Friday Fun Food Facts – January 17, 2020

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

Featured Restaurant News

  • We have less than one week now! Executive chef Matt Kelly and his team at Saint James Seafood announced earlier this week that they will be shucking some oysters, steaming some shrimp and frying some fish again beginning on Thursday, Jan. 23. You’ll remember that St. James has been closed for nine months due to the natural gas explosion on nearby North Duke Street. Time to re-familiarize yourself with them here.

Wake County Restaurant News

  • It was announced this week that La Farm Bakery and Cafe will open its 4th location when it  moves into Terminal 2 at the RDU International Airport. They will bring their signature baked goods as well as coffee, beer and wine. LaFarm is scheduled to open in the airport in late 2020, but a pop-up is expected to begin in May. What a great way to welcome travelers to the Triangle! I can smell it now! Congrats to Lionel and Missy Vatinet. Visit LaFarm here.
  • Chef Jake Wood finally revealed the full details of his next venture. You’ll remember Wood from Jason Smith’s 18 Seaboard followed by his stint at Plates in Raleigh, Well, after months of social media teases at his next venture, Wood finally revealed his plans to his adoring fans. He will open Lawrence BBQ this summer in Boxyard RTP, a micro retail-and-dining space made from upcycled shipping containers located in the Research Triangle Park. Lawrence BBQ’s menu will be anchored by pit-cooked, whole-hog pulled pork, but Wood will highlight other smoked proteins including brisket, ribs, sausage, poultry, and North Carolina seafood like broiled oysters. Thanks to the INDY for additional details on this news. Keep up with Lawrence BBQ on Facebook here and Boxyard RTP here.
  • Brew Coffee Bar, at their new location in Gateway Plaza at 2409 Crabtree Blvd., followed up last week’s ‘soft open’ and just coffee service by rolling out full-on food service which includes breakfast tacos! They suggested another announcement today, which we can only guess involves liquor! Stay tuned and visit them on their Facebook page to keep up with the latest!
  • The Triangle Business Journal reported this week that a new boutique hotel called Origin Raleigh is set to open at the edge of the Warehouse District in downtown Raleigh this March. The hotel is between Boylan Avenue and West Street and will be launching Good Day Good Night, a new “neighborhood restaurant” featuring a “thoughtfully sourced, plant forward menu” and a commitment to working with North Carolina farmers. Get familiar with the restaurant here (and the hotel while you’re at it).
  • And the folks over at Downtown South Raleigh pointed out the hibachi place at 2004 New Bern Ave. (near Frank’s Pizza) had closed, has now reopened as Chuan Raleigh. Take a peek here.

Durham, Orange & Chatham Restaurant News

  • “Welcome to Moe’s” takes on new meaning next week as the 2020 “barbecue renaissance” in the Triangle begins. Next Monday, January 20th Moe’s Original BBQ will open at 11 a.m. at 2014 Hillsborough Road in the former Blu Seafood and Bar spot.  They made the announcement via their Facebook page. Help us “welcome” them by paying them a visit! Get to know them here.
  • WRAL shared the sweet news this week that Two Roosters Ice Cream will soon open their third location – this one coming this spring at the Golden Belt Campus next to Hi-Wire Brewing. This location lands them in a historic building, adjacent to a huge grassy area and outdoor stage as well as a rooftop patio overlooking it all! Get ready Durham!
  • And one more note from Durham, got word from multiple sources that the new Milklab location in Durham is now in soft-open mode. They are located in the Homestead Market shopping center at 105 W. NC Hwy. 54, just a few doors down from Bean Traders and Sprouts grocery store. During their soft-open they plan on being open limited hours from 12 to 8 pm until their official opening. If you are not familiar with them, their original location is in Cary on Tryon Road and they feature Thai-style rolled ice cream and Boba milk tea. Check them out here.
  • Over in Chapel Hill, the “watch” is over for the opening of First Watch at Chapel Hill’s East 54 in the former Egg & I location. Carrie Brogren of the Chapel Hill Carrboro Foodies group on Facebook indicated that it will officially open on Tuesday, January 21. Visit First Watch here
  • And finally in Carrboro, The Daily Tar Heel reminded us that we have two exciting additions coming in February. Sutawanee Duke will open Thai Station restaurant at 201 E. Main St. in the former Southern Rail location. And just down the street, Durham’s Luna Rotisserie and Empanadas will open in February as well in the former Milltown spot. Exciting times for Carrboro! Check out Thai Station here and Luna’s here.

Closings

  • Tyler’s Restaurant & Taproom (in Carrboro) has closed…for now. That was the last Tyler’s location. The Speakeasy (serving 42 craft beers & a smaller rotating menu of best sellers) remains open. Tyler’s may reopen…or open a new concept…or may sell…time will tell. Thanks Tyler for 21 yrs of great hospitality! Thanks to Bart Smith for the initial notice on this development.

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 26! 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

  • Triangle Restaurant Week is next week – January 20-26, 2020. During TRW participating restaurants offer special three-course menu options and fixed pricing, a great opportunity to check out places you’ve never been. No reservations, tickets or passes required. Pricing for the event is $15 for a 3-course lunch, and $20-$35 for a 3-course dinner. Price is for each person and does not include beverages, tax or gratuity. Get all the details and a listing of participating restaurants here
  • The Inter-Faith Council will host their 26th Annual Taste of Hope Gala on Sunday, January 26th at the Renaissance Raleigh North Hills Hotel at 4100 Main at North Hills Street. Proceeds from the six-course dinner and silent auction will provide critical funds for Inter-Faith Food Shuttle’s hunger relief efforts. The evening also includes a special giving opportunity for the BackPack Buddies Program, which provides healthy meals and snacks to children struggling with hunger. There is still time to be a sponsor and/or donate an item for the auction. Get all the details and purchase tickets to attend here.
  • Crook’s Corner, the beloved Chapel Hill restaurant, will host their January Supper Club on Wednesday, January 29th at 6 pm. The January Supper Club is a four-course, family-style meal prepared by chef Justin Burdett with beer pairings from Saxapahaw’s Haw River Farmhouse Ales. The cost is $65 per person for four courses and beer pairings (plus tax and gratuity). Advanced reservations are required and seating is limited. To make a reservation, please visit 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.
  • The Thrive NC Food Festival will return to downtown Raleigh this spring on May 7 and 8. Thrive NC, which held its inaugural festival in 2018, was developed to help raise awareness about food insecurity in the Triangle, where more than 1.5 million North Carolinians struggle with hunger on a daily basis. The first day will include a food summit that delves into ways to address hunger in the state. A service project will be held on the second day involving members of the community in partnership with a local non-profit. Each night includes a food festival with more than 65 local restaurants and beverage purveyors, live entertainment, chef demonstrations and music. Tickets for Thrive NC’s food festivals are $30 each and go on sale Feb. 27. Tickets have sold out each year. Get all the details here.

Food Bank Corner

  •   Did you know that 2020 marks the 40th year that the Food Bank of Central and Eastern North Carolina has been serving our communities with food for daily nourishment, suppliesduring disasters, programs that serve families, and education that empowers our community? Join me in wishing them a happy 40th! No One Goes Hungry. Make a donation today here.

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