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NC Foods! Where to Eat in NC...
20 most recent entries

Date:2008-04-27 17:42
Subject:Harvesting Mulberries

Does anyone here have mulberry trees from which they harvest the berries? We have gotten some berries from a neighbor in past years, but perhaps just a small handful to snack on. Our mulberry tree has now reached a fairly substantial size and I see berries on it this year!

I would LOVE to get these berries and make jam, pie filling, etc. However, my husband is doubtful - he think the birds will get to them while they are still on the tree before we can.

So, if any of you are in this situation, do you have any suggestions?

1 Belched -- Compliments to the Chef

Date:2008-03-31 23:23
Subject:Any Afghan restaurants in the Triangle?

I'd drive a reasonable distance for the pumpkin dish!

How about a place for really authentic pho?  I go to Dalat and a place on Capital Boulevard (Vie Rose?) that are good, but was wondering about better.


Compliments to the Chef

Date:2007-07-26 21:08


I'm going to Wilmington from the UK for ten days in August, and was wondering if there are any nice restaurants that cater well to vegetarians. I've heard that a lot of places in the US outside of CA don't say what options on the menu are vegetarian (don't mark them with a "V").
Are there any restaurants to avoid if I want vegetarian food?
Where are the best places?

1 Belched -- Compliments to the Chef

Date:2007-04-26 00:23
Subject:Social isolation--help!

Okay, I'm finally coming to terms with the fact that since moving here two years ago, I have been completely socially isolated. As in: I see my fiancé every evening but spend days on end when I don't see another living being besides the aforesaid fiancé and, as wonderful as he is, it's just not enough. So, fellow LJers, I need your advice--

I'm looking for activities that I can join--I don't know what, exactly, but something along the lines of a club/book meetup/political organization...I don't know.

Here's who I am, more or less: 32, grad student, female, very liberal, into travel & foreign films, love to cook (definitely a "foodie"), some minor crafting skills (basic sewing, upholstery, etc. but not a knitter), not very athletic, not very religious.

Can anyone recommend local groups or gatherings that might be a good place for me to mingle and meet new folks? Especially folks of my (relative) age group and political orientation (Democrat)?

Thank you in advance!!! Oh, and I live equidistant from Greensboro and Chapel Hill, and from Winston-Salem and Raleigh/RTP. Any of those cities are close enough for me to drive to, in theory at least.

xposted to a few places, sorry for any repeats

p.s. I realize this doesn't seem related to the topic of food in NC, but let me add that I am immensely interested in the food politics, the local food movement, farmers' markets, and gardening (although I always wish I were *more* involved, that's for sure), as well as ethnic cuisines, bread baking, etc. and I would *welcome* any suggestions related to local groups interested in these issues or activities. Or hey, if anyone would be interested in a bi-weekly cartrip to a local farmers' market, that would be great, too!

1 Belched -- Compliments to the Chef

Date:2007-04-12 09:24
Subject:Cheeburger Cheeburger reopened as Kenny's American Grill

All of the Cheeburger Cheeburgers in NC closed about two months ago. The guy at Mammoth Pizza in Brier Creek (which I also highly recommend!) told us it was licensing issues.

The Cheeburger Cheeburger at Brier Creek re-opened about two weeks ago as Kenny's American Grill. (I'm pretty certain I'm remembering the new name correctly.) I had been assuming it would re-open as something similar without the Cheeburger name, but it's quite different and quite tasty! (Not that CC wasn't!)

The decor has been changed from neon and teeny bopper to a more refined look. One of the first things the manager said when we came in was, "What do you think? It's not pink anymore!" Heh. The colorful Elvis-in-concert standup and milkshake posters have been replaced with large black-and-white Elvis and Marilyn headshots. The tables have been replaced by large booths, which make it look much smaller than it used to.

The menu has changed completely. The new menu still has a cheeseburger and a chicken sandwich, but it also has roast beef, a club, a grilled cheese, and a lot more sandwiches. You can even have an Elvis PB topped with your choice of honey, bananas, mayonnaise, and marshmallow. Somehow they make these simple kid-food choices seem almost gourmet!

There is also a list of salads and soups, as well as appetizers. There's a you-pick-two choice that would be perfect for lunch, and you can choose from the salads, sandwiches, a loaded baked potato, and the soups. After 5 pm, there's a dinner menu with home-cooking sorts of options, like spaghetti, chicken and dumplings, and meatloaf.

I had a really great chicken sandwich with provolone. It said it was on a sourdough roll, but I think it was just a tasty roll. It didn't have the real sourdough flavor to it. scsuehle had the Double Dog, which is two big hot dogs. We both had fries for the side. While we were talking to the manager, scsuehle mentioned he preferred the larger fries that CC used to have. He said that they did a surveymonkey and that the shoestring fries won out by a large margin, but that they were open to feedback, and if a lot of people started saying they liked the fat fries, they'd change. To me the difference isn't the size, but that the CC ones were made in-store, and I think these were probably frozen.

Our daughter had the macaroni and cheese, which is made there. It's a really runny white cheese sauce, but it was really tasty. Speaking of cheese, scsuehle ordered his dogs with their "kickin' cheese sauce" on the side. In my opinion, it was probably the only thing we had that wasn't that great. It was a very thick cheese sauce with a little bit of kick and some bacon. It was quick to form a skin on top and too thick for me to dip a fry in. I just didn't think it was that great, but a cheese sauce lover might think differently.

It was a much bigger change than I expected, but overall it was a good experience, and we'll definitely go back.

3 Belched -- Compliments to the Chef

Date:2006-01-18 15:26
Subject:Cheap organic food

Has anyone had any experience buying organics at Costco? Are the savings worth the price of membership? There was a big article on organics in their latest newsletter, and the prices sounded promising, but we don't currently have a membership (and I'm not sure how much they are). (Note: we don't live near a Trader Joe's and I won't shop at Sam's Club because it's affiliated with Wal-Mart, so those aren't options, unfortunately.)
Any advice?
X-posted to poor_skills, nc_foods, la_flaneuse, triangleites, and my own journal.

1 Belched -- Compliments to the Chef

Date:2005-11-02 22:51
Subject:Disappointing new restaurant

My husband and I had been hearing great things about a "hot new restaurant" , The Peak City Grill in downtown Apex. We decided to take my mother in-law there for dinner this evening and are sad to report that we were thoroughly disappointed by the experience.

Everything from the service, the pour of the beer to the food was simply dismal.Collapse )
In summary, if you want to treat yourself to poor service, bad beer, incompetently prepared food and a clueless staff, this is the place for you.

If you actually value your hard-earned money enough to expect competent service and well-prepared food from a restaurant, run far, far away from the Peak City Grill.

2 Belched -- Compliments to the Chef

Date:2005-09-09 16:03
Subject:Tasca Brava

Forgive me, but I felt compelled to champion my favourite restaurant once again, along with a plea to support our local independent restaurants.
The following is taken from this week's Indy Weekly....

(x-posted in triangleites)

In January of this year, I wrote an article about Tasca Brava, the authentic Spanish tapas restaurant in Cary that serves some of the best food in the Triangle. Since then, they have opened a sister restaurant in North Raleigh. (The original Cary location will remain open until they find a buyer to take over the space.) When I spoke to Marta Brewer, who owns the restaurant with her husband Juan Samper, she was very excited about the new space, saying, "So much love has gone into this space. We have put all our love and work into it." Shortly after the new restaurant opened, it was discovered that Brewer has an inoperable cancer, and that it is aggressive and spreading. Since then, Samper has been operating both restaurants single-handedly, throwing himself blindly into the work in an effort to keep their business afloat, and also perhaps to distract himself. But business is not good, not even at the new restaurant where they had put all their hopes.

It will never cease to amaze me--the crappy food that is flying out of restaurants, the hour-long waits at overpriced and overrated food warehouses along the stretches of our secondary highways. Just up the road, another family-owned restaurant that makes food fraught with love, food that you would be lucky to find anywhere in the world, is struggling, perhaps on its last legs.

Samper says that Brewer is keeping a positive attitude, and that she hopes to beat the cancer. For now she is taking a holistic approach, being that the cancer has spread so quickly and chemotherapy makes her very sick.

Restaurants are primarily entertainment--they entertain us, our taste buds and our stomachs. But there is a human story behind every one of them. For selfish reasons, as well as for Juan and Marta, I hope that Tasca Brava survives.

E-mail Besha Rodell at beshalebax@aol.com.

Compliments to the Chef

Date:2005-08-18 11:09
Subject:Wilmington vegan friendly rest.?

Hi, my girlfriend and I are driving down from Richmond to Wilmington to visit my dad this weekend. Ellie and I are both vegan and we expect my dad will want to take us out to a nice restaurant Saturday night. Unfortunately he isn't used to me being vegan (last time I saw him I was vegetatian) and he probably wouldn't have any suggestions for places to go. Can anyone recommend a nice sit-down restaurant that has both vegan and non-vegan options? Maybe a nice Italian place with some different pasta choices would be nice... anyway, thank you in advance for your suggestions.

Compliments to the Chef

Date:2005-07-25 10:58

It has been a few weeks since I actually ate here, but I finally remembered to write up a bit about it.

If you are looking for traditional (non-Americanized) Japanese food besides just sushi, or the best sushi in the area, this is the place to go. Hidden away in the Woodcroft shopping center on 751/Hope Valley Road (just across I-40 from Southpoint) in Durham, Yamazushi has been around for about 18 years. It has a very Japanese atmosphere with traditional decor and music playing lightly in the background. It even has two areas set aside for traditional Japanese dining (i.e. you sit on the floor, etc), though the majority of the seating is at booths and tables. The atmosphere is very sedate, as is the service (though pleasantly so), so don't go there if you are in a rush.

The menu displays a very wide range of traditional appetizers (we got an extended menu because my girlfriend is Japanese and can read/speak the language, but they probably have a version for us anglos as well...she said that a lot of the foods listed there are things that a normal Japanese person would make at home). The main menu is a bit more limited but ranges from sushi to grilled fish and chicken and includes some fairly standard meals for folks unwilling to face the more traditional fare. They have some shared dinners, one of which is a traditional Japanese fondue that I want to try the next time I go. All of the shared dinners require a 24 hour reservation for them to prepare the meal for you. All of the meals have excellent mid-range prices.

They also serve a decent range of beers, wines, and saki.

And for the record, my girlfriend was thrilled with the place because she had been looking for a "real" Japanese restaurant since she'd been here.

1 Belched -- Compliments to the Chef

Date:2005-07-25 09:54

Waba Restaurant & Pub Food's totally edible, no food poisoning, and some dishes taste gross or weird enough to lead me to believe that everything wasn't completely Americanized. But that could be my South American culinary sensibilities, which are more like wtfibilities, considering how we take perfectly healthy fruits like bananas and DEEP FRY them. God, no wonder I'm so third world. Anyway, it's a little more than I usually want to spend on lunch-- $5-6 for food and $1.50 for a drink.

I'm going to embarrass myself trying to spell Korean (because all I remember from the three week portion of a Politics of China & Japan about North Korea is that Kim Il Sung is still the president) but the #1 will probably please most Western palates. I think the portions are generous but I rarely eat a whole plate of food so XLT people should stare down the staff to get more rice or something.

The atmosphere is something else. There's no bar, but they serve a lot of beer. Seating's comparable to El Rodeo; serving's comparable to Sakura; entrance is comparable to Mitch's Tavern. There's a slightly elevated section by the windows to view the street from the second floor. Most notably, the place is filled with the thumping house beats of whatever the heck South Korea filters out of the American music scene and copies ad projectilevomitum. A projection screen shows popular music videos nonstop. It's like this sick parody of MTV that's so impeccably imitated and improvised it's unmistakably Asian. I kid you not but there was a video with a guy wearing Adidas track gear rapping in front of a shiny black Cadillac while two girls dressed like the hoochies of 1997 booty danced next to it.

I honestly couldn't tell if those kids admire American music or if they were making fun of it. Either way I'd punch them in the face if I saw them on the street. Actually I better not, because I swear to the insane Taisho emperor that a fight breaks out in every single one of these videos. If I didn't know better I'd think everyone in Korea knows Tae Bo.

I think this would be an excellent place for a first date. First of all, it'll make you look adventurous for suggesting Asian cuisine that is neither Chinese nor Japanese. Second, if you have a problem with awkward silences, you can always make snarky comments about whatever's playing. Third, the food is sweet, savory, and/or spicy so you can probably kiss or continue your genteel conversation without offending your date's olfactory sensibilities.

3 Belched -- Compliments to the Chef

Date:2005-07-21 21:57
Subject:Los Cazadores

All of you El Rodeo-philes are about to be schooled on delicious affordable Authentic Mexican food. The convenience of that Hillsborough St restaurant may be pleasant, but it has nothing on Los Cazadores (Así se dice en ingles "The Hunters")

Located in the Avent Ferry Shopping Center at Gorman Crosssing (Raleigh, NC), this restaurant sits quietly among the other stores and food places drawing no attention to itself. Inside amazing culinary delights await your virginal taste buds. In fact, from the outside it looks quite small, but it's pretty large once you enter. There's an area at the rear that looks as if it may hide a dance floor with two levels.

Here are links to the menu:
Page 1
Pages 2 and 3
Pages 4 and 5

As you can see, they have quite a few items to choose from. Meats of all types from shrimp to chorizo. There are the usual expectations of tacos, burritos, enchiladas, chalupas, gorditas, quesadillas and the like, but there are also dishes that come closer to traditional Mexican dishes. There’s a kids menu and a list of vegetarian entrees. And for those that simply must quaff libations, there are beers, margaritas, and several mixed drinks. There’s ample replay value here, folks. You could go everyday for a month, and still not process the menu in its entirety, let alone its numerous combinations. I suggest stopping in and trying their lunch specials at the very least.

When mschitchat and I went, they started us with the usual tortilla chips and fresh salsa. Freshly baked chips are always a plus, and they really showed through in the Nachos with Chicken that we ordered as an appetizer (we always try and sample as much as we can when checking out a new place). Their crispy tortilla chips are covered in a creamy white cheese sauce complete with chunks of shredded, marinated white meat chicken. It was awesome. We couldn’t stop eating it. From there, we moved onto our entrees. She had Chicken Fajitas (amazing!), and I had Caldo de Camarones (spicy shrimp and rice soup). We were so full when we left that we could hardly walk. We’re talking huge portions here, and you can see how affordable they are for yourself in the menu links.

We were too full to explore the desert and coffee while we were there, but I have my eye on the Fried Ice Cream. We definitely plan on returning. It’s now my favorite Raleigh restaurant...after one visit.

Want to give it a try? ¿Quieres aprobarlo? Directions


Compliments to the Chef

Date:2005-04-29 08:44

I just got a glowing endorsement for Bella Napoli in Cary from a mailing list. Has anyone been there?

1 Belched -- Compliments to the Chef

Date:2005-04-18 16:00
Subject:Indian restaurants?

Any recommendations for good Indian/Pakistani restaurants, preferably in Apex/Cary?


15 Belched -- Compliments to the Chef

Date:2005-04-18 13:02
Subject:Five Guys Famous Burgers and Fries

Wow, words cannot describe what I feel right now.

Any self-respecting Carnivore has to try Five Guys located in the new North Hills Mall on Six Forks just off the belt-line. It is next to the Movie Theatre. They just have Burgers, Dogs, and Fries.

They are open til 11:00 Sun - Thurs and 12:00 Fri-Sat. website at fiveguys.com.

The Regular burger is two patties. You have to ask for the little burger for one patty. Then they have the standard toppings and more. It was quite possibly the best burger I've had in a long time. The fries are perfect too. They fill a cup of them and dump another scoop in your bag.

Price is pretty decent as well. My Regular Burger, Fries and drink ran 8.50 with tax.
Check it out and let me know when your going!

Just a note for those allergic to peanuts: They use 100 % peanut oil and have open boxes of peanuts for the taking.

1 Belched -- Compliments to the Chef

Date:2005-04-15 01:24

pineappleofdoom and I tried that new Zyng Asian Bistro in Brier Creek today. While I was annoyed that they were sold out of what I wanted, the make your own bowls are really yummy and a decent price. It was about $6 base cost with extra charge for meat. If you're into noodle dishes at all I recommend trying it.

4 Belched -- Compliments to the Chef

Date:2005-03-13 01:32
Subject:Hillbilly Hideaway

The name of the restaraunt is Hillbilly Hideaway. It's in Walnut Cove, NC. The style of food is what's known as family style. This is where it's all you can eat, but instead of a buffet, dishes are brought to your table in bowls and in platters. It's as if you were eating at your grandma's house.

The meals usually consist of three meats: fried chicken, country ham, and ribs/barbecue. If it's a friday, then instead of the ribs/barbecue there is fried fish filets. The side dishes are green beans, corn off the cob (not creamed), mashed potatos, fried apples, and pintos. You also get a basket of corn bread and hoe cake. Hoe Cake is a delicious, fluffy bread that's between a biscuit and a roll. You break off pieces and use it to sop up juices and such. Word is that they do brunches on sunday morning, but I couldn't tell you about the menu.

All of that with a drink comes to something like $13. That's a tad expensive, but this food is DELICIOUS, and it never stops coming. Eventually, your table is a war zone of crumbs, stacked bowls/plates, grease stains and chicken bones.

If you haven't gorged yourself try one of the three deserts. They have a tasty chocolate cake; it's fluffy and spiced. There's banana puddin'. And there's peach cobbler. All of them are tasty. You can get them to go if you like.

The owner Sam Bray is very friendly, as are the staff. It's claim to fame is that Billy Ray Cyrus (Of "Achey Break-y Heart" fame) has eaten there. The place is practically legendary. They have spaces for tour busses. Another interesting point is the walls are all written on by previous gluttons. Take a sharpie with you.

They don't take cards, only cash and checks if I remember correctly. Be sure to tip. They definitely earn it running back and forth at the drop of a hat to refill your dishes. Strike up a conversation with the waitresses if it's not too busy. We took pictures with them. They even remembered me and my girlfriend from the first time we came. I wouldn't suggest this as a veggie place because it's sourthern cooking so there's no telling if they put meatin the veggies or not. Occasionally, they do blue grass music outside that you can enjoy while you eat.

Trust me folks this is one that's definitely worth the drive. Make a road trip of it. It's fun if you bring a decent number of people to talk with. mschitchat, hahnjin, kashaeve, and I showed up as a foursome with a bottle of Texas Pete and a bottle of Tabasco sauce. It was a fun trip that ended with tasty food.

Directions (Just enter your address)

Call them if you get lost: (336) 591-4861

3 Belched -- Compliments to the Chef

Date:2005-03-08 19:46

For some good North Carolina Barbeque, there is a good place on Highway 54 in RTP called Davis Family Bar-b-q. It is one of those hole in the wall places that has seating for maybe 20 people but it's worth the visit. I think they cater too. They only take cash, and it is pretty well priced too.

The info is DAVIS FAMILY BAR-B-Q, 10208 Chapel Hill Rd, Morrisville, 380-9039

1 Belched -- Compliments to the Chef

Date:2005-03-06 00:42
Subject:mmm soda shoppe!

I kept waiting for Emmanuel to write this, cause he's so much better at this than I am :-6

Well, there's this soda shoppe, S&T's Soda Shoppe, in Pittsboro, NC (info here)

We've gone 3 times now and EVERYTHING we've tried is delicious. The people who work there know us by name now.
They do the old fashioned deal - syrups and carbonated water, and it's sooo good. And not too expensive. We've gotten about 3 dishes each time (plus onion rings & sodas/floats) for $12-15 a person. Last time 3 of us went and got 4 dishes, I got two different types of soda, and we got a gigantic desert and we all got out for under $40.

So far we've had...

chocolate egg cream
vanilla coke
vanilla cherry coke
vanilla raspberry coke
cherry coke float

onion rings (so tasty! with the ranch...mmm)

TJ's terrific chicken plate
TJ's terrific chicken sandwich
a footlong chili dog (homemade chili!!)
a corndog
a hillsboro st burger
a pork tenderloin sandwich (my fave so far)

the haw river mudslide with strawberry cheesecake icecream (they were out of banana puddin' ice cream)

and the entrees all comes with pickles (that don't taste like they're from a jar...) & chips, and they make their own Ranch & Honey Mustard :)

next time i'm trying the philly cheesesteak :) and we heard the chicken quesadilla is good too!

go try it! :)

Compliments to the Chef

Date:2005-03-01 23:51

My boyfriend and I really miss Raleigh, since we moved to Arizona about 6 months ago, and we especially miss our favorite Thai place. On Buck Jones Road, in the same shopping center as Grand Asia and Burlington's, is a little Thai restaurant called Thai Villa. The food is delicious and the staff is very nice. Especially if you become one of their regulars. They've got an extensive Thai menu. My favorite dish is the Pad See Ew and my boyfriend likes the Pad Thai. You can do family style or get your own dish. Try them out! They are fabulous!

1 Belched -- Compliments to the Chef

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