By Mia Brady
Upon entering The Raleigh Times on East Hargett Street in downtown Raleigh, I was captivated by the atmosphere. While this popular restaurant and bar opened just six years ago, the building it is housed in was constructed in 1906. The Raleigh Times, the newspaper for which this restaurant is named, called this building home for many years more than a century ago. The Raleigh Times pays tribute to this newspaper in more ways than its name; the inside of this old building displays original ceilings and original walls from the authentic building. Framed and blown up photos of Raleigh during the early 1900s can be found on the walls, as well as antique articles from the Times, and more modern day articles on the success of the bar/restaurant.
When handed the extensive menu, I was overwhelmed by the variety of choses of both beer and meals. Within the first few moments of perusing the menu, Phoebe and I knew we would be ordering beer. How could we pass up the multiple North Carolina, state brewed options, or of course, the ales straight from the oldest brewery in the world found in Germany? After ordering our beers, which arrived prompted in large, ice cold glasses, we asked the waitress for her opinion on food, wanting to ensure that we ordered the best of the menu. We had spent quite some time reading the descriptions of delicious sounding options like Meaty Crispy Chicken Wings and Chicken Fried Pickles for appetizers, and the Salami Brie Burger and Heavy Seas Hanger Steak, completely unsure of what to order. For an appetizer, she answered, without hesitation, “You have to get the nachos with BBQ pork. The pork is to die for”. We didn’t second guess her suggestion, and ordered these nachos along with the Braised Pork Enchilada, eager to try as much Carolina BBQ as we could. In addition to the enchilada, we got the Black & Blue Burger per the waitress’s suggestion as well, based on her claim that the seasoning on the burger added something more than we were used to.
We had a lot of food coming our way, but we were eager to put a taste to the unique atmosphere of The Raleigh Times. As we waited for our food, we intriguingly looked around the restaurant, admiring the photos on the wall as well as the old-fashioned ceiling. The nachos arrived first, and after just one bite, I was sold on the taste of the barbecue pork mixed with the traditional nachos flavors of cheese, salsa, guacamole and sour cream. When the Braised Pork Enchiladas and Black & Blue Burger arrived, we split each dish half and half to share, eager to taste everything.
The enchilada encompassed the same delicious taste of barbecue pork from the nachos, while the burger was perfectly cooked, while the seasoning, blue cheese and sautéed onions added a flavorful addition. We kept eating, despite the fact that we were absolutely stuffed, until all plates were nearly clear. Between the delicious, unique-tasting food, the appealing atmosphere and rich history, The Raleigh Times is not a place to miss in the state’s capitol.