Nearby points of interest

  1. Distance: 1.43mi
  2. Distance: 2.19mi
  3. Distance: 3.27mi
  4. Distance: 3.52mi
  1. Distance: 1.43mi
  2. Distance: 2.19mi
  3. Distance: 3.27mi
  4. Distance: 3.52mi

Nearby points of interest

  1. Distance: 1.43mi
  2. Distance: 2.19mi
  3. Distance: 3.27mi
  4. Distance: 3.52mi
  1. Distance: 1.43mi
  2. Distance: 2.19mi
  3. Distance: 3.27mi
  4. Distance: 3.52mi

About Cafe Rule & Wine Bar

Located in the beautiful foothills of Hickory, North Carolina, Cafe Rule & Wine Bar is an upscale restaurant where you can experience the fine dining that our quaint town has to offer in a relaxed and refreshingly casual setting.
Fresh, sensational flavors and exquisite wine pairings are yours to enjoy as your palette is spoiled by our culinary team. There is simply no comparison to the array of dishes, the extensive wine selection or the fabulous ambiance that Cafe Rule invites you to savor. We offer a private dining room and seating for parties, business meetings and special events (up to 35), as well as an inviting outdoor patio with fountains, sculptures and beautifully manicured gardens.

242 11th Avenue NE
Hickory, NC 28601
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Dining Style:
Casual Elegant

Cuisines:
Contemporary Southern, Fusion / Eclectic, American

Hours of Operation:
Lunch: Tuesday - Friday: 11:30am - 2:00pm; Dinner: Monday - Thursday: 5:00pm - 10:00pm, Friday - Saturday: 5:00pm - 10:30pm; Sunday Brunch: 11 am - 2 pm

Cross Street:
HWY 127

Dress Code:
Business Casual

Price Range:
$30 and under

Payment Options
AMEX, Discover, MasterCard, Visa

Phone Number:
(828) 324-2005

Website:
http://www.caferule.com/

Entertainment:
please check www.CafeRule.com for details.

Parking Details:
Self park

Additional:
Banquet, Bar Dining, Bar/Lounge, Beer, BYO Wine, Cocktails, Corkage Fee, Dancing, Entertainment, Fireplace, Full Bar, Gluten-free Menu, High Tea, Non-Smoking, Outdoor dining, Private Room, Weekend Brunch, Wheelchair Access, Wine

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Cafe Rule & Wine Bar Ratings and Reviews

5
4
3
2
1

4.6

Overall Rating

based on recent ratings
food

4.5

service

4.6

ambience

4.7

value

4.1

noise

Moderate

89% would recommend it to a friend

Special Occasion (31)
Notable Wine List (29)
Great for Outdoor Dining (26)
See All
Good for Anniversaries (25)
Good for a Date (24)
Neighborhood Gem (24)
Romantic (22)
Good for Groups (20)
Creative Cuisine (20)
Worth the Drive (19)
Good for Birthdays (18)
Fit for Foodies (17)
Handcrafted Cocktails (16)
Cozy (16)
Business Meals (16)
Quiet Conversation (15)
Local Ingredients (15)
Casual (15)
Bar Seating (15)
Great for Brunch (14)
Fun (14)
Comfort Food (14)
Pre/post Theatre (13)
Healthy (12)
Authentic (12)
Great for Lunch (12)
Live Music (11)
Gluten Free Options (10)
Organic (10)
Sunday Lunch (10)
Happy Hour (9)
Hot Spot (9)
Seasonal (9)
Modern Decor (8)
Vibrant Bar Scene (7)
Disabled Access (7)
Tasting Menu (7)
Fireplace (6)
Good Vegetarian Options (6)
Private Room (6)
Tapas (5)
People Watching (5)
Wood Oven (4)
Family Style (3)
Vegan (3)
Great Beer (3)
Kid-friendly (2)
Paleo Friendly (2)
Scenic View (2)
Late-night Find (2)
Spicy (1)
Quick Bite (1)
Afternoon Coffee (1)
Dancing (1)
Live Sports (1)
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458 reviews
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·Dined 2 days ago

I went here for Charlotte Restaurant week. The menu selection for the event was decent. I had the petite spinach salad, marinated beef flank steak, and popcorn ice cream. The wine list is fairly extensive compared to other restaurants however there is not much on the lower to intermediate price range for wine. I'm all for splurging a bit for wine but when most of the selections are $50 plus I'll stick with water. The restaurant itself is very nice with a nice contemporary feel. Our server was nice, courteous, and was very knowledgeable in recommendations for my gluten intolerant wife and sister. The atmosphere in the other diners wasn't very favorable. In the dining room, there are fairly quiet conversations and I could hear other tables. The problem is the sound from the bar area is quite obnoxious at some points it seemed as though we have to shout at each other to hear ourselves. My food however was mediocre to say the least. My salad was drenched in vingarette dressing. Each piece of spinach was soaked with what seems like oil and balsamic vinegar make the other all salad a little bitter. My main course of "marinated" beef flank steak was completely bland with no hint of salt or pepper. The accompanying mashed potatoes were prepared well as well as the asparagus. Topping the steak was a balsamic tomato sauce which I had to eat with every bite to give it flavor. However my dessert was exceptional eating the popcorn ice cream. It wasn't what I expected, and tasted very much like popcorn. My fellow guests also had the same complaints about the same salad but got different main courses. I tried my wife's shrimp and grits which were delicious however her dessert was possibly too sweet and seemed like a poor attempt at a compote. In retrospect it could be my poor menu selection but I had higher expectations for a restaurant with these prices. I ate meal as intended and I personally didn't find it to my liking.

Tags: Vibrant Bar Scene, Gluten Free Options, Notable Wine List
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food2
ambience3
service5
value3

 
 (Charlotte)·Dined on July 15, 2017

We really enjoyed the blackberry mojitos and gin/tonics. Bartenders were exceptional. Food was great and patio dining was perfect. The live music was awesome but it didn't last very long. Service was friendly but I think they were understaffed that night as service was a little slow. It was not terribly slow but obvious not enough wait staff.

Tags: Happy Hour, Good for Anniversaries, Good for Birthdays, Special Occasion, Great for Outdoor Dining, Creative Cuisine, Live Music, Notable Wine List, Fit for Foodies
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service4
value5

 
 (Charlotte)·Dined on July 9, 2017

We are so glad that Cafe Rule has started offering Sunday Brunch! Bloody Marys were delicious and the brunch menu was great with lots of choices.

Tags: Sunday Lunch, Fit for Foodies, Great for Outdoor Dining, Good for Anniversaries
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service4
value4

 
 (Charlotte)·Dined on July 2, 2017

We were in town to celebrate my father-in-law's birthday and chose Cafe Rule after having heard about it and from good reviews online and it didn't disappoint. I was there with my husband, my mom and father-in-law and there was something for everyone. We also enjoyed the music and atmosphere. We're from Charlotte and we really thought it was a great value as well.

Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Charleston)·Dined on June 30, 2017

We enjoyed our salad and pizza. It was a great experience.

Tags: Local Ingredients, Neighborhood Gem, Notable Wine List
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service4
value3

vip
 (Charlotte)·Dined on June 30, 2017

Amazing service, great atmosphere, and always wonderful specials.

Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5

 
 (Orlando)·Dined on June 27, 2017

Much improved. The first two times the service was spotty...due, in my judgement, by lack of a management presence in the dining room. Hard to blame young, inexperienced servers. Food is pretty good, although the signature steaks this trip were disappointing. They were good, but not exceptional.overall, in the top two in Hickory.

Tags: Neighborhood Gem, Fit for Foodies, Notable Wine List
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food4
ambience4
service5
value4

 
 (Charlotte)·Dined on June 24, 2017

Miguel and Paige are amazing!!!
Fabulous night out

Tags: Neighborhood Gem, Authentic
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Charlotte)·Dined on June 24, 2017

Great experience and ambiance, good food and exceptional wine cellar. One minor observation - menus need replacing, they are starting to look very worn.

Tags: Notable Wine List, Fun, Worth the Drive, Good for a Date, Great for Outdoor Dining, Casual, Special Occasion, Good for Groups, Good for Birthdays, Business Meals
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value3

 
 (Greensboro)·Dined on June 24, 2017

Beautiful Place. The food is great, I do think for a "wine bar" the wine by the glass is limited. The staff is extremely friendly and the food is unique. The only complaint I have , I do think its a bit pricey. They have a 5oz filet for 28.00 before any sides. I believe its 2.00 more if want a side and 2.00 for a sauce. I have never in my life seen a 5oz steak on a menu. Except an extremely high end place perhaps in California where they charged by the ounce with a minimum of 2 oz. at 5.00 an ounce. For Hickory it may be a little much. I spent 100.00 including tip on my first visit there for LUNCH. Now we had a 36.00 bottle of wine, my salad was good and topped with tuna for around 18.00. My mom had a pasta bowl with shrimp for about 19.00. We had a bowl of olives for 5.00. The meal came with amazing biscuits and sauces or spreads. My husband and I had a dinner there for about the same, but we actually split an appetizer, a salad and a meal as we never eat a whole meal by ourselves. We got a nice bottle of wine for 40.00. So, bring your eclectic appetite but also bring your wallet. (Meal portions are small). All that aside , I will be coming back. Atmosphere , is best around.

Tags: Romantic, Neighborhood Gem, Worth the Drive, Fun, Business Meals, Local Ingredients
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food5
ambience5
service3
value2

 
 (San Francisco)·Dined on June 23, 2017

Excellent and interesting menu, good cocktails, and very attentive service.

Tags: Creative Cuisine
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food5
ambience5
service5
value4

 
 (New York Area)·Dined on June 21, 2017

Had not been to Hickory, NC in 3 years. It wasn't until I entered their parking lot when I realized I had been there before. Great food, the Salmon was cooked perfectly, and the wait staff was attentive and efficient. I highly recommend this place.

Tags: Great for Outdoor Dining, Good for Anniversaries, Notable Wine List, Bar Seating
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food4
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Western NC)·Dined on June 20, 2017

We went as a family with our three young children to Cafe Rule for a nice dinner. Our server was so pleasant and she was patient with our kids. She was also very quick to offer asking the chef about my allergies. I do not eat grains or dairy and so I chose the filet with chimichurri and sautéed veggies. It was DELICIOUS! My husband said his chicken and waffles were the best he has ever had. Our kids also loved their food. We sat on the patio which was so pretty and pleasant. Highly recommend this restaurant for any food-loving families that have allergies!

Tags: Neighborhood Gem, Kid-friendly, Casual
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Charlotte)·Dined on June 19, 2017

Our server started out strong in being attentive but disappeared for long periods when he should have been most attentive. Also, we received calamari that had obviously gone bad with a very foul odor and a hair in it. Thankfully they were kind enough to take care of the cost of our drinks and other appetizer we ordered. The drinks were good. Entrees were decent, but not spectacular. We would have ordered dessert but it took our waiter 15 minutes after we asked for a menu, then he disappeared again for another 10. By that time we were tired and didn't want to wait another possible long time to receive the dessert so we opted out. Could have been a much better experience with better service, and a little more attention to the food.

Tags: Seasonal, Handcrafted Cocktails
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food3
ambience4
service2
value3

 
 (Charlotte)·Dined on June 18, 2017

Great service and the food was wonderful.

Tags: Great for Brunch
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value4

 
 (New York Area)·Dined on June 16, 2017

This is one of the best restaurants I have dined at in quite some time. It is a new favorite!

Tags: Neighborhood Gem, Notable Wine List, Cozy, Romantic, Good for Groups, Gluten Free Options
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience4
service4
value4

 
 (Western NC)·Dined on June 13, 2017

Excellent service and the food was spot on

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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Charlotte)·Dined on June 13, 2017

Great food but a bit pricey for fried chicken with two sides. The shrimp and sausage with potatoes and corn was overly salty. Great atmosphere. Service is always excellent. I recommend this place.

Tags: Neighborhood Gem, Comfort Food, Happy Hour, Special Occasion
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food4
ambience5
service5
value4

 
 (Western NC)·Dined on June 13, 2017

Excellent service and food as always

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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Raleigh)·Dined on June 11, 2017

Amazing food, great service! The French Texas Toast and Fried Chicken and Waffle were incredible! We will definitely be back!

Tags: Great for Brunch
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Charlotte)·Dined on June 9, 2017

Great atmosphere, food, and service. My wife and I were looking for someplace nice and local to celebrate out anniversary and were told we should try Café Rule. We were very glad we checked it out. Our Server Philip was great as was the food. We will definitely be back.

Tags: Worth the Drive, Neighborhood Gem, Cozy, Special Occasion, Comfort Food, Good for a Date, Vibrant Bar Scene
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food4
ambience5
service5
value4

 
 (Charlotte)·Dined on June 9, 2017

Our dining experience was great as usual, it just seemed that our waitress was overtaxed. For our circumstances , it was fine as we were not in any hurry and enjoyed spending the time there. Had we been more in a hurry, it would have been a bit stressful...maybe that should be a question the waitstaff ask their guests???

Tags: Great for Brunch, Afternoon Coffee, Sunday Lunch, Good for Groups, Notable Wine List, Special Occasion, Romantic, Casual, Great for Outdoor Dining, Healthy, Good for a Date, Bar Seating, Good for Birthdays, Good for Anniversaries
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service4
value4

 
 (Charlotte)·Dined on June 3, 2017

Great food & great atmosphere. Never disappointed

Tags: Romantic, Good for Birthdays, Healthy, Happy Hour, Bar Seating, Good for a Date
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food5
ambience5
service5
value4

 
 (Raleigh)·Dined on June 3, 2017

The food was outstanding but our server was even better. She gave great meal suggestions. This was our first time, but will return when in that area again.

Tags: Romantic, Fit for Foodies, Creative Cuisine, Authentic, Live Music, Special Occasion, Comfort Food, Cozy
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Miami)·Dined on May 26, 2017

Great atmosphere, service and food.

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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Charlotte)·Dined on May 26, 2017

Wait staff was excellent. All enjoyed their meals. Very casual atmosphere allowed unrushed time for our party to spend time together.

Tags: Notable Wine List, Casual
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food4
ambience4
service5
value4

 
 (Charlotte)·Dined on May 24, 2017

Food and service were great. Will definitely be going back!!

Tags: Great for Outdoor Dining, Local Ingredients, Good for a Date
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food5
ambience5
service5
value4

 
 (Charlotte)·Dined on May 23, 2017

We felt prices were exorbitant for Hickory. Limited selection of wines by glass but cost of bottles seemed over- the-top. Disappointed in service as server was rarely available. Did not live up to expectations.

Tags: Casual
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food3
ambience4
service2
value1

 
 (Charlotte)·Dined on May 21, 2017

Went for Brunch, the music was fantastic, the food, not so much. Ordered The Skillet, boring..mainly potatoes, very little onions and peppers and no sausage. The vegetarian in our party ordered baked eggs, there was no mention of sausage, apparently sausage comes in the black eyed peas. Deviled eggs were great.

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food2
ambience4
service3
value3

 
 (Western NC)·Dined on May 14, 2017

Really good food, nice twist on some comfort foods, great mixed drinks

Tags: Worth the Drive, Handcrafted Cocktails, Organic, Local Ingredients
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food5
ambience5
service5
value4

 
 (Greensboro)·Dined on May 14, 2017

I was impressed being my first time for Mother's Day. Very pricey for what you get and the booth we had was horrible. The man sitting in the adjoining booth kept moving and the seat was very lose and my mother had to deal with that the whole time.

Tags: Cozy, Great for Outdoor Dining
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food2
ambience4
service3
value2

 
 (New York Area)·Dined on May 12, 2017

Everything was fabulous !!

Tags: Notable Wine List
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Western NC)·Dined on May 12, 2017

We love, love, love Cafe Rule!!! What more can I say. Great food,great drinks, great atmosphere, and the best wait staff in Hickory!

Tags: Cozy, Organic, Good for Birthdays, Business Meals, Vegan, Authentic, Fit for Foodies, Good Vegetarian Options, Comfort Food, Great for Outdoor Dining, Pre/post Theatre, Healthy, Neighborhood Gem, Special Occasion, Tasting Menu, Hot Spot, Paleo Friendly, People Watching, Handcrafted Cocktails, Spicy, Creative Cuisine, Great Beer, Romantic, Casual, Good for Groups, Great for Lunch, Late-night Find, Good for Anniversaries, Fun, Quick Bite, Gluten Free Options, Great for Brunch, Disabled Access, Happy Hour, Good for a Date, Vibrant Bar Scene, Local Ingredients, Notable Wine List, Sunday Lunch, Bar Seating, Quiet Conversation, Seasonal, Worth the Drive
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value4

 
 (Charlotte)·Dined on May 12, 2017

Good southern food with a modern edge.

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food5
ambience5
service5

 
 (Charlotte)·Dined on April 30, 2017

One of the best places to eat in hickory
Great place to go out and eat for any occasion

Tags: Sunday Lunch, Live Music, Quiet Conversation, Great for Outdoor Dining, Fun
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Charlotte)·Dined on April 30, 2017

excellent food! Sunday Brunch was very nice - good menu selection.

Tags: Special Occasion, Great for Brunch
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food5
ambience4
service4
value4

vip
 (Indiana)·Dined on April 25, 2017

I return to Cafe Rule for a specific dish, the tuna tartare, and it is always good but a expensive for an appetizer. I was surprised this visit, because it is usually a bit more plentiful. While it tasted good, it was not as top notch as I remember. On a more positive note, the pesto pasta was phenomenal as was the turkey chili. I would return for both of those but not so sure about the tuna. The fixed price menu was tempting but I knew I wanted the tuna. The service was excellent.

Tags: Good for Birthdays, Bar Seating, Fit for Foodies
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food4
ambience4
service5
value3

 
 (Baltimore)·Dined on April 23, 2017

Really enjoyed it! Great food, service and atmosphere!

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food5
ambience5
service5
value4

 
 (Vancouver)·Dined on April 17, 2017

We had a great evening of friendship, basking in great service, and devouring perfectly prepared 8 ounce beef filets with mushrooms and garlic mash paired with 2010 Silver Oak Napa Valley Cabernet - a wonderful experience!

Tags: Great for Lunch, Good for Groups, Neighborhood Gem, Casual, Quiet Conversation, Worth the Drive, Bar Seating, Sunday Lunch, Business Meals, Good for Anniversaries, Great for Outdoor Dining, Creative Cuisine, Special Occasion, Notable Wine List
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (San Francisco)·Dined on April 15, 2017

First time there...loved it !!

Sat outside. Great atmosphere ! Service and food !!

Tags: Good for Groups, Special Occasion, Cozy, Casual, Great for Brunch, Great for Outdoor Dining, Good for a Date, Good for Anniversaries, Live Music
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food4
ambience5
service5
value4

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