Friday, September 3, 2010

Friday Fun Food Facts - September 3, 2010

Triangle restaurant news...that not everyone knows. Impress your co-workers at the water cooler

  • Big news out of Chapel Hill (and no, this is not football related)...The Ramshead Rathskeller (or simply known as The Rat), once a Chapel Hill landmark, will open by the end of the year under new ownership. This is the best news to come out of Chapel Hill since last week's opening of Krispy Kreme on Franklin Street!

  • Looks like Governor Purdue is ready to do a little drinking. She's proclaimed September as North Carolina Wine and Grape Appreciation Month. And as part of this, you can participate in Grape Day (only in North Carolina) at the State Farmers Market in Raleigh next Friday, September 10th. More information here. I wonder if the governor will show up in one the Fruit of the Loom grape costumes?

  • According to the N&O's Greg Cox, downtown Raleigh's bu-ku's executive chef and founding partner, William D'Auvray, has left the restaurant. Not much else is known at this point, other than he's got something new in the works. We'll keep an eye on it.

  • Here's a coupon just for Labor Day Weekend - TGI Fridays' coupon knocks 25% off your bill over Labor Day Weekend. It is online and printable - and reusable!

  • North Carolina's first Yogen Fruz (frozen yogurt and smoothies) is coming to North Hills in Raleigh! It looks like the opening date is either September 15 or 16th. Visit their site here. Be warned, the site plays some annoying music so turn your speakers down.
  • The folks that founded McAlister's Deli are bringing a new concept to the Triangle, but not until the fall of 2011. Newk's Express Café will eventually have 5 Triangle-area locations. If your curiosity is killing you, check out their website here so you'll know what to anticipate.

  • It is not like you need another reason to go to Pinehurst, but if you're looking for something to do this weekend, head on down to the 22nd Annual Pinehurst Food & Wine Festival. The four-day event features over 100 labels from all over the globe and 10 featured chefs at receptions and culinary demonstrations. Get tickets and more details here.

  • Staying in town for Labor Day? Gravy Restaurant (136 S. Wilmington Street in downtown Raleigh) is hosting their next "Italian Food Tour" on Monday night at 7 pm (featuring the Apulia Region). Cost is $30. Call 919.896.8513 for more information and reservations.
  • Here's something else to do if you're in town this weekend. Locopop's is celebrating their fifth anniversary on Labor Day, Monday September 6th from 4-6 pm at all three Triangle area locations. Sales during that time will be donated to selected non-profits.

  • Speaking of anniversaries, Raleigh's legendary Char-Grill is turning 50! To celebrate, during their anniversary week (Sept. 6-10), customers can get 50% off a Char-burger, cheeseburger or hot dog with the purchase of any sandwich. More information here.
  • And speaking of Char-Grill, they have just inked a four-store franchise agreement in the Charlotte area. The first of the four will open in Davidson in early 2011.

  • The Duke Coffeehouse is now open in the Crowell Building on Duke's East Campus. More information at their website, including new fall semester hours (6 pm - 2 am).

  • Restaurant Savoy announced this week that Christopher Madasz has joined the culinary team as sous chef. Madasz will assist executive Chef Peter Gibson in preparing the seasonally changing menu. Savoy is located in the Greystone Village Shopping Center on Lead Mine Road.

  • Speaking of Savoy, if you haven't been there yet, let me suggest going on any Tuesday when they have their extremely popular half-price bottles of wine.
  • Need a little more wine? Tonight (Sept. 3), visit the Hillsborough Wine Company (118 S. Churton Street in Hillsborough) for their First Friday Wine Tasting from 5 to 7 pm.

  • If wine isn't your thing, how about beer? On Thursday, September 9th Fearrington Village's The Old Granary will host a beer dinner, featuring a three-course menu paired with beers from award-winning Carolina Brewery. It all begins with a reception on the patio at 6pm, followed by a seated dinner at 7pm. $45 per person, reservations required, call (919) 542-2121.

  • If you can't make it on the 9th, try The Old Granary's "Evening Out Dinner Series" on Wednesday, September 29th! These popular three-course dinners are $30 per person, $45 with wine pairings. Reservations can be made online or at (919) 542-2121.

  • And keeping with the beer theme, you might want to sign dad and the kids up for this. The Museum of Life and Science in Durham is hosting the "Science of Beer" on September 16th from 7-9 pm. Enjoy live music, beer tasting and light snacks. Got kids and no babysitter? No problem, for an additional $10 you can enroll your little ones in "The Science of Root Beer." Members $12 per person / Non-members $15 per person. Pre-registration requested, please call 919-220-5429x313 to order tickets. More information here.

  • Beer and wine not your thing? How abut chocolate? Want to see it made right here in Raleigh? Escazu Artisan Chocolates is now offering tours of their chocolate making facility, every first Friday and Saturday of the month. It is limited to 10 people, so call ahead to make a reservation at 919.832.3433. Escazu is located at 936 N. Blount Street in Raleigh.

  • Apparently the Pho Tu Do located inside the An Chau Plaza / Asian Food Court at 2821 Brentwood Road (just off Capital Blvd.) in Raleigh has closed.

  • Get your leash Sparky, we're going to dinner! According to a statement released last Friday by DENR (Dept. of Environment and Natural Resources) restaurants can now allow cats and dogs in outdoor dining areas as long as conditions to protect public health are met. Wonder if any menus are changing?!?
  • Your kids probably already know this, but if you want to find out who has the best Mac & Cheese in Raleigh, head on out to the 1st Annual Mac Down on Saturday, Sept. 8th. The event will be part of downtown Raleigh's Sparkcon celebration. More details here.

  • Burger King was sold this week for a cool $3.26 billion (yes, that is a "b"). Just think, you could have owned the "BK Lounge". Oh well. Let's hope the new owners get rid of that creepy Burger King character.

  • Uncle Fatty's in Raleigh's Cameron Village has a new coupon ($3 off any entrée). Get it here.

  • Ted's Montana Grill is offering a coupon for $5 off any $15 or more purchase coupon. Get your's here. It expires September 19th. There are two Triangle locations - Triangle Town Center in Raleigh and in the Renaissance Center across from the Streets at Southpoint in Durham.

  • In honor of their 35th anniversary, The Melting Pot started giving away a $100 gift card every day, and will do so for 35 consecutive days. Enter here for your chance to win! The Melting Pot has two Triangle locations - Wake Forest Road in Raleigh and across from The Streets at Southpoint in Durham.

  • Get a Buy One Get One Free coupon from Ruby Tuesdays right here (up to $10 value; some restrictions, yadda, yadda, yadda)!

  • On a personal note, but something you could derive a lot of benefit from, my daughter's gymnastics facility is selling Citipass Coupon books as a fundraiser. If you haven't been hit-up yet to buy one of these, just drop me an e-mail and I'll get you one for the low, low price of $25. These books truly are amazing and will save you a gazillion dollars in discounts from over 285 Raleigh, Cary, Wake Forest, Garner & Apex-area merchants. Check out their website here.
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