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Beth Y

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Here's more about it. They basically whine that nearby construction has caused their downfall and never mention the weird menu, awful bathrooms, and lack of advertising that also might have been a factor.

Well, I'll kinda disagree about the menu...not that weird, it was comfort diner food, but with a modern twist. Alot of vegetarian-friendly stuff too, like the ironic veggie meatloaf. :D I never left that place unsatisfied with the food (which is more than I can say for the place they replaced...Vertigo).

I can see how the construction was a major problem, but it never actually kept me from visiting...I just usually parked on Davie and walked down. Seems to me, if you can stick it out, once the convention center is open the foot traffic to the place will go up pretty high.

Don't know about the bathrooms, but I totally agree the lack of advertising was probably a LARGE component of it all....most people I know aren't even aware that place even exists unless I mentioned it. :rolleyes:

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MARTHA STEWART

Fresh Spinach, Dried Berries, Pralines, Celery, Goat Cheese, Apple Cider Vinaigrette

$8.00

Add a Whole Chicken Breast

$11.00

INDIAN CHICKEN SALAD

Spicy Mango Chutney, Baked Chicken Breasts, White Rice & Fresh Spinach topped with Toasted Coconut, Slivered Almonds & Tzatziki, with Toasted Pita

$10.00

BURGERS

POOLES 6oz STEAK BURGER

With Lettuce,Tomato,Onion & Mayo.Served with French Fries

$6.00

DON HO

Single Steak Burger, topped with Fresh Mozzarella, Pineapple Slices, Roasted Red Peppers & Ham

$8.00

DON HO, MAKE IT CLUCK

Grilled Chicken Breast, topped with Fresh Mozzarella, Pineapple Slices, Roasted Red Peppers & Ham

$8.50

CRAWFORD, TX

Single Steak Burger topped with Smoked Applewood Bacon, Grilled Red Onions, Ranch Dressing, Guacamole & Red Peppers

$8.00

BLEU BURGER

Single Steak Burger topped with Saut

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Well, I'll kinda disagree about the menu...not that weird, it was comfort diner food, but with a modern twist. Alot of vegetarian-friendly stuff too, like the ironic veggie meatloaf. :D I never left that place unsatisfied with the food (which is more than I can say for the place they replaced...Vertigo).

I can see how the construction was a major problem, but it never actually kept me from visiting...I just usually parked on Davie and walked down. Seems to me, if you can stick it out, once the convention center is open the foot traffic to the place will go up pretty high.

Don't know about the bathrooms, but I totally agree the lack of advertising was probably a LARGE component of it all....most people I know aren't even aware that place even exists unless I mentioned it. :rolleyes:

The lack of advertising meant they relied on a crowd of regulars...many of those regulars now spend their dime at the Borough because ofthe overlap with Boroughs owner previously working at Pooles. The Borough is more successful overall though because they advertise, the location is prominant, and the style appeals to a wider range of people.

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Two other things affecting Poole's business of late:

1. Shamefully low health inspection ratings (I believe an 81 in October or November, it's just up of 90 now, which according to sanitarians I know is usually a gimme to prevent a place from getting a "B" rating)

2. Rude service of late: my friends and I were unceremoniously kicked out by the bartenders a few Saturdays ago before midnight (!). This place is going downhill in a hurry, which is a shame, because space-wise it will probably always be my favorite bar in Raleigh.

The bottom line is once Kings got its full liquor license, in absence of good food (of which there is none), Vertigo doesn't have much to offer other than the sweet bar space. I never had a problem with the bathrooms, but sometimes they are pretty grungy. But please, people keep going! If it closed, that would be awful. Raleigh has a bad tendency of razing its history for insipid buildings and chain bars, let's hope this place isn't a victim as well.

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The lack of advertising meant they relied on a crowd of regulars...many of those regulars now spend their dime at the Borough because ofthe overlap with Boroughs owner previously working at Pooles. The Borough is more successful overall though because they advertise, the location is prominant, and the style appeals to a wider range of people.

You said it, Jones. I support the Borough even though I'm not big fan of its location within the benchmark Raleigh McCondo, The Dawson on Morgan. Poole's has way more soul.

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To me, Vertigo/Poole's was always a lunch place that happened to also be a bar open for dinner/late night. Anyone expecting any more than that set themselves up for a disappointment.

That being said, Vertigo made a mean black bean nachos, but Poole's had a hard time making a basic nachos plate. Ideally, the lunch counter will be moved somewhere else (warehouse district?) when that block is redevloped. Other bars don't emulate the "rounded out" bar because the counter space eats up too much otherwise open floor space. The circle accomodated other wait staff passing by to the register, etc.

The Borrough and Poole's suffer the same problem -- they are great if you are a regular, but you virtually have to tap dance to get noticed if you're not. Poole's "soul" was *inherited* from the original lunch counter, not created by existing managment. I want to like the Borrough, but can not since I do not want to do jumping jacks to get a drink order placed.

Substance is more important than style to me, so I'd rather go to Flying Saucer (awsome beer selection) or Times Bar (better food). I still need to get to the Capitol Room. The closest to a "chain bar" downtown is the Hi 5/Bogart's/Red Room complex, Woody's City Market, Rum Runners, and the Sheraton Bar. The first two are local chains that happen to have more than one location. The last two barely qualify as a "bar" and neither "razed history" to be created. The same goes for most of Glenwood South, minus the 510 building.

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Has anyone heard anything new on the rumor that H&M was looking at a location downtown? I got a chance to shop at one over Christmas, and I think this store would be incredibly successful downtown. This is the type of store that would be a destination in itself for downtown Raleigh. I think it would be a major draw!

Edited by NCpride
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To me, Vertigo/Poole's was always a lunch place that happened to also be a bar open for dinner/late night. Anyone expecting any more than that set themselves up for a disappointment.

That being said, Vertigo made a mean black bean nachos, but Poole's had a hard time making a basic nachos plate. Ideally, the lunch counter will be moved somewhere else (warehouse district?) when that block is redevloped. Other bars don't emulate the "rounded out" bar because the counter space eats up too much otherwise open floor space. The circle accomodated other wait staff passing by to the register, etc.

The Borrough and Poole's suffer the same problem -- they are great if you are a regular, but you virtually have to tap dance to get noticed if you're not. Poole's "soul" was *inherited* from the original lunch counter, not created by existing managment. I want to like the Borrough, but can not since I do not want to do jumping jacks to get a drink order placed.

Substance is more important than style to me, so I'd rather go to Flying Saucer (awsome beer selection) or Times Bar (better food). I still need to get to the Capitol Room. The closest to a "chain bar" downtown is the Hi 5/Bogart's/Red Room complex, Woody's City Market, Rum Runners, and the Sheraton Bar. The first two are local chains that happen to have more than one location. The last two barely qualify as a "bar" and neither "razed history" to be created. The same goes for most of Glenwood South, minus the 510 building.

Vertigo was never open for lunch as best I can remember (it opened in 95/96-no doubt when the space was open before it lunch was served, though), at least not until its later years preceding the name change to Pooles. Vertigo was basically a bar that served dinner. Is menu was overly ambitious, though, and at least in the mid-late 90's, if someone said Vertigo, the implication was late night bar, the type of place that would be packed til last call. Those were the glory days, and that's the context I associated Vertigo with (not everyone would share this opinion).

I can empathize with not getting served too quickly if you're not a regular at Pooles (and even if you are!), but I've never had that problem at the borough, those are pretty friendly folks there. Sorry you've had that experience.

Point taken about the razing history for chains comment, that was more of a commentary on this area in general vs. DT. Regardless, I'm one of those crazy people who doesn't feel very fulfilled hopping the gloso bar set. I like a place with character where an attempt it isn't conspicuously made to manufacture it. The more popular places on glenwood don't do it for me in that regard, spare a few. Just a personal preference.

I disagree about the notion of soul with Vertigo, though. It was a lunch counter that was converted into a bar, and it came off to me as unique and a great idea, and one that really worked well (to pretty widespread acclaim-lots of folks used to go). Obviously that was the brain child of the management that bought it. They took a unique space and created something new without gutting it and starting again. Whether or not that was because of money, I don't know, but it worked for me.

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Has anyone heard anything new on the rumor that H&M was looking at a location downtown? I got a chance to shop at one over Christmas, and I think this store would be incredibly successful downtown. This is the type of store that would be a destination in itself for downtown Raleigh. I think it would be a major draw!

Haven't heard a thing, myself...and I read the retail column in the N&O every week.

I sure hope they someday decide to give us a chance...with all the northern transplants in the Triangle who are already familiar with the store, they'd make money here, easily.

They are often nowadays called the "Ikea of the Fashion Industry" afterall. :thumbsup:

Edited by RaleighRob
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Update from the Sue Stock in the N&O:

In downtown Raleigh, The Capital Room at 112 Fayetteville St. is expanding into a vacant neighboring space and changing its name to Fayetteville Street Tavern on New Year's Day.

Cool. :thumbsup: I knew they were expanding, but the name change is new. It has a nice ring to it. But, they should really open later today... :alc:

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Capital Room has some great food and service is great as well. The atmosphere is a little quietish with the one pool room being separated from the rest of the space. It tends to be a place people go for a drink to talk about where they will be spending the remainder of their night.

Vertigo to me had a cache that no bar in Raleigh has had before or since even though I was a Comet and Five-O regular a decade ago. Vertigo came along right with the original push of Indie everything from music, to dress and crappy college apartment furnishings (of which I still have some). Vertigo had a simple late night menu (10-2) towards its later days. I thought it would be their saving grace as their core customers aged out into their 30's. Pooles had a nice vision with expanding the menu but did not bill itself strongly enough as a restaurant or as a cool drinking spot. Electronic Dj's, at least trance and related genres, do not have pull anymore so that is not helping them much. I think a big ass neon sign like Mecca's that said "Pooles Diner" in verticle letters and a series of menu ads in the Indy would get the attention of Glenwood Southers. Also paying to get a brochure on the phone table of every Sheraton and Clarion room would help too.

Edited by Jones133
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  • 5 weeks later...

N&O food article on Azurelise, which is right above Mosiac Wine Bar--they make chocolate truffles. (didn't know there was any space above there)

Also, I noticed yesterday that the Dos Taquitos (Wilmington St) is finally showing signs of actual construction. Workers were clearing out the inside old table charis, etc, from the old biscuit station layout.

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I just took a tour of the new Dos Taquitos and it is stripped to the bone. There is a lot of work ahead such as a new grease trap, new staircase, wall repair etc. Estimated opening date is this July. The best thing about this building is the upstairs. They want to make it a lounge/bar area (it would be a hit!), but they are having problems because of the lack of fire exits.

I was told by the owners of Fin's that they hope to open in early April. I can't wait! :thumbsup:

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It would be cool if the "Kitchen" concept that was going to the Helig-Levine space could find its way there, and then move up the block to 209 Davie once it was finished, but that is probably crazy talk...

It is amazing that 428 McDowell (the tire gallery) sold on 4/28/1995 for $116,500, and 426 (Poole's) changed hands for $23,000 on 6/7/1982.

Wake County owns 418 (the northernmost building on the block) so 209 Davie will "start" there, sparing the other buildings. The four owners from 420 south could combine and do something impressive, but it is a matter of who wants to cash out so close to the civic center.

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Has anybody been to the new nightclub SIN CITY? and if so how was it? :unsure:

i went on opening weekend, last saturday to be exact. the place is nice, a huge upgrade to the oxygen setup. the crowd was the usual ess lounge/ white collar crowd, thats either a good or bad thing depending on your taste. anyway they had everything in terms of drinks, good dance floor, professional lights and sound system. Music was loud but not deafening, it is a club afterall. The only negative i can give about sin city is the fact that they are new, and it felt like they did not know how to run a bar. not enough registers for bartenders, people were waiting forever to get a drink, the manager got my drinks and he didnt even have a bottle opener on him, took him awhile to find one too. there was no credit card organization, they were just spread out on the back table, just badly run at first which i assume will get fixed over time. everyone at the bar was complaining about this.

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