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Downtown Raleigh retail updates


Beth Y

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It looks like a second waraji location will open at the old est est est location (hargett & salisbury) :yahoo:. What a great addition to downtown!

Where did you hear that? Damn, that is outstanding news--great coup for downtown if it actually happens! :D

I always thought Waraji was better than Sushi Blues, but Blues gets a lot of customers simply because of location.

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Where did you hear that? Damn, that is outstanding news--great coup for downtown if it actually happens! :D

I always thought Waraji was better than Sushi Blues, but Blues gets a lot of customers simply because of location.

I was at Waraji last night and spoke to the owners. They had been scouting locations and decided on this one. They've signed a letter of intent and their biggest concern is the need for a larger grease trap, but that should not deter them.

Waraji is one of my favorite restaurants. They have such a loyal following because of their consistently high quality and friendly service. I just hope they can replicate that at their new location.

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Where did you hear that? Damn, that is outstanding news--great coup for downtown if it actually happens! :D

I always thought Waraji was better than Sushi Blues, but Blues gets a lot of customers simply because of location.

Not just location, myself as well as hundreds of other college students go there in caravan due to the half priced sushi on Tuesdays and Thursdays. Can't beat it; going there tonight actually, lol.

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wonder if the half price sushi on Tuesday and Thursday will follow to the downtown location...I could see Soup Nazi like lines there if that is the case...

Thats Sushi Blues half priced sushi.....drive by and check out the lines around 9pm or so!

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^Well, in GlenSouth, they'd have competition (Sushi Blues). So the old Est spot may be actually a better thing for them. Plus a very good lunch crowd, I'd imagine. I'm glad to see it filled. :)

I was at Waraji last night and spoke to the owners. They had been scouting locations and decided on this one. They've signed a letter of intent and their biggest concern is the need for a larger grease trap, but that should not deter them.

I've never been to Waraji and am certainly not a sushi expert, but how much grease would a place that serves raw fish produce? :dontknow:

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^Well, in GlenSouth, they'd have competition (Sushi Blues). So the old Est spot may be actually a better thing for them. Plus a very good lunch crowd, I'd imagine. I'm glad to see it filled. :)

I've never been to Waraji and am certainly not a sushi expert, but how much grease would a place that serves raw fish produce? :dontknow:

Waraji, in my opinion, and I eat a lot of sushi, is one of the highest quality, if not the highest quality, sushi places in town. I know from frequenting sites like Chowhound and eGullet that I am not alone in this opinion. So this is very exciting for downtown.

To answer why they need a greasetrap, Waraji does more than sushi. They also do tempura, katsu and other fried japanese dishes, as well as teriyaki, udon, etc.

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^Well, in GlenSouth, they'd have competition (Sushi Blues). So the old Est spot may be actually a better thing for them. Plus a very good lunch crowd, I'd imagine. I'm glad to see it filled. :)

I've never been to Waraji and am certainly not a sushi expert, but how much grease would a place that serves raw fish produce? :dontknow:

Not much. But this is due to newer Wake County regulations regarding grease trap size. It doesn't matter what type of restaurant you are.

"Hargett is the target" is Empire Properties' motto right now and this addition would definitely help them with this. :thumbsup:

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This could be a catalyst for several improvements on Salisbury +/- 2 blocks from this site. There are some great potential retail places through there.

I don't tend to be excited about Keynesian economics, but this is a great example of a success story. I don't think that restaurant location would have attracted Waraji were it not for the City's investment in F St.

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^Well, in GlenSouth, they'd have competition (Sushi Blues). So the old Est spot may be actually a better thing for them. Plus a very good lunch crowd, I'd imagine. I'm glad to see it filled. :)

I've never been to Waraji and am certainly not a sushi expert, but how much grease would a place that serves raw fish produce? :dontknow:

Also, that new restuarant in the Southend location has sushi and sushi bar.

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I was at Waraji last night and spoke to the owners. They had been scouting locations and decided on this one. They've signed a letter of intent and their biggest concern is the need for a larger grease trap, but that should not deter them.

Waraji is one of my favorite restaurants. They have such a loyal following because of their consistently high quality and friendly service. I just hope they can replicate that at their new location.

I work with several people from Japan and other Asian countries and Waraji is thier restaurant. Even many or our Japanese travelers coming to Raleigh eat there and stay in hotels near there when they visit Raleigh.

Noting like the Fishneck. I have a friend/co-worker and his wife from Taiwan/Hong Kong and they go "ga-ga" over the fishneck.

This could be a catalyst for several improvements on Salisbury +/- 2 blocks from this site. There are some great potential retail places through there.

I don't tend to be excited about Keynesian economics, but this is a great example of a success story. I don't think that restaurant location would have attracted Waraji were it not for the City's investment in F St.

Agree and I am not sure F-Street would have passed without the Convention Center (although I could be wrong)

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Note that Wild Ginger Sushi is right around the corner in PEII

True that. Again I'm not a sushi person per se, but sounds like Waraji's reputation will eclipse Wild Ginger's among the sushi fans.

So I would say WG's best bet to keep the business up would be to expand the Thai parts of their menu...so far still no competition downtown in that department.

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True that. Again I'm not a sushi person per se, but sounds like Waraji's reputation will eclipse Wild Ginger's among the sushi fans.

So I would say WG's best bet to keep the business up would be to expand the Thai parts of their menu...so far still no competition downtown in that department.

Wild Ginger is probably at the bottom of sushi places I've experienced in the Triangle... they probably do a decent business with the PE II location and new condos on the way, but they need to improve their quality IMO, or eventually, Waraji will eat them alive (assuming the new location will be as good as the Duraleigh).

The BBQ and Ribs Co. (at St. Mary's and Tucker) is closing. Their sign in the entrance didn't say when the last day is. Maybe someone will tear down the building and put up some high-end condos :)

That kind of sucks... that spot is destined to fail I guess after the seafood joint and now this... I thought BBQ would be winner there, but too far off Glenwood I guess...

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That spot must be cursed or something. Cuz in theory, it should be a good place for a restaurant: adjacent to affluent Cameron Park neighborhood....one of the largest parking lots of any downtown restaurants with a good amount of street parking too....and on a (relatively) well-traveled road. :dontknow:

Maybe the key is getting something there that actually draws people to it...a destination restaurant. (Calling Urban Food Group!! :whistling: )

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Maybe the key is getting something there that actually draws people to it...a destination restaurant.

Or getting a place that serves good food. I went to the seafood place...mediocre, and heard similar things about the bbq place. Put a great place in there....maybe it would lose its curse!

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Retail is tricky...there is no doubt that Glenwood south places feed off one another....this place HAS to be a draw unto itself....either that or a new building entirely needs built...maybe like a nice 6 story apratment building or something....

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Retail is tricky...there is no doubt that Glenwood south places feed off one another....this place HAS to be a draw unto itself....either that or a new building entirely needs built...maybe like a nice 6 story apratment building or something....

Even the most seemingly cursed restaurant locations can eventually redeem themselves with the right concept...the Mellow Mushroom at the corner of Glenwood and Peace is a perfect example...it limped along as a procession of failed restaurants over the years, none of which were successful, until Mellow Mushroom arrived and became hugely popular...

I knew mediocre chain barbeque was not going to be a success at that location--barbecue aficionados laugh at prepackaged chain barbecue restaurants, and people visiting Glenwood South to eat typically aren't looking for a dining experience replicated in a far superior fashion across NC in every burg big enough to have a stoplight (and plenty of burgs that aren't big enough for a stoplight have superior barbecue also). I thought the previous seafood restaurant was OK, though I didn't go out of the way to eat there. The first use of that building was an ice cream place. I remember thinking the building seemed incredibly overbuilt for an ice cream place, since they were selling the same thing as Goodberry's except with a custom built location over twice as big as a Goodberrys. The icecream store actually seemed ahead of its time...I bet a big dessert emporium a la Killians might make a go of it now...

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At BBQ & Ribs, there used to be a gas/service station for a while. Then they pulled up the gas tanks, which may have been leaking and due to its proximity to the creek/spillway/whatever that runs underground behind there.

Cool Mountain was the ice cream place. It was ok, but nothing special. Kind of ahead of its time, and not "different" enough to draw people from Baskin Robbins in Cameron Village, or just eating ice cream at home. That was even before competiton from Cold Stone, Marble Slab, Ben & Jerry's, etc. Another Cool Mountain location opened around the same time at the intersection of Tryon and Cary Parkway in Cary. That building has also gone through several iterations -- Parkway burgers and now Mythos or some simalar sounding name. It opened in the late 90s, when Glenwood South had Sunflowers, the Rockford, and not much else. It was big because they thought people wanted to eat ice cream inside, which maybe some people do, but most don't. Most ice cream palors are just big enough to serve ice cream but have little to no seating.

As for having a dessert place in Glenwood South, I don't know how Turkish Delights is doing near 518. The cupcake store *still* wasn't open next to Amra's the last time I checked.

The seafood restaurant was (I think) Cape Fear Crab house. I went once for lunch and was not impressed. My roommate got fish tacos, which was their attempt at differentiating themselves from 42nd Street Oyster Bar, but didn't do anything well.

The BBQ & Ribs is a regional chain that didn't try too hard to do barbecue well. We went with a "buy one get one free" coupon and that was about right as far as value. I'd rather go to Smithfield's any day, which is still nothing compared to real cinderblock places.

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Cool Mountain was the ice cream place. It was ok, but nothing special. Kind of ahead of its time, and not "different" enough to draw people from Baskin Robbins in Cameron Village, or just eating ice cream at home. That was even before competiton from Cold Stone, Marble Slab, Ben & Jerry's, etc. Another Cool Mountain location opened around the same time at the intersection of Tryon and Cary Parkway in Cary. That building has also gone through several iterations -- Parkway burgers and now Mythos or some simalar sounding name. It opened in the late 90s, when Glenwood South had Sunflowers, the Rockford, and not much else. It was big because they thought people wanted to eat ice cream inside, which maybe some people do, but most don't. Most ice cream palors are just big enough to serve ice cream but have little to no seating.

As for having a dessert place in Glenwood South, I don't know how Turkish Delights is doing near 518. The cupcake store *still* wasn't open next to Amra's the last time I checked.

The seafood restaurant was (I think) Cape Fear Crab house. I went once for lunch and was not impressed. My roommate got fish tacos, which was their attempt at differentiating themselves from 42nd Street Oyster Bar, but didn't do anything well.

The BBQ & Ribs is a regional chain that didn't try too hard to do barbecue well. We went with a "buy one get one free" coupon and that was about right as far as value. I'd rather go to Smithfield's any day, which is still nothing compared to real cinderblock places.

Turkish Delights is a pleasant enough place, but I don't think they'd make it on their own pastries alone without selling mediocre mass produced ice cream (which they seem to sell plenty of, particularly since they are the *only* ice cream place in Glenwood South)...Since no "make it on the premises" ice cream stores have EVER made it (Remember Steve's, Cream and Bean on Hillsborough; and (really showing my age) Rossini's in Durham on Broad Street), I guess it is a pipe dream to suppose a really good ice cream place can make it in any city that isn't a major tourist destination. (Although, I find it hard to believe Blowing Rock can support a Killians, but Glenwood South could not...)

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Frankly, I thought BBQ & Ribs had the best pig in Raleigh and I'm very sad to see it go.

Every time I went there for lunch it was packed. Their problem at dinner was they closed at 8pm! I couldn't believe it one time when I showed up at 8:05 and the doors were locked. That area draws a late dining crowd, and closing that early definitely hurt.

I don't think Boddie-Noel gave it enough time. That place had only been open at most 2 years. There is no way they were losing money that fast unless rent there is unbelievably high.

ITB/West Raleigh needs a good barbecue spot very badly. (And please don't say the Q-Shack qualifies, that place is horrible and completely overpriced).

Don Murray's closed a few months ago. The only spots left in Raleigh are Cooper's, Barbecue Lodge and that place over off Hwy 54 in Cary.

Someone build me a Smithfields on this side of town quick.

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Every time I went there for lunch it was packed. Their problem at dinner was they closed at 8pm! I couldn't believe it one time when I showed up at 8:05 and the doors were locked. That area draws a late dining crowd, and closing that early definitely hurt.

Well that's just a plain dumb move anywhere...let alone someplace near downtown. In any given week, I'd bet I get my dinner after 8 on more days than before. 9 or 10 maybe...but 8? Geez. :wacko:

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