The Pit Authentic BBQ
The Pit Authentic BBQ

The Pit Authentic BBQ

  • Dining Style: Casual Elegant
  • Website: http://www.thepit-raleigh.com/
  • Phone: 9198904500x
  • Hours of Operation:
    Monday - Thursday 11:00 am - 10:00 pm
    Friday - Saturday 11:00 am - 11:00 pm
    Sunday 11:00 am - 9:00 pm
  • Payment Options: AMEX,Discover,MasterCard,Visa
  • Cuisine: Southern, Barbecue
  • Executive Chef: Darrell Brown
  • Dress Code: Casual Dress
  • Accepts Walk-Ins: Yes
  • Additional Details: Banquet/Private Rooms, Bar Dining, Bar/Lounge, Beer, Farm to Table, Full Bar, Non-Smoking Restaurant, Patio/Outdoor Dining, Personal wines welcome, Personal wines welcome (corkage fee applies), Private Room, Smoking Area, Smoking Area (patio only), Takeout, Wheelchair Access, Wine
  • Catering: For Private Dining and Catering inquiries contact Mollyann Russell at (919)829-0833 or mollyann@thepit-raleigh.com.

Getting there

  • Cross Street: Dawson Street
  • Public Transit: The R-line stops right in front of the restaurant!
  • Parking: Valet
  • Parking Details: Complimentary valet parking all day, every day. Street parking anywhere after 5pm
A word from The Pit Authentic BBQ
Empire Eats is proud to present The Pit Authentic BBQ: whole hog pit cooked BBQ featuring all natural, free range pigs raised right here in North Carolina. The Pit is located in Downtown Raleigh’s Historic Depot District and is helping establish North Carolina’s Capital City as a destination for the state’s signature cuisine in an elegant and lively atmosphere. Our Menu… Our team has crafted a menu that features our signature North Carolina BBQ, slow cooked over hickory and coal and inspired seasonal appetizers, entrees, sides and artful desserts. Our commitment to utilize the freshest, locally grown produce and seasonal ingredients allows the menu to continually evolve throughout the year. Private Dining… The Pit has private dining accommodations for parties of almost any size. Contact private events at catering@thepit-raleigh.com
Continued
Foodspotting photos
See all photos
Awards voted by OpenTable diners
  • Diners' Choice WinnerGreat for Lunch
  • Diners' Choice WinnerHot Spot
  • Diners' Choice WinnerKid Friendly
The Pit Authentic BBQ reviews from OpenTable diners
516 reviews since May 5, 2014
Overall Rating4.3
  • Food4.4
    Service4.4
  • Ambiance4.1
    Noise LevelModerate
93% of reviewers would recommend this restaurant to a friend.
good for groups (304)fit for foodies (220)great for lunch (218)neighborhood gem (202)hot spot (189)special occasion (184)kid-friendly (142)vibrant bar scene (84)great for brunch (60)late-night find (56)great for outdoor dining (41)romantic (39)notable wine list (26)scenic view (16)Show More
  • Always Enjoyalbe
    OpenTable Diner Since 2014
    Dined on 8/31/2014
    The Pit is a must when out of towns guests want to enjoy good BBQ in a classic NC setting. Are there "hole in the wall" places that have better food? Maybe, but The Pit delivers authentic and consistent food EVERY TIME which is the most important. Plus they have plenty of room for large groups and a full bar making this a destination stop for locals and out of towners just looking for really good food.
    Special Features:
    good for groups, great for lunch, kid-friendly, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Friendly / Energetic Staff
    OpenTable Diner Since 2014
    Dined on 8/31/2014
    Food is good but had to send back some side items that were a bit old. The Sangria was delicious and the ribs were nicely cooked. The staff was great. By the way, I made the reservation on the "Open Table" web site and the table was ready and waiting for our arrival.
    Special Features:
    great for lunch
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Great BBQ
    OpenTable Diner Since 2011
    Dined on 8/30/2014
    The Pit was a casual environment with good food and service. If you are in the Raleigh area check it out!
    Special Features:
    kid-friendly
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • BBQ Good, Sides ????
    jaxtraveler
    Dined on 8/30/2014
    Has Carolina Ribs with 2 sides and dessert. The best part of the meal was the apple pastry with ice cream. The ribs were very good but they sides were pathetic. Cold fries, tasteless and sweet BBQ beans, typical Cole slaw, and dry red beans and rice. Not as good as I expected, but not waste of money. Note they have 15 minute late reservation cut-off. We were there 16 minutes late and had to argue the point to get seated.
    Special Features:
    good for groups, hot spot, kid-friendly, vibrant bar scene
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Neutral feelings
    OpenTable Diner Since 2014
    Dined on 8/30/2014
    I have heard a lot of people say a lot of good things about the place. Its actually not bad for the price. You can give it a try but its not a place that I would visit on a regular basis. My chicken wings were burnt so it was on the house. My burger was a little burnt as well(I told them well done, probably should have gone with medium) but didn't mention that to our waiter. Overall not the best dining experience for me, but it seemed like a very popular place as it was almost filled and there were lots of people waiting on a Sat around 1pm. So I kind of have a neutral feeling about this place, but give it a try and see how it suits you.
    Special Features:
    great for lunch
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Great Dinner at the Pit
    Daisy8869
    Dined on 8/29/2014
    It was our first time at The Pit and the food was just as great as all my friends described it. The meats are all fork tender and the sides were homemade goodness. Our only wrinkle was the service was slow for the first half of the meal, our team received two large parties on either side of us and despite us ordering before them, they received their bread and entrees before us. Save room for dessert, the banana pudding was to die for!
    Special Features:
    good for groups, great for outdoor dining, hot spot, kid-friendly, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Always a hit
    CameronVIP
    Dined on 8/28/2014
    My brother lives in Raleigh and I tell him every time I'm down in the Triangle we MUST go to the Pit. This was my fiancee's first trip to the Pit and she was not disappointed. I usually go for the ribs because they fall of the bone. Pick up the ribs and all the meat falls off. We went for the pulled pork this time and it was just as good. Great beer selection to go with it. Next time we are down, we will be back.
    Special Features:
    good for groups, great for lunch, hot spot, kid-friendly
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Mediocre BBQ At The Pit
    Daddio
    Dined on 8/27/2014
    Soggy brisket, strangely smokeless flavored ribs, a mound of "ho hum" pulled pork, good chicken with uninspired cole slaw…not sure what the buzz is about. I ordered the sample plate with a selection of all meats. It came heaped on a plate far too small for the task: making the whole scene more like a the inners of a blended meat pie vs bbq. Horrible plate presentation. Are you proud of your food or want to hide it? Bartender was attentive, but poured exactly one ounce of liquor when I ordered a Jack on the rocks. Okay…maybe that's policy, but again when you pour exactly one ounce of liquor into a low ball glass it looks cheap and stingy. Place was packed, loud, lots of groups and families in a popular neighborhood. I won't return.
    Special Features:
    good for groups, hot spot
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Delicious Lunch
    mangoshake
    Dined on 8/26/2014
    Brought my dad to The Pit for lunch, his first time there. We both loved it. Always a great place to eat fried chicken and bbq, and the service was great and we got our food very quickly, during our short lunch break.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, great for lunch, neighborhood gem, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • love this place
    kellz
    Dined on 8/24/2014
    Anytime we have friends in from out of town or state we always take them here..
    Special Features:
    neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Father-n-Laws BDay
    HELP
    Dined on 8/24/2014
    It thoroughly enjoyed it so all the effort was well worth it!!! It's hard to put a smile on his face but this place raised the bar!!!!
    Special Features:
    great for outdoor dining, special occasion, neighborhood gem, hot spot, vibrant bar scene, notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Great night and experience
    kwurlyman
    Dined on 8/23/2014
    The service was absolutely spectacular, my girlfriend had an absolutely wonderful birthday. Definitely will be keeping this location in my mind for further locations.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, special occasion, great for lunch, late-night find, hot spot, vibrant bar scene
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Entertaining out of town guests
    WineNdineWife
    Dined on 8/22/2014
    My husband and I wanted to take our guests out for some authentic southern BBQ to celebrate their anniversary. We noticed the restaurant week menu and everyone passed on that as the choices were extremely limited. In fact none of those menu items were even regular menu items. We decided on the family style selections as everyone was interested in similar menu choices. The food was very good, our guests were impressed. I was kind of disappointed in the smaller portions that were brought out for our party of four. It seemed as though when we got our main entrees to the table, the wait staff avoided our table for a good thirty minutes. We asked for seconds on fried chicken and they brought out two pieces; a teeny tiny wing and one breast.
    Special Features:
    hot spot
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Good but noisy
    Brooklesby
    Dined on 8/22/2014
    The food is always good but it would be nice if there were more Paleo-friendly options. The noise was out of control Friday night. We were a party of 10 and could not hear beyond the person right next to us...and even then we had to lean in and speak loudly. Noise reduction panels or something would be nice! Other than that it's a fun spot and a lovely place to dine.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelCannot Recall
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Amazing BBQ
    David
    Dined on 8/22/2014
    We made our reservation about three months before coming to Raleigh and people were waiting on this Friday night for at least 45 minutes. We were seated right on time on the more traditional looking side of the restaurant (the other side is a little more upscale). We had read a review from another patron who had recommended the fried pimento cheese appetizer and this was an excellent suggestion. Very tasty and very unique. My wife and I both had the two meat combo plates - she had brisket and pulled pork, I had the brisket and baby back ribs (extra charge for the ribs and worth it). Try the Brunswick stew. We live a long way from Raleigh and do not know when we might return but when we do The Pit will be on our agenda.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, vibrant bar scene
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Out of Town Visitor
    FoodieVIP
    Dined on 8/22/2014
    This was our second time visiting The Pit. The food is simply the best! The extensive menu offers something for everyone. Everything is absolutely delicious!!! The selection of beers, listed from light to dark, complement the menu to perfection. On this visit we were a little disappointed in the service. The hostess was disinterested and borderline rude as she made it seem like she was doing us a favor by showing us to our table. The servers work in teams and while they were friendly, there were periods where they couldn't be found. Still the selection and quality of the food is the star of the dining experience. I would recommend The Pit.
    Special Features:
    kid-friendly, fit for foodies, good for groups
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Fried Chicken
    fingerlickin
    Dined on 8/22/2014
    There are plenty of quality meat items, but the fried chicken has consistently been the best item on the menu. The bar is great for the business traveler or anyone interested in a quick bite and/or drink. The sides and desserts are well prepared and very fresh.
    Special Features:
    good for groups, great for lunch, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Great
    LMCP
    Dined on 8/21/2014
    Never disappoints when I bring out of town guests to try NC bbq
    Special Features:
    good for groups, great for lunch, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Best bar b que in Durham
    hland33
    Dined on 8/21/2014
    This is not my first trip to the pit. As I was planning this latest trip, my memories of The Pit were always on my mind. By the time I got off the plane, I could not wait to get to The Pit for dinner. It was just as great as the last time I was in town. The Pit still has the best pulled pork anywhere. And whether you're a fan of traditional b-b-q sauce (tomato based) or a fan of the Carolina style sauce (vinegar based) you will find the sauces here perfectly complement your meal. So stop by, an enjoy!
    Special Features:
    great for brunch, fit for foodies, great for lunch, neighborhood gem, hot spot
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Great service and food!
    cmmart
    Dined on 8/20/2014
    We always enjoy the delicious barbeque and love the outstanding service at The Pit!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, special occasion, great for lunch
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Just OK
    eatngthruNCVIP
    Dined on 8/19/2014
    Service was wonderful, friendly, helpful and efficient wait staff. The food was just ok, not bad, not great. It's a great scene and their beer list is really good.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • The PIT
    luv2eatout
    Dined on 8/19/2014
    Great experience! The best BBQ place in town. Love this place!
    Special Features:
    neighborhood gem, hot spot
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Team Lunch Go-To
    MaxineVIP
    Dined on 8/19/2014
    Our 12-person team ate here for lunch. The wait staff was fast, accurate, and knowledgeable. The appetizers and meals tasted very good, according to the team. This level of service for a large group is hard to find in downtown Raleigh. We will be going back, very soon.
    Special Features:
    kid-friendly, good for groups, great for lunch, hot spot, vibrant bar scene
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • CMA celebration dinner
    fullbelly
    Dined on 8/17/2014
    The Pit was a great place to take the family. It came highly recommended, and I would recommend The Pit to everyone. We were told to go empty because we would need the space for all the great food, we were told we would "stupid eat" both hands with food. And they were right I found chicken in one hand and a biscuit in the other and had to stop and laugh at myself. We had a wonderful time and the wait staff were very personable and friendly. Great service from the time I made the reservation until we left. We will be back again and again and again.
    Special Features:
    great for brunch, kid-friendly, fit for foodies, good for groups, great for lunch, scenic view, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Closest thing to home cooking ever!
    ChicknBBQ
    Dined on 8/17/2014
    Food is always great and I like the three waiter system - never had an empty glass! You may be well known for your BBQ, but the fried chicken is about the closet thing ever to my Mom's home cooking - loved it. The online reservation system worked perfectly, walked right in and was seated immediately.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for lunch, neighborhood gem, hot spot
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • great place to eat
    yumyumyum
    Dined on 8/16/2014
    The food is wonderful, great menu for all types of diets, and the gluten free selections were extraordinary. Street parking is difficult to find, and the lot was expensive, but the pit has their own FREE valet parking
    Special Features:
    kid-friendly, fit for foodies, special occasion, hot spot
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Underwhelming!
    Marsha
    Dined on 8/16/2014
    Just very underwhelming! Food was mediocre, service was rushed.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Great food! Service not so great.
    Yum2thetum
    Dined on 8/16/2014
    Reservations via internet super easy to do with fast email confirm-but when our party arrived we were not allowed to be seated until at least 5 or more of the party were there. We were only a party of 7 with one couple running a little late so NONE of us could be seated until they came-we eventually just changed ourselves to a party of 5 so we could be seated. But this took a talk with the manager to accomplish. Once seated the waiter stood over us for our order. We finally asked if we could have a little time to look at the menu as it was our first visit, he left but came right back! In contrast I later had to stop him for the one refill of tea I received. But food was fabulous and was on the table super fast. I intend to go back!!
    Special Features:
    special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Enjoyed the food
    OpenTable Diner Since 2012
    Dined on 8/16/2014
    Our whole party enjoyed our food, although I did notice our servings were significantly smaller than when I ordered the same meal last month. They were able to seat us immediately - even though we were 20 minutes early for our reservation - however the tiny "check-in" area was crowded and awkward b/c of people hovering over nearby diners. I was glad that our party wasn't seated close to that area! Overall, it was a good experience.
    Special Features:
    kid-friendly, fit for foodies, good for groups, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • The pork and the beef
    beckyr
    Dined on 8/16/2014
    We were disappointed with the beef brisket which had no smoked flavor - it could have been a pot roast! The BBQ sauce helped somewhat. The chopped pork was clean (little fat, no bones) but only mildly flavored. The vinegar sauce gave it a some taste but without much red pepper flavor that I crave. These meals were over-priced for the quality, in our opinion. Our server, John, was a bright spot in the experience, however. He's "living the dream".
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Best BBQ on the Planet
    Charlottesfinest
    Dined on 8/16/2014
    Loved it!! The service was great. The hospitality of the entire STAFF was really heartfelt and genuine - not phony. Why is 'The Pit' not in Charlotte, NC? We need you here! The food was Awesome! I will be back!
    Special Features:
    great for brunch, kid-friendly, fit for foodies, good for groups, great for outdoor dining, romantic, special occasion, great for lunch, late-night find, scenic view, neighborhood gem, hot spot
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • First Visit to The Pit
    Willy
    Dined on 8/14/2014
    Our first visit with visitors went very well. The food was great and the service was very good. I would certainly recommend if considering BBQ in Raleigh.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Less than expected
    Bbqfan
    Dined on 8/14/2014
    Brisket was boring, they were out of pulled pork and ribs were overlooked. We ordered the Sunday Supper complete meals. We were told it was family style, all you can eat. Since we ignored the brisket we accepted an offer of more ribs. When we got the bill, they had added $8 for the ribs. A beer was $8. Dinner fir 2, $62 before tip. Very disappointed and feel ripped off. Will not return
    Special Features:
    good for groups
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • OpenTable Diner Since 2014
    Dined on 8/12/2014
    My first experience at the pit was great! Will definitely eat there again!
    Special Features:
    good for groups, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelCannot Recall
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Great people, good "Que"
    ChiaPop
    Dined on 8/12/2014
    Good selection of "Q", didn't much care for the batter fried onion rings (Greasy and doughy - dipping sauce not my favorite, a plain ranch dressing would have been better). Great service and friendly staff. A bit noisy, but a fun place to eat.
    Special Features:
    kid-friendly, good for groups
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Great service .... so so food
    Matt
    Dined on 8/11/2014
    It's been a while since I have been here for dinner. The service was very good and we felt taken care of. The disappointment was with the food, once again. The last time here, the brisket was very, very dry and even the sauce could not save it. While not as dry this time, it still was not very good. I did try the BBQ Turkey, which was in fact very good, tender and moist. The sides I had (Baked Beans, Potato Salad) were just ok. The other appetizer / free items were really good though (hush puppies and biscuits). Overall, a good experience with the reservation piece of things and a so-so experience at the restaurant itself.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, special occasion, hot spot
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • OpenTable Diner Since 2014
    Dined on 8/10/2014
    Have both NC styles of BBQ, fantastic appetizers, excellent desserts big enough for sharing. Bring an appetite so you can try a little bit of everything.
    Special Features:
    great for brunch, good for groups, great for lunch, neighborhood gem, hot spot
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • VibrantSouthernLady
    Dined on 8/10/2014
    My was in town for a visit and we took him there for lunch. He enjoyed it and suggested we come more often.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, great for lunch, hot spot
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Family Style Menu Option
    MsLucy
    Dined on 8/9/2014
    We have been to The Pit several times since moving to Raleigh 3 years ago but was unaware of "The family Style Menu" which was perfect for us. We got to sample different several options without a hefty price tag nor an over abundance of food. The service was engaging which added to a perfect Birthday celebration.
    Special Features:
    kid-friendly, good for groups, great for lunch, vibrant bar scene
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • OK
    OpenTable Diner Since 2012
    Dined on 8/9/2014
    Food was great, service was just ok - nothing special, server very slow. There was a wedding party in one section that was very noisy. We were seated in the back room which we didn't really care for. I'd come back for the food but the atmosphere is not really great. Also, Davie street was blocked off for a street party. Would have been nice if The Pit would have mentioned that when they called me earlier in the day to confirm the reservation. It made finding parking a bit of a challenge.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic