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“Definitely make reservations for this restaurant”
Review of Nana's Restaurant

Nana's Restaurant
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Ranked #2 of 793 Restaurants in Durham
Certificate of Excellence
Price range: US$20 - US$80
Cuisines: American
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Local cuisine, Romantic, Business meetings, Special Occasion Dining
Dining options: After-hours, Dinner, Reservations
Dining style: Casual Elegant
Cross street: James St.
Reviewed 25 December 2013

Received a friendly reception
Warm colors with modem art displayed on the walls

All of the wait staff were VERY prompt and attentive of the guest needs

Food and beverage selections:
Pali “Rivera” Pinot Noir

Handmade Fettuccine with middle neck clams in fresh tomato ragu
Risotto with white shrimp, pepperoni and english peas in Grana Padana

Red Snapper over beans, field greens, baby artichokes in a caper broth
Grilled leg venison over kale, fennel and red onions in caramelized cranberry sauce

Pumpkin spice cheesecake with bourbon pecans
Honey-almond tart with cranberry-orange compote

My niece will be going to Duke PA school. I will return here

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1  Thank Flounder B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Reviewed 23 December 2013

Recently we had a special occasion in our family, we were taking the prospective in-laws to dinner. We had heard when you wanted a special meal, Nana’s is the place to go, we heard right. While maybe a little pricey, the quality of the food was excellent. (The new mother in law to be still raves about the Risotto). Not one of our party of six was disappointed. The wine list was fantastic, and the desserts to die for. While we had a large (6) party, it is also a nice lace for a romantic dinner for two. We recommend Nana’s to anyone who wants a special dinner in Durham.

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Thank Inez_Coo
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 6 December 2013

The food was very good (the steak was rather tough but the "iron pan" chicken was rapturous), the service was fine despite how crowded it was. Parking has been a problem in the past but they have instituted a free valet parking service which eliminates that frustrating issue. Prices are high but not outrageous. The staff was efficient and service was prompt. I can't mark them down on their menu. But the reason I have to revisit my previous 5 star review and change it to 4 has to do with the wine.

My husband and I are as interested in the wine as the food, and we always make a point of looking at the online wine list before we go to any restaurant. That way, if we don't see something we'd like to try, we bring our own wine. Seeing some interesting choices and good prices, we picked wines for our party in advance so we wouldn't have to waste time perusing the list at the restaurant, and could get right down to catching up with friends. The advance planning was for naught, however, because the wine list had changed. Dramatically. Not a single wine we picked was available. Our waiter was notably unsympathetic and did his best to try and convince us that it really wasn't a problem that the $45 rose brut champagne we had wanted to order wasn't available, but could easily be replaced by the $65 non-rose bottle. Same with the red: we had chosen a beautiful Rioja, but the only Rioja currently served was not as good and on the "by the glass" menu only. When I pointed out that the list online was completely inaccurate, he told me that "our wine list changes once a week, we couldn't possibly keep it updated". I said that a restaurant of this caliber had a responsibility to do just that. He blew me off and said he'd pass along the comment.

UNACCEPTABLE. I have a website, it takes 15 minutes to update if it's done regularly. If Nana's can't devote resources to keeping their website wine list more accurate, then they should say something like, "Nana's stocks red, white, and sparkling wines from the major world regions, across the spectrum of price points. If you are interested in seeing our current wine list, [do this]." It wouldn't take much effort at all.

Chef/owner Scott Howell has been honored by the James Beard Foundation. He's been written up in "Food and Wine" and other great culinary magazines. Nana's website advertises that their wine list has won an Award of Excellence from "Wine Spectator" magazine. They obviously care that customers have a good selection of wines to go with their fine foods. Keeping a seriously outdated list on the website plays a "bait and switch" with customers who care about wine, too, and that made us unhappy, and that's why Nana's lost a star with us.

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2  Thank EllenRN
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 23 November 2013

Nana's has great atmosphere, with local art on the walls and not too noisy for a busy Friday nite. Service was good. Waitress was very knowledgeable about the specials, wines and menu in general. Wife had fois-gras appetizer and I had the gravlax. Both were very tasty. My wife had the roasted chicken w/ brussel sprouts, fingerling potatoes and onions and she raved about it, even the next day as she had the leftovers for lunch. The fly in the ointment was my entree, the NY strip steak. Flavorful and properly prepared. The downside was that it was one of the toughest pieces of meat I've ever eaten. I was able to finish about 2/3 of it, thinking that I just had a tough end and hoping there was a tender portion, at least. Not so however, so I gave up. There was gristle in the steak that I could not even cut with the knife. Now, I know that Nana's is not a steakhouse, however-why offer this on the menu for $29.99 and serve meat that would be scrapped in the trash at Golden Corral? I told the waitress, who apologized and wished I had told her earlier so she could get me something else. This could have been a new favorite restaurant, but please Nana's, serving meat like that ruined it for me. Even though I struggled to eat 2/3 of it, I believe you should have refunded the price, even though this would not have made the experience OK.

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2  Thank Jimmy49463
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 20 November 2013

We had a pleasant dinner for four at Nana's. Our reserved table at 8:30 was ready upon our arrival. The entrees that were ordered included duck breast, sirloin steak and flounder. The service was excellent, the food was well prepared (though the steak was not as tender as expected), presentation and side dishes were good. The fried oysters that three of us shared as an appetizer was just okay. Noise level was moderate to high at times.

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Thank Barry S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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