I don't know about you but when my husband and I have a date night, we like to go to a place without a playground or toys. Recently, we tried out Braise Contemporary Southern which is located at Raleigh Marriott Crabtree Valley.
Typically you wouldn't think to visit a local hotel for a nice dinner for a date night or a get-together, but Braise is a must-try!
As you walk through the lobby of the hotel, one of the first things you'll see is the lounge area with a beautiful bar and lots of intimate seating for groups to gather and have a drink while they socialize or watch the game that's currently on the TV. This is a great area to have a before-dinner cocktail or a little something to finish up your night.
The bartenders are great and they have a wide variety of liquors and beer to choose from so there's bound to be something for everyone.
They have a rotating menu of signature cocktails so you'll always see something different each time you go back. That's much different than most restaurants and bars but it's a great concept! My husband and I tried the Revolver and the Apple Tea. Both were wonderful and there's a great selection of things depending on what type of drink you're looking for - fruity and light, strong and bold, etc.
The menu at Braise is full of southern cuisine that's more sophisticated than your everyday down-home restaurant but still comes in great portions so it doesn't feel like you'll need 7 courses just to get the satisfaction of being full.
We started off with a dishes from the small plates menu so we could have a variety of things to sample. We tried the:
So for our main course, we had quite a hard time deciding what to order. Everything sounded delicious and there were lots of different proteins to choose from - lamb and steak to chicken, pork, and seafood.
I chose the Shrimp & Grits because that's one of my favorite dishes in general. The shrimp were seasoned to perfection - not too spicy but enough heat and flavor. And the cheesy grits were topped with applewood bacon and crispy friend onions. The whole dish was a celebration of flavor and I would definitely order it again!
My husband ordered the Char-Crusted Strip Steak complete with spice rub made in-house by their all-star chef, braised onion, and blue cheese butter. I'm not a steak person but this looked and smelled so delicious and my husband already wants to go back to order this again!
We ended our night with a sweet treat that we decided to just share because, as you can imagine, we were reaching our maximum capacity with all the great food we had already eaten. We took a look at the dessert menu and decided on the White Chocolate Bread Pudding with maple smoked whiskey sauce and fresh whipped cream. Definitely a dessert you should save room for! It was not too saucy so it the bread wasn't too soggy but it had just enough sauce to make every bit more delicious than the last.
The best news is that we'll be heading to Raleigh Marriott Crabtree Valley for our June 15th Girls Night Out event. We'd love to have you join us for a night of shopping local vendors, giveaways, swag bags, and the great food and beverage of Braise and the lounge.
For more info, you can visit the Facebook event page and don't forget to register via Eventbrite to be added to the guest list.
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