison will feature handmade bagels baked fresh every morning, a deli counter stocked with house-made salads and Lady Edison charcuterie, soft-serve ice cream, select gourmet provisions and more. Deli Edison is the third project from Suchoff in the North Chapel Hill Cedar Falls Courtyard. The others include The Pig, a whole-hog barbecue joint, and Your Neighborhood Bar, soon to be rebranded as PiggyBack. Get to know them here.
  • In Carrboro, last we were together we shared that a Thai concept was coming into the spot formerly occupied by Southern Rail/Crossties. Reader Bart Smith was able to share a little bit more information on the new concept which will be called Thai Station Restaurant and is looking to open in January, 2020. Keep up with their progress on their Facebook page here.
  • Over in Durham, the News & Observer reported that Debbie Lou’s opened this past week next door to True Flavors’ Lakewood location at 2022 Chapel Hill Road, which chef Sidney Coves opened earlier this year. His original True Flavors Diner opened four years ago in South Durham, becoming something of a brunch sensation. It has also been named the best breakfast spot in the Triangle by dining critic Greg Cox. As his third restaurant, Debbie Lou’s is built around biscuits, serving an extensive menu of sandwiches based on the South’s favorite carb. Visit them here.
  • Also in Durham, the folks at Bites of Bull City noted on Twitter that a sign for Hook & Reel Cajun Seafood & Bar is hanging at the old Friday’s location on Erwin Road (2608 Erwin Road to be exact). No word on a timeline / expected open date. They are listed as “coming soon” on their website. Get familiar with them here.
  • Down in Hillsborough, Michael DePersia with National Restaurant Properties shared the news that Antonia’s in downtown was sold to Brian and Dana Pearson. But don’t worry, they don’t plan on changing the name or menu, but they are interested in keeping the operation running as is – maybe open for lunch down the road! Visit them here.
  • And finally in Chatham County, Neha Shah, director of the county visitors bureau, shared with me that a concept called The Hill Nutrition is coming to 50221 Governors Drive in Governor’s Square in the spot that I believe used to house a yogurt shop. They’ll be serving up healthy shakes, teas and coffees. According to their Instagram page, they’ll open late February / early March. Probably best to keep up with them on their Instagram page here.

Closings

  •  John Huisman, aka Triangle Explorer, shared the sad news that after a 30+ year run, Sunflower’s Cafe located over in front of Seaboard Station on Peace Street, will close their doors for the final time on Saturday, December 21. There is still plenty of time to get by for one or two more visits!

Food Trucks 

  • If you are missing the food truck rodeos, my friend the BurgeoningBaker shared with me that we are are not far from the next one. The Durham Central Park Food Truck Rodeo is an all-ages Sunday afternoon gathering of dozens of the Triangle’s most popular food trucks, five times each year. And the first one in 2020 is on January 25! Get more details and updates here.
  • As things get cold, here are a  couple of sites to find and stalk your favorite food trucks here and here.

Events

  • On Thursday, December 12th, Leli’s Diner in Wake Forest will hold their “Retro” Holiday Wine Dinner beginning at 7 p.m. The cost is $75 per person and reservations are required. The menu and all the details can be found on their website here. You can also call 919-263-1377 to make reservations.
  • On December 14th, the folks over at Bull City Ciderworks will host their 2nd Annual Bull City Oyster Roast at 305 S. Roxboro Street. They are handling the entire event in-house this year so all oysters will be shucked for you, and they’re adding smoked ribs. The cost is $2.50 per oyster / rib. Get tickets and all the details here.
  • On December 19th enjoy an Afro Vegan Community Dinner at Zwelli’s in Durham from 6-8 p.m. Experience African vegan flavors with an all-you-can-eat buffet created by chef Zwe! Your “journey” will take you from Morocco to Zimbabwe through an intimate evening of dining and music. Tickets are $39.99 per person, $7 for kids 6 and under. Get tickets and all the details here.
  • And the good folks over at Chatham County’s Root Cellar will host their New Year’s Eve Wine Dinner – on December 31. The dinner features an all-inclusive 3-course meal, featuring the creative talents of chef Sera Cuni and wine pairings from Vino Wine Shop. Tickets are $75. Get tickets and all the details here.
  • The 8th Annual Bull City Food and Beer Experience will take place on Sunday, February 23, 2020 at the DPAC. The event pairs delicious local restaurants, with breweries from across the nation. Unlimited food and beer samplings will be spread throughout all three floors at DPAC, plus the On Stage Experience will bring guests up onto the performing arts stage to showcase even more food, beverages and live music. Get all the details here.

Food Bank Corner

  • Listen up restaurants and caterers! The Food Bank of Central & Eastern North Carolina is  looking to connect with restaurants and caterers to help produce reimbursable meals for federal nutrition programs in Moore, Nash, Edgecombe, Wake, Wayne, and Johnston counties.  If you or anyone you know are interested, we’re having an informational vendor meeting on Thursday, December 10 from 2:00-3:00 PM, held at their Raleigh Branch. Here is a link to all the details.

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