What's on Tap

What's on Tap

Foodie news: Opening date nears for The Cortez Seafood & Cocktail

Posted June 2

— The latest news on resturant closings and openings, food trucks and events for foodies in and around the Triangle.

Featured Restaurant News

Saw on Facebook that The Cortez Seafood & Cocktail, slated to open 413 Glenwood Avenue in Raleigh in the former Cafe Helios spot, is closer to becoming a reality. They recently secured their health permit and are awaiting their liquor license. So…getting close.

National Doughnut Day

Every year, on the first Friday in June (that is today!), doughnut shops around the country take part in National Doughnut Day. Quite honestly, it should be a national holiday. Sadly, it isn’t, but here's a roundup of deals at Triangle doughnut shops. Be prepared for crowds.

Wake County Restaurant News

Closures, improvements and updates seem to be the “norm” along Raleigh’s Hillsborough Street. So it is with H-Street Kitchen, as they recently closed for the summer allowing for them to “execute some changes.” They were short on details but plan to re-open when the students return in the fall. We will be watching for their re-opening and what “H-Street 2.0” will bring.

Reader Russ O’Melia noticed a Domino’s “coming soon” sign in a window in downtown Raleigh in the Edison Lofts building at 109 Davie Street next to Amorino.

Over in Apex, reader Chris Graham brought it to our attention that Glory Days Grill is coming to the Publix Point shopping center at 1413 Kelly Road. This will be the first North Carolina location for the chain which has locations all over Virginia, West Virginia, Maryland and Florida. Glory Days is a sports themed American Grill.

Durham, Orange & Chatham Restaurant News

The folks over at Bites of Bull City notified us that acclaimed baker and pastry chef Phoebe Lawless opened her first full-service restaurant and bar, The Lakewood, on May 25. It is located in the former Davis Baking Co. building on Chapel Hill Road in the Tuscaloosa-Lakewood neighborhood -- but she’s not slowing down.

Next up, the second location of Scratch Bakery will open sometime in early July.

The Glass Jug bottle shop will become the Glass Jug Beer Lab this fall, with an on-site brewery, outdoor beer garden and expanded event space. The Glass Jug, which opened in September 2014 in Greenwood Commons shopping center on N.C. 55, will reopen in a new space a few doors down. The new 2,940-square foot space has a grassy backyard that will be used for outdoor seating and food trucks. Owners said they hope to open by September. They will close for a few weeks in late summer to accommodate the move, but a date hasn’t been set.

Also in Durham, Namu Restaurant and Coffee Bar, the collaborative effort between Bulkogi Truck & Bo’s Kitchen, is getting close to opening at 5420 Durham Chapel Hill Blvd. Facebook pictures this week showed finishing touches on the interior.

We first told you about this back in October, but reader Jimmy Poole brought it to our attention that Built Custom Burger has opened in the food court at the Streets at Southpoint mall. The west-coast chain has another location under construction in Alston Place on Highway 55 in Cary. It’s like a Chipotle-type burger restaurant where you go down the line and order what you want for toppings as they cook the burger.

There is a little bit more room to enjoy a great cup of coffee in Chapel Hill thanks to the recent expansion of Coco Bean located at East 54 near Tobacco Road Cafe. They expanded into the space next door adding a comfy couch, tons more tables and plenty of outlets to plug-in to.

Marco's Pizza is opening in the former Fig & Honey location in Chatham County just outside of Chapel Hill on 15-501. The signs are up, but no word on an opening date.


Renee Luongo shared with us that NY Pizza in North Raleigh’s Falls Village closed.

Food Trucks

The big food truck news this week comes from Mattie Beason (think Mattie B’s and Black Twig Cider House) and his business partners who are building a “barn” called County Fare at 1920 Chapel Hill Road. The News & Observer noted that the concept will feature four food trucks parked next to the 150-seat barn with 200 additional outdoor seats (basically a daily mini-food-truck rodeo). Beer, wine and cider, along with kid-friendly grub, will also be served. Look for the project to be completed sometime between mid-fall and the end of the year.

There will be a food truck rodeo over at Five Points in Raleigh to raise money for the new Kiwanis Park. It will take place on June 4 at Kiwanis Park (2525 Noble Road). The event is free, kid-friendly and open to the public.

The food truck events in Knightdale are cranking back up every Thursday through June and September through November, they will host a new truck at Knightdale Station Park for lunch and dinner. Just look for it from 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. and 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. near the amphitheater (rain or shine – shelters are covered).

And the food truck rodeos in Durham and Raleigh are back in full swing (they both have rodeos in June). Check out the Durham dates here and the Raleigh dates here.


The 10th anniversary Farm to Fork Picnic weekend is upon us, June 2-4 at Fearrington Village. It will celebrate the creative partnerships among Triangle farmers, chefs and culinary artisans. Pairings for the June 4 picnic, which has been dubbed “The Country’s Best All-You-Can-Eat Feast” by Bon Appetit, represent more than 70 farms and restaurants.

Triangle Restaurant Week is 10 years old! The week-long event, June 5-11, features restaurants that offer three-course menu options and fixed pricing. Pricing for the event is $15 for a three-course lunch and $20, $25, $30 or $35 for a three-course dinner. It is a great way to check out places you haven’t been before. Get a full list of participating restaurants here.

The pop-up dinners hosted by the Raleigh Food Corridor celebrating local food and community in Raleigh continue on June 7 and 8. These are small, intimate dinners and seats are limited. The June 7 dinner will be prepared by chefs Angela Salamanca of Centro and Ryan McGuire of the Chefs Academy. The dinner on the 8 will feature chef Patrick Cowden of Green Planet Catering and a five-course vegan dinner at Pharmacy Cafe.

Childhood friend Gordon Brown and his wife Lisa have some amazing children – and daughter Meredith is no exception. The Broughton High School junior has taken it upon herself to organize a road race, The Food Shuttle Garden Gallop 5k, to raise money for the Food Shuttle’s Camden Street Learning Garden. The race is on Saturday, June 10.

The next Chefs for a Change dinner is coming up on June 19. This dinner will feature chef/owner Seth Gross, chef Cece Lopez and chef Joe LaPorte from Pompieri Pizza and Bull City Burger and Brewery. Tickets are $75 and benefit Families Moving Forward.

La Farm's Lionel Vatinet will host his fifth annual Bread Bakers Guild of America Open House at La Farm Bakery in Cary on June 24. La Farm will offer behind-the-scene tours of the bakery, followed by a bread shaping demo, and an opportunity to see the bakers scoring and loading breads into and out of the hearth oven.

The TerraVita Food and Drink Festival is scheduled for Oct. 18-21 in and around Chapel Hill, are now on sale here. It will sell out. Trust me!

The North Carolina Restaurant & Lodging Association will hold the second annual NC Chef Showdown on August 21 in Raleigh’s historic downtown City Market. Participating chefs will present a dish to a distinguished panel of six judges and will prepare sample-sized offerings for approximately 200 attendees. Attendees will determine the recipients of the “Peoples’ Choice” awards, while the judges will select the 2017 NCRLA Chef of the Year.

Food Bank Corner

Nearly 300,000 children in the Food Bank’s 34 counties rely on the free and reduced-cost meals at school to get them through the day. For them, summertime doesn’t mean a fun-filled vacation. For them, no school means no meals. Stop Summer Hunger is the Food Bank’s annual initiative to provide additional food to feed these children and their families during this season of increased need. A donation of $35 will feed a child for two months, a donation of $75 will feed a family of four for one month and a donation of $150 will feed a family of four for two months. Help reach the goal of 3.4 million meals before July 31 and ensure that children will receive the daily, nutritious meals they need to grow healthy and strong!

Sean Lennard covers the Triangle food scene on his site Triangle Food Blog.

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  • Rod Runner Jun 2, 12:45 p.m.
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    Heh, thought this was "Foodie news."

    Why does Domino's get a mention? :)