About Herons

100 Woodland Pond Drive
Cary, NC 27513
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Noted by Condé Nast Traveler as a "culinary gem," The Umstead Hotel and Spa's signature restaurant Herons features the refined American cooking of Executive Chef Steven D. Greene and Chef de Cuisine Spencer Thomson. With an extensive wine list spanning over 1,500 selections and 10,000 bottles, one is sure to find the perfect complement to their sophisticated dining experience. Guests will enjoy the elegant setting and exquisite art collection indoors as well as dining on the terrace, with panoramic views of the lake. The Umstead’s Bar is also available to local diners and hotel guests for a more casual experience. Herons, a Forbes Five-Star and AAA Five Diamond Restaurant, serves breakfast and lunch daily, weekend brunch and dinner Monday - Saturday.

Dining Style:
Fine Dining

Cuisines:
American

Hours of Operation:
Breakfast: Monday - Friday: 6:30am - 10:00am

Brunch: Saturday and Sunday: 7:00am - 1:00pm

Lunch: Monday - Friday: 11:30am - 2:00pm

Dinner: Monday - Thrursday: 5:30pm - 9:00pm
Friday-Saturday: 5:30pm - 10:00pm

Afternoon Tea: Wednesday - Sunday: 2:30 pm - 4:00 pm by reservation only

Cross Street:
Harrison Avenue

Dress Code:
Business Casual

Price Range:
$50 and over

Payment Options
AMEX, Carte Blanche, Diners Club, Discover, JCB, MasterCard, Visa

Phone Number:
(919) 447-4200

Website:
http://www.theumstead.com/

Entertainment:
Our sumptuous surroundings are enhanced by live music every day of the week at The Bar and Lounge of The Umstead Hotel and Spa.

Catering:
Please contact Carrie Cassidy of The Umstead Hotel at 919.447.4131 or at carrie.cassidy@theumstead.com for catering in the Hotel Event Space.

Parking Details:
Complimentary valet parking for Herons; self-parking available as well.

Executive Chef:
Steven Devereaux Greene

Additional:
Bar Dining, Bar/Lounge, Beer, Entertainment, Farm to Table, Full Bar, Gluten-free Menu, Non-Smoking, Outdoor dining, Private Room, View, Weekend Brunch, Wheelchair Access, Wine

Private Dining

Herons private dining room for 9-12 guests provides the stage for extensive food and wine-paired tasting menus. Executive Chef Steven Devereaux Greene will both indulge and delight you during your dining experience. Reservations are required.

Herons Ratings and Reviews

5
4
3
2
1

4.7

Overall Rating

based on recent ratings
food

4.6

service

4.8

ambience

4.8

value

4.1

noise

Moderate

96% would recommend it to a friend

Romantic (36)
Special Occasion (35)
Creative Cuisine (34)
See All
Quiet Conversation (31)
Good for a Date (31)
Good for Anniversaries (29)
Fit for Foodies (27)
Modern Decor (19)
Local Ingredients (18)
Good for Birthdays (17)
Worth the Drive (16)
Business Meals (14)
Notable Wine List (14)
Cozy (11)
Sunday Lunch (10)
Great for Brunch (10)
Scenic View (10)
Afternoon Tea (9)
Great for Lunch (9)
Neighborhood Gem (7)
Tasting Menu (7)
Seasonal (7)
Open Kitchen (6)
Good Vegetarian Options (6)
Private Room (6)
Handcrafted Cocktails (6)
Healthy (5)
Authentic (5)
Fun (4)
Good for Groups (4)
Disabled Access (3)
Pre/post Theatre (3)
Molecular Gastronomy (3)
Outstanding Value (3)
Gluten Free Options (3)
Afternoon Coffee (2)
Bar Seating (2)
Live Music (2)
Great for Outdoor Dining (2)
Fireplace (2)
Casual (2)
Wood Oven (1)
Organic (1)
Tapas (1)
People Watching (1)
Hot Spot (1)
Happy Hour (1)
Waterfront (1)
Vibrant Bar Scene (1)
Comfort Food (1)
Dining Occasion:
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Best $300 you'll ever spend on a date. ...

 
 (Raleigh)·Dined 6 days ago

Best $300 you'll ever spend on a date. Totally over the top, without being pretentious.

Tags: Notable Wine List, Quiet Conversation, Modern Decor, Worth the Drive, Romantic, Creative Cuisine, Good for a Date
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food5
ambience4
service5
value3

Outstanding restaurant. Great food with ...

 
 (Raleigh)·Dined on February 12, 2017

Outstanding restaurant. Great food with an amazing atmosphere. Service was the greatest. Pricey, but well worth it.

Tags: Cozy, Tasting Menu, Creative Cuisine, Good for Anniversaries, Handcrafted Cocktails, Romantic, Good for a Date, Special Occasion, Quiet Conversation, Comfort Food
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food5
ambience5
service5
value4

We spent our anniversary and Herons made ...

 
 (Raleigh)·Dined on February 7, 2017

We spent our anniversary and Herons made it special with little surprises and wonderful food and service.

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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

My wife and I celebrated our anniversary ...

 
 (Raleigh)·Dined on February 4, 2017

My wife and I celebrated our anniversary at Heron's. From the very beginning, where we were greeted by name, to the very end, this was an incredible experience. Expensive - yes. But for a special occasion, it was worth the expense. From the attentiveness of the wait staff, to the presentation of each course, to the quality of the food, to the personalized extras designed especially for our anniversary, Heron's earned their 5-star rating!

Tags: Good for a Date
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

Herons lives up to its reputation as a d ...

 
 (Raleigh)·Dined on January 29, 2017

Herons lives up to its reputation as a destination for exquisite dining in the Triangle.

From the complimentary valet parking and coat check ... to the amuse-bouche provided compliments of the chef ... to the impeccably professional and courteous staff, we were thoroughly impressed. We will be back, and with an even larger group if the occasion fits.

Pro tips: DO make a reservation.

DO call if you are running late.

DO remember to tip your valet.

Tags: Quiet Conversation, Modern Decor, Good for a Date, Great for Brunch, Seasonal, Romantic, Fit for Foodies, Creative Cuisine, Special Occasion, Business Meals, Scenic View, Open Kitchen
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

Quite expensive for the taste of the foo ...

 
 (Raleigh)·Dined on January 28, 2017

Quite expensive for the taste of the food. Too simple and something we can do at home but then expensive:

Tags: Sunday Lunch
1 person found this review helpful.
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food3
ambience4
service5
value2

Food, service, atmosphere were excellent ...

 
 (Charlotte)·Dined on January 22, 2017

Food, service, atmosphere were excellent! We were at the Umstead Hotel for a birthday weekend. Very lovely experience.

Tags: Fit for Foodies, Romantic
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

Fabulous birthday brunch! First time di ...

 
 (Raleigh)·Dined on January 21, 2017

Fabulous birthday brunch! First time dining and we loved it!

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food5
ambience5
service5
value4

My wife and I just had one of the best m ...

vip
 (Raleigh)·Dined on January 18, 2017

My wife and I just had one of the best meals of our lives, I couldn't believe this is the first time we have dined here since moving to Raleigh. We have tried all the top restaurants and this far exceeds the rest around.

Tags: Molecular Gastronomy, Quiet Conversation, , Local Ingredients, Seasonal, Fit for Foodies, Creative Cuisine, Tasting Menu, Open Kitchen, Scenic View, Private Room, Modern Decor, Handcrafted Cocktails
1 person found this review helpful.
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

I took my wife out for a romantic birthd ...

 
 (Hawaii)·Dined on January 18, 2017

I took my wife out for a romantic birthday dinner. We ordered the 8 course kaiseki. The portions are very small, but each one was plated beautifully. There were some interesting dishes. Not sure what they're exactly called but chocolate rocks seemed to be a recurring theme in many of the dishes that evening. Ambiance and service were excellent. I absolutely recommend it, under a few conditions.

First condition is the price. It is a bit expensive, but with establishments like these, you're not only paying for the food, but for the creativity and entertainment value in how its presented. I can't confirm because I've only been here once (so I haven't actually seen the physical menu items served), but as far as I could tell, we were served some dishes that already existed on the menu. I believe a chef-selected menu (the kaiseki) should have distinct items not already on the menu. It may just be our personal preference to try something that is definitely unique, otherwise not a big deal.

Second condition though, the taste. It's what you'd expect from a high-end restaurant, but no more than that. If you were blindfolded, the value is not worth it, as the experience was more in the beauty of the food's aesthetics. The taste definitely did not detract from the experience, but it should not be a main focus of dining here. Many dishes did not feel "in sync", as in there were flavors that did not feel well balanced. They were not dishes that made you agonize over the small portions.

Except the parker roll and the truffle butter. Those were amazing.

Tags: Good for a Date, Creative Cuisine, Fun, Good Vegetarian Options, Romantic, Special Occasion, Good for Birthdays, Good for Anniversaries
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food3
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My wife and I celebrated our first year ...

 
 (Raleigh)·Dined on January 16, 2017

My wife and I celebrated our first year of marriage here. The experience and service was outstanding. The food was delicious and beautifully presented. I am glad we chose Herons to help us celebrate.

Tags: Romantic, Notable Wine List
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food5
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service5
value4

We have found that Heron's has become ra ...

vip
 (Raleigh)·Dined on January 16, 2017

We have found that Heron's has become rather too chic. The food is beautifully plated and described, but the flavors leave something to be desired. It is very expensive, but you pay for that wonderful service and atmosphere . Not the place to go to get good value for your money.

Tags: Good for Anniversaries, Fit for Foodies, Romantic, Disabled Access
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food3
ambience4
service5
value3

We had a perfect lunch get together with ...

 
 (Raleigh)·Dined on January 16, 2017

We had a perfect lunch get together with family and friends. We enjoyed the art on display very much. The food was perfect!

Tags: Modern Decor, Afternoon Tea
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

Spectacular! Food was some of the best ...

 
 (Houston)·Dined on January 12, 2017

Spectacular! Food was some of the best I have ever had. Very artistic presentations.

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food5
ambience5
service5
value4

Beautiful ambience with excellent custom ...

 
 (Orange County)·Dined on January 12, 2017

Beautiful ambience with excellent customer service and delicious food! Top notch!!

Tags: Healthy, Afternoon Tea, Handcrafted Cocktails, Quiet Conversation, Good for a Date, Sunday Lunch, Hot Spot
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

Been around the world and the entire exp ...

 
 (Raleigh)·Dined on January 3, 2017

Been around the world and the entire experience was exceptional in every way!!

I would compare it to the best I have experienced.

Tags: Quiet Conversation, Local Ingredients, Good for a Date, Notable Wine List, Seasonal, Good for Anniversaries, Fit for Foodies, Good Vegetarian Options, Creative Cuisine, Special Occasion
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

As usual, the food was very good, the se ...

vip
 (Raleigh)·Dined on January 1, 2017

As usual, the food was very good, the service was very good and I enjoyed the dining experience.

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food5
ambience5
service4
value4

Excellent meal and excellent service! V ...

 
 (Raleigh)·Dined on January 1, 2017

Excellent meal and excellent service! Very beautiful and peaceful location.

Tags: Creative Cuisine, Scenic View, Cozy, Modern Decor, People Watching, Great for Brunch
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food5
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service5
value5

The food and service are excellent, but ...

vip
 (Raleigh)·Dined on December 30, 2016

The food and service are excellent, but it's pretentious to the point of almost being ridiculous. We've been coming to The Umstead and Heron's for years, and I appreciate the "foodie" element as much as the next person, as well as the difficulty in the preparation of the food, but it seems to get more "stuffy" and feel less warm every year. It's almost as if you're watching a comical spoof of an uptight restaurant. After awhile, it was almost laughable. I see why the bar was so crowded and Heron's was not. We'll follow suit and eat in the bar area next time.

Tags: Modern Decor, Quiet Conversation, Local Ingredients, Tasting Menu
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food4
ambience4
service5
value3

Our request for a nice view was met. We ...

 
 (Raleigh)·Dined on December 28, 2016

Our request for a nice view was met. We liked all the little extras and the presentation of the food.

Tags: Worth the Drive, Creative Cuisine
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food5
ambience4
service5
value4

I wanted to lunch with my daughter and g ...

 
 (Raleigh)·Dined on December 27, 2016

I wanted to lunch with my daughter and granddaughters somewhere where we could hear each other in conversation and enjoy the dish of our choice. The service and ambiance is important to me. We had a very good experience at Heron's. The others enjoyed their selections. I ordered a Cobb Salad and was disappointed - a head of lettuce cut in half with a few additions. Too much for me to "grapple" with at lunch. I prefer bite size pieces in my Cobb Salad.

Tags: Afternoon Tea, Disabled Access, Local Ingredients, Neighborhood Gem, Special Occasion, Sunday Lunch, Healthy, Great for Brunch, Scenic View, Great for Lunch
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food4
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value4

Perfect lunch in a quiet spot - amazing ...

 
 (Raleigh)·Dined on December 27, 2016

Perfect lunch in a quiet spot - amazing service as always - love the smoothie sample!!

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food5
ambience5
service5

This restaurant is not for the meat and ...

 
 (Western NC)·Dined on December 23, 2016

This restaurant is not for the meat and potatoes eater. It is the most creative eating experience ever! Beautifully presented dishes with the most attention to detail I've experienced. Each dish is a work of art...

Tags: Good for a Date, Special Occasion, Fit for Foodies, Seasonal, Notable Wine List, Creative Cuisine, Tasting Menu, Molecular Gastronomy
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

Perfection. The food, meal presentation ...

 
 (Raleigh)·Dined on December 22, 2016

Perfection. The food, meal presentation, staff attentiveness, and atmosphere were in concert. No pretentiousness. The wild boar exceeded all expections. The beautiful desserts were smile worthy.

The selections performed by the pianist in the adjacent lounge were misfit for the ovaerall experience. The gentrified arrangements of pop and classic rock tunes were esthetically subpar.

Tags: Scenic View, Romantic, Creative Cuisine, Local Ingredients
1 person found this review helpful.
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

Unique and awesome display of foods and ...

 
 (Raleigh)·Dined on December 19, 2016

Unique and awesome display of foods and the ambience and service are outstanding as well. I am never disappointment when I leave Heron's. Epic experience!!

LisaS

Tags: Authentic, Tasting Menu, Business Meals, Great for Lunch, Great for Brunch, Notable Wine List, Molecular Gastronomy, Sunday Lunch
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food5
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value4

Simply the very best. Chef Stephen Green ...

 
 (Raleigh)·Dined on December 18, 2016

Simply the very best. Chef Stephen Greene and staff create an exquisite dining experience that shines brightly in the heaven of culinary creation. To dine with Chef Greene is a treat beyond compare and an opportunity not to be missed!

Tags: Romantic, Cozy, Special Occasion, Local Ingredients, Quiet Conversation, Gluten Free Options, Fun, Modern Decor, Healthy, Worth the Drive, Good for a Date, Neighborhood Gem, Creative Cuisine
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

Enjoyed the evening. Presentation was o ...

 
 (Raleigh)·Dined on December 17, 2016

Enjoyed the evening. Presentation was outstanding; food better than average.

Tags: Quiet Conversation, Special Occasion, Modern Decor, Romantic, Good for Anniversaries, Creative Cuisine, Good for Birthdays
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food4
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service5
value4

Herons is one of the best dining experie ...

 
 (Washington DC)·Dined on December 16, 2016

Herons is one of the best dining experiences I have had. It is expensive but for a special occasion worth it. If you want a food presentation experience save your $ and blow it here.

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food5
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service5
value5

It was a very relaxing lunch. My choices ...

 
 (Raleigh)·Dined on December 14, 2016

It was a very relaxing lunch. My choices were very good. I over spent my budget for lunch today. The salmon was very good. It might have been cooked a little too long for the chef. Enjoyed the company.

Tags: Private Room, Special Occasion, Quiet Conversation, Authentic, Good for Anniversaries
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food4
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service3
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The choices on the lunch menu weren't ve ...

 
 (Raleigh)·Dined on December 12, 2016

The choices on the lunch menu weren't very good. I had a mushroom omelette which i couldn't finish because it was so rich and it was expensive. The small potatoes on the side were way too salty so couldnt eat them. I've eaten here before and always great, but this time it just wasn't up too standards. It will be awhile before I return.

Tags: Romantic, Good for a Date
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food3
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service3
value2

The service was extremely slow. Not a gr ...

vip
 (Baltimore)·Dined on December 10, 2016

The service was extremely slow. Not a great deal of attention to details, such as replacing the butter dish or serving bread in a timely manner.

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food4
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service3
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Herons never disappoints! Great for ever ...

 
 (Raleigh)·Dined on December 10, 2016

Herons never disappoints! Great for everyday or special occasion.

Tags: Fit for Foodies, Romantic, Special Occasion
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food5
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service5
value5

The food and service was what you would ...

 
 (Raleigh)·Dined on December 4, 2016

The food and service was what you would expect from a 5 star hotel and restaurant. The food was amazing and the service was exceptional. Would highly recommend.

Tags: Romantic, Good for Anniversaries, Sunday Lunch, Business Meals
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food5
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Did the three course dinners. In the agg ...

vip
 (Raleigh)·Dined on December 4, 2016

Did the three course dinners. In the aggregate just too complicated, too many things going on, and amount a little thin.

Tags: Local Ingredients, Tasting Menu
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food4
ambience4
service5
value3

Best dinner ever. My friends and I opt f ...

 
 (Raleigh)·Dined on December 4, 2016

Best dinner ever. My friends and I opt for the kaiseki, 8-course experience for my birthday. The whole night experience, I think it is certainly worth the money. I really want to tell every single detail how amazing everything was, but I do not want to spoil the experience for you all upcoming diners. If you are planning the to do the 8-course, stop reading reviews now and be amazed of everything. Chef Greene stopped by our table just to make sure everything was great. Our server, Rich, was really friendly, accomodating, and professional. The whole 8-course does take a while so do prepare to be there for a few hours. We took a little 10-15 minutes break as we were walking around to make room for the last few courses, they didn't seem to mind, and it means a lot because I know that means they have to adjust the timing on serving us the next course. The food itself, you will get to enjoy a diverse selection of food from something delicate to full body, so this is perfect for a person like me who basically wants everything on the menu. My favorites were the oyster, turbot, and cocoa, which are also offered if you opt for 3 or 4 course menu. Presentation is just out of this world where from the details of plating the food to the the staff when they are presenting the meal to us. Everyone really paid attention to details and if you can't already tell, overall I'm just really impressed. I wish to be back very soon!

Tips: We were seated near the kitchen and the traffic flow was heavy combined with the bright kitchen. I would definitely request to seat a little further from the kitchen/kitchen way, toward the middle area of the restaurant, where you can kinda see where the magic happens, but also to be secluded when you wanted to.

Tags: Good for Anniversaries, Modern Decor, Romantic, Good for a Date
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

Amazing service and experience. Very lu ...

vip
 (Raleigh)·Dined on December 3, 2016

Amazing service and experience. Very luxurious

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food5
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service5

We enjoyed the creative menu, elegant at ...

 
 (Raleigh)·Dined on December 2, 2016

We enjoyed the creative menu, elegant atmosphere and attentive service for our anniversary. Memorable!

Tags: Seasonal, Fun, Fireplace, Special Occasion, Local Ingredients, Modern Decor, Quiet Conversation, Notable Wine List, Good for a Date, Creative Cuisine
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food5
ambience5
service5
value4

Food was great, service was exceptional ...

 
 (Raleigh)·Dined on November 30, 2016

Food was great, service was exceptional and the ambiance was unparalleled. We have celebrated six consecutive wedding anniversaries at the Herons but did not mention celebrating our anniversary when we made the reservation. So we were floored when the Maitre d' first words out his mouth were "Congratulations on your 47th wedding anniversary. Welcome back Mr & Mrs......... ". In addition it seemed the entire restaurant serving staff stopped by our table to congratulate us throughout the evening. Herons is a very classy fine dining restaurant.

Tags: Good for Birthdays, Good for Anniversaries, Special Occasion, Creative Cuisine
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food4
ambience5
service5
value4

Our 24th anniversary dinner could not ha ...

 
 (Raleigh)·Dined on November 28, 2016

Our 24th anniversary dinner could not have been better. In fact, we both agree that this dining experience was the most exquisite of our lives. The food was prepared and presented to perfection and at an equally perfect pace...they just didn't hiccup on anything all night. Our waiter was extremely well spoken with a demeanor commensurate with the highest expectations of a fine dining establishment. He was accommodating, knowledgeable, and attentive to the uniqueness of US as a couple out on a special night. The ambiance was elegant, formal, and a pure delight. We plan to come back for the Kaiseki dining experience where we'll linger a while in Herons good hands, and see if they could possibly top themselves.

Tags: Local Ingredients, Fit for Foodies, Special Occasion, Creative Cuisine, Notable Wine List, Authentic, Open Kitchen, Good for a Date, Good for Anniversaries, Good Vegetarian Options, Quiet Conversation, Neighborhood Gem, Romantic, Worth the Drive, Seasonal, Fun
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

I found the food to be mediocre. I had ...

 
 (New England)·Dined on November 27, 2016

I found the food to be mediocre. I had eggs benedict with crab. The English Muffin was greasy and not tender. The eggs were way underdone. The crab cake was good, the pork belly was terrible.

Starter of donuts was excellent. Juice was not fresh as described by the waitstaff when asked.

Tags: Romantic
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food3
ambience5
service4
value4

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