Featured Restaurant News
Congrats to two local restaurateurs that made the "finalists" cut in the coveted James Beard Awards. Among the finalists for 2016 are Death & Taxes, the new Ashley Christensen-owned restaurant in downtown Raleigh, which made the finalist cut in the category for Best New Restaurant. Additionally, Vivian Howard, owner of the Chef & the Farmer restaurant in Kinston, was named a finalist for her work as host and producer of the television program "A Chef's Life" that airs on PBS. Winners will be announced at a gala held in Chicago on May 2.
Wake County restaurant news
Just 17 months after making its debut in the Raleigh market (North Hills), the fast-casual eatery b.good opened the doors to its second location yesterday in downtown Raleigh's Charter Square on Fayetteville Street directly across from the Marriott. Congratulations to Steve Woodward and his team.
Saw on a Yelp message board that Parkside, a Southern inspired farm-to-fork restaurant, will be coming to downtown Raleigh in the former Brewmaster's space at the corner of Martin and Dawson. We have no further details at this time, but we'll keep an eye on it.
Also in downtown Raleigh, got word that Raleigh Raw has opened at 7 W. Hargett St. serving up coffee, pressed juice and smoothies. Place looks really cool.
The Triangle Business Journal reported this week that Sweet & Savory Gourmet Cupcakes has opened in Raleigh at 2823 New Birch Road off the Interstate 440 Beltline and Rock Quarry Road in Raleigh. They offer traditional and unique flavors, including Jack & Coke, and most cupcakes are gluten free. They will celebrate their grand opening today (March 18).
Got word from owner Josh Trevino that Torch Coffee Roasters has opened up a Coffee Bar at 9521 Lumley Road in Morrisville to complement their roasting operation. They have pastries, tacos (from Taco Revolution), and signature drinks.
This is kind of fun. New Raleigh is reporting that plans are in the works for the Raleigh Times to open a take-out storefront on Wilmington Street. We'll keep an eye on that.
And over in Cary, started hearing 'hiring now" ads this week for the newest version of Hickory Tavern, which will be located in the Parkside Town Commons near where Highway 55 intersects with 540.
Durham, Orange & Chatham county restaurant news
Hope Valley Brewing Company opened this week in the former City Beverage spot in south Durham. Today (March 18) they will feature a limited menu, with the full menu being available tomorrow, March 19. Thanks to Mike Kriston for the heads up!
Got an update this week in the News & Observer that Pizzeria Toro's chef-owner Gray Brooks said he hopes to open his second restaurant, Littler, in the original Monuts location in downtown Durham next month. It was also revealed that he has hired Amanda Orser the former chef de cuisine at Magnolia Grill in Durham.
Got word from my friends over at Taste Carolina Gourmet Food Tours that Durham is now home to a new tea shop called Tempest in a Teapot. They carry loose leaf tea, prepackaged loose leaf tea, teabags and various other tea equipment to sell. Basically, everything you need to enjoy a simple and satisfying cup of tea - including the hot water! They are located in Patterson Place along 15-501 near Interstate 40.
First got word from reader Jennifer Jackson Cox and confirmed by reader Jason Tekotte that MachuPicchu Peruvian Cuisine, a long-time favorite in the N&O's annual listing of the area's best restaurants, has closed. Apparently a rent hike proved too much for them to stay in their current location.
Zinda, once a full-service restaurant that converted to an event space/nightlife venue/bar last July, is closing its doors for good. But not before a "Last Night Ever" party this Saturday, March 19.
The Downtown Raleigh Food Truck Rodeo has announced its dates for this year: May 1, June 12, Aug. 7 and Oct. 9. VIP early admission wristbands, which let you get in to buy food before the general public, are on sale now. Get all the details here.
For a listing of ALL food truck events, head over to Art’s page, The Wandering Sheppard, on all things food truck related here.
The World Beer Festival returns to Raleigh Saturday, April 2, at the exposition center at the North Carolina State Fairgrounds in Raleigh. Tickets are $45 in advance, $55 the day of the show. The VIP Experience tickets are $85. Tickets can be purchased online and at Tasty Beverage and at Bottle Revolution.
Learned from Holly Kahl that the folks over at Triangle Vegfest are holding a monthly market with the next one on March 20 from 1-4 p.m. at Fullsteam Brewery in downtown Durham. If you are interested in a plant-based diet (which we can only assume includes hops!), you might want to check this out.
Tickets to one of my favorite annual events, Farm to Fork, have gone on sale. The event this year will be held on the weekend of June 3 through June 5. Get all the details and tickets here.
Got word from Felicia Perry-Trujillo that Midtown Grille is hosting a multi-course beer dinner with Apex brewery Brueprint on Thursday, March 24 at 6:30 p.m. Seats are $60 each and proceeds will benefit No Kid Hungry NC.
The 4th Annual Bull City Food & Beer Experience will be held on April 10, but tickets have already gone on sale. Looks like tickets will be available through DPAC again this year and you can visit the DPAC ticket center to avoid service charges.
Bottoms up, bacon down. Got your interest? The annual Beer & Bacon Fest will be held again this year at Koka Booth Amphitheatre on Saturday, April 9 and will feature 75 craft beers, 15 restaurants and 10 bacons (who knew?) from across the country.
Morrisville's annual East Meets West Festival will be held April 16 from 11 a.m. until 4 p.m. on Town Hall Drive again this year. This food and music festival will feature local restaurants that represent the diversity of the dining scene in Morrisville along with lots of kid activities.
Also on April 16, barbecue, beer and bluegrass return to Raleigh's warehouse district at The Pit Authentic Barbecue's 8th annual Cuegrass Festival Saturday, from noon to 6 p.m.
Durham Magazine and Chapel Hill Magazine will sponsor the third annual TASTE: A Celebration of Food & Drink, happening from April 21 to 23, 2016. The event will feature more than 30 top local chefs and establishments in Durham, Chapel Hill, Carrboro and Raleigh. A portion of ticket proceeds will be donated to the Durham Branch of the Food Bank of Central & Eastern North Carolina.
Food Bank Corner
Want to see your money double? During the month of March, thanks to a generous matching gift campaign, Table2Table, every dollar you give will provide 10 meals instead of just 5! That's right, double your gift to feed hungry neighbors. Get all the details here.
Sean Lennard covers food news on his blog, Triangle Food Blog.