Weekend in Durham

As I procrastinate about working on my capstone paper or studying for the many fun quizzes I have this week, I can’t help but think about the yummy food spots my dad and I discovered in Durham/Raleigh this weekend. Unfortunately, we witnessed the devastating Duke loss to Florida State, but the great food prevented the weekend from being completely soured. So, I’m sharing some of these great places with you – bon appetit!

After spending the day in Raleigh shopping around in Cameron Village (a great spot for spring wardrobe ideas). I digress and need to discuss this. First, Cameron Village is home to one of the most amazing Lilly Pulitzer shops EVER! Not only do they sell Lilly dresses, furniture, china and accessories (including the Lilly croakies I have been searching for), but also Milly and Trina Turk!! WHY did I not know this?? Here are some of my favorite Lilly finds for 2012.

A perfect one-shoulder dress in Lilly’s new Coral Siesta print. It fits so well in a cotton/silk blend. Pair with metallic gold wedges and this great coral-patterned cuff.

I also have to mention Bevello (www.bevello.com) – I was so impressed by their fun jewelry at such reasonable prices. I have been coveting the J.Crew bubble necklace, but don’t want to pay the hefty $150 price tag. Bevello has a simlar style for $39! They also have great clothes, not really pictured on their website, at great prices. I’ll be going back to see their new Spring items. They also have Toms (and baby Toms…adorable).

Anyway, what was this blog about? Oh right, FOOD. So, back to that. Whenever I am in Raleigh for dinner, especially if my parents are in town, Caffe Luna is an absolute must! The service and food are always great. While they have a lot of great entrees, I always order the Fiocchi – fresh pasta stuffed with  4 cheeses and pear saute. Delish. It’s the perfect amount of sweetness in a rich cream sauce. They also have lattes and Haagen Daaz ice cream on the dessert menu, which makes me love it.

Saturday morning, I wanted to try out a local Durham bakery: Scratch on Orange St. It was featured in Bon Appetit (any foodie’s best friend) several months ago. It’s not often that NC appears in Bon Appetit, so I had to try it out. WOW! It seems their menu changes frequently based on the fresh and local ingredients available. We had a not-so-basic livermush sandwich. Livermush, fried egg, spicy mustard and homemade apple butter between toasted white bread. It was by far my favorite breakfast. I also had a ginger and lemon latte – an unexpected favorite! It had fresh ginger, simple syrup and lemon zest on the top. Great combo of flavors. Next time (hopefully soon before they change the menu), I HAVE to try their take on a Po’Boy sandwich. The table next to us was feasting on one – giant piece of white bread stuffed with pork belly, collard slaw and generously topped with hollandaise sauce. They also have a selection of homemade pies and bakery treats – I recommend the chocolate chess pie. Oh, and they even have homemade doughnut muffins. Who doesn’t love doughnuts?! See http://www.piefantasy.com and you’ll be at Scratch ASAP!

After that devastating loss I don’t want to talk about, we both needed a beer! So we visited one of my favorite Durham eateries – City Beverage. Not only do they have an amazing selection of beers on tap (including my personal favorite, Purple Haze), but they have amazing sashimi tuna tacos and chile braised chicken nachos. The chicken has a surprisingly sweet flavor topped with homemade guac.

They also have a great outdoor seating area – perfect for spring cocktails.

While I unfortunately did not have a chance to take my dad to Dame’s Chicken and Waffles, a Durham food blog cannot go without mentioning it. We discovered this ingenious little restaurant after my half marathon, when I needed and wanted to consume as many calories as humanly possible in one meal. Imagine a perfectly cooked waffle topped with a fried chicken wing, a ‘schmear’ (aka flavored butter) of your choice. And the most amazing mac ‘n cheese ever. What more can I say? Go there. But, go early because there will be a line.

Thanks for reading! Hope you’re hungry now.

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