Cary Food Guide: 10 Must-Eat Restaurants & Street Food Stalls in Cary

April 14, 2018 Mikaela Didonna

Cary /ˈkæri/ is the seventh-largest municipality in North Carolina. Cary is predominantly in Wake County, with a small area in Chatham County in the U.S. state of North Carolina and is the county's second-largest municipality and the third-largest municipality in The Triangle after Raleigh and Durham.
Things to do in Cary

1. Herons

100 Woodland Pond Dr, The Umstead Hotel and Spa, 100 Woodland Pond Drive, Cary, NC 27513-2131 Reservations, Outdoor Seating, Private Dining, Seating, Waitstaff, Parking Available, Valet Parking, Wheelchair Accessible, Serves Alcohol, Full Bar, Wine and Beer, Accepts American Express, Accepts Mastercard, Accepts Visa, Free Wifi, Accepts Discover American, Vegetarian Friendly, Vegan Options, Gluten Free Options Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner, Brunch, Drinks, Late Night SGD 54 - SGD 105 +1 919-447-4200
Excellent
74%
Good
16%
Satisfactory
7%
Poor
2%
Terrible
1%
Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 426 reviews

Herons

Herons delivers a dining experience that is both refined and relaxed. Led by James Beard Semifinalist in 2016 and 2017, Executive Chef Steven Greene, the expertly trained staff warms the room, providing seamless service that helps guests enjoy the pleasures of an elegant meal. The main dining room offers a full view of the kitchen, while floor-to-ceiling windows let in plenty of natural light and overlook the terrace, lawn and wooded lake beyond. In addition to the 98-seat main dining room, a semi-private dining room seats up to eight, while the private dining room accommodates 12 and showcases pottery by North Carolina artist Ben Owen. Outdoor seating invites al fresco dining in the spring, summer and fall. The neutral palette of the décor in Herons provides a sophisticated, yet understated backdrop to the bright and inspired flavor combinations artfully presented. The dinner menu changes seasonally and draws heavily on produce harvested from The Umstead’s own sustainable farm. The exceptional quality of Herons’ wine list been recognized with a prestigious “Award of Excellence” from Wine Spectator.

Reviewed By Aurora L

My husband and I had the four course dinner with wine pairings at our anniversary. The environment is quiet, romantic and the service is just pleasant. The food and wine pairing were delicious! The little palette cleansers served in-between courses are just adorable. We enjoyed a full two hours of dining.
Many times when I decide to dine at an expensive restaurant, I worry that the expensiveness comes mostly from the marketing and the food itself wasn't of top quality. This is not the problem of Herons! I feel the food, the drink and the experience well worth my money.

2. Bosphorus Restaurant

329 N Harrison Ave Ste A, Cary, NC 27513-4560 Takeout, Seating, Waitstaff, Parking Available, Highchairs Available, Wheelchair Accessible Mediterranean, Turkish, Middle Eastern, Vegetarian Friendly, Vegan Options, Halal, Gluten Free Options Lunch, Dinner +1 919-460-1300
Excellent
68%
Good
25%
Satisfactory
5%
Poor
1%
Terrible
1%
Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 336 reviews

Bosphorus Restaurant

Reviewed By jimtX5394UM

We had dinner there on Feb. 17 and really enjoyed our meal and the attentive service. My Brother-in-law and his wife were with us. They lived in Turkey several years ago and both said that it was the best Turkish food they had eaten outside of Turkey. Reasonable prices as well.

3. Doherty's Irish Pub & Restaurant

1979, High House Rd, Cary, NC 27519 Takeout, Outdoor Seating, Seating, Waitstaff, Parking Available, Television, Highchairs Available, Wheelchair Accessible, Serves Alcohol, Full Bar, Free Wifi American, Irish, Bar, Pub, Gastropub, Gluten Free Options, Vegetarian Friendly Lunch, Dinner, Brunch, Late Night, Drinks SGD 9 - SGD 30 +1 919-388-9930
Excellent
63%
Good
30%
Satisfactory
5%
Poor
1%
Terrible
1%
Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 397 reviews

Doherty's Irish Pub & Restaurant

To Our Patrons,We created this relaxing and fun neighborhood Irish pub in Cary for you as a place to meet to bring your friends and family, meet new friends and get to know our family at Doherty's! Let us know if there is anything we can do to make your time with us more enjoyable! Enjoy your favorite pint from one of the ​19 draughts on tap and some Irish - American fare from our menu prepared daily using only fresh ingredients by Chef Irais and his team. We also have a kid's menu for the little ones!​We are open for lunch, dinner, late night and serve a Sunday brunch. Our pub has 7 HD TV's with multiple sports packages for you and your friends to enjoy your favorite team games! We also have live music 3 nights per week, patio dining, drink specials and free WiFi. The "Whiskey Room" is our private dining room that can be reserved Monday - Thursday by phone. We hope to see you soon!

Reviewed By pfafftonian - North Carolina

We went to Doherty's for Sunday lunch and were very pleased. I had Irish biscuits and gravy - similar to good ol' Southern b&g, except that the gravy was sprinkled with corned beef, which we found out it "corned" in-house. My meal came with two eggs and fruit. Plenty of food without overdoing it. My wife had a chicken salad sandwich where the chicken salad was flavored (slightly) with Irish whiskey. It was quite good.

The restaurant has a very large bar area that includes a number of high-top tables, and a separate area with more standard tables and booths. Although there was a good crowd, it was not overly noisy, which we consider a plus.

Our server was very pleasant and helpful. She answered our questions thoroughly. I look forward to going back to Doherty's.

4. Bad Daddy's Burger Bar

3300 Village Market Pl, Morrisville, NC 27560-7549 Takeout, Seating, Waitstaff, Parking Available, Television, Wheelchair Accessible, Serves Alcohol, Full Bar, Wine and Beer, Accepts American Express, Accepts Mastercard, Accepts Visa, Accepts Discover, Highchairs Available, Free Wifi, Accepts Credit Cards American, Gastropub, Bar, Gluten Free Options Lunch, Dinner SGD 13 - SGD 20 +1 919-297-0953
Excellent
55%
Good
36%
Satisfactory
6%
Poor
2%
Terrible
1%
Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 149 reviews

Bad Daddy's Burger Bar

BAD is GOOD. Like when something is so outrageous you can't help but love it. That's the inspiration at Bad Daddy's. Here, the humble burger is given super star status. With premium beef, sizzled up hot on our grill, and surrounded with artisan ingredients, toppings, & condiments. If you aren't in the mood for beef, we have so many other options: from chicken to Turkey burgers, black bean burgers to tuna burgers, not to mention the chopped salads and the full Create Your Own menu. Even if you have special dietary requests, like gluten free, we can accommodate. Looking for a cool place to hang out and grab a drink? With our award winning line-up of North Carolina craft beers and fresh squeezed cocktails, you are going to love this place!

Reviewed By Redbud - Cary, North Carolina

I only want to go to a burger place that lets me order it exactly the way I want it (I'm talking to you Red Robin). Bad Daddy's is one of those places. Always get a juice burger cooked rare to medium rate served in...MoreThanks for taking the time to leave Bad Daddy's a review! We are so glad that you enjoyed your visit and we hope to see you back in again soon!

5. Lucky 32 Southern Kitchen

7307 Tryon Rd, Cary, NC 27518-6603 Takeout, Reservations, Outdoor Seating, Private Dining, Seating, Waitstaff, Parking Available, Television, Highchairs Available, Wheelchair Accessible, Serves Alcohol, Full Bar, Free Wifi American, Vegetarian Friendly, Vegan Options, Gluten Free Options Lunch, Dinner, Brunch, Late Night SGD 13 - SGD 37 +1 919-233-1632
Excellent
56%
Good
33%
Satisfactory
8%
Poor
2%
Terrible
1%
Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 951 reviews

Lucky 32 Southern Kitchen

Join us for lunch and dinner 7 days a week, and for brunch on Saturday and Sunday, at our Cary restuarant. Enjoy seasonal menus of Southern fare in our dining room, grill bar room, or outdoor dining on our beautifully landscaped terrace. Our flavorful southern menu using many local ingredients grown right here in NC, along with our Wine Spectator award winning wine list. We are home to Voodoo Sauce, and often have cooking classes by our chef. Wednesday night special is skillet fried chicken. Our restaurant is near MacGregor Downs Country Club, Regency Park, Koko Booth Amphitheatre, Wake Med Hospital, Crescent Green Shopping Center, Waverly Place, Cary Auto Park, MacGregor Village, Homewood Suites, Comfort Suites, La Quinta Inn, Hampton Inn, Lifetime Fitness, Crossroads Shopping Center, and Lochmere Golf Club.

Reviewed By JoeBoxter - Cary, North Carolina

We made a reservation at the restaurant and requested a booth when doing so. We arrived a little early and were told we would be seated closer to our reservation time. Unfortunately, our wait was over a half hour past our reservation because no booths opened up. To be fair, we dine at the restaurant often and rarely have to wait very long to get our preferred booth. The manager gave us a complimentary appetizer which was appreciated. My wife ordered salmon, sweet potatoes and green beans all of which were delicious. I ordered beef brisket which was pretty dry and hard although the portion was generous. The fries and carrots were very good. The service was OK, not up to the restaurants usual standards. Our server seemed inexperienced.

6. Barry's Cafe

2851 Jones Franklin Rd, Raleigh, NC 27606-4007 Takeout, Outdoor Seating, Seating, Waitstaff, Parking Available, Free Off-Street Parking, Television, Highchairs Available, Wheelchair Accessible, Wine and Beer, Accepts American Express, Accepts Mastercard, Accepts Visa, Free Wifi, Accepts Discover, Accepts Credit Cards American, Cafe, Diner, Gluten Free Options, Vegetarian Friendly Lunch, Breakfast, Brunch SGD 7 - SGD 13 +1 919-859-3555
Excellent
75%
Good
17%
Satisfactory
6%
Poor
1%
Terrible
1%
Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 174 reviews

Barry's Cafe

Barry's Cafe serves great comfort food both breakfast and lunch. It is decorated with Firefighter memorabilia from 23 countries and all 50 states. We have provided emergency foodservice to over 100 local fire stations since 1994, at no charge. We have a separate Foundation that supports us with the food cost. It has a 501-3c if you would like to help.

Reviewed By Liz D - The Villages, Florida

A paralyzing ice storm and an emergency request to provide food and hot drinks to firefighters, first responders and victims, prompted the store owner, Barry, to establish an endowment fund to assist care givers involv.ed in future emergent situations. Barry's' is a relaxing, clean, and comfortable place that provides good meals, and large portions at moderate prices. Dining is casual and kid friendly. From helmets to hatches, fire hydrants to patches, the walls tell a story of the many firefighters and first responders who have donated memorabilia . Barry's offers an Allergy Menu that has gluten free, lactose free , soy, egg and peanut free options. Just let the server know. This is a fun place to stop when in th Raleigh area. Open Monday-Saturday 6:30-3p. Sunday 8-2:30 pm. Breakfast all day. Lunch starts at 11:am

7. Kababish Cafe

201 W Chatham St, Suite 103, Cary, NC 27511-3289 Takeout, Reservations, Outdoor Seating, Seating, Waitstaff, Highchairs Available, Wheelchair Accessible, Parking Available Indian, Mediterranean, Middle Eastern, Pakistani, Vegetarian Friendly, Vegan Options, Halal, Gluten Free Options Lunch, Dinner, Brunch SGD 3 - SGD 33 +1 919-377-8794
Excellent
77%
Good
15%
Satisfactory
6%
Poor
1%
Terrible
1%
Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 115 reviews

Kababish Cafe

About Kababish Cafe <br>Kababish, like kababs and more…stylish, delivers on the promise of its name with an authentic, yet modern take on Pakistani cuisine. Recipient of Best of the Best Award, Syed Yousuf endeavors to create dishes that are authentic Pakistani and Indian with western adaptation with his talented team to create a restaurant that would re-define how Pakistani cuisine is presented on the grand stage. A restaurant that has prestigious reviews and write ups in local magazines and news.<br>The team shares an endeavor to improve the purest traditional and regional cuisines, while simultaneously creating innovative, modern dishes and interpretation. Our passion is to offer dining experiences to satisfy all aspects of fine cuisine, in a vibrant and casual ambience. Kababish is a place of gathering, a place of celebration, a place for business and a place for pleasure.<br>Kababish has in a short time earned the reputation of the best Indian Restaurant in the Triangle area.

Reviewed By caro1262016 - Raleigh, North Carolina

Would not recommend this restaurant to anybody! At 9pm the bright lights were turned on and we were told that the restaurant was closed. Cold not even finish our drinks... Extremely rude attitude towards customers. They won't see me again...

8. Lugano Ristorante

1060 Darrington Dr, Cary, NC 27513-8133 Parking Available, Takeout, Reservations, Private Dining, Seating, Waitstaff, Street Parking, Highchairs Available, Wheelchair Accessible, Serves Alcohol, Full Bar, Accepts American Express, Accepts Mastercard, Accepts Visa, Accepts Discover, Accepts Credit Cards Italian, Vegetarian Friendly, Vegan Options, Gluten Free Options Lunch, Dinner, Brunch +1 919-468-7229
Excellent
58%
Good
25%
Satisfactory
12%
Poor
4%
Terrible
1%
Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 294 reviews

Lugano Ristorante

Reviewed By docnc - Raleigh, North Carolina

This restaurant is well situated, Not far from Brier Creek, RTP and even Raleigh and Durham. It is the best Italian food we have had in the RTP area. Reasonably priced. Love the chicken marsala, and also the Lobster in cream sauce over black pasta. It is a huge restaurant and good for couples or large groups. Have been here over 10 times and have never been disappointed by either the food or the staff.

9. Firebirds Wood Fired Grill

3200 Village Market Pl, Park West Shopping Center, Morrisville, NC 27560-7581 Takeout, Outdoor Seating, Seating, Waitstaff, Parking Available, Free Off-Street Parking, Television, Wheelchair Accessible, Serves Alcohol, Full Bar, Accepts American Express, Accepts Mastercard, Accepts Visa, Free Wifi, Accepts Discover, Reservations, Highchairs Available, Accepts Credit Cards American, Steakhouse, Gluten Free Options Lunch, Dinner SGD 28 - SGD 39 +1 919-653-0111
Excellent
46%
Good
35%
Satisfactory
18%
Poor
0%
Terrible
1%
Overall Ratings

4 based on 122 reviews

Firebirds Wood Fired Grill

Firebirds Wood Fired Grill is located at Park West Village at the intersection of Chapel Hill Rd and Cary Parkway. We offer authentic wood-fired steaks, seafood, specialty cocktails and select wines. Join us for Bar Bite specials Monday thru Friday from 4-6:30PM and Saturday & Sunday from 11AM - 5PM at the FIREBAR(R) or on the patio. Enjoy happy hour drink specials all day Wednesdays. We offer top-notch service and upscale dining at a modest price. Visit us online to learn more.

Reviewed By Burtdol - Apex, North Carolina

This restaurant has the best steak sandwich at lunch. Bigger than most steaks at other restaurants at night. Served with fries it is super great and so tender. Cooked to perfection and served in very nice surroundings of the Firebirds' restaurant. The price of the sandwich is $13.50 and worth every cent. Top notch dining location for lunch or dinner because of the relaxing, beautiful surroundings.
Highly recommend!

10. City Barbeque

1305 Kildaire Farm Rd, Cary, NC 27511-5525 Takeout, Reservations, Outdoor Seating, Seating, Parking Available, Television, Highchairs Available, Wheelchair Accessible, Serves Alcohol, Free Wifi Barbecue Lunch, Dinner SGD 9 - SGD 20 +1 919-439-5191
Excellent
51%
Good
30%
Satisfactory
15%
Poor
3%
Terrible
1%
Overall Ratings

4 based on 299 reviews

City Barbeque

The idea for City Barbeque was born as an invitation to all the people in the city to enjoy great barbeque- America&apos;s food. Our award-winning barbeque is made with only the highest quality meats and served with our signature sauces on the side. Huge smokers are loaded daily to guarantee the very best hickory smoked, juicy, tender meat anywhere. So if an authentic barbeque experience is what you&apos;re after, look no further. Small groups of folks like us still believe in honoring quality, generations of tradition and true service. Whether you call it barbecue, Bar-B-Que, BBQ, or barbeque - we&apos;ve got what you are looking for!

Reviewed By parrib1 - Garner, North Carolina

It isn't bad but I would not put it in the same category as much of the real North Carolina Barbeque you can get locally or the truly excellent NC Barbeque you can get within a hour drive of City. That being said it is okay and the prices aren't too bad.

ThingsTodoPost © 2018 All rights reserved.