Friday, October 21, 2016

Village Deli Celebrates 20 Years!

For twenty years, Village Deli & Grill has been serving up sandwiches, drinks and much more in the heart of Cameron Village. This year marks their 20th anniversary of being in the village (their first location) and as the years have passed and times have changed, Village Deli remains true to their original vision from 1996. Village Deli and their friendly staff continue to serve up quality food made to order partnering with local NC farms and businesses for their ingredients. I'm thrilled to see they are sustainable as well, using biodegradable cups and containers, served up with great customer service at a reasonable price.

Raleigh locals know that one of the "hidden gems" of Village Deli is their homemade chicken salad sandwich with lettuce, tomato and mayo on homemade bread (GF available). Enjoy a tasty side of sweet potato fries, paired with a glass of freshly brewed iced tea, loyal customers have been coming back again and again, some for as many as all 20 years! I have to agree, this was one delicious sandwich! The menu is extensive with everything from salads, soups, seafood dishes, burgers, paninis, subs...they've got it! Vegetarian dishes are on the menu. Breakfast is served until 11am. Cold beer and wine are available. Daily lunch and dinner specials. They are open every day of the week.

At Village Deli, you can enjoy dining in the rustic and comfortable dining room or opt for outdoor seating with plenty of tables to sit outside and enjoy people watching on one of Cameron Village's busiest corners.

Village Deli cares about their customers and the quality of the food they offer. They've proved it with being able to stand the test of time. 20 years. Congratulations Village Deli! Stop in and wish them a Happy Anniversary!

#CVTRENDREPORT: I'm excited to partner with Cameron Village over the next few months to feature some of the great merchants in the Village and highlight some 2016 Fall Trends and great "hidden gems". I love shopping and dining local and it's been an amazing opportunity to get to know these merchants, their stories and their passion for what they do!

Village Deli & Grill
Location: 500 Daniels Street

Hours: Monday - Friday: 7:00am - 9:00pm
Saturday 8:00am - 9:00pm, Sunday 11:00am - 4:00pm

Friday, October 14, 2016

Wagyu + Wine at Capital Grille - NORTH HILLS

Last week, my friend Trish and I  enjoyed a long lunch in the lounge at the new Capital Grille in North Hills.  We were there to check out the WAGYU + WINE special that is currently being featured in their lounge. From now until November 20, you can enjoy one of three gourmet burgers of famed Wagyu beef paired with an exceptional glass of red wine from Duckhorn Vineyards Cabernet Sauvignon, 2013 or Goldeneye Pinot Noir 2013. This unique pairing is available for only $25 and is such a great deal.

You can choose from three delicious burgers including a Wagyu Cheeseburger with Havarti, Fried Egg and Crisp Onions, a Wild Mushroom Wagyu Cheeseburger with 15-Year Aged Balsamic Caramelized Onion, or a Wagyu Burger with Jarlsberg Cheese and Shallot Mayo. Each one comes with fries. I sampled both reds and they were fabulous and it was hard to make a choice between the two. Both were carefully selected to pair specifically with the burgers. This pairing for $25 is a great deal perfect for lunch or dinner with a friend or date night!

We decided to stay for dessert and selected a delicious Warm Double Chocolate Cake with Port Wine Infused Cherries and Ice Cream and Seasonal Berries with Vanilla Bean Crème Anglais. Both desserts paired nicely with a glass of port and topped off with a perfect temperature cappuccino! Needless to say, I did NOT need dinner! Did I mention we also sampled a STOLI DOLI, The Capital Grille Signature Martini. Stolichnaya Vodka infused with fresh pineapple, chilled and served straight up.

Service was amazing, the lounge is stunning, and we both left full and relaxed, having really enjoyed a rare long and leisurely lunch in North Hills.

For more info, you can click here. Reservations are not required and repeat visits are encouraged. ;-)

Capital Grille Lounge

A delicious seafood Amuse-bouche from the Chef!

We sampled this white wine that was truly AMAZING! (Not included in the W&W offering)

Wagyu Cheeseburger with Havarti, Fried Egg and Crisp Onions

Wild Mushroom Wagyu Cheeseburger with 15-Year Aged Balsamic Caramelized Onion

Seasonal Berries with Vanilla Bean Crème Anglais

Warm Double Chocolate Cake with Port Wine Infused Cherries and Ice Cream

Perfect cappuccino finish

Stoli Doli signature martini

Tuesday, October 11, 2016

Fresh Tacos, Pink Chips & Incredible Guacamole at Cantina 18

Last week I was lucky to sit down for lunch with some tasty tacos and Chef-proprietor, Jason Smith of 18 Restaurant Group at his Cantina 18 restaurant in Cameron Village Raleigh. Cantina 18 underwent a huge renovation nearly a year ago adding almost 2000 square feet to the original space and a much bigger, naturally lit and modern restaurant with an upstairs bar as well as downstairs and a flexible private event space. Cantina 18 hosts plenty of outdoor seating as well with doors that open out to the patio for enjoying a meal al fresco on nice days.

Chef-proprietor, Jason Smith is passionate about his farm to table Cantina. He relentlessly searches for the freshest seasonal ingredients from North Carolina farms and purveyors for his affordable take on Southern-Tex cuisine. He brought out catfish and shrimp tacos and an amazing shrimp salad with house made cilantro-lime vinaigrette. The seafood is sourced from Pamlico Sound. Local hydroponic lettuce is featured in tacos and salad dishes. Holly Grove Farm goat cheese from Mount Olive NC, adorns tacos and guacamole. All the flavors are fresh, local and delicious!

  1. During the month of October, Cantina 18 is serving up PINK tortilla chips with salsa partnering with Don Pancho Power of Pink, to help raise money for research and prevention of breast cancer during the month of October.
  2. Did you know that Cantina 18 offers a "Taco of the Day" EVERY DAY?! Along with a variety of different tacos on their seasonal menu, you will always have a unique 'taco of the day' featured for lunch and dinner. My favorite taco was the grilled chicken, apples, cranberries, goat cheese taco! Delicious and healthy!
  3. Attention GF fans! Everything other then flour tortillas in the restaurant is Gluten-free!
  4. Every day things like Cilantro-lime dressing and Fair Game Beverage Company Flying Pepper Tobego infused vodka Bloody Mary mix are made in-house daily and served up fresh at the restaurant. Also brunch is served Saturday and Sunday.
  5. I love guacamole. I have to say I was inspired by Chef Jason's take on guacamole with his addition of black beans and goat cheese! Goat cheese guacamole is made fresh to order at Cantina 18 and pairs very nicely with those pink chips!
  6. A glass of delicious and refreshing house made Sangria is on special every Friday for $6.50!

If you haven't been to Cantina 18, October is a great time to visit and enjoy this cooler Fall weather on the patio or at a table near the open doors.  Snack on pink chips and help a great cause.  Dig into some delicious guacamole and tacos and enjoy a guilt-free meal that's healthy and fresh while supporting North Carolina farms and purveyors. What's better then that?

#CVTRENDREPORT: I'm excited to partner with Cameron Village over the next few months to feature some of the great merchants in the Village and highlight some 2016 Fall Trends and great "hidden gems". I love shopping local and it's been an amazing opportunity to get to know these merchants, their stories and their passion for what they do! 

433 Daniels Street
Hours: Monday - Sunday: 11:00am - 10:00pm
Brunch: Saturday and Sunday morning 11-2pm

Thursday, October 6, 2016

Six Easy Ways to add a Touch of Fall to your Home

Fall is finally in the air in Raleigh and we are ready! I love looking for ways to add a little Fall style to my home. I spent some time this week in Cameron Village and wanted to share a couple great places where you are sure to find some really special items. Two fabulous spots for home decor in Cameron Village are The Local Squirrel and Nadeau. The Local Squirrel features a carefully curated locally produced collection of home goods, gifts and jewelry. Nadeau is a furniture store with unique, handcrafted one-of-a-kind wood furniture and accessories from around the globe at affordable prices. 

Fall is a good time to make your home more cozy and ready for holiday guests and parties. Below, I put together a list of six easy ways to add a little touch of Fall to your home right now!

01. Vintage style glassware. Rich, darker colors with beautiful patterns and texture adds a nice taste of Fall to your beverage carts, shelves or for hosting a cozy dinner party. These beautiful forest green glasses from The Local Squirrel in Cameron Village are stunning and have a nice weight to them. Cute North Carolina coasters are always fun and also make a nice gift item!

02. Add a wreath. Fall is the perfect time to add a wreath to your door. These wreathes exclusively from The Local Squirrel can go on your door now and stay there throughout Fall and Winter. Add a cute detail to them for the holidays! These stunning wreathes are made by Nicholas Askew, a local artist who hand cuts cotton from White Oak Farm where he grew up in NC to make his wreathes. His wreathes are gorgeous, unique and perfect for welcoming in Fall and enjoyed year round!

03. Add a new signature piece of furniture to your house. 
Nadeau, Furniture With a Soul in Cameron Village
is an amazing place to find that signature, one-of-a-kind piece to add some great style to your home. They are well stocked with an eclectic collection of furniture and accent pieces from around the world, with new shipments arriving all the time.  Furniture here is handcrafted and if you find something you like, you should take it with you immediately because there may only be one of them and things move fast here! While I was visiting there was a shipment of beautiful pieces that had just arrived from India and I found several items that would be a great addition to our home! The furniture was priced very affordable as well!

Beautiful desk and chair

Cabinet with repurposed wood from India

Rich colors and great height on this cabinet

Perfect piece for storing all that red wine!

This rustic, wide teak bench is perfect for adding to the front porch with some cushions

04. Add a fun accent pillow. These great pillows are perfect for tossing on a chair or couch to add instant Fall decor to your bedroom or living room.

Pretty cow pillow from The Local Squirrel

Stitched acorn pillow from The Local Squirrel

Love pillows from Nadeau

05. Add a fun light fixture or some new wall art. Create your own gallery wall with some fun pieces from The Local Squirrel mixed in with your own art or framed photos. These plush trophy heads like the lamb's head pictured below are super adorable for a playroom or a nursery. Add a little local art to any room. The copper light fixture is stunning and the perfect color accent for cooler temps.

06. Little things matter. Even adding some fun accent pieces to your space can instantly add charm and fun to a space without breaking the budget. I found some fun stuff at both The Local Squirrel and Nadeau that were affordable and fantastic!

Add a basket of beautiful acorns to a coffee table

Delicate and adorable

Bold accessories

Adorable owls
Gold leaf accessories

#CVTRENDREPORT: I'm excited to partner with Cameron Village over the next few months to feature some of the great merchants in the Village and highlight some 2016 Fall Trends and great "hidden gems". I love shopping local and it's been an amazing opportunity to get to know these merchants, their stories and their passion for what they do! 

The Local Squirrel
Location: 2012 Cameron Street
Hours: Monday-Saturday: 10:00 am - 6:00 pm
Sunday: 1-5 pm
Find them on Instagram: @TheLocalSquirrel and Facebook: TheLocalSquirrel

Nadeau, Furniture with a Soul
Location: 426 Woodburn Road
Hours: Monday - Saturday: 10:00 am - 6:00 pm  Sunday: 12:00 pm - 5:00 pm
Phone: (919) 856-9646