Friday Fun Food Facts – October 16, 2020

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

Featured Restaurant News

  • The Triangle Business Journal broke the news this week that Cape Fear Seafood Company will open its second Triangle location in Cameron Village next spring in the former Cameron Bar & Grill space. The revamped space will include 20 to 30 outdoor seats. The concept, founded in Wilmington, currently has four locations, including the one in North Raleigh at 832 Spring Forest Road (former Lucky 32 Southern Kitchen and Kamado Grille spot). If you haven’t already, get familiar with them here.

Wake County Restaurant News

  • North Hills officially announced this week that The BBQ Lab, an offshoot from the original, award-winning Redneck BBQ Lab in Benson, is coming to North Hills’ Main District and is projected to open sometime in the Spring of 2021 in the former Q Shack location. The BBQ Lab is a locally owned and operated multi-unit concept conceived by Jerry Stephenson and Todd Breed. Raleigh, familiarize yourself with their award winning BBQ here.
  • And speaking of barbecue, the News & Observer shared that Clyde Cooper’s Barbecue, an 82-year-old institution located on Wilmington Street in downtown Raleigh, reopened this week for the first time since the beginning of the pandemic. Check them out here.
  • Kenneth Jarvis shared with us that Peno Mediterranean Grill opened this week in Raleigh at Olive Park in the former Chronic Tacos location at 9424 Falls of Neuse Rd. You’ll recognize the founder, Jamal Haddad, who also founded Baba Ghannouj Mediterranean Bistro and Papa’s Subs & Pizza restaurants. Check them out here.
  • Over in Cary, David McCreary shared with us the announcement of a new restaurant in downtown – Hank’s Downtown Dive, self-described as a neighborhood bohemian dive. The full-service restaurant will feature Evan Cordes in the kitchen where you can expect a full menu of elevated neighborhood fare. It will be located directly across the street from Pharmacy Bottle & Beverage on E. Chatham Street. An open date has not been announced, but they plan to be open seven days a week, throughout the day and into the evening. Looks like they will be doing lots of “pop-up” events, including their first one tomorrow (10/17) at Sidebar at 4 p.m. Keep an eye out for upcoming pop-up events and updates on the process. Keep up with their progress on Facebook here.
  • Looking for all the outdoor dining options in Downtown Raleigh? The Downtown Raleigh Alliance has put together a great list of those options, and they even divided it up by district. Check out that list here.

Durham, Orange & Chatham Restaurant News

  • Down in Chatham County we are getting a little more information on Greg Lewis’ next concept. You’ll remember he closed Pittsboro Roadhouse after 8 years and quickly announced he would soon be opening a new concept just down the way in Chatham Mills. And just this week it was unveiled that that the new steakhouse concept will be called The Sycamore at Chatham Mills. Pictures from inside look amazing! Still no word as of yet on an open date. Stay tuned. In the meantime, keep up with their progress on Facebook here.

Closings / Cancellations

  • David McCreary shared the sad news this week that Fresca Cafe and Gelato at 302 Colonades Way at Waverly Place in Cary has closed.

Food Trucks 

  • Triangle on the Cheap shared the news that Food Truck Flix is a recurring event that combines drive-in movies with food trucks, for a safer entertainment experience just announced their schedule for the upcoming weekends (Friday and Saturday nights). The events will be taking place at Frontier RTP, 800 Park Offices, Durham, and at Focus Church, 7000 Destiny Drive, Raleigh. You can purchase tickets in advance for any of the drive-in movies. The price is $25 per car. Of course, you’ll also want to bring money for the food trucks. Get the movie schedule, purchase your pass and get all the details here.
  • Here are a  couple of sites to find and stalk your favorite food trucks here and here.


  • Accepting that there will be no NC State Fair this year just got a lot easier to stomach. That’s right, from now through October 25 (daily, 10 a.m. through 8:30 p.m.) 22 food vendors will be on hand to satisfy your Fair cravings! Enter the Fairgrounds at Gate 9 off Trinity Road and park in the midway area. Walk up the hill towards Dorton Arena and you won’t be able to miss the collection of fair food vendors. Grab your favorites and head back home to enjoy your tasty treats! This event is take-out only. There will be no gathering allowed. Get all the details and a full list of vendors here. In addition, many local restaurants have added State Fair-inspired dishes. WRAL has an ongoing list here.
  • At a series of Saturday events called Whole Hog Saturdays, St. Roch chef/owner Sunny Gerhart will welcome pitmaster Wyatt Dickson and co-owner and pig farmer Ryan Butler to serve their Eastern North Carolina Whole Hog pig pickin’ style barbecue from Picnic at St. Roch. The dates begin this Saturday, October 17th; and continue on the 24th and 31st from noon to 4 p.m. (or until the pig runs out). Proceeds from the $9 BBQ sandwiches and plates will support downtown Raleigh’s A Place at the Table. Reservations for Whole Hog Saturdays at St. Roch can be made by calling 919-322-0359 or by reserving via RESY. Walk-in’s are also welcome, and orders may be called in for curbside pickup as well. Visit St. Roch’s here, Picnic here and Wyatt’s here.
  • This Saturday, October 17th Catering Works in Raleigh is blending two events (The State Fair and Halloween) into a covid-friendly, drive-thru experience called Carn-o-ween. Dress up (highly encouraged), drive-thru and pick up your deep-fried goodness cravings – all done with a Halloween flare. They have al la carte, family packs, and fun for two (including gluten-free options!). So, sign-up for a drive-thru time, get dressed up…and enjoy! Sign up for a pick-up time and get all the details here. A portion of proceeds will benefit The Judy Zelnak Center for Hope.
  • Harvest Dinner, Raleigh City Farm’s annual fundraising event to celebrate a successful growing season, has a new format this year! Harvest Dinner “At-Home Edition” is a four-week series of take-home Sunday dinners featuring amazing local chefs. Remaining dates include: Coleen Speaks of Hummingbird on October 18; Caroline Morrison of Fiction Kitchen on October 25; and Andrew Gravens of A Place at the Table on November 1. The event series helps support the farm and local agriculture as well as the local restaurant community. For more information, visit here.
  • TABLE, an organization that provides emergency hunger relief to children in Orange County, announces its 8th Empty Bowls annual fundraising dinner will take place on Sunday, October 25, with a “carry out” format from 4:00 – 7:30pm. Tickets are available for purchase here.
  • Like most things in 2020, this year’s Sip+Savor wine and food event is coming at us with a cool little twist – you’ll get to select an at-home food and wine experience for contactless pickup on Nov. 7 at Johnson Lexus of Durham! Each of the four adventure options (Latin, Roots, European and World) includes dishes prepared by some of the best chefs in the Triangle and a handpicked wine flight. Your adventure includes: 5 dishes for two, 4 split bottles of wine, coffee and a swag bag. In addition,chef-tells-all video and virtual wine class by Ryan Vet, Sommelier at the Oak House. Cost is $145. See the offerings and get all the details here.
  • Ashley Christensen Restaurants are now doing Picnic Pop-up at the Park at the North Carolina Museum of Art. You order your picnic (take-out breakfast, picnic boxes, snacks, and beverages) ahead of time and pick it up on Thursday and Friday 8 am til 2 pm and/or Saturday and Sunday from 9 am til 6 pm. Order ahead here and get contactless pick-up located along the walking path on the south side of the brick East Building at NCMA, behind the amphitheater, facing the sculpture park.
  • Alley Twenty Six, one of Downtown Durham’s staple businesses, announced a weekly outdoor pop-up event titled “Alley Freezes Over” happening every Saturday and Sunday (weather permitting) from 12 pm to 8 pm. It continues throughout the summer and early fall. The pop-up includes new frozen cocktails and the choice of “boozy” or alcohol-free snow cones using their local, all-natural Alley Twenty Six syrups, plus a revamped food menu from chef Carrie Schleiffer. Seating will be available outside, in the namesake alley (26 Alley) located directly adjacent to the cocktail bar and will be following safety guidelines, including mask wearing, practicing social distancing, and sanitizing surfaces between guests. Visit them here.

Food Bank Corner

  • It is nice to find good news it what has been an extremely difficult year for so many. But I am excited to share the news that the Food Bank of Central & Eastern North Carolina was named Feeding America’s Food Bank Member of the Year!
  • From the Food Bank: At this difficult time, we are humbled and honored to receive this distinguished award, out of our 200 peers across the nation. Our mission is to nourish people, build solutions, and empower communities, which we could never do without your support. Receiving this award affirms the work we are proud to do, and your investment in our community. Of course, we could not do what we do without the support of our: Partner agencies who help us serve the front lines of hunger; Programs that help us target our most food insecure neighbors; Volunteers that help keep our operation lean; and Donors like you! You have invested in our mission and you make this work possible. Thank you for helping us become Member of the Year! Visit this page to learn a little more about their 40 year history. #noonegoeshungry

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