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The Refectory Cafe

"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
US$5 - US$29
Special Diets
Vegan Options, Vegetarian Friendly, Gluten Free Options
Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner, Brunch
Seafood, Healthy, American, Contemporary
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
Reviews (261)
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All reviews brunch kale salad soups cucumber water strawberry rhubarb pie vegetarian chili huevos rancheros spaghetti potatoes scallops cake biscuits healthy food free desserts vegan options casual atmosphere order at the counter
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51 - 60 of 260 reviews
Reviewed 7 April 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

Date of visit: March 2018
Thank auswes11
Laura H, Owner at The Refectory Cafe, responded to this reviewResponded 10 April 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 6 April 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

Date of visit: April 2018
Thank LMMB3420
Laura H, Owner at The Refectory Cafe, responded to this reviewResponded 17 April 2018

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 2 April 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

Date of visit: March 2018
Thank Bluedevilfoodie
Laura H, Owner at The Refectory Cafe, responded to this reviewResponded 3 April 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

Reviewed 15 March 2018

We had a wonderful dinner experience at The Refectory Cafe. I have trouble eating at restaurants because of dietary restrictions for health reasons. When I read the review and menu for this restaurant, it looked like a good choice for us: I could get my...More

Date of visit: March 2018
1  Thank Kathleen C
Laura H, Owner at The Refectory Cafe, responded to this reviewResponded 18 March 2018

Thank you Kathleen & Bill! I enjoyed meeting you both and we were happy to accommodate your dietary requests! The Chili is, in fact, Vegan - and it won the best chili in Durham (over the meat guys! Not best Vegan chili - best Chili!)....More

Reviewed 5 March 2018

On my frequent trips to visit family in Durham, I always make many stops at Refectory Cafe. Whether it be for breakfast, lunch or dinner, they never disappoint! The staff is super friendly and the food is excellent and affordable. Perfect for family get togethers...More

Date of visit: December 2017
Thank Linda F
Laura H, Owner at The Refectory Cafe, responded to this reviewResponded 7 March 2018

Hello Linda, "Always, Every day, never disappoint, super friendly" - WOW! Thank you for recognizing our hard working team and the fabulous job that they do! We love our cafe and especially love folks like you that visit us regularly and LOVE our place. Thank...More

Reviewed 3 March 2018 via mobile

My wife and I had an early dinner at Rectory. It was my first visit. There is an interesting menu with a wide range of types of food (Indian dal, shrimp tempura, several meats). I found the good and interesting. Prices for some items are...More

Date of visit: February 2018
Thank jayl405
Reviewed 25 February 2018

This is a really great find. Was ready for a fresh take on brunch, this fit the bill. All 3 of us had great breakfasts, and we all want to return for other meals, baked goods, and more brunches. Great outdoor seating for warmer weather....More

Date of visit: February 2018
Thank h2ochild
Laura H, Owner at The Refectory Cafe, responded to this reviewResponded 27 February 2018

Hello h2o! Delighted that your party was so pleased with their brunch! "Great" is what we strive for every day and we love the patio also. We are grateful to have such an amazing "personable friendly staff" and "good healthy food". We look forward to...More

Reviewed 11 February 2018

I took a large neighborhood dining out group there for dinner a few weeks ago (about 14). Thought they did a great job of taking our orders and serving everyone's food in a timely manner. The server was well-versed on the menu and was able...More

Date of visit: January 2018
Thank sushiblues
Laura H, Owner at The Refectory Cafe, responded to this reviewResponded 13 February 2018

Hello Sushiblues, Fantastic review!! Thank you for taking the time to share your experience. Yes this "cafe" absolutely transforms into a beautiful casual fine dining restaurant in the evenings. The candlelight, flowers, music and lighting - as well as the amazing food & full service...More

Reviewed 8 February 2018 via mobile

I had no idea this restaurant was going to be this incredible. I am a foodie. I know really good food. I wasn’t even exactly thinking about the dinner because I was there slightly on a business-related matter. I have been to every single restaurant...More

Date of visit: February 2018
Thank Alex D
Laura H, Owner at The Refectory Cafe, responded to this reviewResponded 9 February 2018

OMG Alex, What an amazing review and you have inspired the entire team to keep trying to do more! I love our food and our customers. Dinner is just an amazing interesting treat that gives everyone and every diet something really special to try (definitely...More

Reviewed 27 January 2018

We love this place! The food is amazing -- there so many delicious vegan, vegetarian, and gluten free options (especially the desserts, SO GOOD). This is our go-to brunch spot (honestly it's so much better than the nearby options!!) but the dinner is wonderful too....More

Date of visit: January 2018
1  Thank Cand10000
Laura H, Owner at The Refectory Cafe, responded to this reviewResponded 8 February 2018

Wow C&10000 - we have heard that comment, "most underrated" often! Thank you. Thank you for "we love this place" - I used your comments in our weekly email. On behalf of the entire team we love the "exuberance" of your comments. We love it...More

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Questions & Answers
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3 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
3 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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