Nearby points of interest
Nearby points of interest
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.
Cary, NC 27513
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
$50 and over
AMEX, Carte Blanche, Diners Club, Discover, JCB, MasterCard, Visa
Our sumptuous surroundings are enhanced by live music every day of the week at The Bar and Lounge of The Umstead Hotel and Spa.
Please contact Carrie Cassidy of The Umstead Hotel at 919.447.4131 or at firstname.lastname@example.org for catering in the Hotel Event Space.
Complimentary valet parking for Herons; self-parking available as well.
Steven Devereaux Greene
Private Party Facilities:
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.
Private Party Contact:
Tammie Burdick: (888) 778-7425
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
Herons Ratings and Reviews
This is a beautifully designed dining experience for a romantic evening with a loved one. The ambience is great, with quiet chatter and laughter from the guests. Herons' staff is extremely professional and they know and understand the menu items well. The menu is easy to understand with plenty of varity to the foods that are offered. Unfortunately this is where this restaurant falls short. Unless you are into brand new experiences and tastes that are influenced by different cultures and highly unique flavors, this may not be for you. Each dish has a unique and acquired taste. From the very unique takes on soups, salads, and sushi, to a very uniquely tasting corndog; or even the oddly tasting chocolate treat that was served in between courses, nothing tasted remotely of something I have eaten before. This is a double edged sword because although I have never had rabbit before, this made me not want to try rabbit again. I'm not a fan of cuisine mixed with art and random flavors strung together. I will admit the presentations were above par and out right exquisite, I just wish the food had the taste to match.
I had made reservations for 11.30. Nobody at the desk till 11.25. I know that the restaurant opens for lunch at 11.30. Was somewhat surprised to be told at 11.28 to wait.
Birthday lunch (included that info in me reservation) for my friend who I don't see often. I had made reservations way in advance. Although nobody else was at the restaurant we were shown to an undesirable booth. I asked if we could have the table at the window. OK We were interrupted during our conversation twice by the waitress..menu..are you ready to order?
Service was much better (different staff) during lunch and the food was good.
This is a tricky review to write. On the one hand, Heron's serves the kind of innovative cuisine you rarely find in the triangle. And they do it in the posh, quiet setting in the Umstead Hotel. On the other hand, the service (while polite) was slow. We waited a long time for drinks. We were finished with our lunch for at least ten minutes before anyone bothered to whisk away our plates. My entree (the Carolina trout) was delicious and decadent, just the right size for lunch. My companion, however, ordered a chicken sandwich. The sandwich had the whole chicken breast--fat in the middle, skinny on the ends, so there was no way it could be cooked evenly. The culinary highlight was the strawberry shortcake at the end. The sugared violet made me ridiculously happy, and there was an interesting combination of flavors of textures. In all, it was a lovely 2+ hr lunch that we thoroughly enjoyed and I would go back.
Heron's provides a great dining experience. The dining room was beautiful and the service top-notch. They had a good selection from which to build one's prix fixe. The dishes were beautifully presented and I love the little nibbles they provided between courses.
The only knock I would have ---and only because it's clearly the best and most elegant dining room in the Raleigh area--is that the chef could go for a little simplicity in the food prep. Some of the dishes we had just had too many components to them (as in multiple plates) that it was hard to really appreciate the fine flavors.
But the one thing I have to give the chef credit for: both my husband and I felt like we just consumed a very wholesome, clean meal that was just delicious. We felt full but there was none of the heaviness one feels after a big meal.
Great wine selection, too!
This was a friends birthday and we hadn't seen each other almost 12years and based on previous reviews I selected Herons. This was an amazing evening, from being greeted at the door to the constant attention throughout the evening.
The food was phenomenal and between each dish we were presented with something to sample from the Chef. We had multiple people waiting on us but Lori really made it enjoyable. We even shopped in the hotel gift shop. Will definitely return and highly recommend.
Although our overall experience was really wonderful, I was so very disappointed when we were first seated at 6 p.m. We were celebrating a wedding anniversary and were really anticipating a special dinner at this outstanding restaurant. We were led to what was easily the very worst seat in the house -- near the swinging door of the kitchen which was my husband's only view. Noisy and not at all romantic. I asked for another table but the hostess said 'they were all reserved'. Well, we had reserved ours too, and we were surrounded by other tables which were also set for two with no one seated at them. We had a great server named Lori who generously agreed to let us sit at a table on the terrace after we discovered that was an option. We moved outside and instantly felt like we were finally able to have our celebratory dinner in style. Heron's should just remove the table for two where we were originally seated; there is no option for at least one person at that table to only look into the kitchen the whole evening. Not the ambiance any of us hope for at such a high-quality restaurant.
My husband and I visited for the FIRST time to celebrate our 33rd wedding anniversary. Knew nothing about this restaurant, but two of our daughters booked a room for our anniversary stay. The stay and the restaurant was no other we've ever visited. It was a wonderful experience. My husband is very picky and he wants to go back again just for the chicken and waffles. We loved it and plan to come again. Thank God for my daughters, they don't realize what they've srarted.
The 3 Michelin stars this restaurant has are well deserved. We had an absolute fabulous meal. Very creative and inspiring. The service was to perfection and the ambiance is absolutely delightful. We had our anniversary dinner there and at the end of the meal we received a custom printed card with the menu and the wine choices in a sealed envelope. What a nice touch. Looking very much forward to coming back.
The service was excellent and the ambiance was nice, though we were the only ones in the dining room for Saturday lunch. Portions were small; menu descriptions could have been more informative. (Salad nicoise had tuna on the side.) The desserts, alas, were a disappointment. Juice as amuse bouche tasted soapy.
The service from Scott was impeccable and aligned to the quality of the food and what you'd expect at this price point. Dishes were very creative and the presentation was exquisite. We opted for the lowest option on the menu which was the three course meal. This however amounted to much more tasting items along the way. Three hours passed by quite easily with the three-course menu selection and so one should plan their evening accordingly. We paid about $150 per person for dinner including a cocktail and a glass of wine each. An overall fantastic dining experience that I would recommend to any foodie out there!
Anniversary dinner at Herons. Liked open concept kitchen. Multiple in between courses courtesy of chef- imaginative and artistically presented. Duck perfectly done but side dishes did not lend itself to the meal and felt odd. Steak perfectly done with generous amount of mushrooms. Desserts were deconstructed- strawberry great. Sakura- just ok. Service was polite but odd due to large party in private room/ felt they were hovering over us when in reality were standing waiting to pick up and deliver large group plates. Very happy we made the drive. After dinner, walked around beautiful lake.
We were celebrating my parents 61st anniversary. The evening started with a nice personal note from Herons at my mother's seat. Very nice touch to start the evening. John was our waiter; very knowledgeable about the wine list and dinner menu. I am always thankful when John is my waiter at Herons. He and his team are so professional and friendly. The food was fantastic including the special palate foods in between each course. The food presentations were a show themselves. For example, the oyster dish (second course) had fog over the dish when served. The last presentation was a raspberry food with a chocolate message reading Happy Anniversary. Beautiful evening!!!!
We started our dining experience with drinks on the patio with a lovely view of the lake. Our dining experience was not nrushed by any means. The wait staff addressed us by name and explained everything on the plate as it was served The food was delicious with little surprises inbetween courses. A perfect special occasion experience
Excellent experience overall. Our waiter (Scott) spoke with us about our specific needs and likes before the meal and was very considerate about everything. Our sommelier (also a Scott) was extremely helpful and picked amazing wines to pair with our meal (he made me like some dry wines which I don't normally enjoy). The meal itself was fantastic and had a delightful element of showmanship with each course and delicious "in between course bites" to try something new and different. All in all a great place for a nice get together and I would definitely recommend it.
Most of the menu items were cooked sous vide, which is normally wonderful. Unfortunately the execution showed that the immersion bags were on too tight- you could see where the food was compressed & too firm. The process is meant to "bloom" the food not make it held hostage. The oysters & egg were very good. The service was over the top excellent which is why we didn't send our food back- it would have made them feel bad.
Took my best friend for a birthday brunch. As always, the fresh squeezed orange juice alone was worth the trip and the pancakes were the best in the area. And the highlight of the meal. The chef sent us a gift of fresh pressed blood orange and lychee juices which were a fun treat. The meal was rounded out with fresh fruit and coffee, both great. We love the quiet ambience and courteous service. All of these things keep us coming back. An exceptional experience.
There aren't adequate superlatives to describe our Herons experience. I've dined many places around the U.S., & some in Latin America & Paris, but Herons really stands out as unique & a meal-of-a-lifetime. The service is amazingly fine-tuned & skilled in attentiveness & timeliness, but never hovering. The dining area is beautiful & elegant, & there's a relaxing ambiance. But the food, wow. Every dish is beautifully presented & richly flavored. Most impressive of all, though, nothing we ate was like anything we've had anywhere before. Admittedly, the price is eye-popping. But for the most special of occasions, it's truly worth the money. Which is saying a whole lot for the 2 of us who dined. Cannot recommend highly enough & will cherish the memory.
We moved to the area from Atlanta about 2 years ago and love to dine out. This restaurant is by far the best we've tried. I highly recommend this for anybody who enjoys the experience of dining. If you are just looking for meat and potatoes try Ruth's Chris right around the corner.
It took at least 30 minutes for our food to arrive. I think there was a problem with the kitchen staffing on this day since the chef sent out a complimentary appetizer. It took another 20-30 minutes before we got our appetizers, another 20-30 minutes to get our entrees, another 20-30 minutes to get our coffees. Overall we spent nearly 2.5 hours for lunch to just get appetizers, entrees, coffees and the bill! I don't recommend this restaurant for lunch if you are mindful of time.
Service could be better coordinated among the team servers who aim to please so you don't have to repeat the same requests (e.g., fresh ground pepper, decaf refill vs. regular, sparkling vs. still water).
Food quality is what you'd expect at this type of restaurant.
My husband and I ate at Heron's for his birthday. We had the three course tasting menu and chose the first three courses as our options (dessert always seems like a tease at restaurants like this). We had the dumplings, hamachi, soup, wild boar, and fowl. All were outstanding, with two notes: the soup was a bit sweet (white chocolate took over the lobster) and the wild boar was a little dry. The small samplings between courses were interesting and stunning concepts, and while i can appreciate the "river rocks" I'm afraid I will never develop a taste for foie gras.
The service was outstanding -- shout out to Scott, our server, and to everyone who attended us. It was my husband's birthday, and the note, chocolates, and little details were special but not over stated (please God, thank you for not singing).
The service is what sets any restaurant apart, and the staff at Heron's make it worth every penny.
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