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May 15, 2013 08:21 AM

Vacation in New Bern

In a month, my wife and I are going to be in New Bern, NC. When on vacation, we tend to like casual not too expensive places, although we generally try to hit one "can't miss" spot if there is one in the area.

I love barbeque and chicken wing kind of places. I also tend to love anything outside of the ordinary pizza, Chinese, and Italian places. Living in Vermont, we have plenty of those, but not many seafood, barbeque, "southern" style places.

I'd like to keep it within about a half hour of New Bern.


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  1. Kinston is roughly 45 mins away but it has Chef and The Farmer. I haven't lived in that area of New Bern to really say anything other than.. I'm sorry.. :-p

    4 Replies
    1. re: burgeoningfoodie

      Sorry that you don't have any recommendations or sorry that I'm visiting New Bern? :)

      1. re: Shann

        The Tryon Palace is a nice place to visit and I recommend it. It was one of the first British seats of government. You will have a good feeling of the historic value of New Bern.

        I can't say we found any places of deep interest for food. I hope someone here can help you. I would head toward the coast to complete your weekend. Kinston is ok, that's it.

        1. re: supernc

          The thought of Beaufort for a day trip down Hwy 70 is a good one. A very nice quaint City on the waterfront. They will have some food!

    2. For true, outstanding eastern NC barbeque, you have to go to Moore's in New Bern. This place is one of our "must do's" (normally more than once) each time we're back home in that part of the state.

      The Chef and Farmer, as previously mentioned, is also very good. Not sure what else is around there as a "can't miss" as we've been away from there for nearly 20 years.

      You will enjoy the town of New Bern. It's a very friendly little town, reminicent of Williamsburg.

      16 Replies
      1. re: goodeatsinadive

        Thanks for the replies. It sounds nice. We love Williamsburg, so it should be fun. We will put the Chef and Farmer and Moore's on the list.

        1. re: Shann

          You can try Moore's since it's your only option in the area...although I have to admit it's one of the worst examples of North Carolina barbecue I've ever had. I would prefer Smithfield's over Moore's (Smithfield's is a fast food bbq chain BTW).

          I'd make a recommendation for great Thai food in Jacksonville, but it's an hour away.

          Good luck...New Bern isn't exactly a food city. I don't know what's there now, but they used to have a handful of little places in the historic downtown. It's nice to walk around down there and explore the few shops.

          1. re: JayL

            There's a Thai place in New Bern called Thai Thai that I ate at a couple of times last fall. Really good. They specialize in seafood dishes, but have the usual pad thai, etc. as well. I found out about it through some coworkers who also raved about it.

            I really can't recommend their seafood specials enough.

            1. re: JayL

              We probably will be driving around the area a fair bit, so Beaufort and Jacksonville might be on our itinerary. I just didn't want to drive too far if the only reason was for a meal.

              Why is Moore's the "one of worst examples"? I'd like to try some decent barbeque. Since we don't have much barbeque around me, I wouldn't know good from really good, but I don't want "bad"

              1. re: Shann

                If you're coming from parts north, you'll likely be passing very near much better barbecue spots, like Wilber's in Goldsboro or the Skylight Inn in Ayden, on your way down. I'd hit one of those.

                1. re: Naco

                  Good idea, but just not something that is going to happen. When I'm driving to a destination for vacation, I'm like Clark W. Griswold!

                  Maybe on the way home I'll be less crazed.

                  1. re: Shann

                    Ayden is less than an hour, and Skylight inn is a destination not to be missed for barbecue.

                    1. re: veganhater


                      #2 in the country in the eyes of National Geographic.

                      My favorite.

                      I live around Charleston, SC and my wife is from the Caribbean. The other day she looked at me and said, "I want barbecue." (boy I love it when she says that) So I asked, "Where do you want to go?"

                      I gave her the deer-in-the-headlight look and just shook my head when here reply was, "Ayden."

                      And she was serious!

                      I love that woman...

                      1. re: veganhater

                        Yep. Skylight is worth the trip. If you go to Kinston for the Chef and the Farmer (also worth doing), have a beer flight at Mother Earth Brewery's tap room. Are you into taquerias?

                        1. re: marlowebeach

                          I'd definitely be into going to one. My wife probably not so much but I can probably talk her into it!

                          1. re: marlowebeach

                            Know anything about the Asian Bistro that opened (is opening?) across from Chef and Farmer?

                            1. re: burgeoningfoodie

                              Just heard about it yesterday and haven't been there yet. We'll try it and report back.

                              I find it amusing that a thread on New Bern dining has people suggesting Kinston. We live closer to Kinston and always go to New Bern to eat :).

                              1. re: GaKaye

                                Anything different from what has already been suggested?

                                Where are the best chicken wings in New Bern?

                                1. re: Shann

                                  Not a chicken wing fan, so I can't help you there. Did you see my other post above? I suggested three or four good restaurants in New Bern.....

                    2. re: Shann

                      My opinion is that Moore's barbecue isn't good. I've had it, didn't like it, and would not go there...even if they ARE the only option.

                      I'd actually rather have drive-thru at Smithfield's. Honestly.

              2. That you are vacationing at New Bern, but I was joking. I grew up in that area and so its all boring to me. Apparently though there is a good vietnamese restaurant or owner in the area now too.

                Moore's is what you are limited to but its not that great and neither is King's in Kinston. There may be some family places towards Morehead like El's Drive In but it is more for the memories of family trips to the beach than perhaps the food.

                1 Reply
                1. re: burgeoningfoodie

                  I gotcha. I live in a small town in Vermont and always tell people "its a nice place to live but I wouldn't want to visit there"

                2. We live about 30 minutes from New Bern, close to Kinston, and go to New Bern frequently to eat. Persimmons on the waterfront is excellent for lunch or dinner, and they have entertainment on their deck on either Saturday or Sunday (check their Facebook page).

                  247 Craven has great, fresh food; their menu changes with what's in season. Open for lunch and dinner.

                  Captain Ratty's has decent food...nothing special, but not bad. They also have a rooftop deck that's nice in the evening, and they have a wine bar.

                  The Chelsea is excellent for either lunch or dinner. I've never had a bad meal there, and I'm very particular.

                  1. Does Yoder's still exist between New Bern and Greenville.. I think?

                    2 Replies
                    1. re: burgeoningfoodie

                      Not really between New Bern and Greenville-it's about halfway between Grifton and Vanceboro, as I recall.

                      Still there as far as I know, though. I was over that way a year or so ago, and it was open.