North Carolina’s exciting and colourful city, Durham, is an unmissable spot while in the Triangle area. An energetic and active cultural hub, Durham boasts music, dance, and art festivals, and is home to numerous nationally acclaimed restaurants. The eclectic selection and great variety of tastes make Durham’s culinary scene one to explore. Following our previous selection, here are our top 10 cultural venues revealing the city’s stimulating diversity.
Dame’s Chicken and Waffles
‘We didn’t invent Chicken & Waffles; we want to be the only ones you think of’ – says this venue’s mission statement. It was during the Harlem Renaissance in the 1920s to 1940s that this seemingly odd pairing became a hit as the first real late-night food combination. Dame’s Chicken and Waffles is the venue that gave it a brand. Located on West Main Street, Dame’s is an exciting culinary experience, where Southern fried chicken and European sweet waffles are the simple basis for a wide selection of mouthwatering options. Try the original combo, or ask for the house signature chicken and waffle dishes separately. Dame’s gives a tantalising taste cavalcade that can be wonderfully enjoyed with a range of local craft beers or the seasonal wine collection.
Dame’s Chicken and Waffles, 317 West Main Street, Durham, NC, USA, +1 919 682 9235
604 West Village
Located in a former tobacco warehouse in Durham’s downtown area, 604 West Village developed a unique and historical milieu, while bringing authentic Italian gastro-culture to the city. The interior is as would be expected: wall bricks, high ceilings, wooden floors, and some decorative art on the walls. While the indoor area is somewhat dimly lit, the spacious patio is a chance to enjoy a fresh and tranquil meal outside. The menu is exciting and unusual, featuring not only classic Italian homemade pastas but also seasonal seafood and other specialties that clearly expose a creative kitchen in the background. With various events, from Latino nights and Monday Martinis, 604 West Village ensures a multi-faceted fine dining experience.
604 West Village, 604 Fernway Ave, Durham, NC, USA, +1 919 680 6333
Blu Seafood and Bar
Blu Seafood and Bar is the best seafood spot in town, if not in the whole Triangle area. Supporting local fishing communities, the restaurant doesn’t compromise when it comes to freshness and quality, and this, as well as the impeccable service, is what brings the continued success among locals and visitors. The setting is faithfully inspired by maritime elements, with a dominating blue color and tiny aquarium windows inserted into the sidewall. This is an upscale restaurant, where the focus is concentrated on serving a rich variety of delectable, innovative, and exciting assortments of seafood dishes. Choose from the special oyster menu, the nightly and weekly changing menu, the fixed lunch and dinner menus, or try the daily catch.
Blu Seafood and Bar, 2002 Hillsborough Rd, Durham, NC, USA, +1 919 286 9777
Yamazushi Japanese Fine Dining
Open since 1986, Yamazushi Japanese Fine Dining is a tiny traditional Japanese venue in the heart of Durham, where the past is gently brought into the present. The ritual atmosphere of Japanese tea ceremonies is echoed at Yamazushi by featuring Kaiseki multi-course meals. This is an eight-course special line of small-portioned traditional dishes, served in strictly timed intervals over 2.5 hours. Imagine flower-shaped sashimi and other delicacies, all presented with care and attention to detail. The success of the venue lies in the masterful hands of Chef George Hitoshi Yamazawa, who, by creating exceptional flavours from the freshest ingredients, demonstrates more than 40 years of outstanding cooking experience daily. Enjoy the traditional and serene Japanese atmosphere, with an excellent selection of sake and authentic oriental teas. Yamazushi is by reservation only and all reservations must be made 24 hours in advance.
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Culture Trip launched in 2011 with a simple yet passionate mission: to inspire people to go beyond their boundaries and experience what makes a place, its people and its culture special and meaningful — and this is still in our DNA today. We are proud that, for more than a decade, millions like you have trusted our award-winning recommendations by people who deeply understand what makes certain places and communities so special.
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