Bars in Wilson

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Audiences often arrive an hour early to Laugh Out Loud’s comedy shows, lured in by the comedy club’s amiable staff, frequent visits by nationally renowned comics, and full dinner menu. Before the live acts step into the spotlight at 8 p.m., patrons can converse and watch scattered flat-screen TVs while dining on panini sandwiches, fresh-made Punchline Pizzas, and other casual fare. After dinner, audience members stay at their tables as the lights dim and the Laugh Out Loud stage is swarmed by daring and original joke tellers. Recent headliners have included Shaun Jones, known for his outrageous personal anecdotes, and Ron Feingold, whose musical comedy routine has recently slayed the club's audiences. Laugh Out Loud regularly schedules shows four nights a week, including the popular Wednesday night open mic, which showcases the fresh talent of amateur comedians and the soundman's admittedly unoriginal microphone check.

8928 US 70 Bus Hwy W
Clayton,
NC
US

Tiny combustions and the smell of butter emanate from Goodnight's Comedy Club's vintage popcorn maker as nationally touring standups such as Marc Maron and Ralphie May step up to the mic. With a brick wall behind them and a checkered floor below, these headliners spin their comic yarns as popcorn, Buffalo wings, and cocktails deftly land on tables. In addition to its cabaret menu of apps and drinks, the club is connected to two restaurants. Every month, the mostly private Grille at Goodnight's unveils a new menu of upscale American fare, from prime rib to lobster mac n cheese and pumpkin ravioli that turns into carriage ravioli at midnight. The Old Bar Restaurant and Bar resides underneath Goodnight's, treating diners to more casual fare in the form of burgers and Tex-Mex platters.

861 W Morgan St
Raleigh,
NC
US

Chef Conrad Johnston injects innovative twists into Krave's menu of modern American cuisine, topping Parisian-inspired flatbreads with caramelized shallots and dousing small plates of Cajun-style calamari with creole seasoning. With fresh meats, local fruits and veggies, and sauces made from scratch, Chef Conrad concocts tapas, entrees, and salads before diners' eyes in his show kitchen. Meals are savored on the outdoor patio or within Krave's sleekly decorated interior, which surrounds diners with chrome metallics and subtle kinetic lighting. On Friday and Saturday, night owls or owls in human disguise can sip handcrafted signature cocktails until 2 a.m., scarf down items from the full menu until 4 a.m., and groove to tunes spun by top area DJs.

510 Glenwood Ave
Raleigh,
NC
US

Oliver Twist Lounge buzzes with an effortlessly romantic vibe thanks to its candlelit interior, which brims with sumptuous dark-red and maroon accents. Artistically crafted plates showcase Spanish-style tapas crafted from verdant veggies and spicy seafood, and more than 20 specialty martinis and an extensive wine list complement each savory bite. Chefs cook up morsels well into the night, and a jam-packed calendar of entertainment—ranging from live music to belly dancers—propels guests from their perches in the VIP room onto their feet or extremely limber elbows.

8111 Creedmoor Rd
Raleigh,
NC
US

At Trali Irish Pub, chef Eamonn Kelly has masterminded a diverse menu of traditional Irish fare. The daily-changing carvery menu harks back to medieval Ireland and stuffs stomachs with freshly cut meats in dishes such as meat loaf, slice steak tips with bourbon-peppercorn sauce, and corned beef and cabbage ($9.95 each). Edibles such as a fresh-fruit waffle with bacon and eggs ($9) and the traditional Irish breakfast—replete with irish sausage, rashers, and a grilled tomato buttressed by home fries, beans, and eggs ($12)—populate the brunch menu, and Trali's catering services deliver succulent Irish grub right to hungry doorsteps, dropping off items such as sandwich platters ($3.50–$4.50/sandwich), handmade desserts ($3–$40), and bangers and mash ($40).

10370 Moncreiffe Rd
Raleigh,
NC
US

While people-watching amongst the picnic tables of its outdoor patio, browse the Borough's menu and take comfort in an order of Charlie & Simone, the restaurant's house-made hush puppies ($4.50), or dip into the Boomerang, a cheesy chopped spinach and mushroom mélange ($6). The Borough's entree selections provide down-home reinterpretations of the best seafood, landfood, airfood, and plantfood. The Valhalla 2.0, a 4-ounce filet mignon medallion drizzled in creamy crab sauce ($9.50), patches many of the bugs in the Viking paradise's operating system, making it Ragnarok-compliant. The Craw Diddy, a house-made crab-cake sandwich ($8.50), makes your tongue feel like a bayou pop star, while The D Train, a marinated chicken breast with grilled red peppers and spicy mustard ($7), transports it home after a hard day's work licking coworkers' faces. The Borough's vegetarian-friendly selections include the Blackbeard, a black-bean burger ($7.50); and the Mock Bawk Bawk, a vegan barbecue mock-chicken sandwich ($7)—making the eatery a welcoming habitat for runaway ex-carnivores looking to reunite for a meal with their former wolf pack.

317 W Morgan St
Raleigh,
NC
US