Vinos Finos is a departure from run-of-the-mill drinking and dining experiences. Located inside European-themed Lafayette Village, the wine bar is designed to sample tapas-style dishes and world-class wines. The staff here is more than happy to help with wine selection and pairings. Dark woods, leather furniture, and warm colors make the interiors feel like an old-world wine shop. Vinos Finos encourages patrons to converse, and the intimate, colorful setting is doubly suited for first dates or casual business meetings.
Fullsteam brewery serves classic and innovative beers crafted with locally farmed ingredients, including sweet potatoes, basil and grapes used in experimental recipes. The industrial, spacious brewery has plenty of room for groups, the occasional live band, arcade games, darts, and ping pong tables. Although Fullsteam does not serve food of its own, visitors are welcome to bring their own, or take advantage of the rotating cast of food trucks that park just outside the bar on most days.
The Flying Saucer Draught Emporium is a popular house of beer and UFOs in downtown Raleigh, where flying saucers adorn the walls and ceiling. The bar offers hundreds of beers to choose from and a generous menu of classic pub fare. Visitors can aspire to join the ranks of the “Ring of Honor,” a glory given to card-carrying U.F.O Club members once they consume 200 hundred different beers. Watch out for weekend fire sales, the Draught Emporium’s day-long version of happy hour.
Located beneath King’s Royal Barcade, Neptune's Parlour is a hip underground bar that offers DJs, pinball, ping pong and arcade games. It also boasts a menu of local craft beers from mostly small North Carolina Brewers, seasonal cocktails and the very popular shot of the week. On weekends the bar is packed with dancers, and on some nights live acts play in front of the brick-walled stage. Neptune’s adds subterranean character to downtown Raleigh’s bar scene, off–or under–the beaten path.
Foundation is a subterranean bar reachable from a stairway on Fayetteville Street in downtown Raleigh. The bar, which makes good use of its underground location with exposed pipe work, brick walls, and reclaimed wood panels, is known for serving some of the best cocktails in Raleigh. The menu also features local beers and seasonal cocktails made with the best of diverse locally-sourced ingredients. Though Foundation is underground, on sunny days the bar opens street level seating perfect for enjoying a beer in the sunshine.
Alley Twenty Six is sophisticated cocktail and wine bar serving charcuterie and small plates in stylish surroundings. Locals come to the bar for the relaxing, dimly-lit atmosphere, classic cocktails, and nicely curated wine list. Attention to detail and flavor sets Ally Twenty Six apart from other contemporary cocktail bars. The team here creates one of a kind homemade syrups and tonics: think zesty cinchona bark and lemongrass syrup. The bar, which faces East Chapel Street, has a little outdoor seating on 26 Alley, from which it takes its name.
Sharp Nine Gallery is the right place to go to if you are interested in jazz. Located in Durham, NC, the venue organizes various music programs and classes and aims to educate the crowd on jazz culture. They are also available for concerts and other music events.
Situated in Durham's City Center, Littler serves modern American cuisine in a cozy and friendly atmosphere. The dining hall is sandwiched between a series of rustic exposed brick walls and features an arrangement of well-spaced tables, wall-mounted artwork and a constellation of interconnected lightbulbs that illuminate the entire space. The menu is compact and includes specialties like the NC Flounder, Braised Pork Shank, and the Grilled Octopus. Don't forget to savor the signature Black Forest Cake Roulade for dessert.
Celebrate traditional tapas style dining at Humble Pie. It consists of shareable bite sized servings of hummus, tostadas, BBQ shrimp, sea scallops and calamari that are spiced in authentic Spanish condiments. The house-made sangria is a pleasant accompaniment to the meal as one converses with friends. Jazz music fills the dining space adding to the fun mood and the helpful staff make the experience all the more special. Chef Andy Cordova has succeeded in creating a place for himself in the dining circles of Raleigh with this gem of a place.