It’s no secret that I am a big fan of Raleigh, North Carolina. It’s also no secret that I love trying new restaurants. I consider one of my skill sets to be in food and restaurant recommendations, and while I love Raleigh, there are some great dining destinations that are actually in the ‘burbs. So here are 10 of the best restaurants in Raleigh that I love visiting.
10 of the Best Restaurants in Raleigh that Aren’t Actually in Raleigh
This Wake Forest restaurant serves delicious tapas, has an extensive wine list, and unique rums. It’s located in historic downtown Wake Forest and is the perfect spot for a girl’s night out! I highly recommend ordering marinated olives, grilled octopus, Parisienne gnocchi, warm goat cheese dip, cheese board, and arancini. Finish with the mousse au chocolat!
110 South White Street, Wake Forest, NC 27587
Photos via Farm Table Instagram
Another Wake Forest spot, Farm Table features a beautiful patio, with farm to table concept using fresh, local ingredients, and has a warm, welcoming vibe. I’ll always suggest ordering mussels and pomme frites together and the cheese tortellini bolognese is a comforting, delicious entree.
960 Gateway Commons Cir, Wake Forest, NC 27587
This stunning restaurant highlights southeast Asian food and has gorgeous patio seating, an incredible bar area, and some of the prettiest natural light in the dining room. Start with their steam buns! Their poké and duck pho are delicious options. I also really enjoy their sushi, especially the Hamachi roll.
2800 Renaissance Park Place, Cary, NC
Photo via La Farm Bakery Instagram
This authentic French bakery is a true gem in Cary, and more recently, Morrisville with current pop-ups in Fuquay-Varina and RDU Terminal 2. It’s a great spot for brunch, and I highly recommend either the avocado toast or the Le Grande BLT. Be sure to grab a loaf of French bread and freshly made pimiento cheese before you leave. You won’t be disappointed.
4248 NW Cary Parkway, Cary, NC 27513
The owners of the Mason Jar have such a unique story for opening their original restaurant in Holly Springs and their community involvement in Holly Springs and Fuquay-Varina is helping to bring more businesses to these towns. The staff at the Fuquay-Varina location makes you feel like family. I usually order the Mason Jar Salad with chicken or
305 S Main St, Fuquay-Varina, NC 27526
This beautiful restaurant in the heart of downtown Cary is located in a fantastic building with a wrap around porch and patio seating. I highly recommend starting with their edamame and then trying lots of their sushi! Plus they have bottles of Veuve, and you know how much I love that!
324 S Academy St, Cary, NC 27511
This restaurant is an excellent option in Holly Springs, and even expanded into a downtown Raleigh. Their Cobb salad is one of my favorite meals, and David and I usually split the pretzel bites. Their menu is guaranteed to have something for everyone.
301 Center St, Holly Springs, NC 27540
One of my go-to favorite spots in Holly Springs is Osha Thai Kitchen. You can’t go wrong with their menu between their sushi and pad Thai selections. It’s another restaurant with both a welcoming dining area and great patio seating! P.S. You’ll also find Osha on my sushi guide!
242 South Main Street, Holly Springs, NC 27540
Photo via The Provincial Instagram
This restaurant features sidewalk seating in the historic downtown Apex with a great, farm-to-table menu with a great craft beer list. The crispy oysters and the grass fed beef burger are absolutely outstanding.
119 N Salem St, Apex, NC 27502
Photo via Vicious Fishes Fuquay Instagram
Vicious Fishes is located in the heart of downtown Fuquay-Varina and features delicious menu pairings for its beer! You will definitely want to start with the pretzel and pimiento cheese (trust me) and I love their coastal Cobb salad while David opts for “the Varina.” They have a dog friendly patio as well!
Don’t these 10 best restaurants in Raleigh look amazing?
What are some of the best restaurants where you live? Share in a comment below!
This post was originally published in 2019 and has since been updated and recirculated for 2022.