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Aug 1, 2014 08:46 AM

Irregardless cafe Raleigh

This place is on the list of dinners for our five day stay in area. What's good here?

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  1. Making a reservation somewhere else. (rimshot)

    I actually do mean what I said, but if I can ask, why is the Irregardless on your list? At one point they were one of the few area restaurants that was vegetarian/vegan. Now, while they still are veggie/vegan friendly, they also serve meat and most other local restaurants can easily accommodate vegetarians with, IMHO, much better food.

    While the restaurant has a cult following, there are many better choices in Raleigh. I can honestly say that I've never had what I consider to be an even acceptable meal there.

    14 Replies
    1. re: rockycat

      +1 (Although we haven't been there in years, it was always merely passable and that was back in the days when Raleigh had no non-chain options, nowadays I can't see any reason to go there with so many excellent places to choose from.)

      1. re: Erika RollerGirl

        Yeah - it's been a couple of years ago since I was there, but it was blah blah blittidly blah…

      2. re: rockycat

        Oh boy it sounded good but... Any ideas for another place then? One of us is vegetarian

        1. re: Barbarella

          I haven't been yet (there are too many places to try and not enough time or waistline room!) but I've heard that Fiction Kitchen is a wonderful option for vegetarians and non-vegetarians alike. Definitely something to consider.

          1. re: Erika RollerGirl

            Just checked menu and looks like just vegan

            1. re: Barbarella

              We live and Durham and just ate at Fiction Kitchen for the first time last night. We thought it was sensational!. We had seasonal (kale) fritters as an appetizer, vegetarian sushi roll w tofu sashimi, and tinga tacos. Everything was delicious. Most non-vegetarians would have no problem finding something they loved here.

              Note, they do not take reservations. We got there a little before 6pm and were seated right away. By 6pm there was a short wait, but they have a nice bar to help pass the time.

        2. re: rockycat

          What other places do u recommend? One vegetarian in party of four

          1. re: Barbarella

            One of my very good friends is vegetarian and I have found most of the independent restaurants in Raleigh will make something terrific for her, even if it isn't on the menu. Is there a price-point or type of cuisine you would be interested in? For example, for a lovely sit-down (pricier, but not astronomical) Mo's Diner and Bloomsbury Bistro [& slightly lesser expensive] 18 Seaboard have often prepared amazing dinners for LT with a call ahead or even request of the waiter.

            We had a terrific meal at The Rockford and LT enjoyed her vegetarian meal immensely a couple of weeks ago (lower price point). Plates and Tazza Kitchen are other fab options that come to mind, too!

            If there is more of an ethnic type place you're interested in, please let us know. Many are vegetarian friendly.

            I haven't been to Fiction Kitchen yet, but definitely have heard great things about it.

            1. re: Tehama

              What is Fiction Kitchen? This thread is the first I've heard of it, and I'm interested.

              1. re: LulusMom

                IIRC they began as a pop-up restaurant and were wildly successful. They had a Kickstarter a year or so ago.

                Dinner only except Sunday brunch.

                1. re: meatn3

                  Thanks meatn3. That basically means I don't need to even think about it, since my dinner chances in Raleigh are so rare.

                  1. re: LulusMom

                    As you know, I'm definitely a carnivore, but I've heard several people (vegetarians, vegans, pescitarians, omnivores, carnivores, you name it) really rave about it. I'd like to give it a try at some point.

                    I need some LuLu time soon!

                    1. re: Tehama

                      Lulu (and I!) would both love to see you. Maybe we can do a GK outing or something?

          2. re: rockycat

            Wow! I went to Irregardless a few times back in the early/mid 90's and really liked it. I bought the cookbook. I don't really remember it being vegetarian. Anyhow, it certainly has shown some longevity!

          3. As a vegetarian how about going trying some of the great Indian vegetarian restaurants in Morrisville the Tower or Cary?

            1 Reply
            1. re: Rory

              My current favorite is Sai Krishna Bhavan in Morrisville (but right off 540).

              I'm not too big on vegetarian food in general, but I really like this place. In fact, I may be going there for dinner tonight. The dosas are absolutely worth trying, as are most of the curries. They even have just a couple of Indo-Chinese specialties.

            2. I don't get to that side of the Triangle often, but I enjoyed Sitti and I often eat vegetarian myself.

              1. Wound up going to the Irregardless Cafe and it was great!! I had the shrimp and grit cake and loved it. DH had chicken pesto and daughter had the Mediterranean platter and was good. Only one dinner was so so that was the Oriental stir fry. We would go back...

                6 Replies
                1. re: Barbarella

                  I was listening to the ne sayers and did not comment. My last meal there was a Sunday morning brunch and my only complaint was the cost. The food was very good. I am glad you had a good meal.

                  1. re: Barbarella

                    I did the same thing as supernc. I rarely comment on these boards anymore. I've been going to Irregardless since it opened, many many years ago. I'm glad you took a chance and enjoyed it.

                    I'm also a sincere fan of St. Jacques, Fearrington House, Angus Barn, Squids, Pancuito, Jujube, and Chucks.

                    I look forward to hearing more of your local experiences.

                    1. re: fussycouple

                      I think it's unfortunate that those who had good recent experiences didn't feel like it was worth it to comment initially for whatever reason. One-sided threads are not useful or beneficial for any of us who depend on these boards to determine where our food dollars should be spent. No one should feel that their opinion is not worthy.

                      I'm glad the OP (and now others) had good meals there. I would certainly be more apt to try Irregardless again after hearing positive (recent!) reviews.

                      1. re: Erika RollerGirl


                        Food is so subjective. The more pov expressed the fuller the picture.

                        I don't always agree with other posters and I'm sure my opinion is received with widely varied levels of interest. Over time there is a chance to learn which voices mesh with your taste and vise versa. The more people who contribute helpful, well considered reviews the greater the value of the board.

                        1. re: Erika RollerGirl

                          I second the motion - on both counts.

                          So…. is the Irregardless serving meat-based dishes now?

                          1. re: Tehama

                            They have been for quite a few years now. That began about the same time that more really good restaurants started serving vegetarian dishes.

                    2. Several folks wrote here about Fiction Kitchen a few weeks ago and we visited the first time tonight. High quality across the board with a multiple dishes outstanding - eggplant lightly breaded served over greens braised with what tasted like porcini mushroom broth with smoked or oven roasted tomatoes; farro "risotto" also with multiple kinds of tomatoes with grilled pickled green beans; huitlacoche quesadillas. Very fresh and seasonal, not afraid of flavor. Good selection of beer, limited wines. Reasonably priced. Thanks for the recommendation.