Cafe Rule & Wine Bar

4.6
1211 Reviews
$30 and under
Contemporary Southern
Located in the beautiful foothills of Hickory, North Carolina, Cafe Rule & Wine Bar is a beautiful restaurant where you can experience the delicious dining in a relaxed and refreshingly casual setting.
Fresh, sensational flavors and exquisite wine pairings are yours to enjoy as your palette is spoiled by our culinary team. There is simply no comparison to the array of dishes, the extensive wine selection or the fabulous ambiance that Cafe Rule invites you to savor. We offer a variety of private dining options for parties, business meetings and special events (up to 35), as well as an inviting outdoor patio with fountains, sculptures, and beautifully manicured gardens.
What 1211 people are saying
Overall ratings and reviews
Reviews can only be made by diners who have eaten at this restaurant
4.6based on recent ratings
4.5
food
4.5
service
4.7
ambience
4.4
value
Noise · Moderate
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DJ
DrJohnnys
Naples
7 reviews
Dined 7 days ago
Overall2food2service1ambience1

It was so cold you had to leave your jacket on! We order appetizers, and they came out with the main meal????

M
Myla
Western NC
1 review
Dined on November 19, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Amazing food and cocktails. Friendly, knowledgeable staff. Highly recommend!

SA
SteveA
Charlotte
8 reviews
Dined on November 19, 2021
Overall3food2service3ambience4

It must have been an off night this past Friday. The drinks were just ok, the food was lacking presentation and taste, and the service seemed inexperienced. The crab cakes are usually the best in town, but not so this time. Hopefully, things will be back on track next time.

OT
vipOpenTable Diner
Charlotte
6 reviews
Dined on November 18, 2021
Overall2food1service2ambience4

This meal was a comedy of errors. Manhattan Cocktails ordered “up” were made “neat”( never touched ice). It was downhill from there . Timing was completely off and eventually entrees arrived cold. Manager stepped in and saw that the meals were unacceptable. She was understanding and apologetic,but we were done . They struck our food from the bill and gave us gift certificates for a future meal. We have had fine meals there many times. This was clearly an aberration. We will be back

MG
MarthaG
Charlotte
4 reviews
Dined on November 13, 2021
Overall3food3service5ambience3

11-13-2021
We were seated close to the bar. There was a draft, so cold on a cool night.
Food was ok. The Calamari and the deviled eggs for appetizers were delicious. Salmon was bland with not much seasoning on the fish or the sauce.
My husband had the chicken that was ok, but again, not outstanding!

OT
OpenTable Diner
1 review
Dined on November 11, 2021
Overall2food2service2ambience4

We waited 30 minutes for our drink order - and over 90 min for our food. The waiter said the kitchen was running behind. The food was not good - I have eaten here many times and was very disappointed.

OT
OpenTable Diner
1 review
Dined on November 10, 2021
Overall2food4service1ambience5

Very slow service.

JM
JennieM
1 review
Dined on November 6, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Excellent service, fantastic food and drinks, top notch experience! We were first time diners at Cafe Rule and will definitely return!

OT
OpenTable Diner
1 review
Dined on November 6, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

The food and drinks were amazing! We had a great waiter Jack who was very knowledgeable about the menu and suggested some great drinks! We will definitely be back!

CJ
CJswan
Charlotte
9 reviews
Dined on October 31, 2021
Overall4food5service5ambience5

Food took a while to get to us; my son especially (something happened with waffle iron) and his was at least 10 min later than the table’s. Other than that- wonderful.

MR
MichelleR
New York Area
2 reviews
Dined on October 31, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Wonderful brunch menu with lots of variety. Everyone's order was cooked to perfection. Lovely atmosphere and service was very good.

OT
vipOpenTable Diner
Charlotte
3 reviews
Dined on October 30, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Daniel is the greatest!

OT
OpenTable Diner
1 review
Dined on October 30, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Food and drinks were fantastic. There were six
In our party. Each of us had a different meal and all were pleased with our choices. Cocktails and appetizers were also fabulous. Highly recommend the broccoli baffle and fried chicken!

AR
AnitaR
1 review
Dined on October 24, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

We had brunch on Oct 24 with some family. There was plenty of choices, it was honestly hard to choose because everything sounded so good😊 Our table was ready when we arrived and service was prompt. We will definitely go back!!

SA
SteveA
Charlotte
9 reviews
Dined on October 22, 2021
Overall5food4service5ambience5

Cafe Rule is always a good bet for a great dinner!! The food is always good and the drinks are spot on!! It's just about time for a menu tweek!!

r
rudy
San Francisco
14 reviews
Dined on October 22, 2021
Overall4food4service5ambience3

The food was good not great, service was great though. The booths are tight and uncomfortable to sit in. The prices are a bit on the high side. To be honest
I prefer Fourk over Cafe Rule when dining in Hickory.

OT
vipOpenTable Diner
Western NC
18 reviews
Dined on October 21, 2021
Overall4food5service3ambience5

Our second time dining at Cafe Rule— they had a couple of large parties, so service was lacking on our end. We kind of got passed around and drinks or additional requests took longer than expected. We started with one female server- and older lady and she complained that she had been triple sat and was overwhelmed. Took our drink order and was unaware of specials— including the Thursday drink specials. The next server was a younger male and explained the drink and menu specials. We had him for a bit, then I guess we were passed on to a younger girl with tattoos. I had the fettuccine Alfredo and he had the scallops. They were very well cooked. For dessert we had the walnut cake, it was good but a little dry for my taste. Overall, we had a good evening. The outside seating area is very nice and the chairs are super comfy. We would go back.

J
Julia
Western NC
1 review
Dined on October 21, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Cafe Rule never disappoints - good food, good drinks, good ambience, good time. Thanks for another great experience.

LR
LisbethR
Denver
2 reviews
Dined on October 18, 2021
Overall4food5service5ambience5

The food and service was outstanding and the hostess was very understating of the kitchen being understaffed. These are trying times and we waited patiently for our wonderful dinner.

t
tomt
1 review
Dined on October 17, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Great Sunday brunch great service beautiful restaurant. Couldn't have possibly asked for it to have been any better.

JS
JamesS
Western NC
7 reviews
Dined on October 16, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

The food, service, and experience were fantastic. Cafe Rule is one of my favorite date night restaurants.

J
Joshua
1 review
Dined on October 15, 2021
Overall3food4service2ambience3

My wife and I come here ever year for our anniversary. We usually enjoy our experience; however, this time was less than desirable. We had to wait a bit longer for our table and they neglected to decorate the table as requested. I also had an issue where I was brought the wrong salad and overcharged. This is not the experience one would expect from Rule. That said my wife and I will be choosing someplace else going forward.

M
Marg
Western NC
8 reviews
Dined on October 13, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Our dinner was at a high top in the bar area. I had the calamari light and spicy very good and a grilled Caesar salad with grilled shrimp which was also delicious and a very large portion. We also had the salmon dish served over polenta which was cooked to perfection. Our waiter was also very attentive and friendly. Overall a great experience

MB
MichelleB
1 review
Dined on October 10, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Perfect restaurant for all occasions. Staff signed birthday card for our daughter & treated us like royalty. Food was amazing! We will be back again & again.

AK
AsmaK
Charlotte
2 reviews
Dined on October 9, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Always love to go here , great ambiance and great service

D
Domenick
1 review
Dined on October 4, 2021
Overall5food4service5ambience5

I always go to Cafe Rule for special occasions. Outstanding service, quality food.

GK
GaryK
San Francisco
3 reviews
Dined on October 2, 2021
Overall4food4service4ambience4

Always a quality experience but pricy for what you receive. Great bartenders and servers. Crab cakes are tasty but not Maryland quality. Ours was an anniversary visit but unlike Ruth Chris is was not acknowledged. Disappointing.

AO
AliO
1 review
Dined on September 30, 2021
Overall3food3service5ambience4

The crab mac and peacan pie cheesecake were AMAZING, our server was great too! However, we were overcharged for our martinis as they were supposed to be on special but didn't catch it until we left.. and the seared ahi fish tacos were very bland and well overcooked. I was expecting much better with being a fancier place.. Overall, we would come back again!

HO
HannahO
1 review
Dined on September 28, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Cafe rule is mine and my boyfriends go to date spot! The food never disappoints! The service is always wonderful, Ashlee is absolutely amazing at her job! We love when she waits on us!

CL
CatherineL
1 review
Dined on September 27, 2021
Overall4food5service3ambience5

When we first arrived they did not have a table for us outside as we had requested. They apologized and I was very disappointed since it was my birthday and the seating we had was not what I had hoped for and also took about 20 minutes to be asked our beverage order. But shortly after that it was as if somebody flipped a switch. They reset us at an outdoor table that had it opened up and the rest of the evening went swimmingly!

OT
OpenTable Diner
1 review
Dined on September 27, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Took my fiancé here for her birthday. Lovely service and ambience. The food was outstanding. We got mojitos, the sampler (with crackers, pickles, and pimento cheese). I had the chicken & waffles, and she had the blackened chicken pasta. Jack was our server, and he made us feel so welcome. If you get a chance, you MUST sit on the patio. Lovely fall evening. Will be back!

TL
TimothyL
E. Tennessee
2 reviews
Dined on September 25, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience3

The only negative thing I have to say is I made a late reservation 745 in order to get a patio table, but the table was not on the patio but right in front of the door leading outside. Under the roof and right in the center of traffic. If you are hoping for garden seating , call to make sure that is what you are getting and not just a view of everyone else in the garden.

V
Vicki
Charlotte
3 reviews
Dined on September 25, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Our evening was beautiful. This is our favorite restaurant in Hickory. The setting was relaxing, the waitstaff superb! We had delicious seafood, salmon and scallops. We will return soon!

G
George
New Orleans
5 reviews
Dined on September 24, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Great atmosphere. Great food. Great service by Ben! One of our favorites!

OT
OpenTable Diner
Charlotte
1 review
Dined on September 24, 2021
Overall4food3service4ambience4

Service good but was like dining at local fast food/Texas Roadhouse type. Not the professionalism we expected. Food was good but potatoes tasted instant and vegetables overcooked. Pasta chicken and filet great

HL
HeatherL
Charlotte
1 review
Dined on September 21, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Our waitress was wonderful!! And the food was delicious. Thank you for a wonderful experience.

OT
vipOpenTable Diner
Seattle
4 reviews
Dined on September 18, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Ashlee was fantastic - wonderful waitress
Taylor makes the best old fashions in Hickory!!

F
Foodie
Charleston
1 review
Dined on September 17, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

My family and I enjoyed a delightful evening dining experience on the restaurant's patio under an umbrella, seated at a wicker, glass table and under the glow of outdoor string lighting. Our waitress was very attentive to our needs and aimed to please in every way. Our food was very tasty and reasonably priced. We even received a weather report of predicted rain in case we would like to be seated indoors. I would highly recommend this restaurant for a peaceful, relaxing evening

MH
MarcyH
1 review
Dined on September 16, 2021
Overall3food3service3ambience3

The night we were there, they only had 1 paper menu. Was celebrating my dad’s 83rd birthday and he and my mom needed paper menus-not QR code’s on the table. Husbands salmon was over cooked on the outside and under in the middle. Vegetables were way over cooked to mushy. Caesar salad was disappointing. Chicken and waffles was good. “Slaw” on tacos needed some acid or dressing instead of bare cabbage. Our experience wasn’t terrible but was a bit disappointing for the amount we spent on dinner.

PG
PansyG
1 review
Dined on September 12, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

W did brunch and the food was amazing. Our waitress was awesome and attentive. We had three best grits we ever had. A 5 start restaurant in our book.

FAQs

Cafe Rule & Wine Bar offers takeout which you can order by calling the restaurant at (828) 324-2005.

Cafe Rule & Wine Bar is rated 4.6 stars by 1211 OpenTable diners.

Yes, you can generally book this restaurant by choosing the date, time and party size on OpenTable. Due to local restrictions, this restaurant may not be accepting reservations at the moment.

Tweets by Cafe Rule & Wine Bar