Friday Fun Food Facts – May 11, 2018

Triangle Restaurant News

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

Featured Restaurant News

  • John Huisman, aka Triangle Explorer, brought it to our attention that LaStella Wood Fired on Hillsborough Street in Raleigh has closed, but has plans to open in August in Cary in the former Hurricane Grill & Wings spot in the Shoppes at Kildaire (corner of Kildaire Farm Road and Cary Parkway) out in front of Trader Joe’s. Fayetteville Street’s La Stella remains open. Keep up with their move here.

Wake County Restaurant News

  • Saw in the ITB Insider that Lynnwood Brewing Concern, which operates a grill and taproom in North Raleigh and a brewery and bar at Dock 1053 on East Whitaker Mill Road, will soon add a new restaurant to Dock 1053. Wilson’s, named after Lynnwood’s owner’s dog, will focus on “flatbread pizzas and crafted sandwiches” and will feature “several house-made sodas & mixers” in their craft cocktails. Wilson’s is set to open in late August. Hart Roberts provided the initial write-up. Keep up with Lynwood Grill & Brewing Concern here.
  • Reader Jeanette Hauser brought it to our attention that Peking Duck & Dumplings has opened on Raleigh’s Hillsborough Street near the intersection with Dan Allen Drive in the 2811 building. Apparently they are in the space that used to house Pho Vietnam. Check them out here.
  • In Raleigh, blogger Eat Raleigh reported that Seoul 116 Korean Kitchen & Bar, City Market Sushi’s sister restaurant, has opened in the former More. Kitchen & Wine Bar space at 116 N West St. Get familiar with them on Facebook here.
  • Saw in a tweet from John Huisman that Caretta Coffee is coming to North Raleigh next to The Hop Yard in the Falls River Town Center at 1141 Falls River Avenue. They will be serving up coffee, breakfast and lunch frittatas, fresh baked goods, smash toast and smoothies. Their original location is in Hilton Head. They are looking to open this month. Get all the details here.
  • Also in Raleigh, the News & Observer reported that a sports and hookah bar is taking over the former Hillsborough Street Applebee’s across the street from Meredith College. TLC Wings and Grill, formerly on West Peace Street, is making the cross-town move. Owners say they want the bigger space and higher traffic spot and are shooting for a May 15 opening. The new TLC will seat 200 in the dining room and feature a dozen TVs, plus a patio for smoking hookah.  Check them out here.
  • And over in Cary, reader Nancy Parker learned upon a recent visit to Paisan’s Italian Restaurant at the corner of NW Maynard and High House that they are transforming into Northern Indian / Himalayan cuisine at the end of this month. Their website is currently down. But we will keep an eye on this one. Thanks Nancy!

Durham, Orange & Chatham Restaurant News

  • The burger news out of Chapel Hill keeps getting better and better. Got word this week that Greensboro’s Hops Burger Bar has opened in the 140 West Building where Lime Fresh Mexican Grill once was on Chapel Hill’s Franklin Street. Burger aficionados may recall that Hops was ranked as the nation’s top burger restaurant in 2015 by TripAdvisor and was No. 17 earlier this year on Business Insiders’ top 50 list. Get familiar with them here. Or visit their Facebook page here. Thanks to Melissa Boyce for the heads up on the opening.
  • The folks over at Taste Carolina notified us that Cha House has opened on Chapel Hill’s West Franklin Street between The Crunkleton and Mellow Mushroom. Looks to be an Asian-inspired tea house, influenced by the tastes and traditions of Taiwan along with desserts. Get to know them on Facebook here.


  • Another loss on Chapel Hill’s Franklin Street. The News & Observer reported that the R&R Grill is closing this Sunday, May 13 on Mother’s Day. The restaurant is tucked in the back of CVS Plaza.
  • Amy Woodring brought it to our attention that Cantina 225 in Apex has closed.
  • And fans of Mr. Sticky Buns food truck up on Capital Blvd. in North Raleigh will be sad to learn that they have closed up shop. Apparently you can still order buns to be shipped. Thanks to Rebecca Calhoun for bringing this to our attention.

Food Trucks

  • The RDU Mobile Food Association announced that the Carrboro Food Fest is set for Sunday, May 20th at the Carrboro’s Farmer’s Market and will feature at least 10 food trucks, music and family fun from 12-4 p.m. Get all the details on their Facebook event page here.
  • The dates have been set for the Durham Central Park Food Truck Rodeo and Downtown Raleigh Food Truck Rodeos. Check out Durham here and Raleigh here.
  • Two great sites to keep up with your favorite food trucks. Street Food Finder is one – find it here. And another, aptly named, is Roaming Hungerfind it here.


  • This Saturday, May 12 from 12 noon until 6 p.m., you can show your NC pride by going to the Triangle Craft Beer Fest – highlighting over 30+ of your favorite local breweries in one spot. Each brewery will be pouring a special one-off beer you won’t be able to get anywhere else! Perfect for craft beer lovers in North Carolina! Enjoy live music, chow down with food trucks and shop local vendors! Get tickets and all the details here.
  • The weekend of May 18-20th will welcome the 2018 version of the Got To Be NC Festival at the N.C. State Fairgrounds. The annual event is sort of a mini N.C. State Fair with rides, animals, N.C. food and beverages, demonstrations, games and more. But here’s the great part about it: It’s free! There is no fee for either parking or admission. Get all the details here. 
  • Beer and Bacon Fest. May 19th. Cary. Not much else needs to be said. Check it out here.
  • Also on May 19th is the Durham Blues & Brews Festival. What started as a rockin’ good time has become a Durham tradition, filled with music, food, and outstanding craft beer! This isn’t a Beer Fest with music, or a Blues Fest with beer. It’s a new type of event offering great Blues music and only North Carolina craft beers. The brewers will be on site to tell you about their breweries and beers. Serving full 12 oz. pours for you to enjoy while learning about their beers, and listening to great blues bands. Proceeds from the festival benefit local Durham charities and programs, including the Exchange Family Center, a Durham-based non-profit agency dedicated to preventing child abuse. Get all the details and tickets here. Use code “TFB5” to get $5 off!
  • And the 2018 version of Farm to Fork expanded to three events over several seasons and tickets to all three just went on sale. The fun begins with the first event on June 3, the perennial favorite Farm to Fork Picnic, where the area’s best farmers and chefs are paired. Then on September 16 they’ll host a pop-up dinner featuring Jacob Boehm of Snap Pea Underground & Catering. And the series will conclude on December 6th with John T. Edge and a celebration of Southern food on Chapel Hill’s Lavender Oak Farm. You can buy ticket to each individual event, or all three. Get tickets and all the details on their site here.
  • The 2018 version of Chefs for Change, a fundraising dinner series that pairs the burgeoning Durham food scene with the needs of families experiencing homelessness, is well underway. The first two events (featuring Charlie Deal on March 12 and Scott Howell on May 14) have sold out. And if last year is any indication, the next two dinners will sell out quickly. The July 9th event features Phoebe Lawless (The Lakewood and Scratch) and the September 10th event features Gocciolina’s Aaron Benjamin. Each night the chef will serve three or more courses at a ticketed dinner with the proceeds benefiting Families Moving Forward. The dinners are held at the Rickhouse and limited to 125 people. Get all the details and tickets here.
  • And finally, listen up chefs! The NCRLA Chef Showdown is an annual statewide culinary competition sponsored by the NC Department of Ag. It’s a culinary competition open to chefs (savory and pastry) across the state. There are three regional semi-finalist rounds (New Bern May 22, Hickory June 4 and Raleigh, June 25) that will result in a final competition on Monday, Aug 27 in Charlotte. The final event is in conjunction with the first night of the industry’s Restaurant & Hotel Expo. Chefs can apply to compete now – May 9. Get all the information you need here.

Food Bank Corner

  • THIS Saturday, May 12th, is “Stamp Out Hunger” where you can place nonperishable food donations in a bag by your mailbox and your letter carrier will take care of the rest. Get all the details here. Don’t want to leave food out? You can still help the cause by donating via our Virtual Food Drive. Get details on that here.

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