The BBQ Lab is finally open in North Hills

RALEIGH, NC — Great news for fans (there are a lot of you!) of J. Betskis, formerly at Seaboard Station. They’ve relocated and served their casual Eastern and Central European fare and fine beverages at Highpark Village in the Five Points neighborhood (1916 Bernard St, Raleigh), right next to Seaboard Wine and Taste. Reacquaint yourself with them here. Thanks to reader Betty Diegel for bringing this to our attention.

Wake County Restaurant News

Raleigh Magazine broke the news that Jason Howards The Rainbow Luncheonette opened last Tuesday at 911 N West St. The breakfast, lunch, and dinner counter, which is open six days a week, serves raised greasy spoon plates in what he calls a really cool-looking, colorful (hence rainbow bottom) waffle House on steroids. A few other notable things: You can get a mixed drink with your breakfast… and Thursday, Friday, and Saturday, the diner is open from 6 p.m. to 10 p.m. and has only one item on the menu: a 12-ounce New York hand-cut strip steak . Howard also brought us The Cardinal and The Atlantic Lounge, among others. Check them out here on Instagram.
And right over there Smoky Cave On Peace Street, Triangle Business Journal said that J. Lights, a second location owned by local entrepreneur Jared Burton, opened last weekend. J. Lights is the sister concept of J. Lights Market & Café on Durham’s Golden Belt campus. The Smoky Hollow Location serves coffee, breakfast, lunch, dinner and alcoholic beverages from its corner location. Their grand opening is today (Nov. 11). Visit them and all renters (now and en route) here.
And after a long anticipation The grill laboratory in North Hills was officially opened last Wednesday. Due to staff shortages, the BBQ area is open Wednesday through Sunday from 11 a.m. until food runs out. And of note, burnt ends are available on Wednesdays and Fridays. Best to follow on Facebook.
A lot of childhood memories come up. WRAL broke the news this week that the newly rebuilt Chuck E. Cheese in Raleigh is having a grand reopening celebration this week. New Features at 3501-131 Capital Blvd. include more than 15 new games, an interactive dance floor, a large video wall and updated seating with charging stations. Check it out here
And some kudos to give away. USA Today readers named Raleigh-based brew mushrooms the best new brewery in the country. Breweries that have opened in the last four years were nominated. Visit their Facebook page here. And kudos to Crave hot dogs and BBQ for winning the News & Observer’s Raleigh’s Best barbecue category, as voted for by their readers. Stop by their Oberlin Road location to try for yourself.

Durham County Restaurant News

We shared this a few weeks ago beer study on Graham Street moved to 504 West Franklin Street, the space that previously housed Mint Indian Cuisine. Chapelboro announced this week that with the move (working towards a Dec. 10 opening) they will also be introducing a menu, but probably not until February. And the space they leave? Chapelboro broke news this week that Mike Benson, owner of Franklin Motors Beer Garden and a local artist, will be starting a new project in the space once Beer Study is fully relocated. It will be called Lapin Bleu and it will be a bar and a bar [art] Gallery. In the meantime carry on Franklin Motors here and Beer study here.
I found out this week that the Tonya Council is opening Tonya’s Cookies & Gifts next Friday 18th November at the Streets of Southpoint Shopping Center in Durham. She offers a variety of gourmet gifts and seasonal hampers, as well as a selection of fresh biscuits baked on site. Council is one of the South’s favorite bakers, and her famous Pecan Crisp cookies were named one of Oprah’s favorites last Christmas. Have a look here.
Saladelia Cafe & Catering is moving its flagship 4201 University Drive location to 3604 Durham-Chapel Hill Boulevard, near Sitar and the ABC store, right next to Konrad Automotive, less than a mile from its current location. They will reopen on November 14th. Visit Saladelia here.
and JB Duke Hotel, a AAA Four Diamond modern lodging destination on the Duke University campus, has officially reopened its Lobby Lounge, located adjacent to the hotel lobby. Locals and travelers alike are invited to experience the lounge’s delectable menu offerings, fine spirits and ideal atmosphere. Check it out here


None to report. Keep eating local folks!

food truck

Looking for your favorite food truck (or stalking it and just don’t want to admit it)? We understand. Find them Street Food Finder.


The eight year old WRAL Voters’ Choice Awards pRessented by M&F Bank is here! Vote for your favorite among the top five finalists in each category. You can vote from now until November 20th. Winners will be announced in January 2023 at an event in downtown Raleigh. Vote here.
That BBQ Blues & Brews Festival, Southwest Wake County’s largest beer and BBQ music festival will be held this Saturday, November 12 from 12pm to 4pm at the old Stephens Hardware Building at 405 East Broad Street in downtown Fuquay-Varina. All details can be found here.
On 11/17 from 6:30 p.m. to 9:30 p.m., 21c Durham and counting house NC are proud to present you with a very special event No child hungry and her mission to end childhood hunger. Chef Jeff Seizer will join some of Durham’s favorite chefs — Matt Kelly of Mateo and Mother & Sons, Jake Wood of Lawrence BBQ, and Chris Lopez of Fine Folk — as well as Ponysaurus, Fullsteam, Empire Distribution, Bordeaux Fine & Rare, and LouElla for a one-of-a-kind drink – and dining experience upstairs in their contemporary art galleries. $85 includes snacks and innovative small plates from each chef, specialty cocktails, a silent auction (including cooking classes, chef dinners, hotel stays and more!) and live music. Get tickets here.
Tickets are available now for holiday market at The Durham on December 7th with 25 NC craftsmen and makers. A wide range of gifts from succulents, jewellery, fashion, artisan foods, candles, crockery, books and more will be available for purchase on Wednesday 7th December from 6pm to 9pm. Attendee tickets are $10 for the 6-7:30pm or 7:30-9pm shopping event. Visitors can shop for thoughtful gifts while enjoying sweet bites from the Durham’s pastry chef, Kelsey LeGaux, as well as eggnog and champagne served at the bar. Buy tickets here.
And looking for a sequel eat outside even if the temperatures start to drop? No problem. The Downtown Raleigh Alliance put together a List of restaurants in downtown Raleigh will keep you warm all year round! Check out this list here.

corner of the food bank

Looking for an easy way for you and/or your office to make a big difference in people’s lives this holiday season? Host a VIRTUAL Food Drive! Forget the hassle of going to the grocery store for your next food drive… create a heavy-lifting food drive with our virtual food drive and maximize your donation 5x! For every $1 donated, the Food Bank can provide FIVE meals! You can make a difference in your community by hosting a virtual food giveaway for your friends, family, or co-workers. It is easy! start here #noonegoeshungry
Sean Lennard, a Raleigh native, has been on the Triangle food scene for…well, a long time, but professionally since 2002 with the Triangle Food Blog, formerly known as Friday Fun Food Facts, in 2008. You can find his here to blog. And you don’t have to wait until Friday for updates because you can follow Sean on Facebook and throughout the week Twitter.


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