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  • Herons

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Herons Details

  • Dining Style: Fine Dining
  • Website: http://www.theumstead.com
  • Phone: (919) 447-4000
  • Hours of Operation: Breakfast: Monday - Friday: 6:30am - 10:00am
    Brunch: Saturday and Sunday: 6:30am - 2:00pm

    Lunch: Monday - Friday: 11:30am - 2:00pm

    Dinner: Monday - Saturday: 5:30pm - 10:00pm

    Afternoon Tea: Wednesday - Sunday: 2:30 pm - 4:00 pm
  • Payment Options: AMEX, Carte Blanche, Diners Club, Discover, JCB, MasterCard, Visa
  • Cuisine: American
  • Executive Chef: Steven D. Greene
  • Dress Code: Business Casual
  • Accepts Walk-Ins: No
  • Additional Details: Bar Dining, Bar/Lounge, Beer, Entertainment, Farm to Table, Full Bar, Gluten-free Menu, Non-Smoking Restaurant, Patio/Outdoor Dining, Private Room, View, Weekend Brunch, Wheelchair Access, Wine
  • Catering: Please contact Carrie Cassidy of The Umstead Hotel at 919.447.4131 or at carrie.cassidy@theumstead.com for catering in the Hotel Event Space.
  • Private Party Facilities: The private dining room for 12 provides the stage for extensive food and wine-paired tasting menus. Executive Chef Steven D. Greene will both indulge and delight you during your dining experience. Reserve this space for lunch, for an evening with friends, colleagues or family.
  • Private Party Contact: Tammie Burdick (888) 778-7425
  • Entertainment: Our sumptuous surroundings are enhanced by live music every day of the week at The Bar and Lounge of The Umstead Hotel and Spa.

Getting there

  • Cross Street: Harrison Avenue
  • Parking: Private Lot
  • Parking Details: Complimentary valet parking for Herons; self-parking available as well.
A word from Herons
Noted by Condé Nast Traveler as a "culinary gem," The Umstead Hotel and Spa's signature restaurant Herons features the refined American cooking of Executive Chef Steven D. Greene and Chef de Cuisine John Childers. The extensive 2500-bottle wine selection complements the sophisticated dining experience. Guests will enjoy the elegant setting and exquisite art collection indoors as well as dining on the terrace, with panoramic views of the lake. The Umstead’s Bar is also available to local diners and hotel guests for a more casual experience. Herons, a Forbes Five-Star and AAA Five Diamond Restaurant, serves breakfast and lunch daily, weekend brunch and dinner Monday - Saturday. Continued
Foodspotting photos
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Awards voted by OpenTable diners
  • Diners' Choice WinnerBest Overall
  • Diners' Choice WinnerBest Ambiance
  • Diners' Choice WinnerBest Food
Diner Reviews
  • "All aspects of our visit were superb. The cuisine is outstanding, the wine list is phenomenal, the service is all one could wish for, and the venue is lovely. It's easy to see why this establishment has earned five diamonds!"
    Dined on 8/18/2014
  • "My wife and I dined here on our wedding anniversary and had a wonderful time. The service was outstanding and our food was also."
    Dined on 8/16/2014
  • "Nothing better in the RDU area. Third visit to Heron's in the month of August 2014."
    Dined on 8/15/2014
  • "Excellent service but I would expect that at this price level. The quality and value of the food did not match the price level. They sat us at a table for two next to a wall and the restaurant was empty so it wasn't very comfortable for 2 people over 6 foot nor did it have ant special ambience."
    Dined on 8/15/2014
  • "I always consider myself very fortunate to dine at Herons, whether for dinner, lunch, breakfast or brunch. Herons is a treat for the senses and should be visited often to reward the efforts of not only the many people who create the perfect experience of dining there, but also one's self!"
    Dined on 8/13/2014
  • "Excellent service, food and atmosphere. A very special night made possible by a very professional staff."
    Dined on 8/12/2014
  • "I can only say that I have been extremely spoilt with fine dining in the UK (I am a UK resident). I searched this place out on the Forbes list when I came to town as I was looking for a special place for lunch. Having read about the Umstead and its owner etc... I was excited to be going. My reservation was not there, but I was accommodated. Lunch was not available on the Sunday, just a limited Brunch menu. No wine list given - just a selcetion of typical brunch cocktails. We asked what was in the mimosa and they didnt know. Finally the bill was given without us asking for it and we were actually considering a desert and coffee. The food was good, did not wow though and I was expecting to be blown away and I left a little sad."
    Dined on 8/10/2014
  • "This is the place to dine if you want a relaxing fabulous dinner. If you are in a hurry you are better off eating at the bar. My husband and I both ordered the Chef's Tasting and were not disappointed in the least. The food was wonderful and the presentation was something like I have never seen. Chilled corn soup in a white chocolate egg? Unbelievable!! The service was the best. We had a few different servers who were always there but not to the point of being intrusive. We will definitely back."
    Dined on 8/9/2014
  • "Herons is not only memorable for extraordinary food, but for the dining experience. There is nothing comparable in this area in my opinion."
    Dined on 8/9/2014
  • "The Heron Restaurant deserves every one of the five stars that I have rewarded them with as many other patrons have done the same. Service was in the top 5% of all of the restaurants I gave rated. Try it - you will be very pleased that you have dined at a Herons."
    Dined on 8/9/2014
  • "The service was quite formal. Not friendly, but efficient. the wine steward was very knowledgeable. Each course was served with it own utensils and by its own server. The appetizers were incredible. I was disappointed in the rib-eye as my wife was in the trout. The cheese tray was lovely. As it was my birthday, they sent a lovely carved piece of fresh chocolate, a very caring touch. The wine was of my choosing, of good provenance and well served. A lovely dining experience, slightly marred by the less than perfect entrees. At $400 for two, my expectations were almost, but not quite met. The art throughout the room was very interesting and the outdoor patio was interesting. The room was a bit warm, but this is NC."
    Dined on 8/8/2014
  • "This trip to Herons was a foodie splurge. It was on our dining bucket list and did not disappoint. The presentation was impeccable and the food incredible. I had the best mint julep of my life (and I have had many). The wait staff was friendly, knowledgeable, and went out of their way to insure our meal was perfect. The courses were works of art."
    Dined on 8/7/2014
  • "I've been to Herons for dinner and for lunch and both were exceptional. Brunch was very good but I didn't think it was as good as the lunches or dinners I've had there. My husband had shrimp and grits and it was excellent. I had blue crab benedict and it was good but nothing exceptional. The ambience is definitely better in the evening. I am possibly being too harsh by saying I wasn't all that enamored with kids at brunch hurrying through the dining room since it was my husband's birthday brunch, but after all it is a hotel."
    Dined on 8/3/2014
  • "I don't know which was better--the view from the outside deck or the food, but our Heron's experience was the best! The shrimp and grits were decadent and the crab Benedict was better than perfect. Everything, including the service, was amazing!"
    Dined on 8/3/2014
  • "Amuse Bouche, corn custard soup, seared scallops, tomato melon soup, smoked trout, succulent halibut, local cheeses, a great wine and beautiful ports and sherries, topped off with Robert Starling's music in the lounge. A perfect evening in every way. The Triangle's best restaurant."
    Dined on 8/2/2014
  • "The wait staff were admirable. They anticipated whatever I wanted. I tasted my husband's appetizer and they were right there with another fork for me, elegantly presented on a napkin. They reseated me when I came back from the restroom. They addressed me by my name when I beckoned them to my table. When asked how specific dishes were prepared, they were very well informed. The presentation of each dish was beautiful."
    Dined on 8/2/2014
  • "Very delightful experience in relaxed atmosphere. The hotel has works of art to view and the scenery from the restaurant was beautiful. The staff are accommodating and professional and were able to answer questions about the menu and the plant that was on the table! The food was very good and they have several gluten free options available."
    Dined on 8/1/2014
  • "Had an enjoyable lunch with a friend. I enjoyed my blue crab very much. The breads that were served were very good, too."
    Dined on 7/30/2014
  • "This was the best meal I have ever had! It wasn't just a meal, it was an experience!! Everything was truly amazing-both in taste and presentation. I found myself enthusiastically waiting for the next course to be brought. The wine pairings exceeded my expectations as well. My only regret . . . I needed to slow down in my enjoyment to appreciate and savor more every bite and every moment. Thank you so much!!!!"
    Dined on 7/26/2014
  • "My friend and I met for lunch and it was excellent. Beautiful atmosphere, superb service, and great food. I will be back."
    Dined on 7/24/2014
  • "Given the price, Herons needs to be a very memorable meal. The good news - they absolutely deliver. We went for a birthday (they didn't know), and every aspect of the meal was as it should be. The service: friendly, knowledgeable about the menu, helpful, precise, professional. Had nice conversations about both the food and the wine. Wine list: fantastic. Lots of by the glass and 1/2 bottle options. Food: Delightfully good. I'll remember the corn custard with buttermilk foam and truffle sauce for years. I can still taste and savor it. The seared scallop my wife had was similarly superb. The Halibut main course is excellent, and the dark chocolate dessert paired with Dandelion Vineyards PX 30 - wow. Very highly recommended & special."
    Dined on 7/21/2014
  • "I took my wife to herons for dinner and the service and food were fantastic. Best I've had in the triangle."
    Dined on 7/21/2014
  • "Everything was absolutely superb! The food was absolutely scrumptious. The service was exceptional. The surroundings are so serene. We walked away in such a peaceful and "full" of so many good things. I highly recommend Heron's!"
    Dined on 7/18/2014
  • "Best Dining experience I have ever had ! My wife and I had dinner there to celebrate our anniversary and it was a great time ...... we added another great memory to our lives together at Heron's. The food was excellent and the service beyond compare."
    Dined on 7/17/2014
  • "In a return trip to the Ulmstead, and another evening spent at Heron's, we could not be happier with the experience. Service, food and ambience were top notch, and never disappointed."
    Dined on 7/17/2014
  • "The service impeccable! The food OUTSTANDING!!!!!!! The atmosphere is beautiful, relaxing and special."
    Dined on 7/16/2014
  • "Outstanding meal and service. Flavors jumped off the plate. Presentation was wonderful with a variety of food combinations."
    Dined on 7/14/2014
  • "The food is consistently great, service perfect, the views are amazing. Can't wait to go back!!"
    Dined on 7/4/2014
  • "This was perhaps the best meal I have ever had. The food was superb and the service was excellent. Highly recommended."
    Dined on 6/27/2014
  • "Everything perfect as always even with the new chef."
    Dined on 6/25/2014
  • "We've gone to Heron's over the years for special occasions and always loved it. This time the food seemed to have slipped a little."
    Dined on 6/22/2014
  • "We celebrated our wedding anniversary at this "fine dining," expensive restaurant. The restaurant is beautiful, with great ambiance. The appetizers, main entrees, and desserts all disappointed us. Portions were small (expected), and the combination of ingredients in our dishes did not produce a good taste experience. There was no WOW for anything on the menu that we ordered."
    Dined on 6/19/2014
  • "What an experience, everything was delicious and service was the best I have ever experienced."
    Dined on 6/19/2014
  • "I dine at Herons 6-8 times (or more) a year and am always impressed with the exceptional dining experience. This is great place for taking out of town guests, as well as celebrating special occasions with family and friends--or just going to treat yourself. Food choices are best of the season, prepared beautifully, and served like art. The bread basket always has at least 3 delightful choices. Sparkling or still water is offered--no extra charge for the sparkling water. Staff and servers are gracious and professional from the entry of the hotel, on to the gift shop, and in the dining room. And, the views of the gorgeous landscape are in sight for enjoying for while you dine inside or outside. Highly recommended."
    Dined on 6/18/2014
  • "Decided to celebrate the anniversary at Herons. Paid $250 for a 3 course meal with wine and tip for a delicious evening hosted with extreme attention to detail in a beautiful setting. Only drawback was being seated in a high traffic area. My first course was a carrot gazpacho and I had never tasted such a delightful and surprising mix of flavors and textures. I will never forget it. The evening was paced just right and the serving sizes were generous. Lots of choices for a prix fixe approach. It was a lovely evening and would recommend it for that special date night."
    Dined on 6/17/2014
  • "My daughter and I had been to Heron's before but it was my husband's first time and we all thoroughly enjoyed our brunch there. The food was excellent, as usual, and we went for a walk around the lake afterward and that was the perfect way to top off our visit. Our waitress brought us a small dessert with a chocolate label saying Happy Anniversay at the end of the meal. Highly recommend Heron's."
    Dined on 6/15/2014
  • "We celebrated my son's high school graduation with brunch. Two of the guys ordered the burger, while the rest of us chose more traditional breakfast/brunch dishes. The servings were large enough for us to take some home. Everything was delicious, and the service was impeccable! Highlights were the bacon and potato casserole and the donuts with vanilla bean mascarpone cream. Although Heron's is thought of as being a higher-end/expensive restaurant, brunch was very reasonably priced. This makes brunch a perfect opportunity to experience both the amazing food and the excellent service that are trademarks of Heron's and the Umstead."
    Dined on 6/14/2014
  • "I took two customers and a colleague to dinner at Herron's. The customers were well traveled 'foodies'. The food, wine and service were all excellent, but the nicest part was the relaxing ambience. We had all come from a conference in a very loud, noisy part of New York, and the ability to relax, enjoy and talk in normal conversational tones was nothing short of therepeutic. I have recommended to everyone I know likely to be in the Raleigh area and will continue to do so."
    Dined on 6/11/2014
  • "The Heron is a bit of NYC tucked away in the lush greenery of North Carolina. The quality of the food is uneven though from superb cold cucumber soup to a so-so dessert. The excellent wines help compensate however. "
    Dined on 6/4/2014
  • "We have dined at Herons numerous times and the food has always been amazing. Small portions, but amazing! Sunday Brunch is a family favorite! The service, quite frankly, is hit or miss. Overall, highly recommend. "
    Dined on 6/3/2014