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Raleigh’s food scene is jam-packed with sophisticated dishes, craft cocktails, stunning outdoor patios, and locally sourced ingredients. These restaurants are built on the expertise of their hardworking owners
and chefs, who keep their passions alive through the love of food. Dive into some of the best tastes in Raleigh, and fall in love with the city all over again.

bu•ku

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Owners: Sean Degnan and Tony Hopkins
Executive Chef: Amanda Haisley
Cuisine: Global Street Food
Location: Downtown Raleigh
Opened: February 2010

Looking for something out of the box? Inspired by street vendors in cities across the world, bu•ku: Global Street Food creates complex yet flavorful dishes. Indulge in their Korean Deviled Eggs or Beet and Vodka-cured Scottish Salmon. And make sure you leave room for dessert or a cold brew. They’ve got beers from abroad and a spiced caramel apple dessert that will have you coming back for more. New Locations: On the heels of its eight successful years in Raleigh, bu•ku scheduled the grand opening of its second location, this one in Wake Forest, on June 28th.  More excitement is on the agenda, as they also announced plans to relocate the Raleigh bu•ku to Cary, moving in January to the space formerly held by AN restaurant. The original Raleigh restaurant will remain open through the end of this year and the New Year celebrations.  


 grilled fish and crab bisque; photo by Kaitlyn Goalen. death & taxes.

grilled fish and crab bisque; photo by Kaitlyn Goalen. death & taxes.

Death & Taxes

Owner: Ashley Christensen
Co-executive chefs: Ashley Christensen and Lauren Ivey
Cuisine: New American
Location: Downtown Raleigh
Opened: June 2015

Before Death & Taxes came to town, the space was once a funeral home and then a bank. Focused on wood-fired cuisine served family-style, the elegant dining and sophisticated dishes are what keep customers coming back for more. Begin the night with roasted oysters before diving into the Heritage New York Strip Steak. And don’t forget to top off your meal with one of their specialty cocktails or a local beer. Check out the “Here’s Jonny” whiskey treat, with Scotch, rye whiskey, spiced Cheerwine, and Dolin Rouge. Really, who puts Cheerwine in a cocktail?
Only the truly adventurous!


 mandolin photo by nathan richards.

mandolin photo by nathan richards.

  on the cover!  mandolin photo by nathan richards.

on the cover! mandolin photo by nathan richards.

Mandolin

Executive Chef/Owner: Sean Fowler
Cuisine: Elevated Modern American
Location: Hayes Barton neighborhood, Raleigh
Opened: November 2011

Sourcing produce, meats, and ingredients from farmers and artisans here in North Carolina is what Mandolin does best. They’re even sourcing vegetables and herbs from Chef Fowler’s very own farm here in Raleigh. Talk about local, fresh ingredients straight from the garden! A rotating menu inspired by seasonal produce keeps customers coming back for the next best thing. And don’t forget to order a cocktail from the bar. Their knowledgeable and skilled bartenders are serving up unique, quality cocktails to complement the menu and satisfy a variety of palates. Midtown Fav’s: “Fox Farm Lion’s Mane and King Trumpet Mushrooms” with spring onion, Goat Lady chevre, panko, Mandolin Farm Green Espelette, and cilantro.


 pizza la stella photo by Pam Varela

pizza la stella photo by Pam Varela

Pizza La Stella


Managing Partner: Rudy Theale
Type of Cuisine: Neapolitan Pizza
Location: Downtown Raleigh
Opened: December 2016

Authentic Neapolitan pizza, specialty cocktails, craft beer, and wood-fired wings. What more could you ask for? Pizza La Stella is using a custom-made brick oven for its pies and importing the finest ingredients straight from Italy to perfect their craft of pizza and cocktails. Their fresh, never frozen ingredients are what keep customers coming back for more. But they’re not just coming back for lunch and dinner. Pizza La Stella is serving some great brunch options, sure to spice up your weekend plans.


 Whole Fried Fish (black sea bass local to nc) whiskey kitchen. image courtesy of Stacey Sprenz / Tabletop Media Group

Whole Fried Fish (black sea bass local to nc) whiskey kitchen. image courtesy of Stacey Sprenz / Tabletop Media Group

 Negroni at whiskey kitchen. image courtesy of Stacey Sprenz / Tabletop Media Group

Negroni at whiskey kitchen. image courtesy of Stacey Sprenz / Tabletop Media Group

Whiskey Kitchen

Owners: Michael Thor and Jeff Mickel
Executive Chef: Clayton Anderson
Chef de Cuisine: Aaron Matyac
Cuisine: Whiskey Bar / Southern Fare
Location: Downtown Raleigh
Opened: August 2016

If you’re looking for a cozy patio with a beautiful display of outdoor string lights in the heart of downtown Raleigh, Whiskey Kitchen is the place to be. Part neighborhood bar, part Southern kitchen, this spot is serving the finest whiskey in town, along with craft beer and specialty cocktails. Not to mention some fine dishes from the menu like fried oysters, huevos con chorizo (from their brunch menu), and an ice cream sandwich with scratch-made cookies and local ice cream.


 wine flight at vidrio

wine flight at vidrio

 photo of vidrio by f8 photo studios

photo of vidrio by f8 photo studios

Vidrio


Owner: Lou Moshakos
Executive Chef: Aaron Whitcomb
Cuisine: Mediterranean
Location: Glenwood South District, Downtown Raleigh
Opened: January 2017

Since opening its doors little more than a year ago, Vidrio has remained authentic to its original mission. Centered on the concept of family and locally sourced ingredients, Vidrio is creating seasonal, chef-inspired dishes served family style. And the food isn’t the only thing inspired by Mediterranean flair. Along the wall of the dining room are 350 hand-blown glass bowls and orbs by artist Doug Frates—beautiful craftsmanship that emulates the gorgeous hues of a Mediterranean sunset. Want to toast a special moment? Check out the 50 wines on tap and 400 labels by the bottle that reflect the restaurant’s evolving menu.

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