West End Station’s long list of menu items complements classic pub appetizers with quesadillas, melts, handtossed specialty pizzas, and chicken wraps. Diners can spice up traditional wings ($5.50 for eight) with one of nine sauce varieties, including Baltimore harbor, sweet honey mustard, garlic, and hot Jamaican jerk. Fingers that are usually relegated to handling steering wheels, stamp adhesive, and ice-cold forks can delight in diving for hot jalapeño poppers ($3.75) or a tray of tater tots ($2.50).
Dick & Jane's Tapas and Martini Bar’s entire menu is designed to be sipped, savored, and shared among friends over conversation. Classic tapas include housemade white cheddar pimento cheese, baked brie drizzled with caramel, and shrimp sautéed with chilies, and an equal portion of the menu is devoted to unfussy, bite-sized takes on American comfort favorites—roast beef and brie stuff mini croissants, pulled pork fills a sourdough panini, and smoked salmon or medium-rare filet mignon lie atop tartines. At the bar, beer and wine join 30 martinis that range from a classic dry martini with pimento-stuffed olives to the sneaky Bruce Willis, which looks like a traditional martini but sneaks orange liqueur and white cranberry juice in through the glass’s ductwork.
Beyond the red walls and checkerboard floors of the dining room, bright umbrellas alight on the patio, where little windows in the wooden fence peek out on flower boxes. On the brick wall just above, a recently refurbished antique mural shows a fresh-faced woman cheerily obeying the instruction to Drink Coca-Cola, adding a splash of vintage character to back up the historical downtown Mebane locale. Some nights find Dick & Jane’s serenading their quaint neighborhood with the sounds of live musicians.
Flat-screen televisions hang high above each lane at Z-Bowl, displaying a medley of scoring charts and high-definition sports broadcasts for bowlers to enjoy between frames. The alley keeps the visual banquet brimming in a sports bar with large-projection sets and an arcade containing more than 60 arcade consoles, including both classic and modern models such as skee-ball and Dance Dance Revolution. The 18-lane facility also offers billiards, shuffleboard, and darts to keep levels of healthy competition high and offer lower-impact entertainment for those with injuries such as bowler’s ear. Z-Bowl also hosts six private lanes designed to host upscale parties and corporate meetings, as well as a full kitchen that serves brick-oven pizza and certified Angus beef burgers.
In 1976, educator, musician, and kinesiologist Robin Wes longed for a children's gym that prioritized personal growth over competition. Unveiled at a time when physical-education classes pushed students to focus almost exclusively on winning, Robin's program was swiftly adopted and is now used in more than 300 Little Gyms worldwide. Robin still pens original music to accompany lessons, which engage whippersnappers aged 4 months to 12 years with gymnastics, dance, karate, and parent and child activities.
Each of The Little Gym's classes introduces simple movements that sharpen motor skills and set brains whirring, allowing kids to progress at their own pace until they can finally build a computer out of macaroni and glitter. Staff members strive to build a base for lifelong social skills and self-assurance with each exercise, including activities rooted purely in fun, such as summer camps or birthday parties, which helped The Little Gym to earn title of #1 Birthday Chain in Parents Magazine.
La Fiesta Restaurante Mexicano’s classic dishes have earned the eatery a long-standing award proudly displayed on the website: Best Mexican Restaurant nine years in a row, as voted by readers of the Times-News. At the start of each workday, the restaurant’s chefs fry the popular tortilla chips and whip up bowls of salsa. Then they get to work on such dishes as chicken simmered in a chipotle cream, char-grilled steak tacos, and spinach burritos.
Hungry locals are drawn downtown by Vintage 301's tapas-style cuisine. Because dishes are prepared using fresh, locally sourced ingredients, the menu changes seasonally. Recently featured small plates include deep-fried calamari with citrus aioli ($9), apple and chèvre ravioli ($9), and saag dip, a savory plate where pita chips are positioned for dredging through a landscape of puréed spinach, ginger, and yogurt cheese ($7). Patrons equipped with bigger appetites can find one-stop fulfillment in a large plate, such as the pork-ribs souvlaki, an oregano- and garlic-rubbed pork-rib with zesty lemon potatoes and tzatziki ($18), or the Moroccan fish dish, which serves up spice-rubbed rockfish, orange and olive salad, spinach couscous, and one stamp for your palate's passport ($19). Finish your feast on a sweet note with some vanilla-infused chocolate gnocchi ($6).