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Bill Leslie's Carolina Conversations

Narrowing the Field - NC Diners

Posted August 21, 2008 9:32 a.m. EDT
Updated August 21, 2008 9:37 a.m. EDT

With more than 40 different restaurants nominated in our Best of Carolina contest for diners it has been decided that we must narrow the field. So, instead of voting today, as was previously suggested, let’s whittle away at our list. Only diners getting multiple nominations will be included in the final poll. The most popular diners so far are Joe’s Place in Raleigh, The Highway Diner in Rocky Mount, Elmo’s in Durham, the Blue Ribbon Diner in Mebane and Burlington, Watkins Grill in Raleigh, Ramseur Diner in Ramseur, Cullowhee Café in the mountains and Knight’s also out west in Blowing Rock.

Your comments bring up an interesting point. With the Triangle melting pot it would seem logical that an excellent Northeast-type diner would be a big hit in the Raleigh-Durham area. If I were an entrepreneur with culinary skills I think I would sink some cash into a diner.

As for the restaurants nominated so far, I hate to admit it but I have only visited a few. It sounds as if I am missing out on some great grub. Elizabeth Gardner took her grandmother to The Blue Ribbon Diner in Burlington and says it was excellent. I’ve been to Joe’s and Watkin’s in Raleigh and they’re both exceptional.  I loaded up on the good food at Linville's Tartan Restaurant prior to a hearty hike in the Linville Gorge last year.  Valonda loves the Big A Burger at Arnold’s in Richlands. Next time on the Outer Banks I will surely stop by Bob’s Grill at Nags Head where their slogan is: “Eat and get the hell out!” Now. that’s hilarious! Does Bob serve fast food? No, just great food fast according to his web site.

Any other interesting slogans as we narrow the field for North Carolina’s Best Diner survey? Again, what North Carolina diners or cafes serve an outstanding and wide range of food with casual atmosphere, reasonable prices and extended hours?