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  • Writer's pictureAlex Nicoletti

Summer Restaurant Roundup

Raleigh has a multitude of restaurants, and I am on a quest to try as many as possible. Here's a few of my favorites from this summer. I'm no good at deciding which restaurant is my favorite (that's like choosing a favorite child), so this list is in no particular order.

Sushi Mon

If you've been around me for 2 minutes, you know that I'm obsessed with Sushi Mon. Seriously, the waiter recognizes me at this point. This restaurant is located in a corporate building off of Glenwood Avenue, but the quant, personal feel provides an intimate dining experience.

Heads up - I would suggest parking in the parking garage behind the building. Also, they do not do takeout on Friday and Saturday nights (sadly).

You seriously can't go wrong with anything on the menu. Some of my favorites are the Truffle Tuna Roll, the Rock Salt Seared Salmon, and the King Shrimp Sushi or Sashimi.

Here's what I've ordered so far (pictured left to right)

  • XO Tuna

  • King Shrimp Sushi & Salmon Sushi

  • Truffle Tuna Roll

  • Yellowtail Crudo

  • Rock Salt Seared Salmon

  • Kiss of Fire Roll & Rainbow Roll

  • Crunch Salmon Roll

  • Miso Black Cod

  • Toro Sushi

  • Miso Soup (not pictured)


Barcelona Wine Bar

This is one of my favorite restaurants in downtown Raleigh. It's the perfect tapas bar, and it's great for large groups that love to share. I'm pretty sure there is a requirement to order an Espresso Martini upon entry (okay, maybe I made that up, but there should be. Their espresso martinis are incredible). The waiter also came around with a perrón - it was so much fun.

The menu is packed, and I can't wait to try more. Everything is small and relatively inexpensive, which makes it perfect for sharing a ton of food. I enjoyed it so much that I forgot to take pictures of everything.

Here's what I've tried so far (pictured left to right)

  • Patatas Bravas

  • Espresso Martini, of course

  • Steak Paillard

  • Paella Mariscos

  • Zucchini

  • Spiced beef empanadas (not pictured)

  • Burrata (not pictured)

  • Albondigas (not pictured)

  • Chorizo w/ sweet & sour figs (not pictured)

  • Chocolate cake (not pictured)


Crawford and Son

Crawford and Son is a great date night spot with a dark atmosphere and a small menu. The food is delicious and they have a fun cocktail menu. I highly suggest the Heirloom Tomato Salad and Watermelon Poke, and of course, the Manchego-Herb Biscuits. I also tried Orange Wine for the first time, and I've been obsessed ever since.

The restaurant is located on Person St, which is a great place to walk around on a lovely date night.

What I ordered:

  • Heirloom Tomato Salad with Whipped Mozzarella

  • Squid Ink Rigatoni

  • Watermelon Poke

  • Manchego-Herb Biscuits

  • Crispy Eggplant 'Caponata'



Amalias is the quintessential Italian Restaurant in the Raleigh area, located in an adorable older house in Wake Forest. This restaurant is the perfect place for a date night or a celebratory dinner. Much of the food is imported from Italy and from locally sourced farmers. They change their menu often, so you will always be able to try something new.

I didn't have the chance to take pictures since I went to this restaurant for a work dinner. You'll just have to take my word for it!

I highly suggest with Caprese, which is made with Mozzarella imported from Italy. The Polpettine D'anatra (duck and Pancetta meatballs) and Tagliere Di Formaggi (fine cheeses) were crowd favorites. I ordered the Seasonal Risotto, a mushroom risotto with seared scallops, and I'm still dreaming of this dish. Do NOT forget to try their Focaccia and Tiramisu, trust me.

Here's what I ordered:

  • Caprese

  • Polpettine D'anatra

  • Tagliere Di Formaggi

  • Seasonal Risotto

  • Focaccia

  • Tiramisu

  • A delicious glass of Montepulciano


I'd love to here from you! If you have other restaurant suggestions, menu items to order, or you tried something on this list and loved it, let me know. The Raleigh restaurant scene is growing, and I want to try all of it!

I hope you enjoy!


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