Where should I go for my first restaurant review for the Raleigh Citizen? The first place I thought of is actually a spot in downtown Durham called Dame’s Chicken & Waffles. Not Raleigh, I know, but Durham has attracted a number of interesting eateries in recent years, and this one stands out as a traditional southern alternative to the trend of tapas bars and experimental gastropubs.
If you love southern fried chicken (and boy do I love fried chicken) and if you love waffles (delicious, soft, fluffy waffles), then this is a must-go in the Triangle. Since it opened about 2 years ago, Dame’s has been serving up five different flavors of waffles (including a vegan option, although practically nothing else on the menu is vegan-friendly). Each waffle comes topped with wings, cutlets, or legs and one of several “shmears” – whipped butters in fun flavors like orange honeycomb and peach & apricot creme. No chicken & waffle meal is complete without a side, and I highly recommend the porky and vinegary Hot N Spicy Greens and the Triple Mac N Cheese. The grits on a neighboring table also looked good.
My only complaint is the wait, which was 45 minutes after the boyfriend and I showed up at 6pm on a Saturday. There is some seating in the back for those waiting for a table, but the place was so crowded that the hostess told us to wait outside – yikes!
As Durham continues to grow and new restaurants pop up, Dame’s still provides affordable, old fashioned soul food that is unmatched in Durham.
What to wear:
- Dress code is casual, and I’d go with sweatpants. Seriously. The portions are humungous.
What to get:
- The Carolina Cockerel – Comes with 3 large chicken wings, a blueberry waffle, and peach & apricot shmear (see pic)!
- The greens and the mac and cheese. You won’t regret it. 🙂
What to know before you go:
- Entrees are under $20.
- Be prepared for long waits!
- Bring the kids – atmosphere is fun! Tables come with crayons and white paper “tablecloths,” giving kids (and adults like me) a chance to find our inner artist before supper time.
Dame’s Chicken & Waffles – Durham
317 West Main Street
Durham, NC 27701-3215
Hours of Operation
Monday 11 am – 4 pm
Tuesday-Thursday 11am – 9 pm
Friday 11am – 10 pm
Saturday 10 am – 10 pm
Sunday 10 am – 3 pm