Thanks everyone for the recommendations!
We will have to try some of the ones listed above that I haven't been to yet, namely Neomonde, Cilantro, Carmen's, Bella Mia, City Beverage, etc.
To clarify some of the restrictions I listed, it's not always logical what the 'Nay-sayers' have come up with for a vote of "No" on a location. One day it's fine to go as far as Squid's for dinner, and the next, places like La Shish and Peak City grille gets shot down because "20 minutes is too far."
The anti-Korean and Vietnamese food mentality is a bit prejudiced. I'm not going to go into details as it just 'grinds my gears.'
Unfortunately because we car-pool and I'm not the driver, I can't 'kidnap' anyone to go and try places I know is yummy and better than the usual chain restaurants.
I do appreciate the advice and time from you guys ^_^
I'm here in the RTP area for work, and are with some picky colleagues. I've found a bunch of good places for dinner after work in the area, but 20mins is too far away for them to want to go have dinner. Therefore, I need some recommendations within 10 minutes of 900 Davis Drive in Durham.
I've been to Mez, and find it non-authentic and pretentious, and hate the waiting for a table when we typically arrive around 6:30pm-7pm. Are there more authentic ones nearby? The ones folks have mentioned on this board closer to downtown Durham are too far for them :(
Furthermore, one of the colleagues doesn't eat Indian food (1 bad experience was enough for him to never try it again. These are the colleagues I'm stuck having dinner with every night).
If it were up to them we'd go to chain restaurants like Cheesecake Factory and PF Chang's every night. They will drive as far as Brier Creek and South Point Mall, but not to say, a place like Peak City Grille, or La Shish, which were my 2 choices for dinner tonight.
So I am asking the foodies here to help me out. We've been to Papa Mojo's and the Thai place near that (Thai Lanna), but the Thai place got shot down because there aren't enough cars parked outside, a sure sign to another colleague that the place must be "bad."
Furthermore, Korean and Vietnamese are OUT, as that is 'too ethnic' and 'weird.'
Please help a fellow foodie out! I'm stuck in companion-dining hell.