Friday Fun Food Facts – December 30, 2022

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

Featured Restaurant News

  • There is a cool new spot to enjoy coffee in North Raleigh. Located in the 5401 North Neighborhood (think intersection of 540 and 401), Smooth Joe Coffee is now open at 5321 Tin Roof Way where they are serving up great coffee, pastries and more as they have brought on a chef to whip up new offerings of yumminess (including gluten-free options). The space is warm and inviting and a great place to hang out with friends. It is just a few doors down from Heyday Brewing. Get to know them on Instagram here and Facebook here.

Wake County Restaurant News

  • Maybe Two Roosters Ice Cream should have been named Five Roosters….as they just announced their fifth location – this one up in Wake Forest in The Factory complex next to Gonza Tacos y Tequila. They are shooting for an early summer opening, just in time for those warm weather ice cream cravings to hit. In the meantime, visit their four current locations in Raleigh and Durham. Get all the details here.
  • Giorgio Bakatsias has a busy 2023 planned with three new restaurants coming on line in January alone. And we just got word from Jennifer Noble Kelly that the first of those has announced their opening date. Spanish eatery Las Ramblas will open January 17th in North Hills. The tapas restaurant will pair North Carolina seafood and pork with authentic old-world Spanish ingredients under the direction of Rosewater executive chef Brian Jenzer and partner Laszlo Lukacsi. Start getting familiar with them here.
  • At Raleigh’s NC Museum of Art, the newly remodeled NCMA Café in the West Building will have their grand opening on Saturday, January 14th. The Winter menu will feature some intriguing small bites and Southern inspired entrées incorporating beef, seafood, poultry and vegan/gluten free selections. Sustainably grown family estate wines will also be available, primarily Old-World selections. Enjoy chef Rick Sloan’s rotating culinary collection featuring signature dishes like – Cider Glazed Chicken or Carolina Classics Catfish Farro Bowl. The coffee lounge will feature barista-crafted beverages for a quick pick me up. Visit them here.

Durham, Orange & Chatham Restaurant News

  • Thanks to a tip from my friends over at Bites of Bull City, we learned that we are getting close to the opening of The Waiting Room in Durham’s American Tobacco Campus. This week they had two nights of test runs. What is The Waiting Room? It is a crafted cocktail and small plates concept slated to open in January where you can hang out before or after you dinner reservations at nearby restaurants. When they open they will be open five days a week Tues.-Thur. 5pm-12am and Fri.-Sat. 5pm-2am, moving to seven days eventually. Learn more about them and keep up with opening announcements on their Instagram page here.
  • Chapel Hill Carrboro Foodies Group founder Carrie Brogren shared the news this week that a change/transition is taking place at Kitchen Chapel Hill over on MLK Jr. Blvd. Founded 10 years ago by husband and wife team Dick and Sue Barrows, Kitchen will close as they currently exist at year’s end. They sold the restaurant to siblings Garret Fleming and Eleanor Lacy who you might remember from Big Belly Que. Beginning in 2023, the space will be converted into a new, locally owned Italian concept called Bombolo. It won’t be a purely Italian restaurant because Garret wants the freedom to pick from their favorite foods, and they have been assisting the last six months at Kitchen, which will leave open the option to carry over some of the Kitchen favorites. Probably best to follow them on Instagram for updates.

Closing / Cancellations

  • None to report (other than the Kitchen transition to Bombolo). Keep eating local, folks!

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.


  • 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.
  • Cooking for the Kids (formerly Cooking for a Classic) is back and is accepting applications from local chefs to join in this fun, friendly chef competition to help raise money for food insecurity. The event is held at 1705 East in Raleigh, and chefs prepare three small plate courses using secret ingredients. Guests and culinary judges decide who advances to the next round for a chance to win $10,000! If interested, please reach out to Brooke here. Visit here for all the details.

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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