Top 10 restaurants in Durham, United States

April 14, 2018 Deane Carmody

Durham is a city in the U.S. state of North Carolina. It is the county seat of Durham County. The U.S. Census Bureau estimated the city's population to be 251,893 as of July 1, 2014, making it the 4th-most populous city in North Carolina, and the 78th-most populous city in the United States. Durham is the core of the four-county Durham-Chapel Hill Metropolitan Area, which has a population of 542,710 as of U.S. Census 2014 Population Estimates. The US Office of Management and Budget also includes Durham as a part of the Raleigh-Durham-Chapel Hill Combined Statistical Area, which has a population of 2,037,430 as of U.S. Census 2014 Population Estimates.
Things to do in Durham

1. Pizzeria Toro

105 E Chapel Hill St, Durham, NC 27701-3201 Takeout, Seating, Waitstaff, Highchairs Available, Wheelchair Accessible, Serves Alcohol, Full Bar Italian, Pizza, Vegetarian Friendly, Vegan Options, Gluten Free Options Lunch, Dinner, Late Night +1 919-908-6936
Excellent
67%
Good
25%
Satisfactory
4%
Poor
3%
Terrible
1%
Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 375 reviews

Pizzeria Toro

Reviewed By John T - Midlothian, Virginia

Great space in an emerging section of Durham. Went before 6, and minutes later the crowds formed. All seats have a view of prep areas and amazing pizza oven. Pizzas were great, with cool toppings (loved the Brussels) with appropriate crispy, blackened bottom. Not the best I have ever had (still, New Haven) but excellent. Good selections of wine and beer.

2. Gonza Tacos y Tequila

604 Fernway Ave, Durham, NC 27701-3264 Takeout, Reservations, Outdoor Seating, Seating, Waitstaff, Parking Available, Street Parking, Free Off-Street Parking, Wheelchair Accessible, Serves Alcohol, Full Bar, Accepts American Express, Accepts Mastercard, Accepts Visa, Free Wifi, Accepts Discover, Highchairs Available, Accepts Credit Cards Mexican, Southwestern, Latin, Central American, Vegetarian Friendly, Vegan Options, Gluten Free Options Lunch, Dinner SGD 10 - SGD 20 +1 919-907-2656
Excellent
69%
Good
25%
Satisfactory
5%
Poor
0%
Terrible
1%
Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 303 reviews

Gonza Tacos y Tequila

Reviewed By pncboy85 - Macungie, Pennsylvania

We had carnitas $11, Camarones $13,and costilla $14. Very delicious and reasonably priced. Clean and open air both inside and out. Seating ranges from picnic tables outside to private party tables inside. Food great and affordable. Luis was a very accomodating waiter. No complaints but several kudos.

3. Nana's Restaurant

2514 University Dr, Ste 104, Durham, NC 27707-2156 Reservations, Private Dining, Seating, Waitstaff, Parking Available, Valet Parking, Wheelchair Accessible, Serves Alcohol, Full Bar American, Vegetarian Friendly, Gluten Free Options, Vegan Options Dinner, Late Night SGD 26 - SGD 105 +1 919-493-8545
Excellent
75%
Good
16%
Satisfactory
5%
Poor
2%
Terrible
2%
Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 551 reviews

Nana's Restaurant

Reviewed By BobOZee - Manning, SC

Our first visit and we were pleasantly surprised.
The service was prompt and efficient, the food was wonderful.
The complimentary breads were truly outstanding.
My Lady had the chicken special, I had the monkfish.
Topped off by a terrific cheesecake, it was a fine evening.
And again, no kids!

4. The Refectory Cafe

2726 Durham Chapel Hill Blvd, Academy Road intersection, Durham, NC 27707-2870 Takeout, Reservations, Outdoor Seating, Seating, Waitstaff, Parking Available, Free Off-Street Parking, Highchairs Available, Wheelchair Accessible, Serves Alcohol, Full Bar, Accepts American Express, Accepts Mastercard, Accepts Visa, Free Wifi, Accepts Discover, Street Parking, Wine and Beer, Accepts Credit Cards Seafood, Healthy, American, Contemporary, Vegan Options, Vegetarian Friendly, Gluten Free Options Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner, Brunch SGD 7 - SGD 38 +1 919-908-6798
Excellent
65%
Good
28%
Satisfactory
6%
Poor
1%
Terrible
0%
Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 212 reviews

The Refectory Cafe

"Slow Food, Fast", this award Winning, local family owned, restaurant is focused on Hot, healthy, homemade & Local fare. The Refectory Cafe® was Duke University's first "Green Cafe" established in 2005, it won best food on campus 7 Years in a row and Duke University's Environmental Leadership Award four times. The Refectory Cafe "on the Boulevard" opened September 2012 and continues the tradition of great homemade soups, fresh local produce, eggs, local line-caught fish, local grass-fed beef, chicken and simply amazing desserts. Vegan, vegetarian, Gluten Free, Raw or Plant Based The Refectory Cafe caters to all dietary preferences. Award winning VEGAN, GF DAL, Chili and soups; delicious panini on locally made bread; "breakfast of champions" with amazing grits, local eggs, biscuits, Tofu scrambles, baked oatmeal, local sausage and more; Delicious Dinners of Chicken Marsala, Surf & Turf, Lobster, Linguine with clams, Crabcakes, Slow-cooked short ribs, Blackened or Grilled Salmon, Vegan GF Tempeh, Indian DAL, soups, salads & more. Full bar, craft cocktails, martinis, fine wines and local beer with Table Service Evenings 5pm-9pm. Monday through Saturday. Excellent seafood, steaks, soups, salads, vegan & vegetarian fare. The award winning desserts are created on site and are simply fabulous! Reservations encouraged and available on-line.

Reviewed By sushiblues - NC

I took a large neighborhood dining out group there for dinner a few weeks ago (about 14). Thought they did a great job of taking our orders and serving everyone's food in a timely manner.

The server was well-versed on the menu and was able to answer quickly and with detail anyone's questions on the menu. I liked their wine list as well.

Dinner was really fantastic! It was by far the best ahi tuna dish I've had in the triangle area! The calamari for an appetizer also got the thumbs up from everyone who ordered it.

The dessert selection looked fantastic (I think they made them in house, portion sizes were huge - I did not order any, but those who did seemed happy with their choices).

Don't let the name of this place fool you, this is much more than just a cafe! You need to try them for dinner sometime if you have not been!

I look forward to coming back soon!

5. Burger Bach

737 9th St Ste 220, Durham, NC 27705-4889 Takeout, Outdoor Seating, Seating, Waitstaff, Parking Available, Television, Highchairs Available, Wheelchair Accessible, Serves Alcohol, Full Bar American, Bar, New Zealand, Gastropub, Vegetarian Friendly, Gluten Free Options Lunch, Dinner +1 919-973-4416
Excellent
65%
Good
23%
Satisfactory
9%
Poor
2%
Terrible
1%
Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 188 reviews

Burger Bach

Reviewed By tsm24 - Miss

My family and I ate here and the food was good. It is fresh and the cheeses and sauces are endless. So many choices.... just be prepared it is expensive but you pay for freshness! The fries are hand cut. The staff was nice but not very attentive.

6. Melo Trattoria

1821 Hillandale Rd, Ste 3, Durham, NC 27705-2659 Takeout, Reservations, Seating, Waitstaff, Parking Available, Wheelchair Accessible, Serves Alcohol Italian, Vegetarian Friendly, Gluten Free Options Dinner, Lunch +1 919-384-9080
Excellent
67%
Good
24%
Satisfactory
6%
Poor
2%
Terrible
1%
Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 246 reviews

Melo Trattoria

Reviewed By Newdoll - Gainesville, Florida

Small, but quaint restaurant in little strip mall. Unexpected to be so fantastic. The whole ambiance radiated authentic Italian cuisine, from the staff, background music, wine and delicious dishes. Salads were fresh and dresssings were great. My son had a salad with shrimp and they were cooked perfect. My son's friend had the bolganese which he ate it all and it was a large bowl. The pasta dish I had was loaded with fresh chunks of garlic and my husband thoroughly enjoyed the shrimp scamp. My son had the chicken fettuccini and loved it. I also highly recommend the tiramisu. Wish we had this place in our town!

7. Parker and Otis

112 S Duke St, Durham, NC 27701-3172 Takeout, Outdoor Seating, Seating, Parking Available, Wheelchair Accessible American, Cafe, Vegetarian Friendly, Gluten Free Options, Vegan Options Breakfast, Lunch, Brunch, Dinner +1 919-683-3200
Excellent
60%
Good
33%
Satisfactory
5%
Poor
2%
Terrible
0%
Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 154 reviews

Parker and Otis

Reviewed By Anita H - Chapel Hill, North Carolina, United States

Sitting in the cute, casual cafe part of the store on a Saturday, I’m joined by many others having lunch while chatting or looking at the wine or browsing the books. The music sets a fun lively mood.
My Turkey with Pepper Jelly is delicious and packed tall with Turkey. I’ll need to take 1/2 of it to-go.
After a morning of holiday shopping at Brightleaf and Morgan Imports, I did more here while waiting for my lunch.
Great Durham (historic) spot.

8. The Original Q Shack

2510 University Dr, Durham, NC 27707-2152 Takeout, Outdoor Seating, Seating, Parking Available, Highchairs Available, Wheelchair Accessible, Serves Alcohol American, Barbecue, Gluten Free Options Lunch, Dinner, Late Night SGD 26 +1 919-402-4227
Excellent
52%
Good
36%
Satisfactory
9%
Poor
2%
Terrible
1%
Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 630 reviews

The Original Q Shack

Reviewed By Richard B - Durham, NC

This restaurant fills one's stomach with comfort food. In particular, our family favorite is the baked potato, prepared,"all the way" and covered with beef brisket. My favorite side is the creamed spinach with Jack cheese. In season, the fried okra is superb. This is casual dining at its best. Always a choice of vinegar based or tomato based barbeque sauce. Other options include pork barbecue, ribs, chicken, sausage, and salad (we always cover the salad with beef brisket. Sweet tea, unsweetened tea, soft drinks and beer are the liquid choices. If not already stuffed, fruit cobbler is usually available.
We did not realize how often we dined here until we went through a year's worth of dining receipts.

9. Foster's Market

2694 Chapel Hill-Durham Rd, Durham, NC 27707 Takeout, Outdoor Seating, Seating, Parking Available, Highchairs Available, Wheelchair Accessible, Serves Alcohol, Free Wifi American, Cafe, Delicatessen, Vegetarian Friendly, Vegan Options, Gluten Free Options Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner, Brunch SGD 26 +1 919-489-3944
Excellent
53%
Good
35%
Satisfactory
9%
Poor
2%
Terrible
1%
Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 302 reviews

Foster's Market

Reviewed By gus c

My grilled portabella sandwich was delicious. Just the right combination of grilled portabella, red peppers, spinach, and cheese. My daughter loved the NC Ruben with Turkey and well-balanced slaw. My spouse really enjoyed the apple scone and gingersnap cookie. The servers were courteous and helpful.

10. JuJu

737 9th St, The Shops at Erwin Mill #210, Durham, NC 27705-4887 Television, Highchairs Available, Reservations, Outdoor Seating, Seating, Waitstaff, Parking Available, Street Parking, Free Off-Street Parking, Wheelchair Accessible, Serves Alcohol, Full Bar, Wine and Beer, Accepts American Express, Accepts Mastercard, Accepts Visa, Accepts Discover, Takeout, Free Wifi, Accepts Credit Cards Asian, Fusion, Vegetarian Friendly, Vegan Options, Gluten Free Options Lunch, Dinner, Brunch SGD 18 - SGD 39 +1 919-286-3555
Excellent
58%
Good
32%
Satisfactory
7%
Poor
2%
Terrible
1%
Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 211 reviews

JuJu

Deliciously lucky. Juju: Asian Tapas + Bar is an Asian fusion tapas dining experience in Durham, North Carolina. Juju is the exciting sister restaurant to Chapel Hill's acclaimed Jujube, launched by local restaurateurs Julian Benfey and Charlie Deal, the award-winning chef behind Jujube and Durham's Dos Perros. Located on Ninth St. Near Duke University's East Campus, Juju is the luckiest place in town to be, for anything from an early bite to a fun evening late into the night. Juju serves up small plates with bold flavors, each prepared creatively with attention to tradition, whimsy, local integrity, and, of course, deliciousness. In addition to its extensive and delicious menu, Juju features a dynamic beverage program of hand-made cocktails, extensive Sake selections and a well-chosen list of artisan wines and craft beers. Dine at the exquisite bar, in the luxurious booths, in the main dining room, or around the fire pit on the patio. Make a meal from small plates or order a whole Peking duck to share with friends. Just come ready for a memorable experience.

Reviewed By TarHeel

Had a reservation for 5 p.m. (opening time) on a Sunday. We were promptly seated and brought water - nice that they left an entire pitcher. We both ordered hot teas and were happy to see real looseleaf tea in the pot, as opposed to teabags. We ordered and shared several small dishes and even split dessert. They told us ahead of time that the dishes are brought out as they are cooked; which was fine with us. Everything was delicious. The atmosphere was sleek and sophisticated, like a restaurant in a big city. It quickly filled up, and there was an energetic vibe with 80's music playing. We quite enjoyed the experience and are interested in coming back to try other dishes.

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