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Jul 18, 2007 07:27 PM

Quick Lunch near the NC State Fairgrounds

I will be spending next Tues and Wed at the NC Fairgrounds and was wondering what is close by that I can grab a quick bite for lunch. I won't have more than an hour for travel and eating. All recommendations greatly appreciated!

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  1. If you do a search, this question has been asked before. I will give you the first answer everyone always gives.....Neomonde. Best middle eastern food around. Take a left out of the fairgrounds onto Hillsborough, pass under the beltline, aka 440. When you come to the light at Beryl Road (waffle house on your right past light) take a right. Once you cross the tracks take your IMMEDIATE left. I don't know the name of the road, but there are several light industrial business down there. About three business down, on your right. Odd place, but started as a bakery mainly, with a little store and then grew. Good outside seating, standard middle eastern fare. Great desserts.

    That is my first thought....I am sure you will get others.

    2 Replies
    1. re: VaNC

      I second that, neomode is great. You can also go down hillsborough street which runs right in front of the fairgrounds & that will take you to the NC State area with lots of choices, some quicker than others. If you're a hot dog fan, check out Snoopy's. If you want to sit down, Mitch's is great, or Porters.
      You might be pushing it for time, though.

      1. re: VaNC

        Ha ha! You are absolutely correct that Neomonde is the closest, best and quickest! And there's always Whole Foods for a quick bite. In case you don't know, it's on Wade Avenue, which is a stone's throw from the Blue Ridge Road side of the fairgrounds.

      2. Pam's Farmhouse is close by if you wish for a meat and two type place. If you get there before 12:00 you can get in quickly. Take Hillsborough St. as traveling to Cary and turn left at the Hardware store and Pam's will be at the next traffic light

        1 Reply
        1. re: BBQJoe

          Pam's Farmhouse is my new favorite place for lunch now (I work down in that area). You really can't beat a meat + 2 veggies, all homecooked quality, for $6.00.

        2. I recognize those dates! I assume you're taking the bar exam (I chair the Board of Law Examiners). A few of the law schools are providing lunch for their students on site. For others who would prefer not to travel, we have arranged for the cafeteria to be open that day, in one of the buildings where the exam is being given. (The Graham Building and the Exposition Center are side by side. I don't have my info at home, but as I recall, the cafeteria is in the Graham Building.) I'm not sure what the menu is, but I'm told it's pretty decent. The proctors will be eating the same food...

          Obviously you can go off site if you want to, and all the other suggestions are reasonable ones. Nothing is right next door, though, which is why we arranged for the cafeteria to be open this year--plus, it gives a place to get out of the heat while you're waiting to get back in for the afternoon session.

          I expect you will get out for lunch sometime between 12 and 12:30; it will be a bit later on the first day than on the second, because it takes much more time for everyone to check in, go through the ID process, and for us to take care of anyone whose application still has problems, etc. Even so, that should leave about an hour and a half for the lunch break. Under no circumstances will the lunchtime get cut below an hour, even if unusual events delay the start as happened for one session of one exam in the past; we'd just start the afternoon session a bit later.

          Good luck!

          5 Replies
          1. re: solive

            As I'll be in the original poster's position in exactly two years for the purposes of IP, I'm bookmarking this post for future reference. Thanks for the info. That reminds me - if you're who I think you are, you'll be getting my resume soon. Small world!

            1. re: mikeh

              or you could do what I did when it was at the McKimmon Center--pack a couple of packs of nabs and cram with your BarBri notes in the parking lot.

              good luck

                1. re: aphayes

         I am partial to the cheddar cheese cracker with peanut butter(toastchee) or the nekot wafers

                2. re: Guilty Gourmand

                  When I was taking my seat in New Orleans for the patent bar exam a few years back I heard CRUNCH CRUNCH. I inquired, "Are those chocolate covered espresso beans?"

                  Best wishes on your test strategy.

            2. About 10 minutes west of the fair grounds on Hillsboro you hit a pocket of locally owned establishments. Directly on Hillsboro/Chatham are Suchi (Indian), Korean gardens, Udipi (Indian) at 590 East Chatham Street, The Food Factory(deli), Cindy's House, Ashworths Pharmacy (old fashioned soda shop) and Havana Grill.

              1. If you're a sushi fan, there's a little place called Sushi Tsune down Hillsborough Street, not too far after the turn for Neomonde (which I would also definitely recommend). Sushi Tsune has always been good sushi (not the best in town, but certainly very acceptable) and fast. They have good lunch specials on weekdays too. It's right next door to the Arby's, which you will spot easily because it has one of those old-school Arby's signs that looks like a giant cowboy hat.