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Poole's Downtown Diner



426 South McDowell Street
Raleigh, NC 27601

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(919) 832-4477

Cuisine: American Restaurants


4.7 of 5.0 from 114 reviews

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Poole's Downtown Diner in Raleigh, NC
  • Poole's Downtown Diner in Raleigh, NC
  • Poole's Downtown Diner in Raleigh, NC
  • Poole's Downtown Diner in Raleigh, NC
  • Poole's Downtown Diner in Raleigh, NC
  • Poole's Downtown Diner in Raleigh, NC
  • Poole's Downtown Diner in Raleigh, NC
  • Poole's Downtown Diner in Raleigh, NC
  • Poole's Downtown Diner in Raleigh, NC
  • Poole's Downtown Diner in Raleigh, NC
  • Poole's Downtown Diner in Raleigh, NC
  • Poole's Downtown Diner in Raleigh, NC
  • Poole's Downtown Diner in Raleigh, NC
  • Poole's Downtown Diner in Raleigh, NC
  • Poole's Downtown Diner in Raleigh, NC
  • Poole's Downtown Diner in Raleigh, NC
  • Poole's Downtown Diner in Raleigh, NC
  • Poole's Downtown Diner in Raleigh, NC
  • Poole's Downtown Diner in Raleigh, NC
  • Poole's Downtown Diner in Raleigh, NC
  • Poole's Downtown Diner in Raleigh, NC
  • Poole's Downtown Diner in Raleigh, NC
  • Poole's Downtown Diner in Raleigh, NC
  • Poole's Downtown Diner in Raleigh, NC
  • Poole's Downtown Diner in Raleigh, NC
  • Poole's Downtown Diner in Raleigh, NC
  • Poole's Downtown Diner in Raleigh, NC
  • Poole's Downtown Diner in Raleigh, NC
  • Poole's Downtown Diner in Raleigh, NC
  • Poole's Downtown Diner in Raleigh, NC
  • Poole's Downtown Diner in Raleigh, NC
  • Poole's Downtown Diner in Raleigh, NC
  • Poole's Downtown Diner in Raleigh, NC
  • Poole's Downtown Diner in Raleigh, NC
  • Poole's Downtown Diner in Raleigh, NC
  • Poole's Downtown Diner in Raleigh, NC
  • Poole's Downtown Diner in Raleigh, NC
  • Poole's Downtown Diner in Raleigh, NC
  • Poole's Downtown Diner in Raleigh, NC
  • Poole's Downtown Diner in Raleigh, NC
  • Poole's Downtown Diner in Raleigh, NC
  • Poole's Downtown Diner in Raleigh, NC
  • Poole's Downtown Diner in Raleigh, NC
  • Poole's Downtown Diner in Raleigh, NC
  • Poole's Downtown Diner in Raleigh, NC
  • Poole's Downtown Diner in Raleigh, NC
  • Poole's Downtown Diner in Raleigh, NC
  • Poole's Downtown Diner in Raleigh, NC

Blogger Reviews of Poole's Downtown Diner

  • Rebecca Gomez Farrell on Jul 26, 2013

    At the end of the evening, I was convinced that Poole's designation as a required stop for Triangle foodies is earned, but I questioned whether the inconveniences would make it worthwhile for the average patron who just wants a good meal.

    View Full Review

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Poole's Downtown Diner Reviews

Add your review for Poole's Downtown Diner.

  • Alejandra RGo for brunch and get the seasonal hotcake and/or the BLT

    55555 by Alejandra R


  • peter M.what an experience! It was a wonderful & thoroughly delightful experience From waiting in line 4 them to open doors on Sunday evening, to sitting at the old time counter, drinking some great wine!

    55555 by peter M.


  • Emma KMAC AND CHEESE🙏🏻👏🏼🙌🏼

    55555 by Emma K


  • Jessica MMac and cheese, short ribs

    55555 by Jessica M


  • Jessica MMac and cheese is great, short ribs and pork belly are super tender!!

    55555 by Jessica M


  • EaterAshley Christensen’s flagship blends high-low dining and Southern-French sensibilities (oh, that macaroni au gratin!) in a singular ode to Americana.

    55555 by Eater


  • PureWowThe creamy-and-crunchy macaroni au gratin, made with Jarlsberg, Grana Padano and white cheddar, is a statewide-hit.

    55555 by PureWow


  • meganAmazing spot in downtown Raleigh. The menu changes daily, but get the pimiento cheese starter is available. Also the shrimp & grits and mac 'n cheese!

    55555 by megan


  • Jide I.Just do the Mac & cheese. Don't ask questions. Just do it.

    33333 by Jide I.


  • Ayana G.Try the Lavender Gimlet or the Cucumber Rickey if your in the mood for drinks!

    55555 by Ayana G.


  • Eric HWhen my moms car dies I'm burying it here. So good

    55555 by Eric H


  • Nick C.high on yelp

    55555 by Nick C.


  • Michael O.Lone riders get seated very fast at the counter. I was able to pass the line

    33333 by Michael O.


  • EaterMade with cheddar, Jarlsberg, and Grano Padano and broiled to a crusty, bubbly bronze, its a mingling of French and Southern sensibilities, and there may be no better version of mac n cheese anywhere.

    55555 by Eater


  • Heather BailiffJust go here. Go early for dinner to avoid the wait. Outstanding service and out of this world food. Good beer selection, too.

    55555 by Heather Bailiff


  • Mark TDidn't live up to the hype.

    22222 by Mark T


  • Paul N.Get the mac.

    33333 by Paul N.


  • Gina D.My first Christiansen restaurant. It's been amazing from the start. Modern diner-inspired food with creative cocktails. Always exceptional!

    55555 by Gina D.


  • Morgan F.All the posts about the mac & cheese are true. Don't leave here without trying it. Great atmosphere as well.

    55555 by Morgan F.


  • Scooby CarolanBeen once & had a bite of everything on the menu. It was all terrific.

    55555 by Scooby Carolan


  • Annie A.Follow up to other review: if you have a service animal be prepared to show documentation. I brought mine in and luckily I had her paperwork with me.

    33333 by Annie A.


  • Carlos R.Get the Mac and cheese. Best I've ever had!

    55555 by Carlos R.


  • Michael P.How can you call yourself a diner if you don't open until 5:30p?

    33333 by Michael P.


  • Jason B.This place is awesome! Sides are big enough for two and then some!

    55555 by Jason B.


  • Mark NixonGreat trendy menu.

    55555 by Mark Nixon


  • Autumn WellesI think I might be the only person who doesn't like the mac and cheese. I found it way too greasy. And I'm a huge lover of pastas of all sorts, especially ones with cheese in them.

    33333 by Autumn Welles


  • Zach BFantastic smoked pork tenderloin. Also fantastic hostess.

    55555 by Zach B


  • Erin TEverything. Nom.

    55555 by Erin T


  • Todd WilliamsRaleigh's best restaurant. Nuff said.

    55555 by Todd Williams


  • Travis ConteIt has been confirmed: the mac and cheese is amazing. The only challenge is there are no reservations...

    55555 by Travis Conte


  • Byron H.The Mac is awesome and filling..... Can totally be shared.

    55555 by Byron H.


  • Abbe L.Ashley's produce is always on point. Always get the tomatoes if it's on the menu.

    55555 by Abbe L.


  • Krista KMac and cheese!

    55555 by Krista K


  • Teresa B.Roasted chicken and the macaroni au gratin are melt in your mouth delicious. Best mojito in Raleigh.

    55555 by Teresa B.


  • Atlanta Food & Wine FestivalFarmers & chefs are nourishing their communities through innovative and generous acts of philanthropy. Join Ashley Christensen for a discussion, and bites, at Atlanta Food & Wine Festival May 29-June1

    55555 by Atlanta Food & Wine Festival


  • Brian AdornettoGet there early- they don't take reservations

    55555 by Brian Adornetto


  • LuciSunday is Royal day! The best "burger" you'll ever have.

    55555 by Luci


  • Katie KukuckaThe whole "menu-on-the wall" concept feels straight out of Portlandia. If you don't want people standing over you trying to memorize the menu before going back to their seats, sit at the bar.

    33333 by Katie Kukucka


  • Harbinger D.Good cocktails, mac&cheese soufle is amaz!

    55555 by Harbinger D.


  • R.E.D. PropertiesEnough can not be said about this place! Outstanding, fresh food and truly eclectic and creative cocktails! Menu is always changing but if you get the chance their Mac N Cheese is a MUST!

    55555 by R.E.D. Properties


  • Michael R.First time I have ever been in a 5 Star diner. Great atmosphere and taste with amazing wine pairings. Service was top notch. I will be back.

    55555 by Michael R.


  • Joe O.Nice bar. Interesting beer selection. I didn't eat but the menu looked promising.

    33333 by Joe O.


  • Bob E.The $10 mac and cheese is rich and tangy with enough calories to feed an entire village in Bangladesh.

    55555 by Bob E.


  • J.J. E.They don't take reservations so plan on either getting there when they open at 530 or much later at night. Very limited seating.

    33333 by J.J. E.


  • Emilie M.The pork cassoulet was amazing-so many flavors. Also enjoyed the pimento cheese appetizer, and my date had the steak. Pimm's cup was very delicious and refreshing, as well. Great date spot.

    55555 by Emilie M.


  • Barbara M.What a culinary delight especially when shared with friends sitting at the counter.

    55555 by Barbara M.


  • Mystery J.Take a pic of the menu (it's all written on the chalkboard) to make ordering from your seat easier.

    33333 by Mystery J.


  • Ryan G.Bibb salad, it's the best salad in Raleigh.

    55555 by Ryan G.


  • Kate D.Mac And Cheese is the best I've ever had! Must order. Also the dark chocolate dessert with cookie crumbs and buttermilk ice cream is heavenly!

    55555 by Kate D.


  • maureen h.The macaroni au gratin is amazing

    55555 by maureen h.


  • Nano S.You pretty much can't go wrong here.

    55555 by Nano S.


  • John H.Burger only offered on Sundays... As of today.

    55555 by John H.


  • Contessa C.Macaroni au gratin. That's all.

    55555 by Contessa C.


  • SamanthaDark & Stormy - Goslings Black Seal Rum, Fresh Lime, Jalapeño - Ginger Syrup, and Soda Water

    55555 by Samantha


  • Rebecca S.Just had the Crispy NC Oysters with roasted tomato slaw. Amazing!!!!!

    55555 by Rebecca S.


  • Mital P.Mac and cheese! And anything else

    55555 by Mital P.


  • Ray G.If this place fell into a sinkhole, by the time the contents of this place made it to the bottom, you would have a pretty big naked hipster avalanche to clean up.

    33333 by Ray G.


  • Marty L.They sell Strohs so... Don't really know what to say about that

    55555 by Marty L.


  • Kate W.Favorite restaurant in Raleigh! Oh, what the hell, favorite restaurant, period.

    55555 by Kate W.


  • Mitch O.Wonderful food. Get there early.

    55555 by Mitch O.


  • Kate O.Prices are through the roof here. $20 minimum for an entree, $10 minimum for a drink. Great place to eat, just bring the bank!

    55555 by Kate O.


  • Patty G.Yum. Get the beet salad!

    55555 by Patty G.


  • The News & ObserverTry some pie - lemon cream with boysenberry honey, roasted banana cream, or chocolate hazelnut chess. The all-pie dessert menu is a tribute to Poole's original incarnation in the 1940s as a pie shop.

    55555 by The News & Observer


  • Michelle H.Not ideal if there are 4+ people in your group.

    33333 by Michelle H.


  • Renaissance HotelsFind out how good fried green tomatoes and mac ‘n’ cheese can be when made by a brilliant chef. For more local tips, follow us on 4sq or check out www.renhotels.com.

    55555 by Renaissance Hotels


  • Barbara M.Try the blueberry French toast gratin.

    55555 by Barbara M.


  • Open Air PublishingOrder the smoked bacon deviled eggs with pickled okra. Then check out "The Better Bacon Book" created for iPads to learn how to make these yourself. http://oapub.co/9a4d0f5d

    55555 by Open Air Publishing


  • Open Air P.Order the Smoked Bacon Deviled Eggs with Pickled Okra. Then check out "The Better Bacon Book" created for iPads to learn how to make these yourself. http://bit.ly/foursq_bacon

    55555 by Open Air P.


  • Atlanta Food & Wine FestivalYou'll be feeling some Southern Chemistry at this year's Atlanta Food & Wine Festival May 10-13! We're happy to have Chef Ashley Christensen hosting a demo and a dinner, Shepherd to Chef!

    55555 by Atlanta Food & Wine Festival


  • Barbara M.What is NOT to like here? The Pooles team, drinks & food are FA-u-lous!

    55555 by Barbara M.


  • Barbara M.Try the roasted beets and baby kale salad! Relish!

    55555 by Barbara M.


  • JoAnn D.Everything is great here!

    55555 by JoAnn D.


  • Barbara M.Try the grits! Relish!!

    55555 by Barbara M.


  • Barbara M.The Poole team are so professional friendly and delightful!

    55555 by Barbara M.


  • Barbara M.Hotcakes! Hotcakes! Hotcakes! Yum!! Today's banana peanut but my fav is sweet potato!

    55555 by Barbara M.


  • James B.Mac and cheese

    55555 by James B.


  • Barbara M.The hotcakes, grits, biscuits are delis--but what isn't here? Fabulous team who work here too!:-)

    55555 by Barbara M.


  • Barbara M.The hotcakes are incredible!!

    55555 by Barbara M.


  • Jermaine L.The menu is on the chalkboards. If you have the megapixels, just take a picture with your phone and take it to your table.

    33333 by Jermaine L.


  • Ann-Cabell A.The Mac + Cheese ROCKS - share it with the whole table!

    55555 by Ann-Cabell A.


  • Jenn B.Get the Macaroni Au Gratin! Also the salads look delicious and that may be the best burger I ever ate.

    55555 by Jenn B.


  • Barbara M.Great for Sunday brunch too!

    55555 by Barbara M.


  • Tammy G.Short ribs & Mac n Cheese are money. Bartenders Choice was fun, but if flummoxed, choose the Dark n Stormy!

    55555 by Tammy G.


  • Randall R.A must visit in the Triangle.....

    55555 by Randall R.


  • David B.The mac n cheese and the sunday bloody mary are mouthtastic!

    55555 by David B.


  • Angela H.Pim's Punch..refreshing with a little fizz! Loved it!

    55555 by Angela H.


  • Charlie L.While everything here is beyond incredible, my top choices would have to be the mac and cheese and pimento cheese. The eggs benedict are great for Sunday Brunch!

    55555 by Charlie L.


  • Chris V.I was really impressed with how the olives were worked into the halibut dish. If you're here for more than the mac 'n cheese, give that one try.

    55555 by Chris V.


  • Bryan D.Royal with "Cheese"!

    55555 by Bryan D.


  • Jenna R.Way more than just Mac & Cheese. Try the pâté!

    55555 by Jenna R.


  • Madi G.Sit at the counter and order a bev from two of the best bartenders in Raleigh

    55555 by Madi G.


  • Anthony AMac & Cheese w/ gravy from Royale w/ cheese is the best. Cheesecake is kickass too.

    55555 by Anthony A


  • Laura C.If they have Pimm's cups, get em.

    55555 by Laura C.


  • Christophe C.Royale with Morbier cheese on Brioche....delicious!!!

    55555 by Christophe C.


  • Hello J.The Blueberry Hotcakes are to die for! Come hungry, leave full!!!

    55555 by Hello J.


  • Margret AnneThe rumor about the mac n cheese is true. Best thing I ever ate.

    55555 by Margret Anne


  • K KOutstanding brunch. Pork shoulder sausage gravy with grilled biscuits and sunny side up eggs. Side of mac n cheese. Bloody mary. Amazing

    55555 by K K


  • Carlee M.Nicest hostess in all of Raleigh

    55555 by Carlee M.


  • Corey W.Mac & Cheese is as good as they say!

    55555 by Corey W.


  • Bryan Y.The mac and cheese is on point. If they have a carpaccio on the menu, that's not to be missed either. And there's something sublime about the pimento cheese appetizer.

    55555 by Bryan Y.


  • Jeff A$6 for a half beer and $7 for a side of beans? More expensive than Second Empire per beverage and in a diner. No thanks. Ill wait for the next restaurant she opens up.

    33333 by Jeff A


  • Dee PhunkLocated in downtown Raleigh, this place serves snazzed-up comfort food w/ a pinch of Southern hospitality, grace & style. There are no menus as the options change often via a blackboard on the wall.

    55555 by Dee Phunk


  • Kaoru K.Order dessert and eat it with spork

    33333 by Kaoru K.


  • Liam B.I know this is the south, but get those drink orders sooner!

    33333 by Liam B.


  • Clay B.Sit at the bar and let Luke entertain with his plethora of great stories

    55555 by Clay B.


  • Julianne D.if you go to poole's you gotta order the mac n' cheese and sangria....

    55555 by Julianne D.


  • Kelly M.my fave restaurant

    55555 by Kelly M.


  • DurhamfoodieThe Mac & Cheese is hands down the best EVER!!

    55555 by Durhamfoodie


  • Ashton S.$5 fix your hangover drinks on the weekends. Oh, and they're handmade and delicious.

    55555 by Ashton S.


  • Dennis L.Roasted Chicken with Rosemary...amazing!

    55555 by Dennis L.


  • Stephen JTry the coffee - extremely fresh, and they give you brown sugar. Mac & cheese is also out of this world and comes out sizzling.

    55555 by Stephen J


  • Susan W.Menu always changing, so always worth a visit. Uses local growers as much as they can. Great for brunch, too!

    55555 by Susan W.


  • AlesiaMac and cheese is not to be missed!

    55555 by Alesia


  • Jedidiah ZFullers London Pride on tap is one of the best beers you'll have in DTR.

    55555 by Jedidiah Z


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