Sunday, September 13, 2015

New Favorite: Chanticleer Cafe & Bakery in Cary

Having grown up just a few miles from the intersection of Tryon Road and Cary Parkway, I've seen a solid handful of businesses come and go from the corner free standing building in the Wellington Park shopping center. This is the first that I think has a real shot of lasting!

Chanticleer Cafe & Bakery is open seven days a week from 7:00 a.m. until 3:00 p.m., and I've read that they hope to expand into evening hours, too. Visit them at 6490 Tryon Road in Cary.

I stopped in a few weeks ago to grab a quick lunch to-go when I was on that side of town and totally loved the Apple & Brie Panini (Sliced Apples and Brie Cheese with Dijon Mustard on a French Baguette) - although it was hard to pass up the Grilled Cheese option (Ashe County Cheddar and Monterey Jack Cheeses toasted between thick slices of white bread). I'm a sucker for anything with brie, but i'll probably order the Grilled Cheese next time I find myself over there for lunch - especially with fall approaching and it's a done deal if I can get tomato soup on the side. Both paninis and sandwiches are served with your choice of potato chips, cole slaw, pasta salad or garden side salad. I chose the potato chips and was pleasantly surprised to find that these are large, house-made chips. #NailedIt

Check out the full menu that includes breakfast and salads online at (Their website,, also offers separate menus for their coffee selection and bakery items.)

I asked for four sweet bakery items (manager's choice) to be packed in a to-go box to send home with my client who I was meeting with after lunch. The total bill for my sandwich and side, plus the sweet goodies to go, was less than $20.

Save Room for the Sweets!
On a second visit about a week and a half later for brunch/lunch, the Manfriend, my parents, and I all ventured around the menu. Johnnie and my dad both enjoyed breakfast sandwiches served with Ashe County Cheddar, eggs, and bacon on croissants. Mom ordered a salad and it was so large, she took half home for later. I ordered the Caprese panini (Italian Bread brushed with Olive Oil and filled with Basil, Fresh Mozzarella and Sliced Tomatoes) and although it was good and exactly what you'd expect with basil, mozz, and toms, the Apple & Brie still ranks above it for me.

This time around, we ordered a French Chocolate Silk Tart which was served basically as a mini-pie. Although the crust was a bit too tough to break with a fork easily, it didn't our four-some from cutting it up into smaller bites and devouring it. The chocolate silk was true to form - super light, yet rich, and a perfect end to the meal - even though we did sneak a few bites early after we sat down and were waiting for our sandwiches and salads. For all four of us, plus the single dessert, the total bill was about $40.

Each time I've been, there have been equal amounts of diners enjoying the outside seating as well as inside. I've never had to wait long and on each visit, the service has been friendly.

According to the N&O's food writer, Andrea Weigl, the bakery is owned by chef Craig Freeman, a longtime Raleigh caterer and owner of Edible Accolades.

If you're local, stop in soon and let me know what you think of this new local spot in the comments below!

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