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Corned Beef Alert at Neal's in Carrboro


Good Showing from Piedmont in Durham

I was desperate to try Piedmont so I went by myself for a very late lunch (pushing close) last week. My service was perfect; no one ever made me feel like I was keeping them late.

More importantly what I had of the food, a local greens salad with a roasted shallot vinaigrette and smoked chicken, was superb. I mean perfect. I had a glass of house grĂ¼ner veltliner which was fine. My only complaint was that my wait couldn't make the right pairing recommendation. I knew the veltliner was wrong but I had it anyway simply because I wanted to try that particular label.

Oh, I forgot to mention, VERY reasonably priced.

I am looking forward to enjoying a more extensive meal there. Great food, nice service.

Flying Burrito re-opening?

My wife and I were fairly regular visitors to the old flying burrito. While it wasn't the prettiest place inside they consistently offered excellent spicy seafood options as well as terrific burritos. The food was generally pretty good; on occasion we'd get something off but they'd always be willing to swap or comp like any good restaurant.

Two nights ago we returned for the first time. The food was pretty, well, awful. I hate to say it as it's a local business we'd like to see survive, but it can't hope to survive with that "food." The crabcake tapas had no crab flavor at all, and I suspect that was due to the paper thin cake consisting of all breading and no discernible crab. NO CRAB? OMG. The catfish soft taco tapas was ok; it needed more flavor. I had a quesadilla with shrimp, black beans, and goad cheese. Sounds really good right, especially anticipating the grilled spicy shrimp of the Flying Burrito of old. It was horrid. CANNED SHRIMP. Those wet smooth little buggers that I wouldn't feed to my dog.

Oh, and they charge $2 for salsa. Wha-?

OK so the food was bad. My wife and I have a combined 20+ years of experience in the restaurant business, from cooking to waiting to bartending to, well, you name it. So my wife took a patient moment to explain calmly that our food was pretty terrible. She was so polite about it in her gracious southern way but still it was clear what she was saying, very clear. The wait replied that yes people do seem to miss the way the old place looked. Wha-? We weren't eating the old decor! We were eating the new food and commenting on how bad it was. No comps, no apologies, no manager, nada.

The decor is OK. It lacks personality on the whole and reflects a restaurant with a sort of identity crisis. Oh and they moved the front entrance, and that was so smart the greeter is horrifically blinded every time the door opens. D'oh!

And so with that, it's nada for us at the Flying Burrito. That really makes me sad. I must agree with ncdocgal. Maybe it's a good place for a drink?

They've been open for over a month and they need to get their act together. But if you make an informed and considerate complaint and it's met with a response that essentially says, "you're wrong"? Wow. That's the difference maker when a local restaurant has growing pains--service. We'll be wrong elsewhere.