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wcmckinney

eGullet Society staff emeritus
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  1. wcmckinney

    For a Good Time in Chapel Hill...

    Chapel Hill is a great town, hard to disagree. However it's a toughy for finding a good decent lunch inside town, or in the Greater Franklin Street area. Might I recommend Carrburritos at the top of Franklin St. which bottles Chapel Hill/Carrborro funk in a bottle. Additionally, Foster's on MLK/Airport captures the fancy lad qualities of Chapel Hill. Good sammiches, freshly fired pizzas and a great atmosphere all work in it's favor. Is Jujube open for lunch? That would also be a very solid option. The question you probably meant to ask was, where should I take my guests for an afternoon pint of beer? Top of the Hill has the nice views of town, but the more enjoyable place is probably Tyler's in Carrborro or Milltown (both of whom serve a solid pub-friendly yet sufficiently fancy lunch to boot).
  2. My man Pistachio raises a good question here. The interior looks pretty swank, especially considering how far off the street this place is. The chairs, which are sort of Louis XVI style oval backs are probably the nicest chairs I have seen in a dining room in Chapel Hill. The menu seems well put together and classicaly french. Any word on who the chef is or what the resto's originations are? I don't know when a nice French place was last in operation in town (Henry's and the time the served roast duckling my freshman year in Lenoir Dining Hall both don't count), how far back in Chapel Hill's culinary history should one look to find a true sacre bleu French place?
  3. wcmckinney

    NYC Chef going to Myrtle Beach

    Malik is right about heading down to Murrels Inlet for better eats. I think the McClellanville Diner is better than the Crab Pot, but you could probably stop off in Georgetown (about 20 minutes closer to Myrtle) and eat at some equally good spots, The Rice Paddy and a seafood diner on King St. are both quite nice...there's a decent BBQ place on the right side of US 17 in between Pawley's and Georgetown too...If you are driving down via I-95 then Schuyler's in Latta, SC is a really good BBQ buffet. While discussing BBQ, Sweatman's in Eutawville is a drive from Myrtle, but it is a doable drive. There's also some good BBQ in Manning, SC. Louis's is excellent. A very enjoyable place to eat. The Fish Camp is a little more informal than the dining room and there's a great outdoor patio. For the most part the seafood in Murrel's Inlet is uniform, Oliver's Lodge has a nice atmosphere and there's a reasonable Asian/Southern fusion place on 17 Alt. as well.
  4. I haven't been to St. Jacques, though I'ld be very curious to try it now. Perhaps Foodiehall and VaNC would like to join me (and pay for me) and we could see just how echt-Francais it is. Varmint, would you say that St. Jacques is better than Bistro 607, the irrascable, but neglected, restaurant on Glenwood South? The menu is decidedly not Bistro-ey, although having a good French restaurant in the South...that's probably the price you have to pay.
  5. wcmckinney

    Riviera in Raleigh

    Per my post header, it's on Wilmington St. (across from the Wilmington St. Parking deck). I don't know hours, and I'm not entirely sure they know hours yet. I know there's a glut of newly opening (fairly) nice restaurants happening all at once in Raleigh, and even in downtown Raleigh so I hope this one keeps its quality control up and makes it.
  6. wcmckinney

    Riviera in Raleigh

    Was walking to my normal lunch time haunt of the Brass Grill today when I came upon the just open (we're talking first lunch service) Riviera. Very fetching interior, in a refurbished older building with exposed brick and white wood. There's a small bar and probably 15 tables. The only menu items today were panninis...mine was turkey and brie with appel chutney and arugula. Portabellos and Roast Beef were the other options (plus another veggie). But the real winner were the french fries which come doused with truffle oil and malt vinegar...their tea is made with peach puree and brown sugar giving it an "Arnold Palmer" taste of freshness. The staff was very atune to pointing out that they make as much of what they serve in house (though probably not the turkey). The dinner menu looks solid and would be interested to see how this place is doing in a few more weeks because it has the makings of a solid eatery...as my friend said, "You know downtown Raleigh is growing up once a fancy Mediterranean place opens."
  7. wcmckinney

    Charleston Cheap Eats

    Sweatman's in Holly Hill is supposed to be outstanding, though the mother ship in Eutawville is magnificent. Was in Charleston last weekend running around and had a great cheap big seafood meal at the Anchor Line on Folly Rd. out towards Folly Beach. You get a seafood feast (i went with shark and deviled crab) for about $15.00, which you would be hard pressed to beat anywhere else in the city. I'll second Holly when talking about Bowen's, it's a gem. Jestine's on Meeting St. is quickly becomming an institution and they also have pretty good cheap eats. Stay away from most of the restaurants close to the slave market. Bubba Gumps, Hyman's and the like probably won't be anything special and definitely won't be a good deal.
  8. wcmckinney

    Greenville, SC this w/e....

    For what its worth the new stadium is gorgeous, and you can still feel good about yourself if you just pretend the team is called the Joe's (in honor of Shoeless) instead of the Drive.... Tailgating close to the stadium may be tough so i might advise against bringing the grill. You might try Chicory Alley on South Main as a light dining option, or the restaurant in the Poinsett hotel which is supposed to be quite good (Spoonbreads)...both of which will be close-ish to the stadium. Greenville is one of the best cities in the world, but it doesn't run on all cylanders during Sundays. Stax Omega is a perfectly respectable diner, as is Stax original if you are feeling like a big breakfast. Rick Erwin and Deveraux's have both opened recently and seem trendy, they're also downtown and close to the stadium...i'ld bet one of the two would be open on Sunday. Selfishly, since I haven't been to the stadium and posted recently on the Southern Foodways Forum about this, I'd like to hear if there were any good eats in the actual stadium... Enjoy your trip to God's Country
  9. 10-4, you are correct Varmint. I wear my Cary directions ignorance as a badge of honor.
  10. wcmckinney

    Vivace (Raleigh)

    Had a nice supper there on Friday night as well. I think the place is still ironing out a few kinks but nothing that wouldn't be expected of any restaurant just opening up. From my understanding after talking to the hostess, the place only makes reservations for half of the dining room so it can still accomodate walk up traffic. This was good because we were walk up traffic. I liked the wine selection which was reasonable and varied and ended up with a bottle of sangiovese/syrah that was not too overwhelming. The water being served in the glass bottles was another good touch. Ordered the mussels, a pizza margharita, spring risotto and a ceaser salad. The mussels and salad really stood out. the bivalves and the sardines were very fresh and worked well with their respective dishes. the pizza was the only (slight) let down and i think that is because our taste buds were overworked by the time it came out. The basil was fresh and the tomatoes were good, but it seemed like chopped up sun dried tomatoes were also added to the pizza which seemed to through the taste off a bit...anyway, no reason to throw the baby out with the bathwater since i agree with Varmint and ZebA that this was a great addition to the North Hills North development.
  11. Thanks for the post Nibbs, i think you are spot on and am glad you are making penence for your initial BBQ comments. RTP is really the Triangle's dining version of Epcot Center (and I think with the tech businesses there we could really stretch this analogy out even more). I noticed that you didn't mention any Japanese places. Is this what Greater 54/55 is missing? Additionally, I think the Chatham/Harrison intersection in Cary is quickly developing a South Asian cooking niche. King Kabob, Suchi, and the Veg. Indian place have all maintained a decent level of cookery (though Suchi lost their best cooks to Spice and Curry from what I understand). King Kabob is also supposed to be starting up a buffet soon which is good news since their menu offers some good Pakistani style sausages.
  12. wcmckinney

    Winston-Salem Update

    There's a really fun Chinese/Indian restaurant on the other side of I-40 than Hanes Mall in a strip mall that is run by a Chinese family who immigrated to India a few generations back. The brother runs a similar operation at Pao Lim in Durham. Additionally, the New York Times did a 36 hours in Winston recently. That might be of some interest since the Times seems keen to 36 hour just about anywhere in North Carolina recently (l'ld attach the link, but having some e-troubles).
  13. wcmckinney

    Best pit bbq

    Its a good point -- sadly. For a number of reasons (and I don't think Mr. DHEC is the only reason, in fact he may be a falll guy) there just isn't much pit bbq in urban Carolina towns. Hard pressed to find any pit BBQ in Charlotte, Greenville, Charleston, Raleigh or Columbia (Maurice's comes to mind but little more)...There're more broasted chicken stands in Columbia than you can shake a stick at, but just seems to me that there isn't as much of a link with Pit BBQ in metropolitan areas than there is in smaller or more rural towns.
  14. wcmckinney

    Behold My Butt! (2003–2006)

    Thanks for the guidance: The more I think about it the more I like the herb tea brine. I'm guessing something like a tablespoon of herb mixture per cup of water, or am I aiming too high? Agreed that the point of cooking over wood is to impart the smoke on the meat, but i think that smoke is more flavorful than tasteful so hopefully I can get some herby quality into the pork that will go well enough with the BBQ sauce (which also admittedly takes away from the smokiness). I'll leave the sugar for the rub, and probably keep it simple with a little Brown Sugar, S&P and paprika
  15. wcmckinney

    Behold My Butt! (2003–2006)

    Heat will be indirect, but due to the size of the grill not as indirect as one might like. Agreed that too much sugar can be an issue, and I know this first hand from flare ups, but typically many BBQ rubs already have some brown sugar in them. The more I think about it the more a thyme and garlic tea sounds like it might do the trick for the brine's liquid. Any other suggestions though would be much appreciated.
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