Duke's Old South BBQ

Duke's Old South BBQ
318 Village Road
Leland, NC

Southeastern North Carolina has not had a BBQ house this good since the original Skinner and Daniels closed.

Serve yourself and eat until you are full. Believe me you will go back for a second plate and maybe even a third or forth plate.

The vegetables are just like grandma use to make. The fried chicken can't be beat. The green beans are perfect, only someone that knows nothing about Southern cooking could find anything wrong with them. Same with the BBQed chicken. You will have to try the hash for yourself, there is just no way I can describe it but I guarantee you will go back for another serving.

Now the BBQ pork it is just simply the best around. Southeast North Carolina has not seen BBQ pork this good since the original owners of Skinner and Daniels were in business. Really this taste  like the old time BBQ that was cooked in a building out back over oak coals all night. Just can't say enough about this eatery. It is going to be one of my regular stops.



1600 Haw Branch Road
Beulaville, N.C.  28518
Telephone: (910) 324-3422
Toll Free: 888-820-FARM

My wife and I went  this past Friday and loved it! Nice motorcycle ride, little over and hour. if you like you caned a goat and have a few private conversations with some chickens and the donkey.  Ride a tractor and take as many pictures around the farm as you like. You may go a little crazy in the fudge shop and come out with piping hot apple cider, fried apple pies, several different flavors of fudge and a few cream cheese puffs. At the cash register were several samples that  included apple butter, crackers, cream cheese and the best jalapeno jelly that i have ever tasted. After that we needed to take a break so we decided to eat lunch at the restaurant. We had fried chicken, green beans, mashed potatoes and gravy, turkey, mac and cheese, fresh sweet corn, ham and biscuit and apple pie. Did I say this was all you can eat? Well it is and the waitress brings it to you so all you have to do is sit and eat. Taste? Sorry mama but it was as good as your's. I am already planning on visiting Mike's Farm again soon.


Tandoori Bites

Tandoori Bites
1620 South College Road
Wilmington, NC 28403
(910) 794-4545

Had an awesome lunch this week at Tandoori Bites. Classic platters of mouth-watering tandoori chicken, lamb curry, goat vindaloo (cubed meat marinated in vinegar and potatoes with spicy gravy) and shrimp tikka masala.  Always a thumbs' up whether you eat the lunch buffet or order from the dinner menu.

Kings Famous Pizza

Kings Famous Pizza 
3511 Hwy 17 South
North Myrtle Beach, SC 29582

We got there before 2 PM, seating was not a problem even though it was the beginning of fall bikers week. Our waiter was very nice and attentive to our needs. Food was delicious and served within 10 minutes of ordering. I would highly recommend this establishment for your next craving for Italian food. The meat sauce is some of the best I have eaten anywhere. Plenty of seating and quite a few locals eating there which is a good sign in a tourist area. Can't wait for my next trip to North Myrtle Beach so I can try other menu items.

Atlantic Seafood and Steaks

Atlantic Seafood and Steaks
5059 Southport-Supply Road SE
Southport, NC
At the crossroads of
Hwy 211 & Hwy 133
(also known as Long Beach Rd.)

Looking for a place you won’t leave hungry? Look no further. Atlantic Seafood and Steaks is just that place. Newly renovated this past winter (formerly Golden Coral) Atlantic is already a local favorite. And for good reason. Atlantic Seafood and Steaks is everything it’s name says and much more. Portions are generous and prices are very reasonable and did I say it is probably the best seafood in the area. It is worth the drive from Wilmington and I will be doing it again soon.


Tengu Japanese Steak House

Tengu Japanese Steak House
5924 Carolina Beach Road
Wilmington, NC 28412

This is our second trip to this place. Our first visit was soon after it opened and the service and food was average. We have given it plenty of time to find what works and what doesn't. Sorry to say it is worse. Probably a 3rd of what is on the menu is no longer served. What is served really isn't that good. I got the chicken tempura and would have got better tasting food at the food court at the local mall at half the price. The chicken was dry and the batter was cooked just long enough that it wasn't doughy. The vegetables were average at best. Now the rice was gummy and tasted starchy. Will I go back? Probably not. If I am pay absolutely not. If you are paying maybe.

Almost for got most item are 15 to 20 dollars, but the portions are adequate.


Los Primos Restaurant

Los Primos Restaurant
3530 Carolina Beach Road

Wilmington, NC 28401
I am very sorry report that Los Primos has closed. As the best authentic Mexican restaurant on the east coast it will be MISSED. Just proves that even the best have a hard time in a bad location. Wishing the Brian and his staff the best in what ever the future brings them.
Have to be honest and say my first visit was a little disappointing but I went back a week later and am glad I did. Los Primos is  one of my top picks. The management goes out of their way to  make sure you are happy and will be coming back. If you are looking for HOME COOKED authentic Mexican food this is where you want to go. Now if you are a fan of Tamales you have to try theirs. No one else in town comes close. This is not the run of the mill Mexican eatery. You feel more like you are in someones home than in a restaurant. Remember back in the days when I would go to my mother in laws and she would not sit down to eat until she was sure everyone was full and happy.

They are a welcome addition to southwest side of town.


Boathouse Restaurant

Boathouse Restaurant
6328 Oleander Drive
Wilmington, NC

Near Bradley Creek on Oleander the seafood is among the best in Wilmington. The real surprise is the Friday Special. They serve spaghetti and it is way better than what you will find in most of the so called Italian spots in town. Nice relaxed atmosphere, easy to find and the management makes sure you know  that they are glad you stopped by.


Lane's Ferry Dock and Grill

Lane's Ferry Dock and Grill
11016 HWY 210
Rocky Point, NC

Another great place to have a light lunch. The grill is right at the bridge that crosses the Cape Fear River on HWY 210 between Rocky Point and Hampstead. They have old fashion homemade hamburger and cheeseburgers, patties made on site and on Thursdays and Fridays some of the best barbeque you are going to find on the coast. It is located in the old Lane's Ferry general Store that has been there as long as I can remember and I have been going up there for over 40 years. Try it you will not be sorry.



Sub Stop
2400 block of Carolina Beach Road
Wilmington, NC

The Sub Stop has been in business at the same location since 1978 in the old Holly Farms Chicken Restaurant. While other sub shops have come and gone they just keep getting better. The present owner has taken everything that was good and made it even better. None of this prepackage NY Style greasy stuff here. Everything is made when you order it with the freshish product available. You will not find a better sub anywhere. What I really like is the fried mushrooms. The batter is just a little different than all the other places around and really makes a difference and their style ranch dipping sauce just can't be beat. Fast and quick service is what you will get and with a smile and you can have it your way or one of the 19 or 20 subs on the menu, plus things like fried pickles, fried okra, fried mushrooms, etc. and they know how to fry food and not be greasy. Oh Yeah, real Southern Sweet Tea. Just don't get any better.



Englese's Italian Restaurant
13460 Highway 50-210 Suite 102
Surf City, NC 28445

This was a pleasant find on a short road trip the other day. Great service and fantastic food, something I have learned not to expect at the local beaches.
Let me state first I do not like Salmon once you get past Salmon Patties my mother made. So to my surprise the only thing I saw on the menu that interested me was their Crusted Salmon. Really I was not expecting to like it when it came out. Man was I wrong, added just a touch of salt and pepper and I had a meal that was fit for a king. If that doesn't sound like you would like it, then try something else because they have all the regular Italian foods along with a couple of unique dishes that are worth trying. If you are ever up Surf City way give them a try every one there kids and adults alike seemed to really be enjoying their meals.



Holland's Shelter Creek Restaurant
8315 Hwy 53 East
Burgaw, NC 28425

Just 7.5 mile east of Burgaw on Highway 53 overlooking Shelter Creek you will fine one of the best seafood and Cajun style restaurants anywhere. When I say overlooking that is exactly what I mean with the dining area built out over Shelter Creek this rustic style restaurant will remind you of days gone by. You eat your meal in a relaxed atmosphere you just don't find this day in time.

Just a sample of some of the wide range of food available include, catfish, frog legs, scallops, fish, deviled crab, oysters, BBQ, pork chops, chicken tenders, hamburgers, hotdog, BLTs and the list just keeps on going. Soups, salads, plate dinners, sandwiches and submarines fixed Cajun or local Southern style you cannot go wrong. There is something there for everyone and every age.

After your meal save room to get some hand-dipped ice cream on the way out. I promise you will come back.


Szechuan Buffet
6932-b Market Street
Wilmington, NC

Szechuan Buffet has been here for years and has been run by the same family. Over the years it has had some bad press and mostly due to bad reporting and investigation by the local news. As many cases the past our local news seemed to report a story and then investigate it to find out if their facts are correct. In every case that I checked about Szechuan Buffet the reports were wrong. This said I would like to tell what I found during a recent visit.

During our last several visits the restaurant was found to be exceptionally clean and the best service I have found at any local buffet. The food was hot and plenty of choices to pick from. I personally think it is one of if not the best Oriental buffet in Southeast North Carolina. The menu includes the regulars at Oriental buffets, plus steak and fried blue crab. The sushi bar has a wide choice of sushi that should satisfy anyone that is looking for sushi. Good desert selection which include soft service ice cream. The salad bar almost always has watermelon, cantaloupe and fresh pineapple. To top it off you can get hot or real Southern sweet tea or the other standard beverages.


Las Olas Mexi-Q Grill

Las Olas Mexi-Q Grill
1127- A2 Military Cutoff Rd
Wilmington, NC 28405

Even Taco Bell is better. Bland or just no taste. Maybe I have been spoiled by real Mexican food. To call it Tex Mex is insulting to 2 countries. Service was fair. I will not waste my time going back to give this place second try. Really the food was just to bad for it to have been an off day. The black beans were horrible, tasted like they were using one of the old store brands. Chips were oily, but I will say the salsa was fair maybe even good. The chicken and BBQ had no taste, the cheese toast was good, now that I did like, but it would have been better if they had used real cheese and not a cheese food that way it would not have been as oily.

To be perfectly honest the food was better when I was in boot camp.



K's Cafe
420 Eastwood Road
Unit 109

If you are looking for a good place to eat breakfast, K's is the place. Hand's down the best in the Wilmington area. "Voted Best Breakfast in Town by WWAY Newschannel 3" and they got it right, The food is not only good but it is reasonably priced, maybe even cheap. If you go there you will not be going any where else. Service? TOPS. So what are you waiting on? Try it and let me know what you think. I'll be surprised if I see any complaints, even small ones
You will not find a better breakfast in Wilmington. K's has fantastic service, exactly what you expect in a Southern cafe. Drop back into the 1930s 40s or 50s and think of the old time local cafes and the great food and service you could get and that is what K's has. Great cooking and on top of all this it is cheap. 

Lunch? You'll just have to try it. Everything I said about breakfast is true about lunch. You will probably pay a little more, but you will not walk away hungry.

Now dinner is not cheap but it is worth every penny you will spend. Follow the link to their web site http://www.ks-cafe.net and look around then make sure you go and try K's, I guarantee you will become a regular.

All in all it is one of my top 5 places I like to go eat.



5709 B Oleander Drive
Wilmington, NC 28403
Phone 910-392-1868

A pleasant surprise. This is what I call one of our hole in the wall Chinese Restaurants. Actually it is in the same building as Dunkin Donuts / Baskin Robbins. They have  take out, delivery and dine in. Great food and fast service, probably the best Chinese take out in Wilmington. One of the perks is having  donuts and ice cream right next door. absolutely no reason to go away hungry from this location.



1 North Lake Park Blvd.
Carolina Beach, NC 28428

Havana's at Carolina Beach has a Sunday brunch that you may or may not want to try. First I will have to say that the service was excellent and so was the atmosphere. 

The Sunday Quiche was good though served loop warm as was the rest of the meal with some exceptions. The fruit was served cool and was very tasty in fact was the highlight of the meal. The Catfish Po Boy was a disappointment.It would have made a great salad, plenty of lettuce, tomato and bread, BUT the fish what there was of it was so thin you could have read the menu through it. Now my favorite was the Fresh Chips a little on the salty side but the sauce that comes with them to dip with is fantastic. 

All in all for a meal at the beach not bad, but they could improve. Will I try them again? Of course, maybe next time at night and give the dinner menu a shot. Prices? A little high, but you're at the beach.



Curry Valley Indian Bistro
1410 South College Road
(between Wrightsville Ave. and Oleander Drive on South College)
Wilmington, NC 28403

Service is very good and the food is excellent. They offer buffet both lunch and dinner or order from the menu ether way you will be glad you dropped in to eat. They offer North Indian Tandoor style cuisine and it is fantastic.

Check out their web site at http://www.curryvalley.net   

I will be back often.



Arnold's Family Restaurant
8500 Richlands Highway
Highway 24
Richlands, NC 28574
(910) 324-3278

We were passing through Richlands yesterday and stopped at Arnold's for lunch. The staff is super friendly and the food is just plain good. I personally love their Country Style Steak with turnips. Their sweet tea is delicious real Southern style sweet tea. The food is tasty and you can't beat their prices. Its not a fancy place, just somewhere great to stop in when you want a quick bite to eat and the food is served cafeteria style. If you are looking for take out they have drive thru as well.  It was as close to home cooking as you are going to find outside of grandma's kitchen. Next time you are in Jacksonville, NC take Highway 24 over to Richlands, it's a short drive and 4 lane all the way. You will be glad you did.

Ezzell's Breakfast House

Ezzell's Breakfast House
2115 Carolina Beach Rd
Wilmington, NC 28401
(910) 763-7179

Ezzell's has been around Wilmington for years and has built up a regular clientele. My visit the other morning gave me quite a surprise. The service was less than professional and food was average, mainly being made to feel that my business was really needed all that much. Up to this point I would have probably given them another try if I was hungry and in the area figuring maybe I caught them on a bad day. We all have those. Then the unforgivable happened. At the next table two ladies had eaten their Breakfast and were on maybe the 2nd cup of coffee when a waitress, not theirs, asked them to leave, telling them that is was close to time for the lunch crowd. Now the place was half empty at this point so there was no lack of tables. Talking to one of them outside I found out this was their first visit and would be their last. So add me and they lost 3 future customers that morning. This is the unforgivable.


Okami Japanese Steakhouse

Just got home from lunch. We decided to give Okami Japanese Steakhouse another chance. It was a real improvement over our first visit. We were seated without any waiting and in a short time our waitress took our drink order. Don't know who made the tea but I am pretty sure they were not Southern. It wasn't bad just not up to Southern sweet tea standards. They could have also put a little more ice in the glass. My wife got mixed veggies and I got veggies and chicken tempura. My wife lunch was good but as she said nothing special. Mind on the other hand was fair. the veggies had very little taste but the chicken was as good as most chicken of this type around town.

One hint to the management, find somewhere else to keep you sweepers and brooms when not in use other then in sight of your customers.

All in all I would say they are about average for Wilmington. With a little more attention to the small things and add a little more seasoning to the veggies and soup they will be where they need to be to compete with the best.

For those that like and enjoy someone play with you food I will have to say those that I could see in the Hibachi section seemed to be having an excellent time.



Gloria's Italian Restaurant
Eastwood Shopping Center
Wrightsville Beach, NC

Gloria's is located in the old Taco Bell building at the corner of Wrightsville Avenue and Pavilion Place. They did a very good job of remodeling so you aren't reminded of being in the old fast food joint once inside. Even at lunch they have cloth napkin and table clothes.

Lunch cost me about $12.00 including tip and it was fantastic. I had the cheese ravioli. The service and food was great, the best Italian I've had since Luigi's on Market was open. This is not your New York style imitation Italian, it taste like the real think.

The dinner menu is price right along with the chain stores, but from talking to the customers that have eaten dinner there it is way better. I will be back soon to try  it again.



Camino Real
2307 N.College Road (Murrayville)
Wilmington, NC 28403
Phone 1-910-790-0494

We now have Mexican restaurant in the Wrightsboro / Murrayville/ Castle Hayne area of New Hanover County. With all the different Mexican restaurant we have in the county this is the first in this part of the county. They don't act like they are the only one though, they act like there are others all around competing for your business. The lunch prices are very reasonable and service is quick. The style of cooking is similar to El Cerro Grande, but different enough to make it worth the trip to give them a try. I have eaten there several times and have always been please with the dishes and service. Friendly, clean and just plain good. I'll be back and soon.


Okami Japanese Steakhouse

Okami Japanese Steakhouse
614 S. College Road
Wilmington, NC

My wife and I tried this place when it first opened. Stood in the waiting area to be seated for 10 minutes and no one offered to sit. With service like that I wrote them off. After reading this article from the Star News I am glad I did.

From The Wilmington Star News.
Published: Tuesday, January 3, 2012 at 11:11 a.m.

At Okami, which opened in September, the former ice cream bar is a Tokyo-chic, gold and black spot for drinks and sushi. The modern space divides two hibachi dining rooms, where chefs perform to “oohs,” “aahs” and applause heard throughout the grand space.
Every now and then, patrons bang a big, brass gong to express joy over the chefs' skills rather than stop the program al la “The Gong Show” style.
Such enthusiasm is perhaps less frequent in the center dining area where al la carte offerings, including hibachi meals, are served.
Friendly and accommodating as servers are, they can't carry the show when soggy, shrimp-stuffed shumai arrive. Fried spring rolls' crispy exteriors fare slightly better but the mostly cabbage filling is sticky.
One evening, spicy cream-sauced shrimp slipped from their tempura coats as the seafood pieces were plucked with a fork from their odd container: a taco salad shell.

Please follow this link to the full article.