Friday, September 16, 2011

Friday Fun Food Facts - September 16, 2011

Triangle Restaurant News
Triangle restaurant news...that not everyone knows. Impress your co-workers at the water cooler.
  • We've got to start with some good news out of Chapel Hill (we all know they need some good news). And this is GREAT news...bring on the Greek Grilled Cheese on a Pita! That's right, Hector's is opening their grill this Saturday in time for the UNC v. Virginia football game. Who cares what the NCAA thinks...Hector's is back!   
  • Ashely Christensen's latest restaurant venture, Chuck's is now open. This burger establishment is also downtown and right next door to Beasley's, her chicken joint, which opened just a few weeks ago. And on the menu? Burgers. All made in a very unique way, but the "foundation" of each burger is a half-pound, house-ground, flat top seared, 100% chuck on a potato roll. And fries, shakes and a few other things. But mostly it's about the burger...and great burgers at that. Be sure to add Beasley's and Chuck's to your "must try" list. You won't be disappointed.    
  • Raleigh is getting its third (sixth in the Triangle) Chipotle Mexican Grill this coming Tuesday. This rendition is located at 2316 Hillsborough Street directly across from NC State. It is in that same stretch as Jimmy John's, Dunkin' Donuts/Baskin Robbins and I Love NY Pizza
  • Somebody got a facelift! Over on Glenwood South, The Diner closed for a few days this past week for an interior renovation, but that wasn't all that was new when it opened back up Thursday morning. They also rolled out a new menu and introduced their new chef, Corey Palakovich. Stop by and check out all the updates at The Diner.  
  • Speaking of new chefs and new menus, fans of Savoy's former chef, Peter Gibson, will be tickled to learn that you can now enjoy Peter's creations at the NOFO at the Pig in Five Points in Raleigh. Peter just rolled out his menu last week. Check him out the next chance you get and welcome this extremely talented chef back! 
  • A new Neopolitian pizzeria, al Dente, opened in the former Wildflour space in Stonehenge Market shopping center in North Raleigh. They have a custom-made, high-temperature coal-fired oven to make their pizzas as well as serving classic and signature pasta dishes. It is located at 7456 Creedmoor Road, near the Bruegger's Bagels. For more information and to see the full menu, click here.  
  • Vin Rouge chef and part owner, Matthew Kelly, is finalizing plans on a new Spanish-inspired tapas bar and restaurant called Restaurant Mateo which will open at 109 W. Chapel Hill Street in downtown Durham...soon. He is putting final touches on the financing. The two-story spot is the former Book Exchange location. 
  • Also in Durham, Gregorias Kitchen opened yesterday at 2818 Chapel Hill Road in Durham. Featuring Cuban food, the restaurant is located in a historic 1920s property that once housed The Peddler Steakhouse. Check them out here.  
  • Fans of Al Carter, better known as Big Al's BBQ & Catering, will be happy to know that this November he will open a "brick and mortar" location at the intersection of U.S. 401 and Forestville Road in the Forestville Crossing shopping center in Northeast Raleigh. The restaurant will offer pork, ribs, chicken and beef brisket cooked on hickory wood, plus homemade coleslaw and fresh hush puppies. Carter said he still expects to use the food truck for select big events and catering. 
  • If you live out in Clayton, you've got a new option for lunch and dinner. The Latin Grill has opened off U.S. 70 at 876 Gulley Drive. Opened by brothers Eddy & Galo Andrade, the restaurant serves Portuguese and Argentinean food, including grilled steaks, ribs and chicken.  
  • CafĂ© Capistrano in Cary has closed. The Cary location was in Carpenter Village at 2250 Gathering Park Circle. That's the bad news. The good news is that the Raleigh location in Durant Station remains open. 
  • Here are a couple of fun listings we encourage you to check out...although not on the same night. The N&O's Andrea Weigl has put together a list of wine tastings coming up throughout the Triangle, as well as a listing of upcoming church suppers. If you do hit them up on the same night, might we suggest you do the church dinner first!
  • Perhaps spurred by the new ordinances in Raleigh, the Triangle has a new food truck - Chick_N_Que, featuring, you guessed it, chopped chicken barbecue, Eastern North Carolina style.    
  • Pronto Pasta, located in the former Bear Rock location at the corner of Six Forks & Wake Forest Road, has a new, revamped fall menu. New items include hand-rolled meatballs, rich home-made alfredo sauce and whole-wheat spaghetti. Check them out here.   
  • If you like Greek food, this weekend is your dream come true. The fairgrounds in Raleigh will host the 30th Annual Greek Festival featuring food, pastries, live music, dancing and the marketplace. A portion of the proceeds benefit Habitat for Humanity. Get more information here.  
  • This might be a sight worth seeing. First Flight Venture Center (FFVC), located at 12 Davis Drive in RTP, is hosting the very first RTP Food Truck Rodeo on September 22nd (that's next Thursday). If the turnout is as big as they anticipate, they plan to make this a monthly event. More details here.  
  • The 6th Annual Eastern Triangle Farm Tour will be held this weekend (September 17-18) from 1-5 p.m. and will be the biggest Eastern Triangle Farm Tour to date. Co-sponsored by the Carolina Farm Stewardship Association and Whole Foods Market, the tour features 25 sustainable farms located across the Eastern Triangle.  Advance tickets are $25 per carload or cycle group.  Tickets are good for both Saturday and Sunday and can be used to visit all of the farms on the tour. Day-of tickets are $30 or $10 per farm. Info and tickets.  
  • On Monday, September 19th, Acme in Carrboro is hosting an Italian wine dinner with Blair Taylor, who's kindly flying into town for the evening. It's going to be great. Think of it as the Piedmont of Italy meeting the Piedmont of the Carolinas. Barolo and Barbaresco from two of Blair's great producers. Veal Cheeks and Duck Confit from Acme. Five courses and six wines. $55 per person. Reservations are required by phone at 919-929-2263. It'll start at 6:30.   
  • Who remembers the N&O's Andrea Weigl's list of "must go" food events? Well, TerraVITA food & wine event in Chapel Hill in just over a week was one of them. The event will be held in Chapel Hill's Southern Village on Saturday, September 24th. You can get more information here. TerraVITA brings together biodynamic and organically-grown wines and microbrews with some of the very best North Carolina chefs that are committed to using locally-grown organic ingredients!    
  • Listen up Paula Deen fans, the N&O's Andrea Weigl has the skinny on her book signing in Raleigh on October 14th. Check out the details here.    
  • Today, and today only (i.e. September 16) Rocky Top Hospitality is offering ½ off gift cards for The Twisted Fork Grill & Bakery. You can get the $40 gift card for only $20. Only good at Twisted Fork, the gift card must be used by Oct. 31, 2011. Get yours now!

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