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The Refectory Cafe

2726 Durham Chapel Hill Blvd, Academy Road intersection, Durham, NC 27707-2870
+1 919-908-6798
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  • Excellent65%
  • Very good28%
  • Average6%
  • Poor1%
  • Terrible0%
Travelers talk about
“brunch” (28 reviews)
“kale salad” (16 reviews)
“soups” (17 reviews)
Open Now
Seafood, Healthy, American, Contemporary, Vegan Options, Vegetarian Friendly, Gluten Free Options
₱₱ - ₱₱₱
2726 Durham Chapel Hill Blvd, Academy Road intersection, Durham, NC 27707-2870
All Details
Write a ReviewReviews (218)
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1 - 10 of 217 reviews

Reviewed 4 days ago via mobile

I was looking for a place to take my wife to lunch on a day when we had lots on our minds. Considering the reviews here and elsewhere, this sounded like a destination. So we drove the 35 minutes each way. The food was good,...More

1  Thank DHNC
Laura H, Owner at The Refectory Cafe, responded to this reviewResponded 3 days ago

Thank you DHNC, We have worked very hard to get to #4 and what makes us special is that our team is so friendly and they go out of the way to please people. It is also a labor of love that allows us to...More

Reviewed 4 days ago via mobile

This is a four and a half star review. Five stars are reserved for nirvana experiences. We were spending one night in an unknown town and found this restaurant on Tripadvisor. The menu held several promising items and we were extremely pleased with the food,...More

Thank rhfatula
Reviewed 2 weeks ago

The basics here - tomato soup, BLT, Cobb salad - were better than your average lunch restaurant. Lots of little extras that elevated it - the herbs in soup, the thick and perfectly toasted wheat bread, the simple syrup rather than sugar for iced tea,...More

Thank Michelle M
Laura H, Owner at The Refectory Cafe, responded to this reviewResponded 1 week ago

Hello Michelle, Those "little extras" go a long way! Thank you for noticing all of the tender loving care that goes in to our food and the hospitality that we offer our guests. Our pastry chef, Rosa, is truly phenomenal. The ingredients she uses and...More

Reviewed 4 weeks ago via mobile

The smoked salmon with avacado spread was delicious!! Have eaten here many times, primarily from the breakfast menu even at lunchtime ( breakfast is served late). Potatoes are spicy, which I really like. Staff has always been nice and very helpful. Will be back.

Thank becca83-TN
Laura H, Owner at The Refectory Cafe, responded to this reviewResponded 4 weeks ago

Thank you Becca! We aim to please which why we serve breakfast until 3 pm daily! We love our staff too - they are a great team. Come check us out for dinner! Full service, fine wines, candlelight and casual fine dining. Gratefully, Laura Hall

Reviewed 4 weeks ago

great service; cafe and food as straightforward and simply done as befits a refectory... we shared dal as a starter and delighted in the savory complexity and heartiness of the dish. Mains (tuna, chicken marsala) were similarly done with care and attention to detail, with...More

Thank peripateticjim
Laura H, Owner at The Refectory Cafe, responded to this reviewResponded 4 weeks ago

Hello Jim, "Care and attention to detail" - that is us! Thank you for noticing - love the "beautifully prepared and presented". Our folks work diligently to please everyone that walks through the door at The Refectory Cafe! We are delighted that you shared your...More

Reviewed April 14, 2018 via mobile

We visited for Brunch after finding Fosters it’s usual overwhelmingly crowded self on a Weekend morning. This was a great treat! The food was fresh, environment relaxing, and staff super-friendly. The menu for Vegan/Vegetarian is hard to beat. Would highly recommend!More

Thank MBFNCNative
Laura H, Owner at The Refectory Cafe, responded to this reviewResponded 4 weeks ago

Hello NC Native! We are so glad that you found your way to us and were so pleased with the food and staff! We use as many fresh local and organic or sustainable ingredients as possible and love to make our guests happy! Thank you...More

Reviewed April 14, 2018

With so many options in Durham, it's easy to forget the Refectory Cafe. We ate there a few years ago and I thought it mainly a breakfast and lunch spot. Although we recently returned for Sunday brunch, we noticed the menu had dinner options as...More

1  Thank TarHeel
Reviewed April 8, 2018 via mobile

Delicious dinner with family to celebrate my mom's first visit to Durham. Quality ingredients and great taste, though a tad overpriced. Enjoyed the vegetarian and vegan options. Ambience is relaxed, fresh, and classy - nothing really like it in Durham. Waitstaff was friendly, but there...More

Thank auswes11
Laura H, Owner at The Refectory Cafe, responded to this reviewResponded April 11, 2018

Hello Auswes11, Thank you very much for the review and the suggestions! I am always happy to listen to our customers and hear their recommendations. I agree, there is nothing like us in Durham and I loved your description, "relaxed, fresh & classy". We always...More

Reviewed April 7, 2018

We stopped in for dinner on the spur of the moment while in the area one Friday evening. We were greeted and seated right away at one of the high top tables. Let me tell you..........they were tall! I needed help getting on the chair!...More

Thank Linda B
Laura H, Owner at The Refectory Cafe, responded to this reviewResponded 4 weeks ago

Hello Linda! Yes, the tall tops are just that! :-) You will be happy to know that the chips are ours! They are a mix of sweet and white local potatoes and are cut fresh daily. NC is the largest producer of sweet potatoes in...More

Reviewed April 2, 2018

One of the best brunch spots in Durham, Refectory is consistently delicious. Yummy sandwiches are a good value, and the huevos rancheros are fantastic. Staff has always been friendly and it's usually less crowded than Foster's down the road.More

Thank Bluedevilfoodie
Laura H, Owner at The Refectory Cafe, responded to this reviewResponded April 3, 2018

Thank you Bluedevilfoodie! "Hidden Gem" - Wow!! :-) "Yummy", "friendly" and "fantastic" AND 5-STARS. We could not ask for better accolades. Thank you on behalf of the entire team - this review will make their day and of course inspire us all to always do...More

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Ask a question
Questions & Answers
4 August 2017|
AnswerShow all 7 answers
Response from achef | Reviewed this property |
Yes you need to make reservations for dinner and I have no idea about calories.
Angela U
4 March 2016|
Response from Laura H | Property representative |
Hello, We are one mile from Duke's Main (West) Campus. You can download all of our menus from the website which you may click to from Tripadvisor. We are not able to attach the link to this response. Dinner is... More
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Restaurant Details

Rating summary
  • Food
  • Value
Average prices
US$5 - US$29
Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner, Brunch
Restaurant features
Takeout, Reservations, Outdoor Seating, Seating, Waitstaff, Parking Available, Free Off-Street Parking, Highchairs Available, Wheelchair Accessible, Serves Alcohol, Full Bar, Accepts American Express, Accepts Mastercard, Accepts Visa, Free Wifi, Accepts Discover, Street Parking, Wine and Beer, Accepts Credit Cards
Good for
Families with children, Kids, Large groups, Local cuisine, Special occasions
Open Hours
9:00 AM - 3:00 PM
8:00 AM - 9:00 PM
8:00 AM - 9:00 PM
8:00 AM - 9:00 PM
8:00 AM - 9:00 PM
8:00 AM - 9:00 PM
9:00 AM - 3:00 PM
5:00 PM - 9:00 PM
Location and Contact Information
  • Address: 2726 Durham Chapel Hill Blvd, Academy Road intersection, Durham, NC 27707-2870
  • Location: United States  >  North Carolina (NC)  >  Durham
  • Phone Number: +1 919-908-6798
  • E-mail
"Slow Food, Fast", this award Winning, local family owned, restaurant is focused on Hot, healthy, homemade & Local fare. The Refectory Cafe® was Duke University's first "Green Cafe" established in 2005, it won best food on campus 7 Years in a row and Duke University's Environmental Leadership Award four times. The Refectory Cafe "on the Boulevard" opened September 2012 and continues the tradition of great homemade soups, fresh local produce, eggs, local line-caught fish, local grass-fed beef, chicken and simply amazing desserts. Vegan, vegetarian, Gluten Free, Raw or Plant Based The Refectory Cafe caters to all dietary preferences. Award winning VEGAN, GF DAL, Chili and soups; delicious panini on locally made bread; "breakfast of champions" with amazing grits, local eggs, biscuits, Tofu scrambles, baked oatmeal, local sausage and more; Delicious Dinners of Chicken Marsala, Surf & Turf, Lobster, Linguine with clams, Crabcakes, Slow-cooked short ribs, Blackened or Grilled Salmon, Vegan GF Tempeh, Indian DAL, soups, salads & more. Full bar, craft cocktails, martinis, fine wines and local beer with Table Service Evenings 5pm-9pm. Monday through Saturday. Excellent seafood, steaks, soups, salads, vegan & vegetarian fare. The award winning desserts are created on site and are simply fabulous! Reservations encouraged and available on-line.
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