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Walls of edgy art create an exciting ambience for global fare.


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Counting House, Durham, NC

Operations may be disrupted due to COVID-19. Be sure to contact the restaurant to find out its current status and offerings.

Counting House Restaurant Review

: Counting House anchors 21c Museum Hotel, one of four small and stylish luxury hotels in the eastern U.S. The property occupies a former bank building in bustling downtown Durham, specifically designed to show off its 1920’s Deco architecture. Eye-popping contemporary art installations adorn every wall --- halls, bar, restaurant and even restrooms double as galleries. Chef Josh Munchel, previously of the franchise’s Metropole in Cincinnati, brings a style he describes as “global with local ingredients.” On the menu you will find plenty of small plate options, several geared toward vegetarians. Beets tartare, enhanced by a cashew purée, and a savory sweet potato soup garnished with peanuts and popped sorghum are standouts. Other possibilities on a given night may be trout terrine or shrimp and grits. Among the mains are a plump burger, braised beef with parsnips, and a roast chicken with chili aïoli. The few dessert offerings include “broken” apple pie with cardamom ice cream and a delicate panna cotta garnished with honeycomb candy. Wines are limited to a dozen bottles, but the extensive liquor and craft beer lists make up for it. Creative cocktails such as Alley Cat, a concoction of Campari, lemon, cinnamon and salt, make the bar a great place to hang out with a friend and nibble on the popcorn of the day.

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