Best resturaunt in Chapel Hill. As good of a resturaunt as I have been to in any major city. Great service, interesting menu and a fine dining experience without pretense.
5/10/2013 4:00:00 PM
Perfect, as always
Mother's Day - great meal and event , thank you. Even took the teens this time; even they were impressed!
5/11/2013 4:00:00 PM
A delicious experience
Delicious dinner, and the staff easily made a place when an unexpected guest showed up for dinner. One of the few local places you will find fois gras well prepared. Steak perfectly cooked and wide range of appetizers. Offered to let us taste wines before making a purchase. it is the little things that make them special. Overall still our favorite local eatery.
5/23/2013 12:00:00 AM
Good for a date
We had hoped to spend some time at Fridays on the Front Porch at the Carolina Inn before heading over to dinner at Elaine's. Unfortunately, when I tried to make a reservation via OpenTable there was nothing between 5:45pm and 9pm. I snagged the 5:45 slot just in case before calling to see if there were any additional openings. Sure enough, they had several slots around 8pm which was perfect. We arrived a little early but our table was ready. The staff was cordial and attentive throughout the evening. The ambiance was nice...the indoor area is small/intimate but didn't feel crowded; there are also some tables outside. The food was tasty but not out of this world. Left full.
5/24/2013 12:00:00 AM
In addition to be a fabulous restaurant, when we sat down and they handed us our menus, at the top it said 'Happy Anniversary' - they had printed special menus for us. That little touch was really lovely. And like I said, the food was wonderful and the setting so tastefully arranged.
5/24/2013 4:00:00 PM
Elaine's is one of the few restaurants in the triangle that is consistently top notch. The food never disappoints, and the service is friendly, courteous, and not pretentious. We've enjoyed several meals here over the years and always leave quite satisfied.
5/29/2013 12:00:00 AM
one great meal in chapel hill
Tried Elaines on a recent visit to Chapel Hill. Glad I did. Servers were terrific, friendly efficient and prompt. Fun feel to it. Upscale for the Chapel Hill scene. Menu was interesting and sophisticated. Fresh salads, good apps, and terrific main courses. I had soft shells - large excellent with good sauce. My wife had tuna - cooked rare, with a really great sauce. Apps were a good salad and ceviche, also good. Dessert was not the best, but hit the spot. All in, a terrific evening with a charming staff and good food. Much enjoyed!
6/6/2013 12:00:00 AM
Chose Elaines for a special occasion and they did everything to make it feel that way. Wine and food menus are exceptional. Not our first time there but it had been a while. Won't wait so long next time.
Wait staff very knowledgeable and friendly.
6/6/2013 4:00:00 PM
Elaine's is outstanding. From the attentive service to the fantastic food, outstanding. Our reservation was correct. The server was always available but never invasive. The delivery of food and and wine was timely. Excellent knowledge of wine and pairings. In particular, I had the best filet mignon I have ever eaten there. We have made Elaine's a part of our anniversary tradition.
6/8/2013 12:00:00 AM
Elaine's on Franklin has become our goto place for special occasions. They never fail to measure up to our high expectations. The food once again was excellent and our knowledgeable and friendly waiter rounded out the perfect dining experience. Elaine's remains one of (if not the) best restaurants in the Triangle.
6/14/2013 12:00:00 AM
Adorable small restaurant in a great area of Chapel Hill, Elaine's is a gem. The drinks were wonderful, the waiter was engaging, the menu uses fresh and local products and it tastes like it! The Beef Oscar was meltingly tender and my husband's appetizer of fresh garlic bisque with little fried oysters floating in it was delightful and not overpowering. This a place filled with regulars and now we know why. We will be regulars too, with great pleasure.
6/14/2013 4:00:00 PM
Our place for special occasions
We have dined at Elaine's quite a number of times, all of them special occasions like birthdays (ours or others') or anniversaries (ditto). The food is excellent, the service usually very good, and it's usually not as noisy as many of the other good local restaurants (though this time there was a group of about fifteen young men at a long table that made the restaurant almost unpleasantly noisy). We appreciate the free valet parking. All in all, we have no hesitation in recommending it as one of the nicest restaurants in the area (and we have tried quite a few).
6/20/2013 12:00:00 AM
A wonderful anniversary dinner!
I mentioned in our reservation that it was our anniversary and when we were seated, to our surprise, at the top of our menu it was personalized to say Happy Anniversary! A very nice touch. Our waiter was Damon. His suggestions for current menu items was excellent and his recommendation for a wine to accompany our meal was perfect. Since the menu changes seasonally, Elaine's takes advantage of the freshest food available. I had the salmon which had a Mexican twist and moving back to CH after living in California, it was just the right amount of spice and flavor. Service was just the right amount of attentiveness, and didn't "hover". Elaine's has become our favorite Chapel Hill restaurant.
6/25/2013 4:00:00 PM
Great service. We enjoyed the wine. I remember the food being better. It could be better, perhaps an off night... I wanted to give Elaine's five stars, but couldn't based on the food. All of that said, I would go back.
6/28/2013 4:00:00 PM
We were in town from savannah ga and so glad
We were able to get a res at Elaine's. the food was
Absolutely amazing!!! Wine list fabulous and the
Service impeccable . I would definitely recommend
This restaurant !!!!! A++++
7/5/2013 12:00:00 AM
Great place, too casual.
This a great place. The food was very good, and the service was excellent. The downside, and this is an opinion, is that it is not as dressy as it should be. We expected at least business casual. Men in coats and open collar, and women in a dressier outfit. This was not the case. Plenty of people, in fact the majority, completely causal aka shorts and flip flops. While this did not destroy the night, it did detract. One would think that the menu would dictate a little more of a dress code. Having said that, don't miss this place. Just leave the coat and tie, or the black dress at home.
7/9/2013 12:00:00 AM
Best Food in the Triangle
This place is awesome!!! We had the tuna and the salmon and they were outstanding!!!! Wine by the glass was excellent (Pinot Noir and Malbec). The tomato app was excellent.
7/13/2013 12:00:00 AM
all food was high quality-
all food was high quality- fresh and local.
entrees and desserts were excellent.
server was helpful and friendly.
menu was expensive
7/24/2013 12:00:00 AM
The food at Elaines is always
The food at Elaines is always exceptional. They feature local farms and products and change the menu often enough to keep it interesting. The heirloom tomato salad features a variety of sea salts (such as Hawaiian Black and Portuguese) - which was fantastic. The duck over a creamed corn/arugula salad was divine. I'm still raving!
7/24/2013 12:00:00 AM
Elaine's on Franklin
We went to Elaine's for our 9th anniversary dinner. I booked thru Open Table and noted that it was our anniversary. We were the first customers that evening. They sat us in a quiet table by the window. Menu title wished us a Happy Anniversary. My wife started with the artisanal three cheese sampler & I had the rare beef tataki w/ roasted eggplant salad. Both were very good. For entrees we had black pepper crusted yellowfin tuna(wife) and tortilla crusted wild salmon on refried black beans w/ guacamole. Again both were very good, would rate the Salmon as the better of the two though. Overall it was a great experience and we highly recommend it.
7/24/2013 12:00:00 AM
34+ years Chapel Hill Resident
Elaine's is just about as good as it gets. The duck was delicious and sustantial (had to take half home). Desserts are always great and dependable. Still waiting for that "surprise dish" that will be a lasting memory for us and other diners. Keep up the good work -- you make Chapel Hill proud to have Elaine's continuing, notable dining experience!
7/26/2013 12:00:00 AM
Elaine's stands out
In this area, Elaine's may possibly be the only fine dining available. Came down from VA Beach for a Psychedelic Furs concert (AWESOME) , decided some good food was in order first. Very upscale, fresh, local and delicious. They definitely serve food creations, not your corporate food. Tuna was very good, tender (HOW did you do that?) with lots of cracked pepper (a bit much for me, but no worries). Friend had chicken "to die for". Service was excellent, but there was a bit of a wait for the food, although not many diners (3 tables). Will definitely go again if down there, and highly recommended. Worth every penny!
7/30/2013 12:00:00 AM
Excellent food, better service
I took my wife here for our anniversary, and they printed "Happy Anniversary!" menus special and seated us at the best table in the house. The food and cocktails were awesome.
8/2/2013 12:00:00 AM
Seasonal tomato sampler was
Seasonal tomato sampler was absolutely the best starter I have EVER had! The Salmon was spectacular, highly recommend. My husband thought the same about his Filet Oscar. Brian, our server, was just attentive enough. I will never visit Chapel Hill again without going to Elaine's for dinner. Reviews prompted us to try. Wish we had tried it sooner.
8/6/2013 12:00:00 AM
Happy to return years later
We were visiting chapel hill and were happy to return to a favorite restaurant that remains amazing- if not better. We started
With local tomatoes- delicious and fresh. The foie gras was an nice sized portion, seared to perfection. We also loved a local pork chop served with a fresh avocado and corn salsa. All of the menu items were Innovative with a farm to table concept. I love going to a restaurant where the menu changes daily depending on local food availability. The wine list was very nice- our waiter, JB, was very knowledgeable about the food and wine list. Great service! We will return the next time in town!
8/8/2013 12:00:00 AM
Wonderful attention from the
Wonderful attention from the chef! Great food - Great service - Great fun!
8/10/2013 12:00:00 AM
I ordered foie gras and stuffed figs with prosciutto . I was pleased with both. Especially the simplicity of the foie gras which was excellent. We sat at a window table to enjoy side walk traffic . The wait staff was prompt and pleasant . I would return.
8/13/2013 12:00:00 AM
A Pleasant Surprise
We had dined at Elaine's about a year ago and while it was a good experience it was not what one would call outstanding. We decided to give it another shot and it was quite improved. My Tuna was cooked just as I had requested and my wifes scallops were like "buddah". The smoked salmon appetizer was quite good. And the peach and blackberry cobbler hit the spot. The wine pairings suggested by the waiter were good. The port especially so with the cobbler.
8/14/2013 12:00:00 AM
A good experience
We celebrated our 52nd anniversary and when we arrived the menu had "Happy 52nd Anniversary!!!" on top. This is the little extra.
The Artisanal three cheese sampler was so-so as cheese dishes go. The tortilla crusted wild salmon was excellent. My wife said the pork chop was good too.
We enjoyed the waiter and he was efficient and attentive.
8/27/2013 12:00:00 AM
A real find!
Food was terrific and service fabulous. Loved the fun, helpful and attentive staff. Will return.
8/30/2013 5:00:00 PM
Our 1st trip to Elaine's. A la carte menu is on the expensive side, most dishes in the very high $20s. Prix fixe menu at $35 served from 5:30 to 6:30 is a good deal. We had the prix fixe with wine pairings, and even better deal at $50. Portions with the prix fixe are more than adequate especially if you are older like us. Food was very good, just a shade under outstanding. Ditto for the service. By the glass wines served for the wine pairings were excellent choices for the food were quite good. We would definitely go back again.
8/31/2013 12:00:00 AM
Still a fine place
Elaine's has been here a long time and continues to produce great food, wine and service. Isn't this what it takes for a place to survive?) The pork chop Milanese was just wonderful. The cheeses after dinner were delightful.
The early diner prix fix menu is a nice touch. Just go you'll like it.
9/7/2013 12:00:00 AM
Very good food for a high price
All the food tasted really good. The prices seemed high for the food we got. The wine was pricey and the portion so small it was infuriating. The glasses were not what you would expect from a good restaurant. My friend ordered beer and it came in a small wine glass! He had to ask for a different glass to get a normal size glass of beer. The price fixed dinners are the way to go here with the wine pairing. That was good value. I was very disappointed that we went for a very special birthday and I didn't even get a free dessert! That was enough to turn me off to going here for a special occasion. For a birthday, allow them to be treated special and to order the price fixed menu with substitutions.
9/10/2013 12:00:00 AM
Great Great Great
Yes, I just said great three times because Elaine's on Franklin is just that. Both times I have been there the service was excellent and the food was so fresh and flavorful. We were treated with true appreciation for dining there and they were not in a hurry to flip the table for the next customer. The duck was the best I have ever had. What a great place. I'll be back again.
9/13/2013 12:00:00 AM
I love this restuarant. The food is fantastic. The servers are helpful, efficient, patient, and unobtrusive. The menu is eclectic. I highly recommend it. After trying many places, Elaine's on Franklin exceeds all others.
9/21/2013 12:00:00 AM
Used valet parking for 7:30 dinner reservation. Prompt seating, server also within minutes. Ordered a strawberry-basil cocktail, yes glass was a little small, but nice flavor. I had two starters for my dinner, the figs and salmon. Both nicely plated. Bread and butter offered and enjoyed. The wine was very nice, but waiter attempted to serve in a glass inappropriate for a red -- suggested larger glass and was accommodated. Overall a nice evening.
9/27/2013 12:00:00 AM
We go to Chaoel Hill several times a year and always try to go to Elaine's for dinner while we are in town. Their food is a little pricey, but totally worth it. They also have a great wie list!
9/27/2013 12:00:00 AM
The magic here is in the kitchen
The magic here is in the kitchen -- distinctive and inviting flavor combinations make this a restaurant worth returning to. Reasonably priced. Knowledgeable and friendly bartenders. Service good...would benefit from an extra server or two on busy nights.
9/27/2013 12:00:00 AM
Awesome! As usual..
We are never disappointed here! Superb food, service and atmosphere!
10/4/2013 12:00:00 AM
This place has been on Franklin St for a long time and for good reason. My wife and I first visited Elaine's when we were dating years ago as students at UNC. Now, despite being married for 11 years and moving to Raleigh, we still try to make the drive back to Chapel Hill to revisit our old favorite on special occasions. Their menu is thoughtful and well executed, service is polite, knowledgeable and professional, and the ambience is cozy (with a tendency to get noisy at peak hours). They always have a great oyster dish, and their drinks are tasty.
10/5/2013 12:00:00 AM
Another great meal!
Another great evening at Elaine's. Martinis perfectly shaken. Bartender was very attentive. Our meal was fabulous! The foie gras BLT and smoked salmon appetizers were a standout! Elaine's dark chocolate cake for dessert is worth the calories too! We ordered a 2009 Rochioli chardonnay which is one of our favorite Russian River wines!
10/8/2013 12:00:00 AM
Recommend that diners do not
Recommend that diners do not order appetizers as entrees unless they are not hungry.
10/10/2013 12:00:00 AM
I chose Elaine's for an anniversary
I chose Elaine's for an anniversary dinner. They selected a quiet table in a window alcove and provided specially printed menus to commemorate the occasion. The service was outstanding, the food was delicious and the small wine list was well thought-out and interesting with eclectic finds from all over the world.
10/15/2013 12:00:00 AM
Elaine's is one of the best
Elaine's is one of the best restaurants we know of, including those in New York and other major cities. Chef Brett takes great care in creating his menu, choosing ingredients and preparing/presenting the food. The wait staff is professional and knowledgable and makes a real effort to make the meal enjoyable. Brett is particularly diligent in finding combinations that avoid my wife's allergies.
Thanks, Brett. We will be back soon!
10/25/2013 12:00:00 AM
My husband and I have gone to Elaine's for greater than 10 years and never been disappointed. It's consistently good and we are able to take our out-of-town guests there knowing that we're going to leave a very good impression. The food is unique, varied and draws heavily from local sources. The desserts are equally as good which as someone who has a sweet tooth is totally satisfying.
11/1/2013 5:00:00 PM
Prix Fixe was awesome!
This was by far the best 3 course I've had. The cheese and fruit tray was shared by me and my friend. Amazing. The same applies to the vegetable goat cheese napoleon. My my my!!! I had the pork chop as the main course. It was grilled to perfection. The wait staff was stellar. This was an awesome dining experience. I will be back!!!
11/14/2013 4:00:00 PM
2 of us dined at Elaine's during a recent trip to Chapel Hill. The table was ready at our appointed time; the food was excellent and served with inventive sides. The chocolate dessert was a big hit. This is a restaurant we will return to next time we are in Chapel Hill!
11/15/2013 4:00:00 PM
Elaine's on Franklin has always been our preferred haute cuisine restaurant in the area. For the quality of the food, and the reasonable prices, you won't find much better good/service in the area, and will pay 3 times more in places like Washington DC, New York for comparable food. We are leaving for Portland/OR and will miss Elaine's.
11/19/2013 4:00:00 PM
My wife and I went to Elaine's on Saturday night before going to see a movie. I had the bison and my wife had the tuna, which were both fantastic. Our waitress recommended two really good wines that paired perfectly with the meal. We shared a dessert before heading. Following the movie, we came back for drinks at the bar and dessert #2. The only thing that could have been better is if the waitress would have told us what was on the pre-theather menu.
11/29/2013 4:00:00 PM
House made crackers & Humbolt Fog
The title says a lot! How many restaurants take care of the smallest details like house made crackers for their cheese plate, and include an amazing cheese like Humbolt Fog in there 3 fab cheeses? If u r a fan of Lemon Drop martinis....order it here..... Perhaps the best I've ever had and it is my favorite drink! the pork chop dish had a tittle heat and was nicely balanced. Fantastic wine pairings. The sweet potato pound cake is just sinfully good. This is a cute, unpretentious restaurant on Franklin St in downtown Chapel Hill where the quality of food and the attention to service and detail excellent, one of our favorites spots when we are in the area.
12/5/2013 4:00:00 PM