Lure of the fresh draws diners to Triangle Restaurant Week
Posted June 3, 2015
Updated June 8, 2015
Raleigh, N.C. — Triangle Restaurant Week is June 8-14. More than 90 area restaurants will be offering special three course prix fixe menus for lunch and dinner.
Damon Butler, CEO of Triangle Blvd, the agency presenting the semi-annual event, said it has grown by about 10 percent each year since its inception.
"In 2008, we reached out to a few restaurants to see who wanted to do it and be on board and all said, 'let’s have at it,'" he said.
That core group of 26 has grown to 90 participating restaurants in Raleigh, Durham, Cary, Morrisville, Chapel Hill and Apex. Each will have $15 lunch menus and $20, $25 or $30 dinner menus.
That works out to about a 25 percent discount for diners at downtown Raleigh's Buku, General Manager Sean Degnan said.
Todd Olsen said he indulges in restaurant week because it's incentive enough to try something new.
"You don’t have to really think when you walk into a restaurant. It’s kind of a set menu," he said. "You get to try something you normally wouldn’t try."
Many diners take the chance on a trip across town, too, Butler said.
"We see people come from Raleigh and go to Durham and from Durham go to Chapel Hill and Chapel Hill people coming to Raleigh," he said. "It’s a chance to get out and try new restaurants that you probably haven't had a chance to try before."
Chefs like the restaurant week challenge, too. Butler said they use the opportunity to try preparing new recipes in bulk.
"They test it out on diners and get some feedback and see if that comes out on their menu the next time around," Butler said.
"Our chefs put together about 30 items that they’d like to see for restaurant week and we wittle them down, test them all out and the best of the best make it to the menu," Degnan said.
Repeat diners can expect something different each day.
"It’s a completely new menu all week long," Degnan said. "We're using all fresh, local produce. It all just came in season so I’m really excited to see that."
Map of participating restaurants