Category Archives: Durham LifeStyle

Maxing Out Your Movies: An Overview of Deluxe Movie Theaters & Cinemas in the Triangle

Wish my pictures were sharper but pretty much all movie theaters are dark!

In the battle for your movie dollar, the Triangle has been popping! Higher end theaters with stadium seating and upgraded food menus are upping the ante for movie-watching in the Triangle. And who can blame them given the great home theater set-ups many of us have at home? Without making the cinema experience stellar, we would ever leave our family rooms, amiright? But in the summer heat, there’s often nothing better than catching the latest flick in a deluxe movie theater with all the bells and whistles. I’ve been able to try most of the super cinemas in the area, here’s my take on what you get for your movie-watching dollar at each one!

Front of IMAX Theatre at Marbles in Raleigh- NC Triangle Dining
Front of IMAX Theatre at Marbles in Raleigh- NC Triangle Dining

First up is the classic IMAX Theatre at Marbles in Raleigh! For a while, IMAX was the only real luxe movie-watching experience in the Triangle. From the enormous screen (70′ by 52′) to the seat-shaking Dolby sound system pumping out 24,000 watts of sonic thunder, the IMAX still rocks it out for the right movies. If you’re got a great 3-D movie with top notch cinematography and sound, IMAX will blow you away. I’ve seen Inception, Gravity and Avatar at the IMAX and it truly feels as if you’re IN the movie. The stadium seating gives you an unfettered view of all the action, the only bad seats are the 3 or 4 rows up front. The seats, while comfortable, are your more typical seats with drop-down arm-rests and cup-holders.

Seating for IMAX Theatre at Marbles in Raleigh- NC Triangle Dining
Seating for IMAX Theatre at Marbles in Raleigh- NC Triangle Dining
Stellar screen and sound system for IMAX Theatre at Marbles in Raleigh- NC Triangle Dining
Stellar screen and sound system for IMAX Theatre at Marbles in Raleigh- NC Triangle Dining

Tickets for IMAX are $11 (2-D) and up which isn’t bad at all given the screen size. Concessions are reasonably priced ($3 to $7) but very basic and limited in selection (candy, popcorn, soft drinks, wine-beer). Note that you also can NOT choose your seat at IMAX Raleigh which means you’ll have to queue up early to ensure great seats for the hottest movies. What you’ll give up here at IMAX Raleigh is the comfy leather recliners and expanded food-drink menu. But still, even with all the less modern movie theater operations here at IMAX, it delivers a stellar movie-watching experience for the right movies. Choose wisely and you’ll be blown away by whats on-screen at IMAX Theatre at Marbles.

Lobby at Cinebistro Wavery Place in Cary - NC Triangle Dining
Lobby at Cinebistro Wavery Place in Cary – NC Triangle Dining
Lobster roll at Cinebistro Wavery Place in Cary - NC Triangle Dining
Lobster roll at Cinebistro Wavery Place in Cary – NC Triangle Dining

Next up on my super cinema list is Cinebistro at Waverly Place in Cary! Cinebistro was the first of the newer luxe movie theaters in the area, bringing together food, drink and the show all in one venue. And it’s still one of the best! With a full bar and lobby at the entrance, you know you’re in for a special experience. Billed as dinner and a movie, you show up early for your movie, order and are served in the theater for your meal. And the food here at Cinebistro is quite good, my faves include the cheesesteak sandwich and lobster sliders. Once the movie starts, you’ll have to self-serve your dishes and andy additional drinks-eats at Cinebistro.

Seating at Cinebistro Wavery Place in Cary - NC Triangle Dining
Seating at Cinebistro Wavery Place in Cary – NC Triangle Dining

Seating at Cinebistro is luxurious, leather recliner seating with motorized foot-rests that allow you to kick back to enjoy the movie! While Cinebistro does not have stadium style seating, you do recline back to get a good view of the excellent raised screens. Cinebistro tickets can be purchased online through Fandango and range from $13.50 to $16. Note that after 6pm, Cinebistro is 21 and over. But I can tell you for sure that Cinebistro hits the trifecta of great food, great screens and great seating. The only major drawback is the price, you can easily drop $50 here on popcorn and food, ouch. For more details, check out my full review of Cinebistro in Cary.

The Raleigh Grande Theater – NC Triangle Dining
The Raleigh Grande Theater - NC Triangle Dining
The Raleigh Grande Theater – NC Triangle Dining

Heading up a bit further north it the Raleigh Grande! For years, the Raleigh Grande was a traditional movie theater but a renovation in 2016 brought stadium type seating and an expanded food menu. Inside, not only does the Raleigh Grande have tiered stadium style seating but also the same motorized recliners found at Cinebistro. What is nice is that the Raleigh Grande provides a more private viewing experience with walls behind each row of seats, creating some real separation.

Seating at the Raleigh Grande Theater - NC Triangle Dining
Seating at the Raleigh Grande Theater – NC Triangle Dining

For food you have you standard popcorn and soft drinks but the expanded theater menu includes sandwiches, hot dogs, chicken tenders, pizza and more! If you’re ordering hot food, they’ll give you a buzzer to bring to the theater and once it goes off, meet your server in the hallway outside your theater to get your food! The Raleigh Grande also has a decent draft beer and wines available here for your movie. I’ve tried out just a handful of items off their menu but I can tell you that they do a solid chicken tenders plate for $7 along with some truffle fries for $4.

Chicken tenders at the Raleigh Grande Theater - NC Triangle Dining
Chicken tenders at the Raleigh Grande Theater – NC Triangle Dining

And tickets at the Raleigh Grande have stayed an affordable $9.50 so you won’t break the bank here on either tickets or food. I’ve managed to catch a couple of movies here and if your focus is more on the movie than the food, you can’t go wrong at the Raleigh Grande.. While the food is more garden variety, higher end movie-theater fare, the screens and movie-watching experience more than make up for that slight miss. Plus you’ve got the Lynnwood Brewing Concern right across the street if you’re hungry!

Front of Frank Theatres Cinebowl in Cary - NC Triangle Dining
Front of Frank Theatres Cinebowl in Cary – NC Triangle Dining
Concessions at Frank Theatres Cinebowl in Cary - NC Triangle Dining
Concessions at Frank Theatres Cinebowl in Cary – NC Triangle Dining

Now let’s head back down to Cary and the new Frank CineBowl! This bowling alley and cinema presents another spin on the deluxe movie theatre experience. Up front and to the right you’ll find the bowling alley lit up in neon. Above the bowling alley area is an arcade with some fun games like Pop-a-Shot, skee-ball and more. And to the left, you’ve got your luxe movie theaters! Like Cinebistro, they serve food right up in the theater but like Raleigh Grande, they offer up stadium style seating with motorized leather seats. So you’ve got the best of both worlds at CineBowl & Grille.

Seating at Frank Theatres Cinebowl in Cary - NC Triangle Dining
Seating at Frank Theatres Cinebowl in Cary – NC Triangle Dining
Loaded tots at Frank CineBowl in Cary - NC Triangle Dining
Loaded tots at Frank CineBowl in Cary – NC Triangle Dining

The food menu here is upgraded theater food but it’s not bad at all! I ordered up a ridiculous plate of tater tots which was a ginormous, heaping mound of crisp tots covered with two types of cheese sauce, bacon, and scallions, delicious! But I could have fed a family of four off these tots. The rest of the menu runs the gamut of wings, tacos, sandwiches, burgers and entrees, plenty good but more casual than Cinebistro. With ticket prices in the $12 to $15 range, Frank Theatres CineBowl & Grille is an excellent option if you’re looking for food AND a movie.

Front of Silverspot Cinema in Chapel Hill - NC Triangle Dining
Front of Silverspot Cinema in Chapel Hill – NC Triangle Dining

And finally, our last super theater: Silverspot Cinema in Chapel Hill. Located off of S. Estes Drive on the west side of University Place, Silverspot mixes things up a bit compared to the previous four super cinemas! Silverspot offers the upscale Trilogy Restaurant at the front of the cinema for a pre-show dinner or take-out box for in-theater dining. If that doesn’t float your boat, you can grab some eats at the more standard concessions area. I’ve done a media dinner at Trilogy Restaurant and it is certainly the highest-end food available if you dine in. Check out my full review here!

Concessions at Silverspot Cinema in Chapel Hill - NC Triangle Dining
Concessions at Silverspot Cinema in Chapel Hill – NC Triangle Dining

Silverspot is pretty modern and offers ticket kiosks on a wall to grab your seat if you don’t order your ticket online.  Once you get your eats, move on into the movie theater section where you’ll find yourself in a luxe seating area but different from the other options on this list. Silverspot offers plush leather seating in a stadium (tiered) setting BUT the seats are not motorized and don’t offer foot-rests. The front row does have leather ottomans available to kick up your feet but you won’t be able to do that for the back rows.

Seating at Silverspot Cinema in Chapel Hill - NC Triangle Dining
Seating at Silverspot Cinema in Chapel Hill – NC Triangle Dining

So there you go! A quick trip and overview through most of the top movie theaters in the area. What’s really interesting is that they all offer slightly different food, seating options and movie watching experiences. So choose wisely based upon your needs and interests. Some days I’m in more of a dining mood and want the food. Other times it’s all about the movie watching experience. But I’m pretty certain that one of these deluxe, blinged out movie theatres will suit you fine!


IMAX Theatre at Marbles

201 E Hargett Street

Raleigh, NC 27601


Raleigh Grande

4840 Grove Barton Road

Raleigh, NC 27613


Frank Theatres Cinebowl and Grill

Parkside Town Commons

1140 Parkside Main Street

Cary, NC 27519


Silverspot Cinema

201 S Estes Dr #100

Chapel Hill, NC 27514


Cinebistro, Waverly Place

525 New Waverly Place 

Cary, NC 27518

The post Maxing Out Your Movies: An Overview of Deluxe Movie Theaters & Cinemas in the Triangle appeared first on NC Triangle Dining.

...[READ MORE]   SOURCE: NC Triangle Dining

Weekend Picks: July 21st – 23rd

Andy Ferrell

Andy Ferrell performs at Mystery Brewing in Hillsborough Friday at 8:30pm
(photo by Daniel Barlow)

This weekend is going to be a scorcher so I’ve decided to pick events to enjoy inside where it will be nice and cool. Here are my top picks for the weekend. Also, if you are looking to cool off with some ice cream I recommend checking out the new Two Roosters Ice Cream Shop that just opened in North Raleigh. If you are in Durham, there is no better place to grab a cone than at The Parlour. Stay cool and happy exploring!

Friday – July 21

Cajammers Perform at the Blue Note Grill – Durham
The Cajammers are a North Carolina band that has been playing a highly danceable mix of Cajun, Zydeco, and swamp pop since 2012. Unique to the group is a trio of female fiddlers who adore sharing their love for Louisiana-inspired tunes with the audience. This energetic group will keep your toes tapping from beginning to end! Music 8pm-11:30pm at the Blue Note Grill in Durham.

Saturday – July 22

Andy Ferrell at Mystery Brewing Public House – Hillsborough
North Carolina roots songwriter Andy Ferrell perorms this Saturday at the Mystery Brewing Public House in Hillsborough 8:30pm-11:30pm. Born in Boone, NC, Ferrell grew up in the heart of the Blue Ridge Mountains, the birthplace of Appalachian traditional music and the home of the great Doc Watson. Growing up in Watson’s shadow, and with a folk guitarist for a father, Appalachian roots play a large role in Ferrell’s music.

Sunday – July 23

Kitten Party at Wake County Animal Center – Raleigh
The Wake County Animal Center of Raleigh will be having a kitten party. Come meet your new best friend. There will be many adorable available fuzz balls. 12-5pm. 820 Beacon Lake Dr, Raleigh.

Free Play at Level Up Kitchen & Barcadium
Play any of your favorite arcade games at The Level Up Kitchen + Barcadium for FREE. Sip on one of our ice cold drafts for $1 off!

...[READ MORE]   SOURCE: Triangle Explorer

Friday Fun Food Facts – July 21, 2017

Triangle Restaurant News

Triangle restaurant news…that not everyone knows. Impress your co-workers at the water cooler.

Featured Restaurant News

  • Chapel Hill’s iconic Carolina Coffee Shop has new owners. A group of UNC alumni and friends, led by Jeff Hortman, have purchased the institution. Things will pretty much continue the same through the fall before renovations and tweaks over the winter. Thanks to Michael DePersia at DePersia & Associates for the heads up on this news. Check out Carolina Coffee Shop here.

Wake County Restaurant News

  • The ITB Insider reported this week that the next location of Chopt will reside in the former Tribeca Tavern building in the North Ridge Shopping Center on Fall of the Neuse Road. No word on an open date. Get familiar with Chopt here.
  • The folks over at Morgan Street Food Hall announced another tenant this week – MKG Kitchen. MKG Kitchen is from the same creators of Mekong Vietnamese Cuisine in Morrisville. Get the latest details on the Morgan Street Food Hall here.
  • In Brier Creek this week the big news was the opening of the new Harris Teeter (which has a wine and beer bar in it!)at the corner of T.W. Alexander and U.S. 70. However in that same center, it was announced that pizza chain Your Pie and breakfast joint First Watch would join Harris Teeter. No word on open dates.
  • Over on Hillsborough Street, Ashton Mae Smith noted that Pho Vietnam, already with a location on Buck Jones Road, has opened. They are located in the 2811 Building at the corner of Hillsborough Street and Dan Allen Drive. Check them out on Facebook here.
  • Congrats to Sara Coleman Fitzpatrick and the team over at The Cupcake Shoppe in Raleigh as they celebrate 10 years of bringing yumminess to the Triangle. They will have a ‘neighborhood birthday party” all day on Thursday, July 27th with free mini cupcakes, t-shirt giveaways, and more (with additional specials running through the weekend). Check out the latest on their website here.
  • And over in Cary, reader Hugh Autry brought it to our attention that Cary is going to get a second Shuckin’ Shack Oyster Bar, this one adjacent to the Craft Public House near the intersection of Tryon Road and Walnut Street. Check out Shuckin’ Shack here.

Durham, Orange & Chatham Restaurant News

  • In Durham, got word from Michael DePersia at DePersia & Associates that Los Dos Sombreros (formerly Cinco de Mayo) located at 4818 NC Hwy 55 has been sold to Basera Indian Cuisine, a successful Indian restaurant franchise out of Plano, Texas. They should open later this month after completing renovations. We will keep you posted. Get familiar with them here.
  • Also in Durham, WRAL reported that Local Yogurt has opened in their new location at 1114 W. Chapel Hill Street, conveniently located between downtown Durham and Duke University. Check them out of Facebook here.
  • WRAL also reported that a new coffee shop in Durham called Kaffeinate will be taking over the former Respite Cafe spot at 115 N. Duke Street. No word yet on an open date. Get to know Kaffeinate here.
  • Bites of Bull City blogger Amber Watson first reported that there is a new Latin-flavored ice cream/popsicle/milkshake shop at 1918 Perry Street (near Duke) called Pincho Loco. According to WRAL, they will hold their grand opening this weekend, Friday through Sunday. Check them out here.
  • In Chapel Hill, Carolina Brewery will be celebrating their 22nd anniversary with lots of changes – following renovations to the physical space at their W. Franklin Street brewpub, they will unveil a number of menu changes. All offer a new, refreshing feel that reflect the community that surrounds them. The new menu will be unveiled on July 31. Keep up with the latest on their website here.
  • Got word from the Chatham County Convention and Visitors Bureau that Phoenix Bakery Market Cafe will hold their grand opening in their new location at 664 West Street in Pittsboro on August 19th. Bagels, pastries and cakes oh my! Check out their Facebook page here.
  • Also in Chatham County, just down 15-501 from Chapel Hill, Marco’s Pizza will have their grand opening on July 23 in the space in front of Harris Teeter where Fig & Honey used to be. From 1 – 4pm they will have free pizza samples, DJ, face painting and other children’s activities. Get all the details here.


  • Got word from Christine Rhyne Johnson that the Marco’s location in Apex has closed.
  • In Cary, got word this week from several sources that the Train Station across from the Amtrak station in Cary has also closed.
  • Over in Durham, Bites of Bull City’s Amber Watson reported that George’s Java on Ninth Street has closed.
  • And in Chapel Hill, the News & Observer reported that after more than three years on West Franklin Street, Old Chicago Pizza & Taproom will serve its last slice in Chapel Hill this weekend.

Food Trucks

  •  The Wake Forest Food Truck Rodeo returns to town this Sunday, July 23rd, from 12-4 at The Renaissance Center in historic downtown Wake Forest. Nearly 20 trucks are already signed up. A beer tent will be provided by Brooks Street Bowl and the kids have can have fun in the Kid’s Zone that will include FREE face painting sponsored by The Learning Experience, a bouncy house, road chalk, hula hoops, ball toss and bubble fun. Get all the details here.


  • This summer, chef John May will partner with local purveyors to create exciting themed evenings at Piedmont. Each dinner will consist of four courses with optional beverage pairings, and chef May will welcome guest distillers, cheesemakers, and farmers to the restaurant to educate diners about their products. Upcoming dates and themes include: July 27: Grilled Veggies featuring Fullsteam Brewery; August 10: Lost Dishes of the Midatlantic and Punches. All menus will be $40 for four courses and an additional $15 for beverage pairings. Get all the details here.
  • The Rickhouse will host Durham’s 3rd Annual PickleFest on Sunday, July 23 – a pickle-packed tasting event and market place showcasing North Carolina made products from pickle vendors near and far including locally crafted kombucha and kimchi. Triangle area restaurants sample their unique pickle dishes as well as pickle flavored beers and a Bloody Mary bar to quench your thirst and pucker your lips. Only 100 VIP tickets available for early bird entry at Noon! $15 VIP includes: (1) drink ticket, early entry and the thrilling announcement of the home pickler contest winner!! $5 General Admission Session 1 from 1 – 3pm; Session 2 from 2 – 4pm. Kids under 10 years old are free. Check out the event on Facebook here.
  • Raleigh’s newest dining concept, 41Hundred (the new concept inside the Renaissance Raleigh North Hills Hotel), is holding their grand opening celebration on Tuesday, July 25 from 5-8 p.m. Enjoy complimentary bites from the 41Hundred menu and samples from TOPO Distillery, Bombshell Beer Company and Aviator Brewing Company. Check them out here.
  • The Second Annual Big Biscuit Showdown will take place on Thursday, July 27 from 6-9pm at The Rickhouse in Downtown Durham. This unique food competition features twelve teams of Rise chefs partnered with a local brewery or beverage company. Each team will prepare a special biscuit and donut that will be paired with a local craft-made beverage. With biscuits, donuts and beer, you can be sure this will sell-out fast. Get your tickets here.
  • This is my annual shout-out/reminder to my good buddy Tim CoyneSmith – tickets are on sale now to the Beer, Bourbon and BBQ Festival being held again this year at Cary’s Koka Booth Amphitheater on July 28 and 29. Basically it is two days of beer sippin’, bourbon tastin’, music listenin’, and barbeque eatin’. Get ticket information and all the details here.
  • Catering Works will hold their next “Foodcation” at their event space, The Laurelbrook, on Thursday, August 3rd with the “destination” being Asia! “Travel” through the Southeastern territories for their signature spin on authentic Asian street fare and onward to inspired Indochina fusion delicacies! Tickets are $45 for the seven-course meal/trip. Get all the details here.
  • Join North Carolina brewers at the NC Museum of Natural Sciences for their fourth annual Natural Selections event on Friday, August 18. Enjoy this one-of-a-kind evening of beer and science among the museum’s dioramas. Sample unique creations fitting the museum’s natural science focus from more than 20 North Carolina breweries. Enjoy hands-on science of beer activities, a panel discussion, games and live music by Handsome Al and the Lookers. Vote for your favorite beer during the event and award the second annual Natural Selections People’s Choice Award to one lucky brewery. $65 VIP; $40; $25 for Friends of the Museum members. Price includes beer samples, activities, tasting guide, and collectible Natural Selections tasting glass. You must be 21 years or older to attend. Get all the details here.
  • The North Carolina Restaurant & Lodging Association will hold the second annual NC Chef Showdown on August 21 in Raleigh’s historic downtown City Market. Participating chefs will present a dish to a distinguished panel of six judges and will prepare sample-sized offerings for approximately 200 attendees. Attendees will determine the recipients of the “People’s’ Choice” awards, while the judges will select the 2017 NCRLA Chef of the Year and the 2017 NCRLA Pastry Chef of the Year. Get all the details here.
  • The News & Observer brought it to our attention that tickets for Beericana Craft Beer and Music Festival are on sale now. Beericana will take place again in Holly Springs on September 9th and will feature 70 breweries, 16 food trucks and thousands of beer lovers. Get ticket information and all the details here.
  • Join host chef Teddy Diggs of Il Palio at the Siena Hotel in Chapel Hill on Thursday, September 14th for Festa Italiana, a Friends of the James Beard Benefit Dinner. Cocktail hour begins at 6:00pm on the terrace with hors d’oeuvres, games of bocce and a silent auction. Dinner begins at 7:30pm in the Il Palio dining room and is followed by a live auction. Tickets are $185. Get your tickets and all the details here – including the stellar lineup of chefs.
  • Pittsboro’s annual PepperFest will be held on Sunday, September 24th this year at the Great Meadow in Briar Chapel. PepperFest is a celebration of  local food made by local chefs and food artisans featuring 40 different kinds of locally grown peppers prepared in hundreds of creative ways. Get all the details here.
  • Folks, listen up. I try to make it a habit not to tell people what to do (mainly because I don’t want them to tell me what to do, but I digress). Here is an exception. Go to this event! Trust me. And get your tickets EARLY! Speaking of which, tickets to the eighth annual TerraVita Food & Drink Festival (@TerraVitaFest), scheduled for Oct. 18-21 in and around Chapel Hill, are now on sale here. It will sell out. Trust me!

Food Bank Corner

  • Nearly 300,000 children in the Food Bank’s 34 counties rely on the free and reduced-cost meals at school to get them through the day. For them, summertime doesn’t mean a fun-filled vacation. For them, no school means no meals. Stop Summer Hunger is the Food Bank’s annual initiative to provide additional food to feed these children and their families during this season of increased need. For example: A donation of $35 will feed a child for two months; A donation of $75 will feed a family of four for one month; and a donation of $150 will feed a family of four for two months. Help reach the goal of 3.4 million meals before July 31 and ensure that children will receive the daily, nutritious meals they need to grow healthy and strong! Click here to donate and find out more.
...[READ MORE]   Source: Triangle Food Blog

MoDH Executive Director Search Announcement

Executive Director, Museum of Durham History

Interested applicants, scroll down and follow the link to apply.

The museum has reopened its search for a new leader. Katie Spencer, the founding Executive Director, recently stepped down to focus on curatorial interests, and Director of Operations Patrick Mucklow stepped up to serve as Interim Executive Director.

“We’re on firmer footing than ever before,” said MoDH Board Chair Carlton Wilson, “and we’re eager to have a permanent executive director in place. There are exciting times ahead for the museum.”

The Executive Director is the museum’s face to the community and has overall strategic and operational responsibility for staff, programs and execution of the Museum’s vision. Community relations, fundraising, and exhibit oversight are important aspects of the job description.

The board is looking for five years of management and development experience with a museum or other performance-based organization, demonstrated business abilities, and strong communication and project skills.

The full job description is posted online.

Interested or know someone who might be? Applicants should send a letter of interest, resume and three letters of recommendation to: [email protected].

...[READ MORE]   Source: Durham History Hub

Durham County Library Presents ADF Book Discussion With Bill T. Jones

Program: ADF Book Discussion With Bill T. Jones
Date: Saturday, July 29
Time: 1 p.m.
Location: South Regional Library, 4505 S. Alston Ave, Durham, NC 27713
Cost: Free and open to the public

Durham, NC – Durham County Library presents ADF Book Discussion With Bill T. Jones at 1 p.m. on Saturday, July 29 at South Regional Library, 4505 S. Alston Ave, Durham, NC 27713.

Don’t miss this rare opportunity to engage in a book discussion with world-renowned dancer and choreographer Bill T. Jones. The Emigrants by W.G. Sebald is the inspiration for one of Jones’ performances, the ADF-commissioned Analogy/Ambros: The Emigrant. The novel is described by The New York Times book reviewer Larry Wolff as “a profound and original work of fiction, The Emigrants pursues the stories of four people as they move from land to land — and, above all, as they move through history” (March 30, 1997). Check out a copy from the library and join the discussion.

This program is sponsored by the Durham Library Foundation. For more information, call 919-560-0268 or visit

Durham County Library encourages Discovery, connects the Community and leads in Literacy. As a department of Durham County Government, the library furthers Goal 1 of the county’s Strategic Plan by enhancing cultural, educational and creative opportunities. For more information about the library, visit

Contact: Stephanie Bonestell
919-560-0151 or [email protected]

Source: Durham County Library

Summer Reading Family of Readers – Week 4

Madelyn and Addison Daryani with their favorite books

The Daryani Family

This summer Durham County Library is celebrating a family of readers each week of Summer Reading, June 17 through August 12. This week’s family of readers are Addison and Madelyn Daryani.

Addison is 8 years old, and Madelyn is 4 years old. They visit South Regional Library, where their favorite book to read as a family is On the Night You Were Born by Nancy Tillman. They’ve been visiting South Regional Library since Addison was only 1 year old.

One of their favorite library memories is when the girls’ mom used to bring Addison to Baby Lapstitters when Addison was only 1 year old. They have been fans of the library for their whole lives! The whole family loves to visit South Regional Library and read lots of books together.

Summer Reading at Durham County Library is free and open to people of all ages. This year’s theme is Build a Better World. Reading stretches the imagination, deepens our capacity to empathize with others, and helps students retain academic gains over the summer months.

Durham County Library encourages reading every day. Babies love books, too! It’s never too early to start reading together. Children, teens, and adults can earn prizes by reading, visiting each Durham County Library, participating in library programs, exploring a library database or electronic resource, and volunteering in the community.

To register for Summer Reading and learn more, visit your local library or check out Stop by the library to discover something new, participate in community, and help build a better world.

Source: Durham County Library

Media: The 41Hundred at North Hills For Delicious Local Beers and Plates

41Hundred at the Renaissance Hotel in Raleigh - NC Triangle Dining
41Hundred at the Renaissance Hotel in Raleigh – NC Triangle Dining

If you’re a fan of North Hills, you’ve probably seen and passed by the Renaissance Hotel many times. Located on the very southern end of North Hills, it hosted a nicely upscale restaurant named Flights for years. It was a fine restaurant, very upscale but more of a special occasions type spot. But time changes everything and Chef Dean Thompson has re-swizzled the culinary efforts at the Renaissance into a more relaxed and casual experience reflecting the changing tastes in Raleigh. Enter 41Hundred, part bar, part lounge and part restaurant. With an upcoming grand opening party on July 25th, you’ll get a chance to see what’s near at the 41Hundred. I had a chance to preview the menu last week and it was a very interesting culinary experience…

Bar at 41Hundred in Raleigh - NC Triangle Dining
Bar at 41Hundred in Raleigh – NC Triangle Dining
Dining room at 41Hundred in Raleigh - NC Triangle Dining
Dining room at 41Hundred in Raleigh – NC Triangle Dining

When I first entered 41Hundred which sits on the first floor of the Renaissance Hotel, I didn’t recognize the place. Gone were the 25′ ceilings with fabric wall-hangings from the old Flights. In was a funky looking bar with urban mural and a lot more. I met up with Kristen from Tabletop Media Group who was hosting the event from a PR perspective and the 41Hundred team, including Chef Dean Thompson. I first ran into Chef Dean years ago when he won two of the Fire in the Triangle competitions in 2013 and 2014, so you know he’s got some talent in the kitchen. Peering around the corner, I spy a funky looking dining room with an artificial grass flooring, outdoor chairs, and patio lighting overhead. Past the main dining room is a modern nook area with a bookshelf library on display. The dining room feels very open and modern with a glass face shedding a lot of natural light into the space. This is definitely not your typical hotel restaurant and dining area!


We all gather round the tables set up for our media preview and Chef Dean takes us through the menu. While 41Hundred offers breakfast, lunch and dinner, we’ll be focusing on their popular shared plates today. Scanning the menu, it all looks very reasonably priced with all the plates and sandwiches running from $10 to $15.  The shareable plates cover a wide range of cuisine types, a very eclectic assortment of flavors! Note the plates pictured here are a bit bigger than normal due to the media event and need to share across a larger table. 41Hundred has also amped up their beer and liquor selection by focusing on many of the great local options we now have in-state.

Menu at 41Hundred in Raleigh - NC Triangle Dining
Menu at 41Hundred in Raleigh – NC Triangle Dining
Roasted cauliflower plate at 41Hundred in Raleigh - NC Triangle Dining
Roasted cauliflower plate at 41Hundred in Raleigh – NC Triangle Dining
Halloumi plate at 41Hundred in Raleigh - NC Triangle Dining
Halloumi plate at 41Hundred in Raleigh – NC Triangle Dining

We start off with the roasted cauliflower plate which is served with baba ghannoush, pita, olives. It’s a healthy and flavorful offering and the side of harissa (hot chili sauce) adds some spicy pop. Next up is the fried halloumi (semi-hard cheese) served with figs, almonds and heirloom tomatoes, very satisfying! There’s some chewy, crispy and and crunchy happening here and the tomatoes show off a wonderfully crimson skin. If you’re a vegetarian, these are the best options for you out of the shareable plates at 41Hundred.

Tuna poke at 41Hundred in Raleigh - NC Triangle Dining
Tuna poke at 41Hundred in Raleigh – NC Triangle Dining

Korean BBQ wing at 41Hundred in Raleigh - NC Triangle Dining
Korean BBQ wing at 41Hundred in Raleigh – NC Triangle Dining

Next up is a lovely looking tuna poke plate! Served up with sliced avocado, wasabi aioli and plantain chips, you can keep the bite simple or add some bite by adding the jalapenos.  A plate of crispy wings show up on the table. A heaping pile of flats and drums slicked with a sweet crispy crunch, these Korean BBQ wings could be very addictive! There’s some sriracha aioli for wing dipping if you’re in the mood.

Oxtail poutine at 41Hundred in Raleigh - NC Triangle Dining
Oxtail poutine at 41Hundred in Raleigh – NC Triangle Dining

Now we’re deep into the meats on the 41Hundred menu. A plate of tender steak tacos disappear quickly (missed a picture) and then the piece de resistance for me, oxtail poutine! I’ve been on a bit of a poutine kick lately. Popular up in Canada, we’re talking about fried covered in gravy and cheese curds, a real meat and potatoes type dish. 41Hundred goes with a luscious oxtail meal and deep brown gravy with chunks of that cheese curd atop. A sprinkle of chives fills out the plate and it is dee-licious! The oxtail meat is super tender and has that mouth-feel given the fat and collagen in this cut. A great use of tender meat and potatoes here, in my opinion!

Hot cheesecake at 41Hundred in Raleigh - NC Triangle Dining
Hot cheesecake at 41Hundred in Raleigh – NC Triangle Dining
Banana pudding at 41Hundred in Raleigh - NC Triangle Dining
Banana pudding at 41Hundred in Raleigh – NC Triangle Dining

We finish off the media tasting with Chef Dean’s famous hot cheesecake! This closely guarded recipe was handed down to him from the previous executive chef he worked under and after one taste you’ll understand why. The hot cheesecake is light, fluffy with some lemony tang and offers a nice contrast to your typically dense, cold cheesecake. I’m normally not a fan of cheesecake due to its density and texture but this hot cheesecake is eye-opening. And a small serving of banana pudding is wonderfully put together with a drizzle of caramel syrup and toasted coconut flakes.

Phew, that’s a lot of food and I’d have to say that my highlights were the Korean BBQ wings, oxtail poutine, and hot cheesecake! And if it all sounds mouth-watering to you, stop on by for the 41Hundred’s grand opening party on 7/25. They’ll be doing complimentary tastings of their menu and offer some beer and drink samples to the public. The 41Hundred has definitely switched things up here in North Hills. No longer a formal, special events type of destination, it’s brought a more international and casual menu to the dining room which you can enjoy with a nice beer or cocktail at the bar. So if you’re a N. Raleighite, come on by and check things out. I think you’ll be pleasantly surprised and your tastebuds tingled…


41Hundred at the Renaissance Raleigh North Hills Hotel

Grand Opening, July 25th

4100 Main at North Hills Street

Raleigh, NC 27609


Location on Google maps

The post Media: The 41Hundred at North Hills For Delicious Local Beers and Plates appeared first on NC Triangle Dining.

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News: The Unscripted Hotel Opens Up in Durham, July 19th!

The new Unscripted Hotel Durham - NC Triangle Dining
The new Unscripted Hotel Durham – NC Triangle Dining

The NC Triangle has been on a roll with boutique hotels over the past couple of years. From the 21C Museum Hotel and Durham Hotel out in the Bull City to the Aloft Hotel in Raleigh, these hip, urban hotels usually feature some interesting retail offerings like cool restaurants, stores and more. The upcoming opening of the Unscripted Hotel out in Durham is the latest in a wave of these new stay and play destinations!

Pour Taproom at the new Unscripted Hotel Durham - NC Triangle Dining
Pour Taproom at the new Unscripted Hotel Durham – NC Triangle Dining

Located in the old Jack Tar Motel on Corcoran Street, the new Unscripted will host 74 guest rooms, five food and beverage establishments and a 3rd floor rooftop pool and lounge. On the food-beverage front, there will be a Neomonde, Jack Tar Diner (folks from Pizzeria Toro) and Pour Taproom (already open) on the street level. I’ve had a chance to visit Pour which was pretty cool! A modern beer bar with 60+ self-serve taps paid for with a magic band.

The grand opening for Unscripted Durham is coming soon, July 19th at 10am! I’ll be heading over for a media preview the day afterwards and will be updating this post with more information and pics. But very excited to see what they have done in this renovation and what sort of food they will be bringing to downtown Durham.

In celebration of the hotel’s grand opening, locals can take advantage of a special staycation package, including 10 percent off a room, free parking and late check-out (Use promo code LOCALS when booking). Now through Sept. 5, travelers can also enjoy 10 percent off room bookings, as well as two complimentary drinks at The Patio, bike rentals for two and late check-out by using the code OPENING when making a reservation.


Unscripted Hotel Durham

Grand Opening on July 19th at 10am

202 Corcoran Street

Durham, NC 27701


Location on Google maps


The post News: The Unscripted Hotel Opens Up in Durham, July 19th! appeared first on NC Triangle Dining.

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Weekend Picks: July 14th – 16th


Two Roosters Ice Cream Truck Opens their North Raleigh Storefront this Sunday at 2pm

This weekend there are several cool things to enjoy. Friday night I highly recommend checking out the Party in the Park at the NCMA Ellipse Lawn. Then there’s awesome Blues Music in Durham on Saturday. Finally, wrap up the weekend with the Grand Opening of the Two Roosters Ice Cream Shop on Sunday. Below are all the details you need to enjoy my top picks this weekend. Happy Exploring!

Friday – July 14th

Hoopla: Party in the Park at NCMA
Hoopla is back, Polynesian style, with a Carolina luau! Experience fire dancers and ukulele music amid art in the Park. A local DJ spins tunes, and Imagine Circus dazzles with their Femme de Fire show. Durham Ukulele Orchestra and Raleigh Drum Circle perform. Food trucks will be on hand (see list below), and beer, wine, and nonalcoholic drinks will be available for purchase. The Disney film Moana (ticket required) screens after the party at 9 pm. The event takes place in the NCMA Park at the Ellipse Lawn

Gregg Gelb & the Second Line Stompers in Cary
The Starlight Concert Series is a lively series of free concerts that features musical styles from near and far. Concerts takes place at 7pm in the beautiful gardens of the Page-Walker Arts & History Center in Cary. Bring a picnic and enjoy music by starlight! Enjoy and evening of jazz with central North Carolina’s top jazz musician and his band in their Starlight Concert debut!  With guest singer Kathy Montgomery Gelb. Del’s Lemonade will be on-site during the concert selling frozen lemonade!

Saturday – July 15th

Pat “Mother of Blues” Cohen performs at The Bullpen
For years, Pat sang in New Orleans six nights a week, performing at a wide array of venues including the House of Blues, until Katrina destroyed her home. She relocated to North Carolina and has recently started touring with the Music Maker Blues Revue. This Saturday at 8:30pm you can hear her perform at The Bullpen in Durham right next to the Durham Bulls Stadium. The Bullpen is known for great wings and a nice selection of local beer.

Sunday – July 16th

Two Roosters Ice Cream Shop Grand Opening
The Two Roosters Ice Cream Truck is opening their long awaited Brick & Mortar Ice Cream Shop in North Raleigh this Sunday at 2pm. Customers can expect a rotating menu of ice cream with 10 popular flavors always on hand. The new storefront is located next to Gonza Tacos off Lead Mine Road in the same shopping center as Sola Coffe Cafe’. Nothing better than enjoying a cone of locally made ice cream as a way to celebrate National Ice Cream Day!

...[READ MORE]   SOURCE: Triangle Explorer
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