Nearby points of interest

  1. Distance: 0.05mi
  2. Distance: 0.25mi
  3. Distance: 0.39mi
  4. Distance: 0.46mi
  1. Distance: 0.05mi
  2. Distance: 0.25mi
  3. Distance: 0.39mi
  4. Distance: 0.46mi

Nearby points of interest

  1. Distance: 0.05mi
  2. Distance: 0.25mi
  3. Distance: 0.39mi
  4. Distance: 0.46mi
  1. Distance: 0.05mi
  2. Distance: 0.25mi
  3. Distance: 0.39mi
  4. Distance: 0.46mi

About Second Empire Restaurant and Tavern

Located in downtown Raleigh’s historic Victorian Dodd-Hinsdale House (circa 1879), Second Empire combines history, atmosphere, exceptional service and gourmet cuisine for an unforgettable dining experience. Second Empire Restaurant and Tavern features our award winning Contemporary American Cuisine in two dining atmospheres. Upstairs enjoy the ultimate dining experience in an elegant yet relaxed atmosphere of charm and grace. Downstairs in the Tavern and beautiful Atrium room enjoy a lighter fare menu and more casual environment. The Capitol Room, Raleigh Room, Pine Room and Atrium Room are available for private parties seating up to 55 people or various combinations of rooms for parties up to 300 people. Second Empire is very proud to be the recipient of the DiRoNA Award (Distinguished Restaurants of North America), the AAA Four Diamond Award (Raleigh’s only restaurant with this award) and the Wine Spectator Award of Excellence since 1998.

330 Hillsborough St.
Raleigh, NC 27603
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Dining Style:
Fine Dining

Cuisines:
Contemporary American, Southern, French

Hours of Operation:
Dinner: Tuesday - Saturday: 5:00pm - 10:00pm

Please note under special requests if you prefer tavern/ atrium seating instead of the formal main dining room.

Cross Street:
Harrington St./ Edenton St.

Dress Code:
Business Casual

Price Range:
$31 to $50

Payment Options
AMEX, Diners Club, Discover, MasterCard, Visa

Phone Number:
(919) 829-3663

Website:
http://www.second-empire.com/

Parking Details:
Parking is available on the surrounding streets & our private lot in the rear of the Restaurant. Additional parking is also located behind the Restaurant in the Reynolds Building parking lot.
There is a public parking lot across from Second Empire on Hillsborough Street owned by the City of Raleigh & is available for parking, however, there is a $3.00 parking fee that must be paid online. If you do not pay you will be towed.

Executive Chef:
Daniel Schurr

Private Party Facilities:
Second Empire Restaurant and Tavern offers four private dining rooms for day or evening receptions and/or dining. We offer our Pine Room which seats 40 people, the Raleigh Room which seats 25 people, the Capitol Room which seats 25 people and the Atrium which seats 50 people.

Private Party Contact:
Nicolle Roberts: (919) 829-3663

Additional:
Banquet, Bar Dining, Bar/Lounge, Beer, BYO Wine, Chef's Table, Corkage Fee, Full Bar, Non-Smoking, Private Room, Wheelchair Access, Wine

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Second Empire Restaurant and Tavern Ratings and Reviews

5
4
3
2
1

4.8

Overall Rating

based on recent ratings
food

4.8

service

4.8

ambience

4.8

value

4.5

noise

Moderate

99% would recommend it to a friend

Good for Anniversaries (100)
Romantic (97)
Special Occasion (83)
See All
Good for a Date (68)
Creative Cuisine (60)
Historic (54)
Quiet Conversation (51)
Fit for Foodies (50)
Good for Birthdays (46)
Notable Wine List (42)
Neighborhood Gem (32)
Worth the Drive (30)
Cozy (25)
Business Meals (25)
Pre/post Theatre (24)
Handcrafted Cocktails (19)
Authentic (17)
Good for Groups (14)
Private Room (14)
Local Ingredients (13)
Bar Seating (11)
Outstanding Value (10)
Comfort Food (8)
Seasonal (7)
Healthy (6)
Afternoon Tea (6)
Tasting Menu (6)
Scenic View (5)
Fun (5)
Sunday Lunch (5)
Fireplace (5)
People Watching (5)
Modern Decor (4)
Family Style (4)
Molecular Gastronomy (4)
Paleo Friendly (3)
Gluten Free Options (3)
Great for Brunch (3)
Casual (3)
Good Vegetarian Options (3)
Disabled Access (3)
Hot Spot (3)
Great Beer (2)
Late-night Find (2)
Vibrant Bar Scene (2)
Vegan (1)
Afternoon Coffee (1)
Great for Lunch (1)
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2311 reviews
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 (Raleigh)·Dined 5 days ago

Brought mother in law who was visiting from out of town. Responsive staff and love old house atmosphere. Food was well presented and very tasty so awesome chef. Highly recommend!!!

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

 
 (Greensboro)·Dined 6 days ago

The service and food was excellent! An excellent choice for our anniversary dinner.

Tags: Quiet Conversation, Creative Cuisine, Local Ingredients, Authentic
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Raleigh)·Dined 6 days ago

Outstanding as always! This is one of our favorites and we always enjoy our meal here!

Tags: Special Occasion, Good Vegetarian Options, Vibrant Bar Scene, Romantic, Handcrafted Cocktails, Fit for Foodies, Good for Birthdays, Good for a Date, Good for Anniversaries
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Little Rock)·Dined 6 days ago

Compliments to the chef and the hostess staff.. the meal was outstanding, and the service, notably Matthew, were incredible as well. They accommodated us for our anniversary by putting us in a beautiful window table, and we received a signed menu from the chef. The experience was incredible, and one of the most memorable meals we have ever had.

Tags: Notable Wine List, Cozy, Worth the Drive, Creative Cuisine, Special Occasion, Romantic, Good for Anniversaries, Quiet Conversation, Good for Birthdays, Good for a Date
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value3

vip
 (Raleigh)·Dined on May 16, 2017

We had fantastic service. The duck leg salad was truly amazing.

Tags: Molecular Gastronomy, Worth the Drive
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

vip
 (Chicago)·Dined on May 16, 2017

Everything at 2nd Empire exceeded expectations. The food, service and atmosphere was outstanding. Would highly recommend this restaurant!

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

 
 (Las Vegas)·Dined on May 16, 2017

Absolutely the best restaurant in Raleigh. I have been here several times and each time is better than the past. How can they consistently be perfect? I don't know but I'm happy they are.

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food5
ambience5
service5

 
 (Raleigh)·Dined on May 14, 2017

Lovely meal overall. Tasty appetizers bursting with flavor (duck salad and foie gras that just melted in my mouth), a substantial wine list, and hearty, expertly-cooked entrees. The chef even whipped up a vegetarian dish for one of our guests that turned out much tastier than expected. My only qualm is that our server was clearly under the influence of some kind of amphetamine, but in all honesty, his attention to detail more than made up for it.

Tags: Notable Wine List, Romantic, Good for a Date, Quiet Conversation, Business Meals, Good for Birthdays, Fit for Foodies, Historic, Pre/post Theatre
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food4
ambience5
service3
value5

 
 (New York Area)·Dined on May 13, 2017

Our family of 4 chose this restaurant for dinner to celebrate our daughter's graduation from NC State University. We were looking for excellent food, beautiful ambiance, quiet dinner conversation and impeccable service. We were not disappointed! From he time we walked into the restaurant, until we left, we were impressed. Chris - our server - was amazing. The restaurant even personalized a dinner menu with a congratulatory message for our daughter and signed by the chef. Appetizers, main courses and dessert were the best we have ever had. Chris also offered our daughters a tour of the kitchen. The venue, an historic home, was tastefully decorated. We all loved this restaurant!!!

Tags: Romantic, Notable Wine List, Historic, Cozy, Special Occasion, Good for Anniversaries, Quiet Conversation, Neighborhood Gem, Fit for Foodies, Worth the Drive, Creative Cuisine
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

vip
 (Raleigh)·Dined on May 13, 2017

Excellent service from Alex. Very accommodating to a vegetarian in the group. Two fish entrees were outstanding, salad apps quite good, wine list extensive. A little pricey but you feel pampered. Desserts were only weak part. Overall we had a very satisfying meal and enjoyable evening.

Tags: Good for a Date, Late-night Find, Fit for Foodies
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food4
ambience4
service5
value4

 
 (Raleigh)·Dined on May 12, 2017

We chose Second Empire to celebrate our daughter's college graduation. We have dined at Second Empire in the past and just knew that we could not choose a more beautiful, delicious and exceptional restaurant to celebrate such a momentous occasion. Thank you to Chef Daniel for a handwritten, signed copy of the evening's menu as a wonderful remembrance of the evening!

Tags: Special Occasion, Historic
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

vip
 (Raleigh)·Dined on May 12, 2017

Everything was great EXCEPT an obnoxiously loud group seated in the middle of the Tavern.

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

vip
 (Raleigh)·Dined on May 12, 2017

It has been about two years since I visited Second Empire so it was nice to dine at this fine restaurant once again. The food was very good but it wasn't as good as previous years. It is still one of the better restaurants to dine in Raleigh. Raleigh-Durham area has a lot of fine restaurants so the culinary food bar is set very high. I would go back to Second Empire for an anniversary or for a business meal. I thought the Filet Mignon was succulent and very tasty but some of the sides just weren't as good. Very good restaurant but a few years ago it was a great restaurant.

Tags: Business Meals, Family Style, Private Room, Good for Anniversaries
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food4
ambience5
service5
value4

 
 (Raleigh)·Dined on May 12, 2017

The Tavern at Second Empire was an amazing experience, not only was the level of service and food exceptional but the price point was approachable and extremely value driven because of the quality of food and portion size. And nicest part of sitting in the tavern vs upstairs is you can order from either menu, which was a nice treat.

Tags: Comfort Food, Good for Anniversaries, Historic, Handcrafted Cocktails, Romantic, Good for a Date, Special Occasion, Good for Birthdays, Fit for Foodies
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

vip
 (London)·Dined on May 11, 2017

OMG! Raleigh'/ finest against which all else pales. Truly gourmet and delightful. Considering even mediocre restaurants have $25 entrees, here you get your money's worth. I want to return!

Tags: Good for a Date
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Raleigh)·Dined on May 9, 2017

Very enjoyable evening, celebrated our wedding anniversary and Chef Daniel presented us with a dated and signed menu! Excellent fare too!

Tags: Seasonal, Historic, Bar Seating, People Watching, Family Style, Fun, Romantic
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Raleigh)·Dined on May 7, 2017

A really lovely meal and very spirited and friendly hostess. Also, a surprisingly interesting cheese course. I'm not from the south originally and have until Saturday night found the restaurant's name off-putting. However I was so pleased to find that neither the staff nor the cuisine was stuffy, in fact the opposite. It took a longer time than I would image at that hour of the evening to place our orders, but otherwise an excellent experience. Very pleasant wait staff, and a quiet space to have conversation.

Tags: Creative Cuisine, Good for Anniversaries, Quiet Conversation, Private Room, Good for a Date, Paleo Friendly, Pre/post Theatre, Good for Birthdays, Historic
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service4
value5

 
 (Raleigh)·Dined on May 6, 2017

I love the atmosphere of this restaurant in a historic home with the smaller dining areas, dim lighting, as well as the outstanding food and service. It is elegant dining at its best.

Tags: Vegan, Quiet Conversation, Paleo Friendly, Neighborhood Gem, Cozy
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

vip
 (Western NC)·Dined on May 4, 2017

Overall we had a great time dining here, but our waiter was a little annoying. He constantly came to the table and pressured us to make decisions.

Tags: Good for Anniversaries, Romantic, Business Meals
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service4
value4

 
 (Raleigh)·Dined on May 4, 2017

First visit for Anniversary dinner, reserved seating in the Tavern. Extremely pleased with both the presentation and taste of the dishes. Staff was helpful and delightful. Highly recommend!!

Tags: Tasting Menu, Good for Anniversaries
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Raleigh)·Dined on May 2, 2017

Great food and great service. The ambiance at this place is great, and the staff are all very friendly and helpful (even those not assigned to our table)

Tags: Good for a Date, Special Occasion, Romantic, Good for Anniversaries, Neighborhood Gem, Good for Birthdays, Authentic, Business Meals
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

vip
 (Seattle)·Dined on April 29, 2017

Fantastic birthday dinner!! First time here & everyone loved their entrees!! Will be back!

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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Raleigh)·Dined on April 28, 2017

Excellent! I love the Atrium in the Tavern! Great food and excellent service every time!

Tags: Good for a Date
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food4
ambience5
service5
value4

vip
 (Raleigh)·Dined on April 28, 2017

Wonderful food and service, as always. We opted to eat in the Tavern this time and enjoyed the evening. The Barramundi was delicious and the wine was excellent. The Bailey's chocolate dessert was a bit of a disappointment--okay, but nothing special. You can't go too wrong at Second Empire.

Tags: Romantic, Good for Anniversaries, Good for a Date, Handcrafted Cocktails, Bar Seating, Special Occasion, Pre/post Theatre
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food4
ambience4
service4
value3

 
 (Miami)·Dined on April 28, 2017

Outstanding experience! One of the most delicious food I ever tried considering that I travel all over the world and pretty often in restaurants. Historical venue. Very knowledgeable personnel. Great service

Tags: Good for a Date, Authentic, Comfort Food, Healthy, Creative Cuisine, Good for Birthdays, Fireplace, Fit for Foodies, Quiet Conversation, Good for Anniversaries, Historic, Notable Wine List, Special Occasion, Romantic
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Raleigh)·Dined on April 27, 2017

We went for my wife's birthday and sat in the main dinning room. The service was outstanding and surpassed only by the meal itself. The chef combines ingredients and flavors in a way truly deserving of a 5-star rating. We will definitely be back.

Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value3

 
 (Raleigh)·Dined on April 26, 2017

Second Empire is a high-end restaurant but it delivers value for the price and is an enjoyable and tasty place to share a meal with family, friends, or business associates.

Tags: Good for Anniversaries, Modern Decor, Authentic, Business Meals
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience4
service4
value4

 
 (Raleigh)·Dined on April 25, 2017

Wonderful experience, will be dining again very soon.

Tags: Good for Anniversaries, Fit for Foodies
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food5
ambience5
service5
value4

 
 (Raleigh)·Dined on April 25, 2017

We loved our experience at Second Empire restaurant. This is a dining experience for anyone who loves quality, innovative, interesting, meal choices. The flavor profiles were creative and all of our meals (3) were beautifully presented and delicious.

This is not a dining experience for children. The menu offerings and specials are very sophisticated and the setting is conducive to an intimate adult experience.

Our waiter/sommelier, Matthew, was well versed in the evenings offerings, as well as, the wine pairings for each course.

Matthew happily recommended appropriate changes to one of our partie's meal that was not conducive to an allergy she had.

I highly recommend Second Empire Restaurant. I cannot speak to the Tavern having never eaten there and the menu is quite different.

Tags: Good for Anniversaries, Historic, Fireplace, Special Occasion, Fit for Foodies, Good for a Date, Neighborhood Gem, Romantic, Good for Birthdays, Quiet Conversation, Worth the Drive, Creative Cuisine
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Raleigh)·Dined on April 22, 2017

This was our second time at Second Empire and once again it was a great experience. The food is outstanding and the service is equal to it, relaxed yet attentive, you never feel rushed.

Tags: Good for Anniversaries, Fit for Foodies, Romantic, Special Occasion
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience4
service5
value4

 
 (Raleigh)·Dined on April 21, 2017

Excellent dinner and service with great cocktails

Tags: Private Room, Good for a Date, Handcrafted Cocktails
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Raleigh)·Dined on April 20, 2017

Perfect location for our 43rd Wedding Anniversary. Every aspect of the occasion was perfect. Starting with our waiter, Alex, who was extraordinarily attentive and knowledgeable our evening was remarkable. The food was the highlight of event and we weren't disappointed.Looking forward to going back again.

Tags: Cozy, Romantic, Historic, Good for a Date, Special Occasion, Good for Anniversaries
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value4

 
 (Washington DC)·Dined on April 19, 2017

It was my husband's birthday. Matthew was a wonderful server and treated us like we were his top priority. He even talked me into trying a few new dishes. Great experience!

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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Raleigh)·Dined on April 18, 2017

Phenomenal,best Birthday Dinner so far! Highly recommend to anyone that loves a private and romantic setting.

Tags: Romantic, Afternoon Tea, Family Style, Cozy, Private Room, Authentic, Good for Anniversaries, Good for a Date, Special Occasion, Good for Birthdays
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Raleigh)·Dined on April 16, 2017

We selected Second Empire to celebrate our 11th anniversary. The food and service were impeccable! Unfortunately, there was a wedding earlier in the day and the reception was held in the bar. We heard very loud 80's music playing throughout our meal. It definitely spoiled our romantic meal.

Tags: Romantic, Creative Cuisine, Notable Wine List, Good for Anniversaries, Special Occasion, Historic
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience4
service5
value3

 
 (Richmond)·Dined on April 16, 2017

The house is beautiful, the food wonderful, and the service fine, but our experience was ruined by the incredibly loud dance music coming from the basement wedding reception. The music was thumping our table. The level went down a bit, then a bit louder, then back down. But our anniversary dinner meal from the fine chef was ruined by allowing crappy dance music to be played so the upstairs diners could hear every word of every song. Not the atmosphere I wanted, and not what they told me they normally have. Since I live 3 hours away I won't really have a reason to come back and give them a second chance.

Tags: Historic, Cozy, Romantic
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience1
service4
value3

 
 (Raleigh)·Dined on April 15, 2017

it was great great on every aspect....next time I will ask if there will be a wedding planned....the noise was a bit uncomfortable...other than this I will be back as many times as I can

Job well done!!

Tags: Special Occasion
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Raleigh)·Dined on April 15, 2017

Always consistently superior service, great seasonal meals prepared with great care and presentation

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

 
 (Raleigh)·Dined on April 15, 2017

The food was excellent, as was the service staff. However, there was a wedding party in an adjacent room that raised the noise level in the dining room above what I expected for a restaurant of this quality and price point. I believe hosting the wedding party also negatively impacted the service in that the wait staff appeared short-handed, and we had to wait longer than what was probably normal for dessert to be served, for example. However, our particular waiter (Michael) was outstanding.

Tags: Fit for Foodies, Romantic, Special Occasion, Notable Wine List
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience3
service5
value3

 
 (Richmond)·Dined on April 15, 2017

Went here for my wife's birthday/our 5 year anniversary! Staff was excellent beyond expected. A must go!!!

Tags: Healthy, Good for Anniversaries, Good for Birthdays, Notable Wine List, Handcrafted Cocktails
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience4
service5
value4

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