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“Great food, weird location” 4 of 5 bubbles
Review of Poole's Diner

Poole's Diner
Ranked #17 of 1,439 Restaurants in Raleigh
Certificate of Excellence
Price range: US$6 - US$30
Cuisines: American
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Local cuisine, Special Occasion Dining, Bar Scene
Dining options: After-hours, Dinner, Full Bar, Parking Available, Seating, Serves Alcohol, Takeout, Waitstaff, Wheelchair Accessible
Park City, Utah
Level Contributor
247 reviews
166 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 69 helpful votes
“Great food, weird location”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 16 June 2014

The first thing you need to know about this place is that even though it's on a super busy street where traffic is flying by just a few feet away, it's still worth going. In fact, they have their own parking lot right across that busy street. If you aren't familiar with the area you will almost certainly fly right by it because somebody will be riding up your butt. Your wife will say "oh.....there it was...." and you'll utter a profane word or two and then you'll calmly take the next right turn and work your way back to that street and you will park like a pro! After all of that, the fine folks at Poole's will take care of you with good food, good beverages, and really good dessert. If you don't mind sitting at lunch counters you should opt to eat as close to the front as possible because the farther you go back into this restaurant, the louder it gets. By the time you get back near the restrooms you'll think you've stepped into a sports bar during the Final Four. Have fun!

Visited June 2014
Helpful?
1 Thank Godby
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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429 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
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Rating summary
    Food
    Service
    Value
    Atmosphere
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Portuguese first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Raleigh, North Carolina
Level Contributor
36 reviews
19 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 17 helpful votes
“Great Food and Wine”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 7 June 2014

Every time I go to Poole's
, the food is fantastic. It is cooked to perfection and the service is excellent. Last time, I had the hamburger (cannot remember the fancy name) and we shared the Mac and cheese which is my favorite thing in the menu. We are at the bar so we did not have to wait and the bartender was so helpful in choosing a wine. This is one of our favorite restaurants.

  • Visited April 2014
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Food
Helpful?
2 Thank Deb0904
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
North Carolina
Level Contributor
7 reviews
7 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
“Worth the wait!”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 3 June 2014

We had been trying to go to Poole's Diner for over 1 year! Finally got in. You must get there when the bar opens and then wait for the seating at 5:30. The drinks are very creative. Yes, it is loud, but we were ok with that. Ashley served us the legendary Mac n Cheese-very good and lots of it! Our entrees were very fresh and delicious-loved the tomato stew with the crab fritters. Desserts were great, too! The lemon tart --yummy!

  • Visited May 2014
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Food
Helpful?
1 Thank NCTraveler22
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Raleigh, North Carolina
Level Contributor
380 reviews
201 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 151 helpful votes
“Try it-- at least once!”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 28 May 2014

Ashley Christensen is a legend here in the Triangle-- and elsewhere, as her recent James Beard award has proven. Come try Poole's Diner to get a sense of why. The food is super-fresh, locally sourced, and the menu changed often. The drinks are creative and fun. It's a lively atmosphere with such character and life, and I love visiting here. It is a bit pricey, though, and there's usually a wait. Go early, if you can-- or stop by just for drinks, if you're concerned about dining too early in the day. Trust me, though, that the wait will be worth it if you keep an open mind. Other reviews are correct, too, when they say that it is loud. It is. It's not a great place for an intimate chat over dinner, but go and enjoy yourself nonetheless.

  • Visited June 2013
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Food
Helpful?
1 Thank thetravelingjen
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Cary, NC
Level Contributor
87 reviews
52 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 31 helpful votes
“Despite hype, big disappointment”
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 22 May 2014

I celebrated my birthday last night with a much anticipated dinner at Poole's Diner. Parking was a snap and the staff was attentive and polite. The rest was a disappointment. As noted, it's very noisy with hard surfaces everywhere, hard to converse without yelling when it gets busy. Lighting down the center of the long room is non-existent. Looking out from near darkness into the bright street, I could not see my husband's face across the table nor could I see the food on my plate without taking my plate a few feet to the left or the right where there is dim lighting along the sides of the room. So much for tasting with your eyes first! I ordered a Sunburst Tomato Salad served with a mound of creamy mozzarella and toasted corn bread. While I realized this is not tomato season yet, I assumed that if the James Beard award winning chef were serving tomatoes, they must be good. Not so. They were anemic tasting. However, the corn bread was very good. For my entree, I selected the crab fritters served on a bed of stewed tomatoes. The four fritters were meat ball sized. I could not detect any crab taste at all, so I had my husband (who always orders seafood) taste them. He said he "barely" tasted crab in my $22 entree. Since the entree was very small, I decided to add a side of macaroni and cheese which was served promptly with a gorgeous crust. The "side" could serve 4-5 people. Rich does not do this dish justice in description. After googling the recipe, I was not surprised that for 1/2 lb. pasta, it contained 3 cups of heavy cream. The leftover mac and cheese in my fridge is a nice, solid block of fat today. That said, my husband's softshell crab over red cabbage appetizer was very good, a creative combination, and he enjoyed very much his small serving of halibut over fingerling potatoes served in an olive stew. His side of asparagus was cut into long slivers and paired with oyster mushrooms in sherry though the cream in the sauce was more pronounced in flavor than the sherry. What could have been a healthy side dish was rich in fat. Adding in my husband's one glass of wine, the tab exceeded $100.00 (and my husband was still a little hungry). I couldn't help comparing the meal with our recent meals in Charleston at similarly hyped restaurants there. Cost benefit comparison for me: paid 30% more to get at least 50% less in quality.

  • Visited May 2014
    • 1 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Atmosphere
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Food
Helpful?
2 Thank CaryCook
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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