Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Girl's Night Out - A list of Favorites!

Believe it or not, it's HOLIDAY time! Time to start shopping! Friday, November 21 from 6-10pm, Vend Raleigh's Holiday Sip & Shop will be held in the beautiful  Cobblestone Hall building in Raleigh's historical City Market.


Cary Heise of Vend Raleigh, asked me if I could put together some suggestions for the ladies to make this a quality Girl's Night Out!  I've put together a list of some of my personal favorite drinking/dining spots located in the heart of downtown Raleigh, within walking distance to Cobblestone Hall. 

When making your plans with girlfriends to shop local be sure to plan some quality time together nearby to eat and drink local at some of the amazing restaurants nearby for dinner, drinks, or both!

Within walking distance to City Market/Cobblestone Hall, downtown Raleigh offers a vast array of many different kinds of food from Southern Cuisine to Laotian, Mexican, Asian, Lebanese, Italian and much more!

H I T  L I S T



DINNER & DRINKS
Beasley's Chicken & Honey
Chuck's Burgers
Oro Restaurant & Lounge
Buku Global Street Food
Oak City Meatball Shoppe
Cala Vela Empanada & Tequila Bar
Battistella's
Busy Bee Cafe
Sitti Authentic Lebanese
Gravy Italian-American Kitchen
Bida Manda Laotian Restaurant & Bar
Centro Mexican Restaurant & Tequila Bar
Garland
Jimmy V's Osteria + Bar
Sono Japanese Sushi Restaurant & Bar
Zinda New Asian Cuisine
Mo's Diner

EVENING COFFEE DRINKS
Joule Coffee
Morning Times



BEER & COCKTAIL DRINKS (and late night!)
The Raleigh Times Bar
Fox Liquor Bar
Foundation
The Hive
Neptune's Parlor

DESSERT & DRINKS
Bittersweet



Thursday, November 6, 2014

Instagram Travel Thursday: Nashville

Last weekend was spent exploring more of Nashville's amazing food and drink offerings. This was my second time in Nashville so I had some new places I wanted to check out as well as revisiting a couple favorites.

Arriving Saturday afternoon, we headed to one of Nashville's outstanding Breweries, Tennessee Brew Works. Great indoor and outdoor space. Some tasty brews too. It was the perfect way to enjoy a Tennessee sunset on the upstairs patio. Try the Basil Ryeman, a Farmhouse Ale. Tasty and appropriately chosen since we were in town to see a show at the Ryman Auditorium!

A photo posted by chana lynn (@raleighwhatsup) on


Photo opps and shopping in several of the local neighborhoods.

A photo posted by chana lynn (@raleighwhatsup) on


A return to one of my very favorite places in East Nashville is the famous Barista Parlor. Coffee and bacon egg cheese biscuit perfection. This place is a MUST if you are in Nashville.

A photo posted by chana lynn (@raleighwhatsup) on


A photo posted by chana lynn (@raleighwhatsup) on

While in Nashville, you have to spend a little time on the famous Broadway in downtown Nashville.  It's the honky tonk strip. Live music from every venue and all the country music you could ever want. And of course cowboy boots! We were in town to see Jason Isbell at the Ryman Auditorium.

A photo posted by chana lynn (@raleighwhatsup) on


We were thrilled to have dinner Sunday night at the famous Husk restaurant featuring Chef Sean Brock. Located not too far from the historic Broadway, the heart of Downtown Nashville, this restaurant redefines Southern cuisine. Heirloom ingredients grown locally (they have their own garden!), an open collaborative kitchen and a stunning location, Husk is definitely a must for a truly amazing dining experience.

A photo posted by chana lynn (@raleighwhatsup) on


A photo posted by chana lynn (@raleighwhatsup) on


Pinewood Social is another must visit while in Nashville. This place is everything from relaxed working coffee shop to dining with friends, to cocktail bar happy hour, it also includes a vintage bowling alley, patio and pool! The relaxed and hip style of this place is somewhere you will want to be!

A photo posted by chana lynn (@raleighwhatsup) on


A photo posted by chana lynn (@raleighwhatsup) on

A quick stop at the famous Gruhn Guitar store! Stunning inventory relocated to 8th Avenue.

A photo posted by chana lynn (@raleighwhatsup) on


Another music stop at Third Man Records, Jack White's record label. Eclectic record shop and studio. Almost all of the records are recorded, printed and pressed in Nashville, TN and produced by Jack White.

A photo posted by chana lynn (@raleighwhatsup) on

Most importantly, when taking a trip to Nashville, bring along some good company! Always more fun to share these amazing experiences with truly great friends. Photo taken at Pub 5 in downtown Nashville.

A photo posted by chana lynn (@raleighwhatsup) on


This post is part of the Instagram Travel Thursday link-up!
http://www.skimbacolifestyle.com/instagram-travel-thursday-linky

Monday, November 3, 2014

RDUBATON: Instameet! Celebrating 2 Years of the RDUBaton at the NCMA



Saturday may have been cold, gray and gloomy, but for several of us, it was a great afternoon spent at the NC Museum of Art celebrating two years of the RDUBaton! We met up with the @rdubaton team to celebrate their project's second birthday with the first-ever #rdubatoninstameet. Saturday combined two of my favorite things...visiting the NC Museum of Art and meeting local people that share the same passion about community and social media. NCMA has to be one of my top places in the Raleigh area to visit. I love hanging out here and exploring, inside the buildings, the galleries, the many quiet gardens or walking the NCMA Park. Sunny or rainy, this place has many things to see and do and I always find something new every time I go. The other favorite thing is using Instagram to share as I explore Raleigh and meeting other folks from the community who share the same passion. The RDUBaton is a great resource for anyone looking to learn more about the Triangle and the many great places there are to visit. I love seeing each person's personality reflected each time someone takes the Baton around for the day to their favorite local spots.

RDUBaton is a collaborative photo project to highlight life around Raleigh, Durham, Chapel Hill and Cary using Instagram. RDUBaton was founded by Brittany Iery (@brittanyiery) and Susannah Brinkley (@slbrinkley) in 2012 out of their shared love for the culture in the Triangle region. They were inspired by the NYC Baton, who allowed them to start their version of the Baton here in the Triangle. Recently they stepped down to pursue other projects. Two new co-captains currently lead the Baton, Laney Tipton (@lgtipton12) and Toni Chester(@tonicat).

Go to RDUBaton.com to find out more about how to sign up if you are interested in holding the baton for a day!

I've shared below a few of my Instagram shots from the meetup on Saturday, but check out the hashtag #rdubatoninstameet to see many of the fabulous shots captured on Saturday from other talented local folks!

A photo posted by chana lynn (@raleighwhatsup) on


A photo posted by chana lynn (@raleighwhatsup) on


A photo posted by chana lynn (@raleighwhatsup) on


A photo posted by chana lynn (@raleighwhatsup) on


A photo posted by chana lynn (@raleighwhatsup) on


A photo posted by chana lynn (@raleighwhatsup) on


A photo posted by chana lynn (@raleighwhatsup) on


A photo posted by chana lynn (@raleighwhatsup) on


A photo posted by RDU Baton (@rdubaton) on

Thursday, October 9, 2014

New Toast Bar at Sola Coffee Cafe

Sola Coffee Cafe is now offering a brand new TOAST BAR in addition to their current menu offerings. Inspired by current trends from San Francisco and other West coast coffee shops and restaurants, the artisanal toast is a delicious and fresh compliment to your favorite hot or cold beverage.

Whether you lean towards a sweet treat like donuts or cupcakes or prefer a fresh baked biscuit or muffin, toast lends itself nicely to unique, creative and satisfying new options for pairing with coffee or tea. Try a sweet or savory (or spicy!) toast to compliment your breakfast, or late afternoon coffee.

Sola is exploring creative options, offering about five different varieties of toast from their new Toast Bar menu.  Challah bread with peanut butter or nutella,bananas, and cinnamon honey is one tasty option for a sweet tooth, or a fresh baguette with melted gruyere, green apple, and maple sriracha giving it a nice little kick for another. Other cheeses, spreads and seasonal produce combined with savory drizzles make for a delicious and healthy start to the day or afternoon pick me up.

goat cheese, green apple,cinnamon honey on Dakota bread
Tuesday night Sola invited several local foodies to come in and sample the new menu. We offered suggestions and our thoughts on flavorful topping options while enjoying new ingredient combinations and seasonal flavors. Personally I loved the goat cheese paired with apple and cinnamon honey on Dakota bread. Another personal favorite was Sola's own granola mix (which they sell!) on a grainy toast with almond butter and cinnamon honey (the perfect post-workout breakfast with coffee!).

Challah with peanut butter OR nutella, bananas, cinnamon honey
Personally I think the opportunity for ideas are endless and using local breads and toppings allow for creativity, while keeping the menu fresh and simple. After all, it's really about the BEST ingredients which Sola has always subscribed to for all their drink and food offerings.

The new Toast menu at Sola changes seasonally & weekly and is available before 11am and after 1:30 each day. Prices range from $2.40-$3.95.

Stop in soon, try something new and ask for TOAST.!


Mixing it up with gruyere, green apple, baguette and toppings.


Granola and Grain


Local foodies tasting new flavors.

John talks a little about keeping it fresh and local.