Bill Leslie's Carolina Conversations

Tasty Town

Posted January 23, 2012

Have you seen Southern Living’s latest survey? The popular magazine is trying to find the tastiest town in the South. Raleigh was picked among ten Southern cities for outstanding cuisine. However, at last check Raleigh ranked 10th in the voting. Even Baltimore beats us. We only have a week to push Raleigh up in the poll. Can you believe the frontrunner – Lafayette, LA?

I am quite proud of Raleigh’s cuisine. We have made tremendous strides on the culinary front over the last ten to 15 years. Glenwood South and the rebirth of downtown Raleigh are two major factors. Cary has also come on strong along with Durham and Chapel Hill.

It’s interesting that Raleigh was the only North Carolina city to make the top ten tasty town list. I could possibly tolerate losing to Charleston but not to Lafayette, Louisville or Decatur. So, if you have pride in Raleigh’s restaurant scene please vote this week.

Here’s my question – what is your favorite restaurant and why? Let’s have a lively discussion.


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  • genegeneandnancy Jan 25, 2012

    Do you have any particular favorite restaurants in the Raleigh area, Bill?

  • PAINFREE Jan 24, 2012

    NC barbeque is not a simple thing, Blues Man Z, and there is more than one type that is excellent.I can't pick a favorite restaurant, because there are too many good ones. Thank goodness!!!

  • cwood3 Jan 24, 2012

    AMEN genegene... Casa Carbone is my favorite restaurant in Raleigh and beyond-no close 2nd. Prices are reasonable-bread is out of sight with REAL BUTTER-wine list supurb, and for me-their spaghetti with meat sauce is outstanding.

    Great thought-it does not have to break the bank to be outstanding.

    PS-as I get smarter-I pig out and still bring home the next days lunch from that wonderful bowl of spaghetti!!

  • go fish Jan 24, 2012

    I have seen some of Blues Man Z's other derogatory posts about NC, the south in general and how great NY is. Best to just ignore him and hope he finds his way back from where he came.

  • Hippy_mom Jan 24, 2012

    Blues Man Z, the roads that lead to Raleigh also lead away from Raleigh. Go find some decent BBQ elsewhere and quit complaining.

  • westoflyra Jan 24, 2012

    One of my favorite places is Vic's Italian restaurant on Blake Street in downtown Raleigh. For a good "soup and sandwich" type of place, I like Serendipity in Cary. I went to the Mint on Fayetteville Street once and was impressed.

  • genegeneandnancy Jan 24, 2012

    One of our favorite restaurants is the Casa Carbone Ristorante on Glenwood Avenue which has been around for a number of years. The authentic Italin food is always delicious, the staff is always polite and attentive, and the owners, Mike and Maria, are always the warm/welcoming hosts. Another favorite is Torero's restaurant (Mexican food) on Atlantic Avenue..great staff, and the food is wonderful and plenty of it.

  • nuncvendetta Jan 23, 2012

    Blues Man Z, I moved to the Triangle from San Francisco and find the Triangle to be an exceptionally foodie area. The Slow Food and farm-to-table movement around here has been so strongly supported and nurtured by many of our area restaurants. Combine amazing ingredients sourcing with a deft culinary touch that ranges from adhering to Southern roots and traditions or pushing the fold in cuisines as varied as Italian, Asian, and Latin American, and many of my favorite meals of the past year have been had right here at home. I can go from having an oysters with succotash at Magnolia Grill with its amazing explosion and interplay of flavors, to a Cane Creek pork bolognese with housemade pasta at Pancuito, to steamed NC-caught lemongrass fish at Lantern, to the best BBQ anywhere at Allen&Son, to amazing tacos at Los Comales, to inspired huachinango at Tonali, to a to-die for pimento cheese sandwich at Parker&Otis, to Mami Nora's peruvian roasted chicken, to, well, you get the picture.

  • Blues Man Z Jan 23, 2012

    I am curious as to why you think Raleigh should be voted higher than 10th? Which foods do you find worthy? They really don't even do a simple thing like BBQ very well.

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Bill Leslie