As North Carolina’s capital city, the heart of a vibrant student community, a center for innovation, and part of the American South, Raleigh will never disappoint when it comes to great food spots and a thriving culinary scene. Raleigh is home to a diverse population and, as a result, many flavors and culinary delights. There is always something intriguing, delicious, and fun to try. Whether it’s hot dogs, a modern twist on old favorites like Macaroni & Cheese, or delicious treats from South America, Raleigh will leave your taste buds in awe.
Here are some favorite food spots in Raleigh that you shouldn’t miss!
Snoopy’s Hot Dogs & More
Celebrating 40 years in Raleigh, Snoopy’s opened in 1978 when Raleigh native, Steve Webb, converted an old gas station on the corner of Wake Forest Road and Whitaker Mill Road into an eastern North Carolina grill. Traditionally, Eastern NC hot dogs and burgers are served with mustard, onion, and chili in a steamed bun but Snoopy’s also serves everything made-to-order. People rave about everything on the menu from the hot dogs to the seasoned fries to the chicken salad sandwich. Whether you are a college student, a parent of small children, or a Raleigh tourist, Snoopy’s is a Raleigh classic that is definitely worth visiting.
Brewery Bhavana has been named one of the top 10 coolest restaurants in the world by Forbes. People travel from all over the country to try out Raleigh’s all-in-one brewery sensation. You’ll want to make sure your reservations are made in advance so that you can get a table. If you forgot to make a reservation, pull up a stool at the bar (where Brewery Bhavana serves its very own brews on tap) or sink into an armchair with a book from their extensive library/bookshop. At first, the menu might look intimidating, as the place itself doesn’t look like your typical restaurant, but feel free about asking a server for advice when ordering. You won’t regret being a tad adventurous.
Poole’s Diner is part of a Raleigh tradition that has been booming since the end of World War II. The restaurant was known for its delicious sweet pies back in the 1940s. In 1950, it was transformed from Poole’s Pies to Poole’s Luncheonette, when the diner began to serve all sorts of delicious meals that were just as tasty as their pies. The Poole’s Diner we see today is the work of Chef Ashley Christensen, who restored it to its former glory with a modern twist, and even has won accolades like the James Beard Award for Best Chef-Southeast, thanks to her signature macaroni and cheese she created for the restaurant.
Fiction Kitchen gives your taste buds a wake-up call. The vegetarian and vegan restaurant offers excellent food, but you don’t have to be a vegetarian to enjoy it. Meat-lovers can indulge in the crispy Fried ”Chicken” And Waffles on the menu. Is it real chicken, you ask? No, but it’s a tasty “mock” chicken the chef dips into a unique combination of herbs and seasoning before frying and serving with fluffy Belgian waffles. Dessert is equally creative and scrumptious there.
Arepas are a favorite dish in Venezuela—and they’re becoming popular in Raleigh thanks to Guasaca. If you’ve never tasted an arepa, it is like a fluffy tortilla made of corn or maize flour and stuffed with tasty ingredients. Arepas at Guasaca are pretty overstuffed with fresh, delicious ingredients like chicken, beef, cheese, avocado, a chunky version of guacamole that is the restaurant’s namesake, tilapia, black beans, and much more.
Clyde Cooper’s Barbecue
Clyde Cooper’s provides food quick—but not fast food. If you only have enough time to visit one barbecue restaurant here in Raleigh, make it Clyde Cooper’s. It’s that good. You also have pork rinds on the menu that come complete with hush puppies, of course. You’ll also be blown away by their fall-off-the-bone, tasty barbecue ribs, and good old-fashioned sweet tea. And bonus: If you want to make delicious barbecue at home, Cooper’s sells its secret sauce in a bottle.
Saying yes to Mandolin would be the best idea you have all day. The Southern-inspired restaurant is operated and owned by a hometown boy that returned to his roots and brought everything great about Raleigh to the restaurant. Good food, right ingredients grown locally and a good atmosphere are central to Mandolin. If you ever swing by Mandolin, you must try the Hangar Steak with smoked potato and shiitake mushrooms, or the mouthwatering open-faced BLT that’s to die for.
Whether you’ve had a long day’s work or you’ve been exploring Raleigh, having a great time and tasting amazing food, come back home and relax in a clean and spotless home by hiring a professional house cleaning service!