Every year we ask our readers to vote for the Best of Raleigh, and more than 2,500 of you responded. This year we decided to expand our categories, and give you the top three winners for each. What follows is the best of the best; the winners that you, our readers, have decided to name as this year’s Diamond Award winners!

Dine & Drink

Best Restaurant
GOLD: Stanbury
SILVER: Vivace
BRONZE TIE:  Poole’s Diner; Winston’s Grille

Best New Restaurant
GOLD: Brewery Bhavana
SILVER: Royale
BRONZE: Crawford and Son

Best Place for a Romantic Dinner
GOLD: Second Empire Restaurant and Tavern
SILVER: Angus Barn
BRONZE TIE: Herons at The Umstead; Sullivan’s Steakhouse

Best Chef
GOLD: Ashley Christensen
SILVER: Scott Crawford
BRONZE: Jeff Seizer

Best Waitstaff
GOLD: Angus Barn
SILVER: Winston’s Grille
BRONZE: Sullivan’s Steakhouse  

Best Business Lunch
GOLD: The Capital Grille    
SILVER: Winston’s Grille
BRONZE: Midtown Grille

Best Outdoor Dining or Patio
GOLD: Vivace
SILVER: Taverna Agora Greek Kitchen & Bar
BRONZE: Whiskey Kitchen

Best Place to Impress a Date
GOLD: Second Empire Restaurant and Tavern
SILVER: Angus Barn
BRONZE: Herons at The Umstead

Most Kid-Friendly Dining
GOLD: The Cowfish Sushi Burger Bar   
SILVER: Sassool
BRONZE: Gonza Tacos y Tequila

Best Breakfast
GOLD: Big Ed’s City Market Restaurant
SILVER: Brigs Restaurants   
BRONZE: First Watch

Best Weekend Brunch
GOLD: Coquette
SILVER: Herons at The Umstead
BRONZE: Brigs Restaurants   

Best N.C. Barbecue
GOLD: The Pit Authentic Barbecue
SILVER: Clyde Cooper’s Barbeque
BRONZE: Smithfield’s Chicken
‘N Bar-B-Q  

Best Burger
GOLD: Bad Daddy’s Burger Bar  
SILVER: Chuck’s Burgers
BRONZE: MoJoe’s Burger Joint

Best Pizza
GOLD: Lilly’s Pizza
SILVER: Trophy Brewing & Pizza
BRONZE: Mellow Mushroom  

Best Steakhouse
GOLD: Angus Barn
SILVER: Sullivan’s Steakhouse
BRONZE: Vinnie’s Steak House & Tavern

Best Fried Chicken
GOLD: Beasley’s Chicken + Honey
SILVER: Bojangles’ Famous Chicken ‘n Biscuits
BRONZE: Royale

Best Comfort Food
GOLD: Poole’s Diner
SILVER: Beasley’s Chicken + Honey
BRONZE: Relish Craft Kitchen& Bourbon Bar

Best Vegetarian
GOLD: The Fiction Kitchen
SILVER: Irregardless Cafe & Catering
BRONZE: The Remedy Diner

Best Clean Eats
GOLD: Raleigh Raw
SILVER TIE: B.Good; Clean Eatz
BRONZE: Happy + Hale

Best Sports Bar
GOLD: Tobacco Road Sports Cafe
SILVER: Carolina Ale House
BRONZE: Yard House

Best Place to Have a Girls Night Out
GOLD: Vita Vite
SILVER: Vivace
BRONZE: Level7

Best Place for Drinks After Work
GOLD: Level7
SILVER: Vivace
BRONZE: The Raleigh Times

Best Local Beer
GOLD: Trophy Brewing Co.
SILVER: Lynnwood Grill & Brewing Concern
BRONZE: Raleigh Beer Garden

Best Place to Grab a Glass of Wine
GOLD: Vita Vite
SILVER: Vivace
BRONZE: Bella Monica

Best Spot for a Craft Cocktail
GOLD: Fox Liquor Bar
SILVER: Watts & Ward
BRONZE: C. Grace

Best Dive Bar
GOLD: Slim’s Downtown Distillery
SILVER: The Players’ Retreat
BRONZE: The Goat

Best New Bar
GOLD: Watts & Ward
SILVER: Level7
BRONZE TIE: Milk Bar; Whiskey Kitchen

Best Bread Bakery
GOLD: Yellow Dog Bread Company
SILVER: La Farm Bakery
BRONZE: Boulted Bread

Best Cakes/Sweets
GOLD: Lucettegrace
SILVER: Edible Art Bakery & Dessert Café  
BRONZE: Hayes Barton Café & Dessertery

Best Place for Dessert
GOLD: Hayes Barton Café & Dessertery
SILVER: Bittersweet
BRONZE: Lucettegrace

Best Ice Cream
GOLD: Goodberry’s Frozen Custard
SILVER: FRESH. Local Ice Cream
BRONZE: Two Roosters Ice Cream

Best Food Truck
GOLD: Cousins Maine Lobster
SILVER: Chirba Chirba Dumpling Truck
BRONZE: Gonza Tacos y Tequila   

Best Cheap Eats
GOLD: Snoopy’s Hot Dogs & More
SILVER: Cook Out
BRONZE TIE: Char-Grill; Mami Nora’s Rotisserie Chicken

Best Local Coffee House
GOLD: Sola Coffee Café
SILVER: Jubala Coffee

Best Pet-Friendly Patio
GOLD: Lynnwood Grill & Brewing Concern
SILVER: The Station
BRONZE TIE: Vivace; Whiskey Kitchen

Shopping & Services

Best Shopping Center
GOLD: North Hills
SILVER: Cameron Village
BRONZE: Crabtree Valley Mall

Best Florist
GOLD: Fallon’s Flowers
SILVER: The English Garden
BRONZE: Davenport at Five Points

Best Place to Buy Designer Jewelry
GOLD: Bailey’s Fine Jewelry
SILVER TIE: Diamonds Direct; Raleigh Diamond
BRONZE: Fink’s Jewelers

Best Place For Custom Jewelry
GOLD: Raleigh Diamond
SILVER: Bailey’s Fine Jewelry
BRONZE: Diamonds Direct  

Best Place to Buy Wedding Rings
GOLD: Diamonds Direct
SILVER: Raleigh Diamond
BRONZE: Bailey’s Fine Jewelry

Best Resale/Consignment Clothing
GOLD: dress.
SILVER: Revolver Consignment Boutique
BRONZE: Adore Designer Resale Boutique

Best Wine/Beer Store
GOLD: Total Wine & More
SILVER: Taylor’s Wine Shop
BRONZE: The Raleigh Wine Shop

Best Youthful Woman’s Boutique
GOLD: Uniquities
SILVER: Bevello
BRONZE: Vestique

Best Women’s Boutique
GOLD: Kannon’s Clothing
SILVER: Uniquities
BRONZE TIE: Charlotte’s; Vermillion

Best Men’s Boutique
GOLD: Kannon’s Clothing
SILVER: Nowells Clothiers
BRONZE: Liles Clothing Studio

Best Store for Vintage or Antiques
GOLD: Father and Son Antiques
SILVER: Hunt & Gather
BRONZE: SuzAnna’s Antiques

Best Garden Center
GOLD: Logan’s Garden Shop
SILVER: Homewood Nursery
BRONZE: Atlantic Gardening Company

Best Pop-Up Market
GOLD: Sola Pop-Up Market
SILVER: Pop-Up Raleigh
BRONZE: N.C. State Farmers Market

Best Place to Buy Locally Made Goods
SILVER: N.C. State Farmers Market
BRONZE: NOFO @ the Pig

Best Furniture Store
GOLD: Green Front Interiors & Rugs
SILVER: Ethan Allen
BRONZE TIE: Havertys; Nadeau

Best Home Décor
GOLD: HomeGoods
SILVER: Inspirations Home Decor & More
BRONZE TIE: DECO; Furnish   

Best Place to Buy a Unique Gift
GOLD: Raleigh Diamond
BRONZE TIE: Charlotte’s; Zest Café & Home Art

Best Local Sporting Goods Store
GOLD: Omega Sports
SILVER TIE: Great Outdoor Provision Co.; Johnson-Lambe Co.
BRONZE: Runologie

Best Place to Find Denim
GOLD: Raleigh Denim
SILVER: Uniquities

Best Place to Find Men’s Shoes
GOLD: Belk
SILVER: Nordstrom
BRONZE TIE: Kannon’s Clothing; Nowells Clothiers

Best Place to Buy Women’s Shoes
GOLD: Main & Taylor
BRONZE: Nordstrom

Best Local Pet Store
GOLD: Unleashed
SILVER: Phydeaux
BRONZE: Woof Gang Bakery

Best Pet Grooming
GOLD: Woof Gang Bakery
SILVER: PetSmart
BRONZE: Canine Country Club & Pet Hotel

Best Pet Boarding
GOLD: Dog Diggity Daycare & Boarding
SILVER: Suite Paws Pet Resort & Spa
BRONZE: FURbaby Pet Sitters

Best Veterinarian
GOLD: Armadale Animal Hospital
SILVER: Care First Animal Hospital
BRONZE: Hayes Barton Animal Hospital

Best Catering
GOLD: Catering Works
SILVER: Rocky Top Catering
BRONZE: Ladyfingers Caterers

Best Home Cleaning
GOLD: Molly Maid
SILVER: Merry Maids
BRONZE TIE: The Other Woman, Inc.; Metro’s Other Woman of the Triangle

Best Private School
GOLD: Ravenscroft School
SILVER: Cardinal Gibbons High School
BRONZE: The Franciscan School

Best Dry Cleaners
GOLD: Brothers Cleaners
SILVER: Medlin Davis Cleaners
BRONZE TIE: Capstone Cleaners; Pope’s Dry Cleaners

Best Auto Repair Shop
GOLD: Autohaus Import Service
SILVER: Atlantic Avenue Tire & Service
BRONZE: Walton’s Family Auto Service

Best Real Estate Agent
GOLD: Angie Cole, A Cole Realty
SILVER: Christina Valkanoff, Christina Valkanoff Realty Group
BRONZE: Heidi Harris, Home Sweet Heidi Realty

Health & Beauty

Best Salon for a Haircut
GOLD: Von Kekel AVEDA Lifestyle Salon Spa
SILVER: Mark Christopher
BRONZE: Salon Blu

Best Salon for Color
GOLD: Mark Christopher Salon   
SILVER: Von Kekel AVEDA Lifestyle Salon Spa
BRONZE: Salon Blu

Best Health Club/Gym
GOLD: Life Time Fitness   
SILVER: O2 Fitness   
BRONZE: Burn Boot Camp   

Best Place to De-Age
GOLD: Skin Raleigh at Davis & Pyle Plastic Surgery
SILVER: Von Kekel AVEDA Lifestyle Salon Spa
BRONZE: Raleigh Plastic Surgery Center

Best Med Spa
GOLD: Skin Raleigh at Davis & Pyle Plastic Surgery
SILVER: The MedSpa at Raleigh Plastic Surgery Center
BRONZE: Synergy Spa & Aesthetics

Best Place for a Facial
GOLD: Skin Raleigh at Davis & Pyle Plastic Surgery
SILVER: Von Kekel AVEDA Lifestyle Salon Spa
BRONZE: Synergy Spa & Aesthetics

Best Spa Experience
GOLD: The Umstead Hotel and Spa
SILVER: Von Kekel AVEDA Lifestyle Salon Spa
BRONZE: Skin Raleigh at Davis & Pyle Plastic Surgery

Best Massage
GOLD: Von Kekel AVEDA Lifestyle Salon Spa
SILVER: The Umstead Hotel and Spa
BRONZE: The Sport of Massage

Friendliest Customer Service
GOLD: Von Kekel AVEDA Lifestyle Salon Spa
BRONZE: Pinup Studio

Best Dentist
SILVER: Renaissance Dental Center
BRONZE: Lane & Associates Family Dentistry

Best Orthodontist
GOLD: N.C. Oral Surgery + Orthodontics
SILVER: Zaytoun Orthodontics
BRONZE: Cheek-Hill Orthodontics

Best Chiropractor
GOLD: Atlas Chiropractic Of Raleigh
SILVER: Atlas Orthogonal Chiropractic
BRONZE: Crabtree Chiropractic Center

Best Place to get a Mani/Pedi
GOLD: Paintbase
SILVER TIE: Cameron Spa & Nails; HighPark Nail Spa
BRONZE: Paris Nail Bar

Best Yoga/Pilates Studio
GOLD: Barre Up!
SILVER: Pulse Pilates
BRONZE: YoBa Studio

Entertainment & Events

Best Innovative New Business
GOLD: Supper Meals
SILVER: The Flourish Market
BRONZE TIE: Meraki Salon; Raleigh Raw

Best Place to Take Out-of-Towners
GOLD: N.C. Museum of Art
SILVER: The Umstead Hotel and Spa
BRONZE: Angus Barn

Best Live Theater
GOLD: Durham Performing Arts Center
SILVER: Raleigh Little Theatre
BRONZE: N.C. Theater

Best Live Music Venue
GOLD: Red Hat Amphitheater
SILVER: Lincoln Theatre
BRONZE: Walnut Creek Amphitheater

Best Museum
GOLD: N.C. Museum of Art
SILVER: Marbles Kids Museum
BRONZE: N.C. Museum of Natural Sciences

Best Staycation in the Triangle
GOLD: The Umstead Hotel and Spa
SILVER: Renaissance Raleigh North Hills Hotel
BRONZE: Fearrington Village

Best Place to Entertain the Kids
GOLD: Marbles Kids Museum
SILVER: Pullen Park
BRONZE: Frankie’s Fun Park

Best Golf Course
GOLD: Lonnie Poole at N.C. State
SILVER: North Ridge Country Club
BRONZE: Carolina Country Club

Best Wifi Lounge Spot
GOLD: Starbucks
SILVER: Sola Coffee Café
BRONZE TIE: The Morning Times; Panera Bread  

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