Friday, May 25, 2012

Friday Fun Food Facts - May 25, 2012

Triangle Restaurant News
Triangle restaurant news...that not everyone knows. Impress your co-workers at the water cooler. 
  • So the big news of the week is the moving target that is next week's opening of Durham's version of Lilly's Pizza (the menu will be the same as Raleigh). If you follow my blog, you know what a huge fan I am of Lilly's Pizza (in fact, my daughter's name is Lilly, but it has nothing to do with the pizza joint...seriously). Anyway, it is set to open next week in Durham in the Brightleaf District next to Morgan Imports. The only question is what day? Rumors peg it with a Monday opening, but you are best to follow them on Twitter or Facebook to get the exact timing of their opening.    
  • Venable Rotisserie Bistro held its grand opening this week in Carrboro's Carr Mill Mall. Located in the former Fleet Feet space, Venable will serve contemporary comfort food and feature fresh, locally sourced ingredients. Open for lunch and dinner and Sunday brunch. Check them out on Facebook here.  
  • And speaking of Carr Mill Mall, the Herald Sun is reporting that another pizzeria is making its way into the historic building, this time in the former Rita's Italian Ice space. And it will be a familiar face to pizza lovers in Chapel Hill & Carrboro. Craig Samuels, who just sold his Franklin Street Pizza & Pasta to Tomato Jake's, will open Carrboro Pizza Oven. Look for them to open sometime this fall.  
  •  If you like Chef Tom Ferguson and you like Durham Catering Company, you are going to love his next concept - Rise. Simply, it will be a doughnut and biscuit joint. The only hang-up at this point is that he hasn't settled on a location. But we'll continue to watch it and let you know once we hear anything. 
  • Got word from the News & Observer this morning that the location that most recently housed Bistro 155 in Apex is getting a new tenant. Located at the intersection of US 1 and Hwy. 55, Chevy's Ale House is projected to open in mid-July at 1402 E. Williams Street.
  • And speaking of the News & Observer, they are getting into the food business...well sort of. The News & Observer and are hosting a Food Truck Friday event on Friday, June 1st. Head over to the N&O headquarters at 215 S. McDowell Street from 11:30 until 1 and hit up Chirba Chirba Dumpling, KoKyuBBQ and Sympathy for the Deli. Stay tuned for more "First Friday" events from the N&O. Heck, you might even get your picture in the paper!
  • There is a new frozen yogurt place in North Raleigh called Citizen Yogurt. It is at the intersection of Lynn and Creedmoor, near the Kroger grocery store. And hurry over today (Friday, May 25th) where they'll be giving away free yogurt to the first 561 guests. Here is their website for more details.
  • Here's one for the rumor mill. On a recent Facebook posting, my buddy over at Triangle Explorer noted that he had heard there is going to be a second location of Dame's Chicken & Waffles. That's it. We'll keep an eye (and mouth) on this one for you. As soon as we hear something more definitive, we'll let you know. In the meantime, visit the "original" Dame's at 317 W. Main Street in downtown Durham.
  • And speaking of waffles, here is something we know for sure, thanks to our friends over at the Herald Sun. Durham will soon be home to another Waffle House (seems kinda wrong to be listing this after the posting about Dame's). Anyway, it will be located next to the Sheetz station at the intersection of T.W. Alexander Drive and Miami Blvd. It is still awaiting final approval from the city. 
  • We're getting word that an opening of Zinda, a Pan-Asian restaurant, is drawing near. The source? The restaurant itself. Both their Twitter account and Facebook page broadcast their hiring efforts, which can only mean their opening will closely follow last week's opening of Oro, also in the PNC building in downtown Raleigh. Stay up-to-date by checking their site for opening announcements.
  • And over in Chapel Hill, in Timberlyne Shopping Center, the beloved Cup A Joe is now Joe Van Gogh. Although the longstanding coffeehouse may always be known as Cup A Joe, they are in the process of renaming it Joe Van Gogh, integrating it with the rest of the shops under the roastery name. Despite the name change, it remains the same great-tasting coffee and the same special spot to Chapel Hill coffee drinkers. As part of that, they are making some changes with all renovations expected to be completed by the end of the summer. Get all the details here.
  • Looks like there is a new food truck on the scene...sweet! Seriously, very sweet. From the creators of Sweet Stacy Cakes, makers of custom cake creations and specialty cupcakes, we now have "Smiles," their cupcake truck making its way around the Triangle. Get all the details on their website here. Also, be sure to "Like" them on Facebook and follow them on Twitter.
  • And speaking of food trucks and great father's day presents (hint, hint), plan on taking your father over to Durham for the next Food Truck Rodeo which will be held on June 17 from 12:30 to 4:30 at Durham Central Park. Look for 30-35 food trucks, carts and vendors. Visit their site for more information.
  • Here's a cool "freebie" for you thanks to a tip from a childhood friend of mine, Julie Liddle. The Chick-fil-A in North Raleigh's Falls Village is having their "Free Order Friday" today (Friday, May 25th). Whatever you buy today, you bring back your receipt and get the same item free on a future visit! Get all the details here
  • And speaking of Julie and her husband Bob Liddle, they own a company called Kustom Koozies and offer custom designed koozies for any event you might have coming up over the summer - think 4th of July, company picnics, graduation parties, get the idea. And when you order, tell Julie that Triangle Food Guy sent you and she'll give you a little bit of a discount. Check them out.
  • Heard from my friends over at Triangle Localista this week that there is a new farmers' market coming to the area - Waverly Place Farmers' Market in Cary's Waverly Place. Looks like they'll open the first weekend in June! Get the details here.
  • Got word last week from a reader that Jim's Famous BBQ on Elliot Road in Chapel Hill has closed and the building is now for lease. Any ideas on what should go in there now? How about Nana Taco Two? Or how about a Chapel Hill version of Tribeca
  • On May 31st, Café Helios will celebrate it's 10th anniversary and will combine the event with Counter Culture Coffee's Thursday Night Throwdown. Think music, coffee and foodtrucks. Get all the details on Café Helios' Facebook page here. Oh, and congrats to Café Helios on 10 years!
  • So this is kinda cool. Each year the Independent Weekly puts out a dining guide called Eats (which is really nice, you need to get your hands on one). But in the event you can't find a copy, don't fret. Here is the electronic version - truly a great resource.  
  • Here is an extremely unique dining experience/cooking contest. Called Fire in the Triangle (there are also 3 others going on simultaneously in North Carolina), the contest pits two restaurants/chefs (16 total in the "iron-chef style competition) against each other working around a unique North Carolina ingredient. And here's the best part, you can attend any of the dinners/competitions and be one of the judges (well, you and 99 others)! The two-month long competition (15 total events) runs through June and July and will feature a star-studded cast of chefs from across the Triangle. Get all the details here.    
  • And speaking of cool dining events, don't forget that June 4 through June 10th is Triangle Restaurant Week. What is it? Basically it is a great excuse to get out and try some new restaurants. Over 80 restaurants will feature special menus at special prices all week. So, jump on over to their site and check out all the details.
  • Thanks to a tip from one of my most loyal followers, Sara Jane Morris, she told me that she read that Chapel Hill's Buns restaurant made it on Southern Living's list of top ten NC burgers. I do have to admit, that is one of the best burgers I've ever had. Check them out here.
  • And speaking of reading, are you looking for a good book for the summer? Well, our very own Andrew Weigl at the N&O served on the James Beard Foundation's book awards committee and they released their "14 Great Reads for Food Lovers" and she shares it with you here.  (Editor's note: There are 14 weeks between Memorial Day and Labor Day, thus 14 books). Happy summertime reading! 
  • And kudos this week to Rocky Top Hospitality and its local restaurants and catering services for being awarded the Triangle Business Journal's A Better World Award for the company's ongoing support, service and contributions to local community charities and nonprofit organizations across the Triangle. Well done Dean Ogan!

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