WRIGHTSVILLE BEACH — Topsail Steamer, which has been slinging custom buckets of raw seafood and veggies fit for Lowcountry boils since 2016 on Topsail Island in Surf City, is expanding to Wrightsville Beach at 530 Causeway Dr. Owner Danielle Mahon, who first arrived in the area seeking a coastal getaway in 2003, coordinates signature and customizable combinations of homemade spices in Bay Buckets, paired with instructions for at-home boiling. Seafood offerings include snow crab, shrimp, clams and scallops. Corn on the cob and potatoes will also be available.
WILMINGTON — Just in time for mid-summer sips comes the sister concept of wine and small bites bar The Fortunate Glass. The original wine spot is already known for pouring wines from diverse regions, with more than 50 wines by the glass and nearly 350 wines by the bottle, frequent free tastings and offerings of global cheeses, truffled mushroom pizza and country paella with duck, among other small plates. When owner Celeste Glass brings The Second Glass to the ground-floor level of Wilmington’s South Front development, guests can expect a larger kitchen and expanded menu.
WILMINGTON — Also in the South Front area, locals may soon catch whiffs of fresh bread baking in the historic cottage that sits at the corner of Third and Greenfield streets. This summer, PinPoint Restaurant pastry chef Lydia Clopton is opening her coffee shop and bakery, sweetly called Love, Lydia, with breads, fruit tarts, big cookies and, of course, coffee. Clopton, who has worked at Hugh Acheson’s restaurant 5&10 in Athens, Ga., as well as Katie Button’s Nightbell in Asheville, will also bring breakfast and brunch service to the table, with sandwiches, croissants and vegetarian options.
CARY — Cary residents can soon expect to bite into a slice from Pizza La Stella, with the same menu loved at its original downtown Raleigh location (meanwhile, sister concept La Stella Wood Fired has closed on Hillsborough Street to make way for the move). The pizza spot will open at 1389 Kildaire Farm Road by mid-August with Neapolitan-style pizzas crisped in ovens from Naples and bubbling with mozzarella di bufala from Campania, San Marzano tomatoes and other ingredients imported from Italy. The wings, mac and cheese, and sandwiches -- not to mention the cocktail list -- are not to be overlooked, either. A third location is in the works for North Raleigh as well.
KNIGHTDALE — Pitmaster Chris Prieto will start smoking pork on the next leg of his journey to uncover the soul of barbecue at his new concept. From the pits at Prime Barbecue in Knightdale (close to Knightdale Station Park), customers will find whole hog and beef brisket, as well as spare, beef and baby back ribs sold by the pound and offered up on trays with parchment paper. The best part: He’ll be manning the pits right in the middle of the dining area to show off his style — a blend of Texas, North Carolina, and Kansas City flavors.