Friday Fun Food Facts – December 9, 2022

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

Featured Restaurant News

  • This may be the best news to hit RTP since IBM arrived in 1955. Downtown Raleigh’s Manhattan Cafe shared the news this week that they are growing and will be moving into a second location off Miami Blvd. at 1004 Lower Shiloh Way in the old Singas Pizza location. Owned by the Vorbeck brothers (Casey, Mick and Nate), Manhattan Cafe has been the go-to spot for lunch and corporate catering in downtown Raleigh since 2014. Now the working folks in RTP will have the same opportunity. Expect the menu, look and feel to be very similar to their original location. And don’t expect this to be their last announcement! Keep up with the opening (likely end of the first quarter in 2023) on their Instagram, Facebook and website.

Wake County Restaurant News

  • Raleigh Magazine shared the news this week that the much anticipated revamping of the former Edwards Mill Bar & Grill in Olde Raleigh Village will reopen just after the first of the year as The Mill, under the umbrella of Stacey and Kevin Jennings’ Urban Food Group. The Mill isa nod to the former name. The menu will be similar to Porter’s City Tavern (which operated on Hillsborough Street until 2013) but modernized. According to the magazine, it will be a menu rooted in Americana steakhouse fare—think big shrimp po’boy sandwiches, double-thick pork chops, and hearty salads topped with sliced steak. The space also received extensive renovations. Visit Urban Food Group here.
  • Triangle Business Journal reported this week that cousins Salvador Alvarez and Joel Ibarra are opening a second location of their popular spot Chido Taco at 555 Fayetteville St. in the space space that was previously home to Living Kitchen. The original location of Chido is located off Wake Forest Road near midtown. Look for this location to also have an extensive cocktail bar. Alvarez is also a part owner in Totopos in Cary, Fonda Lupita in Sanford and La Buena Vida. Ibarra is also a part owner in Totopos along with several others connected to the family. The Ibarra family has long been bringing popular restaurants to the Triangle area with spots like Jose and Sons, La Rancherita, Cortez and El Rodeo. Visit Chido Taco here.
  • This is the month! We are anticipating the opening of the Glenwood South’s newest cocktail bar, Cuya, being brought to us (and upstairs from) the team at The Cortez Seafood + Cocktail. The name comes from Maracuya, which is Spanish for passion fruit. Best to follow them on Instagram here where they will announce the official opening date once they have it.
  • Also in downtown Raleigh, Michael DePersia of DePersia and Associates shared the news that Plaza Cafe (ground floor of Duke Energy building) will become Mustang House, Taste of Himalaya. Bishnu Rijal and Krishna Sapkota plan on doing a light remodel and hope to be open very soon. We were unable to find an online presence for them.
  • And we would be remiss if we didn’t help celebrate with a shout out to Ashley Christensen and her Poole’s Diner as they celebrate their 15th anniversary all month (the official anniversary is December 13)! As part of the celebration, they will share a different macaroni and cheese dish every week (made with different ingredients on the menu)! Get by and enjoy and celebrate their 15 years! Visit Poole’s here.

Durham, Orange & Chatham Restaurant News

  • Big news out of Chapel Hill as first reported in the Triangle Business Journal. Al’s Burger Shack, with locations on West Franklin Street and in Southern Village, has been sold to Charlie Farris and Jason Kesler, a couple of UNC-Chapel Hill graduates who also own several local Jersey Mike franchises. Don’t expect too many changes during the first year, but look for it to grow after that as they tap into their Jersey Mike successes and connections. All our best to Al Bowers as he imparts on a career in residential real estate. Visit Al’s here.
  • And just down from the Al’s Burger Shack location in Southern Village, Paula de Pano’s new wine bar and store, Rocks + Acid, opened this week selling bottles and offering on-site tastings. The 1,150-square-foot space is located at 712 Market St. and will feature a few tables of indoor seating along with a large communal table where de Pano will host classes. Next spring, de Pano plans to add outdoor seating. Get to know them here.
  • And a big update over in Durham’s American Tobacco Campus from our friends over at Bites of Bull City. We originally shared with you back in November of last year the news that downtown Raleigh’s Five Star Restaurant (301 N. West Street in downtown) would be opening a location in Durham in the former Cuban Revolution spot. Amber Watson provided an update that we should expect that opening to happen mid-December! Get ready Durham! Congrats to Michelle Bender and her team. Visit Five Star here.

Closing / Cancellations

  • Got the news from my buddy Tim Moore that Old North Meats and Provisions in the Durham Food Hall closed last week. We were lucky to have them for three years – good eats!

Food Trucks

  • Looking to find your favorite food truck (or stalking them and simply don’t want to have to admit it)? We understand. Find them on Street Food Finder here.


  • The last Pop Up with Locals Seafood of the year takes place tonight (Friday, Dec. 9) from 5-8 p.m. at The Raleigh Wine Shop at 317 S. Bloodworth St. in downtown Raleigh. Locals Seafood will be serving up oysters and small seafood plates, all paired with wine. Get all the details here.
  • Chefs Amanda Orser and Matthew Butler have teamed up to host occasional Ellerbee + Joy pop-up dinners in Durham. Orser and Butler worked together at Durham’s Littler where she was chef de cuisine for five years after a decade at the closed Magnolia Grill. The next dinners are 5:30 and 8 p.m. Dec. 17. The five-course dinner costs $75 per person with optional wine pairings for an additional $30. Vegan menu available. Seatings are limited to 20 people. Location TBD but diners will be informed five days before the event. Purchase tickets and see the menu here.
  • And looking to do some good this holiday season? The Chapel Hill Carrboro Foodies Group on Facebook is holding a holiday charity partnership again with Chapel Hill Service League’s annual Christmas House event. They are looking to raise as much money as possible allowing them to buy/distribute grocery gift cards for local families in need. If you’d like to donate, please do so here.
  • And looking to continue dining outside even as the temperatures start to drop? No problem. The Downtown Raleigh Alliance has compiled a list of restaurants in downtown Raleigh keeping you warm all-year long! Check out that list here.

Food Bank Corner

  • Looking for an easy way for you and/or your office to make a HUGE DIFFERENCE in people’s lives this Holiday season? Host a VIRTUAL Food Drive! Forget the hassle of a trip to the grocery store for your next food drive… create a food drive without the heavy lifting using our Virtual Food Drive, and maximize your donation times five! For every $1 donated, the Food Bank can provide FIVE meals! You can make a difference in your community by hosting a Virtual Food Drive for your friends, family members, or coworkers.  It is easy! Start here. #noonegoeshungry

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