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.

Thursday, October 2, 2014

Beericana Rocks Holly Springs!

This past weekend we attended the newest Craft Beer & Music Festival in the area, Beericana. This first ever Holly Springs event was a little different than most beer tasting events we've attended in the past which have generally been hosted in downtown locations in both Raleigh and Durham. Beericana was held in Holly Springs at Sugg Farm Park. We google-mapped it and headed out to the event in a part of the Triangle we've never explored. Coming from North Raleigh, we took the new section of 540 which was easy and traffic-free.

Upon arriving, we were greeted with friendly volunteers everywhere with organized parking and easy access into the venue. The relatively new park provided a beautiful grassy park setting and partnered with some fabulous NC weather,  conditions were set for a great day of beer tasting!

The tents were set up for easy access and lines were at a minimum. VIP tickets allowed for guests to taste for over an hour before the general public arrived.  There was a great mix of local NC breweries as well as some well known national breweries. There was also a chance to sample and meet some of the newest breweries in the state, still in the development stages with their beers/breweries.

 Free water was everywhere, volunteers were easy to recognize and in abundance, and it was easy to access several food trucks for some great food options. Live music was provided on a stage and added to the comfortable and relaxing atmosphere of the whole event. The park was really a great location and we enjoyed talking and tasting with other beer folks.

Not only was the event a hit, but two non-profits benefited from the event, Meg's Smile Foundation and the NC Brewers' Guild.

Well done 919Beer! We hope the event will be back again next year! We appreciate how well  organized the event was and the ability to get to know some local breweries on a more personal and relaxed level.

Below are a few pictures we took from the event. Several photos are courtesy of Matt Lynn, "Brewtographer Extrordinaire"! Follow him on Instagram for more fabulous beer photos @matagonia.brew.

Monday, September 29, 2014

Raleigh Coffee Break! #NationalCoffeeDay

It happens to be #NATIONALCOFFEEDAY and since I love spending time with friends, family and clients in many of Raleigh's cozy and fabulous coffee venues, I pulled together a few random moments from the past year. Enjoy!

Sola Coffee Cafe

Morning Times

Slingshot Coffee

Sola Coffee Cafe

Morning Times

Jubala Village Coffee

Saxbys Coffee in North Hills

Jubala Village Coffee

Coquette Brasserie

Joule Coffee

Joe Van Gogh

Sola Coffee Cafe


Yellow Dog Bread Company

CAM - Creative Mornings RDU/Counter Culture Coffee

New World Cafe

Cup a Joe

Sola Coffee Cafe

Slingshot Iced Coffee

Jubala Village Coffee

Sola Coffee Cafe

Sola Coffee Cafe

BREW - Downtown Raleigh

Friday, September 19, 2014

RALEIGHWHATSUP: 3 Year Anniversary Today!

Today marks officially three  years since I sat down and posted my very first post to RaleighWhatsUp. What I find ironic is that my first post featured a concert at Red Hat Amphitheater with the band Better then Ezra. It was short and sweet but the start to something I was still trying to figure out, yet was compelled to do.

Last night we went to see Lorde at Red Hat Amphitheater. We took our teen daughters who were SO excited and happier then ever to get a chance to see one of their favorite musical artists.  Words can't express what seeing her and hearing her meant to the girls and watching them have a moment that they will remember forever is pretty darn magical (despite my guilt of having them out late on a school night!)

Raleigh has been host to SO MANY AMAZING musical performances lately it's a little unreal. Practically every week I see friends and local folks enjoying some of the coolest bands on the planet right now right here in Raleigh. We try to get to as many as we can.  I think the Red Hat venue is stunning and I like that it's not overwhelmingly large and I feel good bringing the girls there as well. The setting always seems to be admired by the musicians on the stage with their view being the city skyline and the shimmer wall.

I feel passionate about Raleigh and all the cool things that are continuing to happen to this city. I am so grateful to all the other local blogger folks that keep you updated, sharing their passion for Raleigh and the area as well. They have become great friends.

I hope to continue to provide you with more information on local events and how to support your local small businesses. I will continue to help small businesses. Whether it's a local brewery, coffee shop, boutique, restaurant or event, I feel strongly about getting people educated on how fantastic it is to shop/drink/eat local...putting your money back into our community and what it means to support these small business owners. They put their heart and souls into their businesses and not only do they want to share with you their offerings, but they also want to get to know YOU. I will say from personal experience it can make the difference in a day to be greeted when you walk into a local shop, like running into a good friend. I think that's part of why I still feel so strong about it even now, three years later.

Get out this weekend and enjoy what Raleigh has to offer! And thanks for continuing to support my efforts!