I'm home in Durham, NC this week and as usual most of the outings involve food! I can't decide what to review so I'll do mini summaries of everything.
Neo Monde, Raleigh: This middle eastern restaurant is near the airport, so we typically go on the way home after someone flies in. It is way better than any other falafel I've had in NC, and they have a bakery right on the premises. Always really busy at lunch with Raleigh-Durham area professionals and is a nice alternative to the shopping mall chain restaurants selection.
Ox and Rabbit, Durham: Everyone I know who grew up in Durham up until the early 90's remembers the beloved McDonald's Drug Store. The when I was in high school, it closed for the first time in decades and sat empty for the longest time. Last summer it opened again as Oxand Rabbit, and I was skeptical until I heard the young couple who own it also grew up with the original and strive to honor it with their new shop. They still have the bar with syrup pumps so you can choose your own soda flavor or milkshake. When we were little we would always get "chocolate cherry coke!" and it's comforting to know that is still an option, apart from making our own with hersey's and cherry coke which my friend Kate used to do after moving away. They also have some novel gifts which I've never bought, and fancy milkshake flavors like Lavender Vanilla which I got last Thursday.
Rick's Diner, Durham: Here's an example of an old fashioned southern diner. They play 1930's music and have good eggs florentine and good biscuits and the kind of heavy white coffee mug with the very thick sides. I'm surprised they have a website, but not surprised to see that they were friends with John Hope Franklin who lived in Durham until he died last week.
Durham Farmers' Market: I went this Saturday late in the morning with my dad. I like this market better than ones in New York mainly because there is the terrorizing threat of seeing people I know, like my 5th grade teacher who sells produce from his farm. It's also the only market in town, which makes it more central and communal without all the crowds and aggression of the Union Square Green Market.
Bliss Boutique Bakery, Chapel Hill: I went here with my friend Kate on Sunday hoping to find the coffee shop 3 Cups which apparently closed. The aesthetic of the website pretty much explains it all. Trying to be very trendy but still using the font comic sans. The cupcakes were pretty good though.
Elmo's Diner, Durham. Another southern diner. This place is inexpensive and reliable. I am vegetarian again, but had to order the chicken and dumplings anyway. This place is always a nice mix of locals and duke students and tons of kids running around. I usually see someone I know here and this time it was Emily from my job last summer.