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Nearby Restaurants in Chapel Hill

Booming with small town charm and a crowd of nationally recognized local chefs, Chapel Hill North Carolina has a one-of-a-kind restaurant and bar scene. 

From southern classics, to globally-inspired dishes, you’ll find everything here from hickory smoked pork chop, to salt n’ pepper shrimp to authentic gyros, all within a couple blocks of one another. 

Whether you’re looking for fine dining, drinks or fast casual, here’s five of the best restaurants and bars you need to try now. 


Hawthorne & Wood

Savor the flavors of Chapel Hill at Hawthorne & Wood, a neighborhood eatery whose food morphs to meet your mood. Dig into a dinner and drinks that can be either effortless or elegant, both of which will be well-served by Hawthorne & Wood’s seasonal, ever-changing menu. 

Sip fine wines or premium cocktails alongside dishes ranging from the unique (General Tso’s cauliflower, anyone?) to the indulgent (hickory-smoked grilled duroc pork chop). Eat at the restaurant’s shaded outdoor patio and dining area or pick-up your order and enjoy it right here at Graduate Chapel Hill.

Insider Tip

Since Hawthorne & Wood’s menu is seasonal, you can order up any time of year to sample different takes on local, seasonal Chapel Hill ingredients.

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Epilogue Books, Chocolates and Brews

Step into a new time or place through one of the many books packed onto the shelves at Epilogue Books, Chocolates and Brews. A self-professed haven for “wanderers and wonderers,” Epilogue Books channels its founders’ unique cultural heritage, passion for reading and writing, and the community-driven nature of Spanish chocolaterías.

Cozy up with a craft beer, carefully-sourced glass of wine, or rich cup of chocolate and pore over a diverse array of literature from local authors to New York Times Best Sellers.

Insider Tip

Our Insider Tip: Epilogue Books is beloved for their freshly-baked pastries. Grab a churro and a latte (or a cup of chocolate!) while you settle in with your favorite book.

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Mediterranean Deli

Feast your eyes—and your stomach—at Mediterranean Deli, a Chapel Hill staple since 1991. For 30 years, Mediterranean Deli has brought a blast of the Middle East to their quaint storefront just off campus through colorful dips, salads, baked goods, and more.

College students and Chapel Hill locals flock to the deli for freshly-baked pitas with all the fixings. Don’t be surprised if the line winds through the door, as Mediterranean Deli is often packed from open to close.

Insider Tip

Get there early! Stop by right when they open to avoid the daily rush, which often won’t let up until close.

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Every dish at Lantern has a local flair. Though they serve up predominantly Asian cuisine, each meal they create has a unique, Chapel Hill twist. Try their pea and scallion dumplings or local, grass-fed beef sashimi for flavors that transport you to far away places made from ingredients that are as local as it gets. 

When they’re not filling the bellies of Chapel Hill residents, Lantern operates the Kitchen Patrol in partnership with UNC’s Sonja Haynes Stone Center for Black Culture, which teaches kids to eat and cook healthy foods for a lifetime.

Insider Tip

Try the hot chocolate cake, topped with pecan brittle ice cream. You can thank us later.

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lantern restaurant chapel hill

Brandwein’s Bagels

A bagel has the power to brighten your day. At least, if you ask Brandwein’s Bagels, an alumni-owned bagel shop located just off campus. Their freshly baked and boiled bagels are the talk of Chapel Hill, especially for the morning after a night on the town or a long, lazy afternoon catching up with old friends. 

Though Brandwein’s is newer to Chapel Hill, their New York-style offerings have made them an instant favorite among students and locals alike. Opt for just the bagel, or go all in for their deli sandwiches and homemade salads.

Insider Tip

Get there early and grab a fresh baked bagel, straight out of the oven. If you need help keeping your eyes open, add on a hot cup of Gray Squirrel Coffee.

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The Crunkleton

Signature cocktails and curated spirits set The Crunkleton apart from other Franklin Street watering holes. The Crunkleton’s creative concoctions and literal wall of spirits make them the go-to spot for cocktails. Those newer to spirits might find a fresh favorite, while cocktail enthusiasts will be delighted to find bartenders that will gladly join in on a conversation about the origins of Sazerac. 

As exceptional as The Crunkleton is, they pride themselves on being approachable for anyone in search of a one-of-a-kind cocktail. In their own words, at the end of the day, The Crunkleton is just a “really really good bar.”

Insider Tip

Tell the bartenders what type of liquor you prefer, and they’ll surprise you!

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