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  • On The Square

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On The Square
On The Square

On The Square Details

  • Dining Style: Casual Dining
  • Website: http://www.onthesquarenc.com
  • Email: info@onthesquarenc.com
  • Phone: (252) 823-8268
  • Hours of Operation: Lunch: Monday - Friday: 11:00am - 3:00pm; Dinner: Thursday - Saturday: 5:00pm - 10:00pm
  • Payment Options: AMEX, Discover, MasterCard, Visa
  • Cuisine: Contemporary American
  • Executive Chef: Stephen Ribustello
  • Dress Code: Smart Casual
  • Accepts Walk-Ins: Yes
  • Additional Details: Banquet/Private Rooms, Bar Dining, Bar/Lounge, Beer, Counter Seating, Delivery, Farm to Table, Full Bar, Gluten-free Menu, Non-Smoking Restaurant, Personal wines welcome (corkage fee applies), Takeout, Wheelchair Access, Wine
  • Catering: We offer catering of every kind. From box lunches to weddings, we are happy and able to provide food and wine for your special event.
  • Private Party Facilities: Our private dining area seats 38 people comfortably. It is available any night of the week. On Sunday-Wednesday, the minimum is $1500 ++, and on Thursday, Friday and Saturday evenings, the minimum is $2000 ++. Of course, we also cater off-premise so please contact us for more information if you already have a space in mind.
  • Private Party Contact: Frances Liverman (252) 823-8268

Getting there

  • Cross Street: Main Street
  • Parking: Street Parking
A word from On The Square
Located in Historic Downtown Tarboro, one of the oldest towns in North Carolina, On the Square Restaurant offers seasonal, sustainable ingredients that are celebrated throughout the ever-changing menu. Open for dinner on Thursday, Friday and Saturday evenings and for lunch on Monday through Friday, we are as proud of our food and comfortable atmosphere as we are of our eclectic and value-driven wine list.Continued
Foodspotting photos
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Awards voted by OpenTable diners
  • Diners' Choice WinnerBest Overall
  • Diners' Choice WinnerBest Food
  • Diners' Choice WinnerBest Service
Diner Reviews
  • "Excellent food. Had the swordfish, and my wife had the veal. Both dishes were perfectly prepared. The wine list is extensive and incredible. Very good service. A most enjoyable meal, and well worth a drive."
    Dined on 4/12/2014
  • "Great place to get together with friends - half-way point for friends to meet for dinner"
    Dined on 3/29/2014
  • "The minute you walk in the door you can tell you are somewhere that understands quality dining and your experience. Their style and flavors are something to look forward to and to take home with you."
    Dined on 4/11/2014
  • "The Square continues to amaze with it's creative and always delicious dishes!"
    Dined on 4/11/2014
  • "Our favorite restaurant ever. We always enjoy our walk from the MainStreetInn to OnTheSquare. What a treat to have such world-class food and service in our small town."
    Dined on 4/10/2014
  • "You won't find anything better in this part of the state.. Always a fabulous meal."
    Dined on 4/5/2014
  • "We've dined at On the Square more than our share of times in the past 5 years. And I'm never disappointed."
    Dined on 4/4/2014
  • "excellent food--fine dining--we had a superb meal--the food was outstanding--extensive wine list--service was great--we had a great overall experience--would highly recommend"
    Dined on 3/29/2014
  • "My wife and I love this restaurant. We have been many times and are never disappointed. As usual the food and service were excellent. We recently went to NYC and ate at a few very nice restaurants but none compare to On the Square. I had the NC Monk Fish for the first time and it was outstanding. We highly recommend this restaurant."
    Dined on 3/29/2014
  • "I've eaten at Daniel, Per Se, Eleven Madison, Dinner, etc. On the Square is one of the best restaurants in the world. Eastern North Carolina should be proud. The wine list, in particular, would rank in the top five in any major city in the world. Worth a flight, a train ride, etc. On the Square is outstanding."
    Dined on 3/27/2014
  • "The food and wine have such a reputation here, and they did not disappoint. The restaurant was worth the drive, and it seemed as if others agreed, as On the Square was full at almost every table. The wines by the glass list was brief, but accompanied the food menu ideally. The focus here on excellent food is apparent, and their offerings were superb."
    Dined on 3/22/2014
  • "Nestled in the historic downtown area of Tarboro, is this "big city" restaurant. The food was delicious and the service was low key yet top notch."
    Dined on 3/22/2014
  • "We have our annual "March birthdays" celebration there. There were 12 of us and everyone had a great time. The food was super, each course was excellent. I have NEVER had a bad serving of anything there. The staff was just the best. We will be back for sure."
    Dined on 3/21/2014
  • "The menu looked attractive, wine list generous and reviews very good so we came long way to enjoy a meal. We found a trainee sommelier and dinner with some real high points and a few lows. We enjoyed steamed clams to start. Our entree, leg of lamb, was presented as medallions -- medium rare, it certainly did not taste roasted, and a faint bitterness persisted on the outside of the meat. The sides were pleasant. The fried apple pie was a home run, but the cheese board was too cold for the lovely cheeses to offer their full flavor. All in all a pleasant enough meal, but really our expectations were higher. And, we are still wondering why a restaurant with 2 sommeliers as owners would leave a neophyte to struggle at the dinner service."
    Dined on 3/20/2014
  • "On the Square is by far one of the top 3 restaurants I have eaten in anywhere in the US. And to think it is neatly hidden in a quaint little town of Tarboro, NC on a side street. The food is 5 star for sure and wine availability and assortment is unbelievable. The owners treat you as dear old friends with warm smiles and hugs. The staff, all levels, could not be more accommodating and kind. It's like a New York dining experience with great friends...except better."
    Dined on 3/14/2014
  • "On the square in the downtown of old historic Tarboro is a great dining experience. Since it is a little expensive it is not an everyday dining restaurant, but a good place for that special meal. There is not a large menu but everything we tried was exceptional and had great presentation."
    Dined on 3/15/2014
  • "We love On the Square! It's our absolute favorite place to eat. However, our dinner on Saturday night was really disappointing. My husband ordered the beef brisket and it was inedible. We took it home and fed it to the dog. It was 75% fat and gristle. We've been to the Square many times, and this was the only time we've had something that wasn't fabulous."
    Dined on 3/15/2014
  • "We love going to On the Square. The food is always presented beautifully. The wait staff is very attentive. The beer and wine selection is outstanding. Just a wonderful place to eat!"
    Dined on 3/15/2014
  • "I loved the pleasant and easy going ambiance of the place. Casual dining with good food. We ate there for dinner and will go back for lunch the next time. The table service was great. Our only critique was that the menu did not categorize items like appetizers and entrees and did not list all the choices available...like house salads. This was our first time eating there, and the menu was confusing."
    Dined on 3/14/2014
  • "I could travel to every country and eat at every restaurant known to man and none would even touch On the Square. The service is unparalleled. The food is to die for. The environment is so welcoming and pleasant. On the Square is all around the best."
    Dined on 3/14/2014
  • "Outstanding food and service, Highly recommend !!!! Hope to go back soon."
    Dined on 3/7/2014
  • "Read about the husband & wife owners of On The Square and their story (they worked at Windows of the World up until 9/11) in a newspaper article several years ago and wanted to try the restaurant mainly because of their exceptional wine list. Finally was able to make it to Tarboro for a Saturday night dinner. Coming from foodie heaven Raleigh/Durham/Chapel Hill area wasn't sure what to expect, however their menu posted on their web site looked promising. In my opinion the food was on par with just about any Raleigh/Durham/Chapel Hill restaurant and the wine list was outstanding and extremely reasonable. They also have a small wine shop attached to the restaurant stuffed to the gills with wine (bought a mixed case to bring home!)."
    Dined on 3/8/2014
  • "Food was excellent....various fish dishes purchased by all 4 diners with excellent reviews. Appetizer of sushi and chicken livers great. As usual, wine selections paired nicely with meal."
    Dined on 3/7/2014
  • "World-class restaurant in Tarboro, NC, of all places! I live in Cleveland, which has hundreds of quality restaurants, though non finer than On the Square...."
    Dined on 3/6/2014
  • "More restaurants like this are needed in the eastern part of NC!"
    Dined on 2/21/2014
  • "The menu for that evening had a lot of good choices, and it was difficult to decide which plate to get! Wine list was also outstanding and did not disappoint. Service was excellent as it always is. Thanks for a great evening!"
    Dined on 3/1/2014
  • "The calamari is the best you will find. The overall dining experience is phenomenal. We've never been disappointed with the food. Always presented well and delicious!"
    Dined on 3/1/2014
  • "Outstanding food quality and presentation. Excellent service as well. Some may consider it a bit pricey but the premium paid is well worth it. Good value for the $'s spent. Great wine selection and great drinks from the bar. Pan roasted oysters are to die for."
    Dined on 2/28/2014
  • "Really great place, super specials and offerings, creative display and DELICIOUS! Super place to see and be seen!"
    Dined on 3/1/2014
  • "For our anniversary, my wife and I traveled to Tarboro based on the recommendation of a colleague. What a find! First off--reservations are a must. This place gets busy quickly. The wait staff never stopped moving--they were attentive and on the spot. We ordered the NY strip and petite filet. Both were cooked to perfection. With my filet, the Beurre Rouge (a red butter reduction) was a perfect addition to the potato-carrot puree. Parmesan fries came with my wife's NY strip, which were also very good. For dessert, we had the Carrot Cake with Candied Pecans, Raisin Compote, Cream Cheese Frosting. We should have ordered 2 servings it was that good. Our dinner was memorable and we WILL return."
    Dined on 3/1/2014
  • "No one would expect to return from New York and have a place to go with as good if not better food. After being at Per Se during 10th anniversary with Thomas Keller in the kitchen, spending an evening at Daniel, enjoying the BarRoom at 21 Club, Eating lunch at MoMa, steak at Del Frisco, street dog and Halel Brothers; to return home and not feel a letdown is great."
    Dined on 3/1/2014
  • "Food was great, only complaint was i ordered the bacon johnny cakes and wasnt prepared to have a small portion. The other entrees were fine, both the asian short ribs and grilled slaughterfish portions were substantial. I would still recommend the bacon johnny cakes as long as you know it isnt going to be much food."
    Dined on 2/22/2014
  • "If you cannot get to New Orleans to eat this is the next best thing. Wonderful food, great service and a cocktail menu and wine list that excites."
    Dined on 2/20/2014
  • "Entrees were delicious. Salad was ok & over priced for it was just ok. Not romantic, great place for friends & family."
    Dined on 2/22/2014
  • "Always love this place and the food. Luv the ginger margaritas!"
    Dined on 2/20/2014
  • "I dined at On The Square twice during a recent visit to the Tarboro area -- once for lunch, once for dinner -- and both experiences were excellent. The service was friendly and helpful, the food excellent (rib eye steak for dinner; blue cheese burger for lunch -- guess I was in the mood for red meat. . .), and the ambience very pleasant. Clearly a locals favorite (though I understand out-of-towners come from many miles on weekends) -- there was much recognizing and greeting of friends from one table to the next. The host and wait staff were charming and helpful. . . didn't hover, didn't continually ask us how everything was tasting. . . highly recommend the experience for anyone living in or visiting eastern North Carolina."
    Dined on 2/22/2014
  • "This is the very first time that I have ever been disappointed in my food! Usually the filet can be cut with a fork. When the waitress noticed that I was having trouble cutting it, she brought a steak knife. She never asked if the steak was ok. I was very disappointed."
    Dined on 2/20/2014
  • "Celebrating Valentines Day a day early. Snow afternoon from work. Late night for a week night din near but the chef was on his or her game. We ordered pan fried Grouper and pork chop tenderloin. Both meals were exceptional. We are great sales people for this great little home town restaurant."
    Dined on 2/13/2014
  • "Best restaurant in the NATION! Yes, that is what my husband said when we finished our dinner. And when we told the owner, she so humbly replied, "We try". Needless to say, whatever they are doing, IT works!!!!! If you are considering a top notch meal, run...don't walk to On the Square!"
    Dined on 2/15/2014
  • "Wonderful food, but part of the crowd was out of control. There were two large groups who apparently had too much to drink. One of the groups was obnoxious, so disruptive that other patrons were constantly looking back and frowning on the behavior. The management and wait staff did not seem to notice. This occurred once before in the past year. Apparently locals who are inconsiderate of other guests; and management seems hesitant to do anything about it. At least three separate parties commented on the disruptive behavior. Several couples did not enjoy their valentines date as much as they had hoped. But the food was great."
    Dined on 2/15/2014