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Jayce’s guidebook

Jayce

Jayce’s guidebook

Downtown Food Scene
Downtown Wilmington is bursting with great restaurants! Typically very busy during high season and weekends.
Fun vibe for medium to large groups because they have couches and coffee table seating. PLEASE NOTE: Two very steep staircases to climb to get to the top level of this historic building, but it's worth it.
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Dram and Morsel
33 S Front St
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Fun vibe for medium to large groups because they have couches and coffee table seating. PLEASE NOTE: Two very steep staircases to climb to get to the top level of this historic building, but it's worth it.
Great ambiance and food. Half price wine by the glass or bottle on Monday nights. One of my favorite bars to sit at while eating and drinking wine.
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Pinpoint Restaurant
114 Market Street
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Great ambiance and food. Half price wine by the glass or bottle on Monday nights. One of my favorite bars to sit at while eating and drinking wine.
Tiny and cozy. Delicious comfort food. Call ahead reservations are accepted.
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The Fork 'N' Cork
122 Market Street
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Tiny and cozy. Delicious comfort food. Call ahead reservations are accepted.
Another favorite "space" with old, colored glass transom windows and local art displayed. Delicious food and a great burger.
Platypus & Gnome
9 S Front St
Another favorite "space" with old, colored glass transom windows and local art displayed. Delicious food and a great burger.
Locals continue to choose this restaurant again and again for delicious food and wine.
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Caprice bistro
10 Market Street
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Locals continue to choose this restaurant again and again for delicious food and wine.
Circa has been consistently serving great food in a Historic setting for years. It's another great place to go have a cocktail and share a small plate. I'm not positive, but I think it has recently been sold, so hopefully the food quality stays the same.
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Circa 1922
8 North Front Street
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Circa has been consistently serving great food in a Historic setting for years. It's another great place to go have a cocktail and share a small plate. I'm not positive, but I think it has recently been sold, so hopefully the food quality stays the same.
Casual and tasty. Outdoor seating during high season provides some fun people watching! The pulled pork nachos are yummy!
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Beer Barrio
34 N Front St
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Casual and tasty. Outdoor seating during high season provides some fun people watching! The pulled pork nachos are yummy!
Comfort food reinvented combined with interesting craft cocktails. The atmosphere is relaxed and modern.
RUMCOW.
121 Grace St
Comfort food reinvented combined with interesting craft cocktails. The atmosphere is relaxed and modern.
Not cheap! Formal dining with great views of the Cape Fear River, especially during inclement weather. Visit Cloud 9, their rooftop bar during nice weather for the best views of the river in town.
Steam Restaurant and Bar
9 Estell Lee Place
Not cheap! Formal dining with great views of the Cape Fear River, especially during inclement weather. Visit Cloud 9, their rooftop bar during nice weather for the best views of the river in town.
Atop the Embassy Suites Hotel, this bar serves up the best sunsets and views of the Cape Fear River, along with a limited menu of elevated bar food. Be warned! It's almost always windy, so batten down the skirts and hair! Some protected areas, but best during nice weather.
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Cloud 9 Rooftop Bar
9 Estell Lee Pl
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Atop the Embassy Suites Hotel, this bar serves up the best sunsets and views of the Cape Fear River, along with a limited menu of elevated bar food. Be warned! It's almost always windy, so batten down the skirts and hair! Some protected areas, but best during nice weather.
Just minutes from my place, Indochine is the best Thai/Vietnamese restaurant in town. The dinner menu serves large portions of curries and noodles, so plan to share dishes or have leftovers. During nice weather they have a beautiful garden with outdoor seating. If you go for lunch, they have a lunch menu with smaller portions, but you can order from the dinner menu, too.
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Indochine Restaurant
7 Wayne Drive
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Just minutes from my place, Indochine is the best Thai/Vietnamese restaurant in town. The dinner menu serves large portions of curries and noodles, so plan to share dishes or have leftovers. During nice weather they have a beautiful garden with outdoor seating. If you go for lunch, they have a lunch menu with smaller portions, but you can order from the dinner menu, too.
BREAKFAST & LUNCH - A local favorite for breakfast, but BRING CASH! They really do have the fluffiest omelet I've ever eaten. I've heard they have a great burger for lunch, but I always get breakfast when I go. It's not actually downtown proper. It's right by the railroad tracks on Market St.
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Goody Goody Omelet House
3817 Market St
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BREAKFAST & LUNCH - A local favorite for breakfast, but BRING CASH! They really do have the fluffiest omelet I've ever eaten. I've heard they have a great burger for lunch, but I always get breakfast when I go. It's not actually downtown proper. It's right by the railroad tracks on Market St.
Great food served up in a small setting. I typically order a fish entree and I'm never disappointed.
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Savorez
402 Chestnut St
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Great food served up in a small setting. I typically order a fish entree and I'm never disappointed.
I haven't actually eaten there since it has changed hands, but I've heard from several people it has good food. It's a large space, with great views of the Cape Fear River and Marina, and it has it's own parking lot. You can pair a nice walk along the Riverwalk with this outing.
Marina Grill
18 Harnett St
I haven't actually eaten there since it has changed hands, but I've heard from several people it has good food. It's a large space, with great views of the Cape Fear River and Marina, and it has it's own parking lot. You can pair a nice walk along the Riverwalk with this outing.
Located in the up-and-coming North Forth Street district, the food is delicious and the setting is cozy. There is typically art hanging by a local artist.
The District Kitchen & Cocktails
1001 N 4th St
Located in the up-and-coming North Forth Street district, the food is delicious and the setting is cozy. There is typically art hanging by a local artist.
A solid choice for quality bar food and there's something for everyone on the menu. Very popular since featured on Guy Fieri's Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives in 2018.
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The Copper Penny
109 Chestnut Street
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A solid choice for quality bar food and there's something for everyone on the menu. Very popular since featured on Guy Fieri's Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives in 2018.
This actually has a restaurant with a nice wine selection and small plates inside it. The space is cozy and Historic and I've been meaning to try it. The "market" aspect is the olive oil store which also shares the space.
Taste the Olive & Vine
1125-D Military Cutoff Rd
This actually has a restaurant with a nice wine selection and small plates inside it. The space is cozy and Historic and I've been meaning to try it. The "market" aspect is the olive oil store which also shares the space.
BREAKFAST & LUNCH: A local favorite for elevated "diner" food. Great sweet potato pancakes...if you ask for blueberries they'll add them if they have them. VERY popular for breakfast on weekends and during high season so expect to wait if you go during a typical "rush" time slot.
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The Dixie Grill
116 Market St
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BREAKFAST & LUNCH: A local favorite for elevated "diner" food. Great sweet potato pancakes...if you ask for blueberries they'll add them if they have them. VERY popular for breakfast on weekends and during high season so expect to wait if you go during a typical "rush" time slot.
Upscale and quirky. Diverse menu, meaning plenty for vegetarians and omnivores. Everything I've had has been delicious. The BREAD is amazing. I don't even eat bread and yet I fantasize about it...but it's best to share since it's a large handmade loaf doused in EVOO. Outside garden area has multiple fire pits to sit around and enjoy a cocktail during nice weather.
Dram Yard
101 S 2nd St
Upscale and quirky. Diverse menu, meaning plenty for vegetarians and omnivores. Everything I've had has been delicious. The BREAD is amazing. I don't even eat bread and yet I fantasize about it...but it's best to share since it's a large handmade loaf doused in EVOO. Outside garden area has multiple fire pits to sit around and enjoy a cocktail during nice weather.
Sightseeing
This is a fun activity for families with kids that can RUN on their own. Not toddler or stroller friendly! Nor is it a good place to tour with bad knees. The tour involves a lot of tight spaces and stairways, but it IS very interesting. Local lore says it's haunted, but I've been twice and never felt weird.
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Battleship North Carolina
1 Battleship Road Northeast
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This is a fun activity for families with kids that can RUN on their own. Not toddler or stroller friendly! Nor is it a good place to tour with bad knees. The tour involves a lot of tight spaces and stairways, but it IS very interesting. Local lore says it's haunted, but I've been twice and never felt weird.
Say no more...it's a Children's Museum with children's activities. It's nestled in the Historic residential area of downtown, so you can easily walk to the Riverwalk and find a bite to eat after all that activity!
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The Children's Museum of Wilmington
116 Orange Street
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Say no more...it's a Children's Museum with children's activities. It's nestled in the Historic residential area of downtown, so you can easily walk to the Riverwalk and find a bite to eat after all that activity!
I haven't actually been, but I've been tempted!! If you happen to go, let me know what you think. It's also downtown, so you have easy access to the Riverwalk and restaurants.
Museum of the Bizarre
201 S Water St
I haven't actually been, but I've been tempted!! If you happen to go, let me know what you think. It's also downtown, so you have easy access to the Riverwalk and restaurants.
Downtownish - Another Fun Area
The great thing about Satellite is it has always been a place where all age groups happily mix and enjoy each other. The have a huge selection of beer, their wine is fair and they have hard liquor too. There's a great outdoor "back yard" with seating and corn hole and a Sunday night Bluegrass jam (people who enjoy contra dancing often attend) open to any competent musician. Block Taco is a take-out window attached to the front with affordable, small hand-held tacos...I like the brussels sprouts taco!
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Satellite Bar and Lounge
120 Greenfield Street
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The great thing about Satellite is it has always been a place where all age groups happily mix and enjoy each other. The have a huge selection of beer, their wine is fair and they have hard liquor too. There's a great outdoor "back yard" with seating and corn hole and a Sunday night Bluegrass jam (people who enjoy contra dancing often attend) open to any competent musician. Block Taco is a take-out window attached to the front with affordable, small hand-held tacos...I like the brussels sprouts taco!
A new wine bar with upscale food right next to Satellite. It's a fun, modern space and they use super nice stemware (which I love when I drink a nice wine). Expensive for Wilmington, but it's a fun vibe.
The Second Glass
1540 S 2nd St
A new wine bar with upscale food right next to Satellite. It's a fun, modern space and they use super nice stemware (which I love when I drink a nice wine). Expensive for Wilmington, but it's a fun vibe.
Vivian Howard's restaurant in Wilmington. Located in a renovated warehouse, the food is very good and the space is warm and cozy. It's very popular, but you can wait at Satellite (across the street) after you put your name in, and they will text you.
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Benny's Big Time Pizzeria
206 Greenfield St
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Vivian Howard's restaurant in Wilmington. Located in a renovated warehouse, the food is very good and the space is warm and cozy. It's very popular, but you can wait at Satellite (across the street) after you put your name in, and they will text you.
An Irish dive bar with solid food choices.
The Harp
1423 South 3rd Street
An Irish dive bar with solid food choices.
Disclaimer: I'm not a beer drinker. Located right behind The Satellite Bar. I've really only stuck my head in here after it was newly opened, but I disliked the lighting and space. More research needed.
New Anthem Beer Project-Greenfield Street
110 Greenfield Street
Disclaimer: I'm not a beer drinker. Located right behind The Satellite Bar. I've really only stuck my head in here after it was newly opened, but I disliked the lighting and space. More research needed.
Castle Street Antiques District
Call ahead to confirm their hours...website is inaccurate! Wilmington's only distillery which opened Feb 1st. Located in a Historic quonset hut, they've done a great job creating a hip interior and vibe. They currently carry their own vodka and rum, paired with a nice craft cocktail list. They carry tequila, but not their own. The distiller (Steve) said he's working on a batch of gin at the moment. They give tours. It's VERY popular since it's new.
End of Days Distillery
1815 Castle Street
Call ahead to confirm their hours...website is inaccurate! Wilmington's only distillery which opened Feb 1st. Located in a Historic quonset hut, they've done a great job creating a hip interior and vibe. They currently carry their own vodka and rum, paired with a nice craft cocktail list. They carry tequila, but not their own. The distiller (Steve) said he's working on a batch of gin at the moment. They give tours. It's VERY popular since it's new.
BREAKFAST & LUNCH: A nice choice for breakfast, brunch or lunch. Located in an old house in the Castle Street District. Can be crowded as it has a very strong following!
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Jester's Café
607 Castle Street
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BREAKFAST & LUNCH: A nice choice for breakfast, brunch or lunch. Located in an old house in the Castle Street District. Can be crowded as it has a very strong following!
I've not actually been but I've heard it is good. Research to come!
The Hungry Sparrow
701 Castle St
I've not actually been but I've heard it is good. Research to come!
Located in the old Halls Drugstore, Rx serves up delicious farm to table food. They have a great brunch on Sundays too.
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Rx Restaurant and Bar
421 Castle Street
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Located in the old Halls Drugstore, Rx serves up delicious farm to table food. They have a great brunch on Sundays too.
Food scene
This is a new restaurant in a new development along the Cape Fear River. The food is very good, but the views are amazing! They have a large deck with outdoor seating and a large gas fire pit with rockers around it. Great place to watch the sunset, but be warned of no-seeums during the summer months.
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Smoke on the Water
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This is a new restaurant in a new development along the Cape Fear River. The food is very good, but the views are amazing! They have a large deck with outdoor seating and a large gas fire pit with rockers around it. Great place to watch the sunset, but be warned of no-seeums during the summer months.
Winnie's has been a local favorite for as long as I can remember, and can be crowded. Personally, I think it's basically a cute and quirky dive bar and burger joint that's off the beaten path.
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Winnie's Tavern
1895 Burnett Blvd
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Winnie's has been a local favorite for as long as I can remember, and can be crowded. Personally, I think it's basically a cute and quirky dive bar and burger joint that's off the beaten path.
Located between here and Wrightsville Beach, the elevated bar food here is consistently good. The bar area has a lively vibe with many TVs for sports fans.
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Hops Supply Co.
5400 Oleander Dr
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Located between here and Wrightsville Beach, the elevated bar food here is consistently good. The bar area has a lively vibe with many TVs for sports fans.
Located up Market Street just minutes from here, they have solid pub food and decent ambiance. A good "family" restaurant.
Bills Front Porch Pub and Brewery
4238 Market St
Located up Market Street just minutes from here, they have solid pub food and decent ambiance. A good "family" restaurant.
"Out by the Beach" Food Scene
Very popular, especially during high season so expect to wait. The food is great.
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Ceviche's
7210 Wrightsville Avenue
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Very popular, especially during high season so expect to wait. The food is great.
One of the only places at Wrightsville Beach where you can eat on the pier. Fantastic views and a fun casual vibe. The food is very solid. They do have their own parking lot.
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Oceanic
703 South Lumina Avenue
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One of the only places at Wrightsville Beach where you can eat on the pier. Fantastic views and a fun casual vibe. The food is very solid. They do have their own parking lot.
A fun, casual vibe, with elevated bar food. If you sit upstairs it affords a modest view of the water.
Shark Bar and Kitchen
13 E Salisbury St
A fun, casual vibe, with elevated bar food. If you sit upstairs it affords a modest view of the water.
Upscale, great food and a local favorite. It's located in one of the buildings in Lumina Station, a posh retail development out near Wrightsville Beach, but not across the bridge.
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Port Land Grille
1908 Eastwood Road
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Upscale, great food and a local favorite. It's located in one of the buildings in Lumina Station, a posh retail development out near Wrightsville Beach, but not across the bridge.
Great food and a local favorite. It's located in one of the buildings in Lumina Station, a posh retail development out near Wrightsville Beach, but not across the bridge.
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Brasserie du Soleil
1908 Eastwood Rd
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Great food and a local favorite. It's located in one of the buildings in Lumina Station, a posh retail development out near Wrightsville Beach, but not across the bridge.
I've not eaten here in years, but my book club pals who live out by the beach recommend it. It's on the way to and from Wrightsville Beach.
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Boca Bay
2025 Eastwood Rd
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I've not eaten here in years, but my book club pals who live out by the beach recommend it. It's on the way to and from Wrightsville Beach.
A casual place to grab a bite out out near the beach. Recommended by friends.
Zeke's Beans and Bowls
534 Causeway Drive
A casual place to grab a bite out out near the beach. Recommended by friends.
Mayfaire / Forum Area
Great handmade thin crust pizzas, salads and more. It is very dark inside, so maybe not the best summer dining experience.
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Osteria Cicchetti at the Forum
1125 Military Cutoff Road
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Great handmade thin crust pizzas, salads and more. It is very dark inside, so maybe not the best summer dining experience.
I've been told they DO have great brunch, so if you happen to find yourself in retail-land at Mayfaire, this would be a good place to eat.
Brunches
6800 Parker Farm Drive
I've been told they DO have great brunch, so if you happen to find yourself in retail-land at Mayfaire, this would be a good place to eat.
The best sushi out near the beach area. In an upscale retail area.
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The Bento Box Sushi Bar and Asian Kitchen
1121 Military Cutoff Road
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The best sushi out near the beach area. In an upscale retail area.