Adventures in Eating

In Eat, July 2016 / August 2016 by Paige LuckLeave a Comment

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Sometimes you crave something out of the ordinary, a unique experience or an unusual flavor. You don’t have to travel around the world to find exotic culinary experiences. They exist in Raleigh. We’ve unearthed five uniquely delicious and adventurous eats for you.

Two eggs scrambled with rose pork brains

Big Ed’s Restaurant

220 Wolfe Street

Big Ed’s is a traditional, country-cooking establishment located in City Market since 1989. Red checkered plastic tablecloths, farm implements on the wall and dried herbs hanging from the ceiling remind you of the rural lifestyle that originated this food. Brains and eggs are a Southern tradition. When cooked, brains have a texture similar to scrambled eggs with a flavor akin to a Vienna sausage. The strong pork flavor of the dish won’t let you forget its source though!

Adventure rating: • • • •


Beef tongue, tripe and beef head tacos

Taqueria el Toro

3601 Junction Boulevard

With a walk-up counter and clean, casual atmosphere, Taqueria el Torro serves up Mexican dishes overseen by two bullheads on the walls. Stop at the condiment bar and load up on salsas, pickled vegetables, jalapenos and cilantro. Cubed tender bits of tongue are smacking with beef flavor. Tripe, beef stomach, is chewy and crispy when fried up. Beef head, primarily cheek meat, falls apart in a taco, with milder beef flavor than tongue.

Adventure rating: • • • • •


Sea Urchin Nigiri


319 Fayetteville Street

Modern dark elegance greets you in Chef Mike Lee’s Sono where he brings you first class, fresh ingredients. Sono serves up sea urchin regularly, as well as geoduck, monkfish liver and other delicacies when in season. A spiny sea creature, the reproductive organs are the delicacy of the sea urchin. Perched on top of a bit of rice and surrounded by cucumber, the sea urchin has a delicately briny astringency that melts in your mouth.

Adventure rating: • • • •


Braised and Grilled Tempeh Sandwich

The Fiction Kitchen 428 South Dawson Street

A farm to fork vegetarian/vegan restaurant, Fiction Kitchen’s lime green building stands out. Chef Caroline Morrison’s passionate menu surprises carnivores with vegetarian dishes so delicious they won’t miss meat. Forming mold-fermented whole soybeans into blocks creates tempeh. Braised in balsamic vinegar and topped with onions, charred tomatoes and molasses, this sandwich gives a meaty bite with acidic sweetness, providing loads of texture and flavor intrigue!

Adventure rating: • • •


Goat Balti

Kabab and Curry
2418 Hillsborough Street

The Upendre family from Nepal has been serving Nepalese food for two years. Dark ceilings accentuate cream walls featuring brightly colored art when you walk into this warm, curry-scented restaurant. Balti, a type of curry, is served in a copper-clad hammered cup. Goat meat, which is slightly stringy, is surrounded by a stew of peppers and onions flavored with garam masala. Navigate carefully as you dine because part of the depth of flavor comes from the goat’s bones, which makes  an appearance in the curry.

Adventure rating: • • • •

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