With a stay at The Siena Hotel in Chapel Hill, you'll be in the suburbs and convenient to Morehead Planetarium and University of North Carolina. This hotel is within close proximity of Kenan Stadium and UNC Medical Center.
Make yourself at home in one of the 79 air-conditioned rooms featuring refrigerators. Your bed comes with triple sheeting and cotton sheets. Complimentary wired and wireless Internet access keeps you connected, and satellite programming provides entertainment. Private bathrooms with shower/tub combinations feature makeup/shaving mirrors and complimentary toiletries.
Rec, Spa, Premium Amenities
Take advantage of recreation opportunities such as a fitness facility, or other amenities including complimentary wireless Internet access and a concierge desk. Additional features include wedding services, a fireplace in the lobby, and a television in the lobby. Getting to nearby attractions is a breeze with the complimentary area shuttle.
Grab a bite to eat at the hotel's restaurant, which features a bar, or stay in and take advantage of room service (during limited hours). At the end of the day, relax with your favorite drink at a bar/lounge. Breakfast is available daily for a fee.
Business, Other Amenities
Featured amenities include complimentary high-speed (wired) Internet access, a 24-hour business center, and limo/town car service. Event facilities at this hotel consist of a conference center, conference/meeting rooms, and small meeting rooms. Free self parking is available onsite.
Who doesn't love a warm tortilla? Fans of Margaret's Cantina say that the best Mexican fare is found right here, where top-notch ratings rule the menu.
Margaret's Cantina combines great flavors with healthy ingredients for dishes that not just taste good but make you feel good too.
Pair your entree with a glass of wine or draft beer — this restaurant has a fully-stocked bar to complement your meal.
Little guys and gals will also love dining at this restaurant, which offers a family-friendly environment (and menu).
Sit back, relax, and enjoy the beautiful weather during your meal at Margaret's Cantina.
Margaret's Cantina is a suitable restaurant for both large and small groups.
Margaret's Cantina is known for its great food, and it also includes a pup-friendly policy neighborhood locals love.
Forget the stuffy formal wear! Margaret's Cantina's business casual dress code sets the tone for ease and enjoyment.
What's that you hear? It's carryout at this restaurant.
Margaret's Cantina is known for serving great food, and they are able to serve it at your next event with their excellent catering.
With a parking lot adjacent to Margaret's Cantina, you won't get stuck circling the block.
For those who prefer to travel by bike, Margaret's Cantina is a great option due to its generous bike parking options.
For great dishes that fall smack dab in the middle when it comes to price, Margaret's Cantina is a reasonable option for diners of different budgets.
Feel free to swing by the restaurant for breakfast or lunch, but fans recommend holding out for dinner.
For the highest rated Mexican food around, make Margaret's Cantina your first stop.
When you just want to relax and indulge in some Mexican fare, Margaret's Cantina has you covered.
Margaret's Cantina provides diners with a unique Mexican dining experience, so head on over today and enjoy some great eats.
Come for a tasty meal at Spanky's Restaurant and Bar that the whole family will love.
Ditch the dairy and meat and head to Spanky's Restaurant and Bar for a vegan meal.
This restaurant also operates a bar, so a round of drinks with dinner is not out of the question.
Having trouble finding that family-friendly restaurant everyone will love? This restaurant serves all ages, so little ones are welcome to come along, too.
Spanky's Restaurant and Bar easily accommodates large groups — there's even a reserved room available for extra special occasions.
Spanky's Restaurant and Bar's happy hour is filled with food and beverage deals.
Free wireless Internet is also available at Spanky's Restaurant and Bar, so bring your tablet or laptop along.
If your Friday or Saturday night plans include a trip to the restaurant, it's best to reserve a table before heading over.
Save your formal dress for another occasion — a nice top is the perfect fit for Spanky's Restaurant and Bar's business casual code.
Throwing a big party? Count on Spanky's Restaurant and Bar to provide top-notch catering with the same great dishes you love.
If you need to get somewhere fast, the restaurant also serves up grub to go.
Parking is available in the lot next door, as is valet. If the lot is full, street parking is also an option.
Spanky's Restaurant and Bar offers safe bike parking outside.
Spanky's Restaurant and Bar offers a wide variety of payment options, including payment by major credit card.
Spanky's Restaurant and Bar dishes up breakfast, lunch, and dinner, so stop by for your favorite meal.
When you have a hunger craving, head over to Spanky's Restaurant and Bar and treat yourself to an American classic.
Spanky's Restaurant and Bar serves up a variety of American eats in a casual setting. Swing by today and munch on some of your favorite dishes.
Carolina Brewery is a relaxed restaurant with an elegant decor and classic American dishes.
You'll find a wonderful selection of drinks from this restaurant's full bar to top off your meal.
This restaurant is great for families with kids.
Sit outside when the weather is fine — Carolina Brewery has a lovely patio to enjoy a warm day.
Stay in the loop (and online!) by tapping into Carolina Brewery's free wifi hotspot.
Parties of any size can easily be seated at Carolina Brewery.
Those with sensitive ears may want to stay away from this restaurant, though, as it can get quite loud.
No need to leave Fido outside — pooches are very welcome at Carolina Brewery.
For those who prefer to dress down for dinner, Carolina Brewery's low-key style is the perfect match.
Throwing a big party? Count on Carolina Brewery to provide top-notch catering with the same great dishes you love.
Just through the door at this restaurant, you can claim your food. No delivery required.
The restaurant is adjacent to a parking lot, where optional valet is also provided. Street parking is readily available as well.
Bike parking is quick and easy at Carolina Brewery.
At Carolina Brewery, you can ease your appetite and please your pocketbook
the menu offers a selection of mid-priced, budget-friendly meals.
Major credit cards are accepted as a form of payment, so patrons are advised to charge responsibly.
Breakfast, lunch, and dinner are all on Carolina Brewery's menu — you can stop by whenever the moment's right for you.
When you're feeling hungry, head on over to Carolina Brewery and indulge in a tasty and innovative American dish.
See what great American fare is cooking up next at Carolina Brewery.
So head on over to the highly-rated Carolina Brewery for some American eats and see what the buzz is all about.
Build your own burger at Top of the Hill Restaurant and Brewery — this restaurant serves all-American food.
Beer, wine, and more are also available from this restaurant's extensive drink list.
Little ones are free to make a mess at this restaurant, where the whole family is invited to dine.
Need to catch up on some work or the latest news? Get online at Top of the Hill Restaurant and Brewery with their complimentary wifi.
Sit outside when the weather is fine — Top of the Hill Restaurant and Brewery has a lovely patio to enjoy a warm day.
Top of the Hill Restaurant and Brewery is a great location to host a group dinner.
Slip into something more comfortable before dining at Top of the Hill Restaurant and Brewery, where dress code calls for business casual.
If you're strapped for time, take out food from this restaurant.
Love the food so much you want to serve it at your next soiree? No problem — Top of the Hill Restaurant and Brewery offers catering.
Top of the Hill Restaurant and Brewery is just steps away from a parking lot.
Store your bike safely at one of the main bike racks near Top of the Hill Restaurant and Brewery.
For great dishes that fall smack dab in the middle when it comes to price, Top of the Hill Restaurant and Brewery is a reasonable option for diners of different budgets.
Top of the Hill Restaurant and Brewery serves breakfast, lunch, and dinner, so stop by whenever is most convenient for you.
You'll definitely want to reconsider going anywhere else when the food at Top of the Hill Restaurant and Brewery tastes like pure heaven!
See what great American fare is cooking up next at Top of the Hill Restaurant and Brewery.
So head on over to the highly-rated Top of the Hill Restaurant and Brewery for some American eats and see what the buzz is all about.
If cooking isn't on the agenda, the perfect pie awaits you at Brixx Wood Fired Pizza, where customers praise the pizza like no other.
Eat healthy and feel better with Brixx Wood Fired Pizza's low-fat and gluten-free plates.
Pick your poison and toast your evening — drinks are also served here.
Families will feel right at home at this pizzeria with its kid-friendly menu and atmosphere.
Warm weather brings out Brixx Wood Fired Pizza's highly coveted patio seating.
Between the music and the crowds, be prepared for a lot of noise at this pizzeria.
For the tastes of Brixx Wood Fired Pizza from the comfort of your next party, the pizzeria also offers catering services.
At this pizzeria, you can work your arms a little. Pick up the food yourself and carry it out.
Don't waste time on public transportation! Bring your own wheels to the pizzeria and easily park nearby.
If cycling is more your speed, you'll find plenty of space to stash your bike outside the pizzeria.
Brixx Wood Fired Pizza s mid-range cuisine will please your pockets as well as your palate.
Supper is exceptional, though the pizzeria also offers breakfast and lunch.
Roni, sausage, and veggie are just a few of the delicious options at Brixx Wood Fired Pizza. Taste the shining reviews for yourself when you head to Brixx Wood Fired Pizza for a tasty pizza pie.
For a low-key yet delicious pizza experience, people can't stop talking about the pies at Brixx Wood Fired Pizza. Swing by for a quick bite next time pizza's on the agenda.
Brixx Wood Fired Pizza serves up great pieces of pizza in an even better atmosphere for entertaining you and your gang.
When you don't feel like cooking dinner, pay Brixx Wood Fired Pizza a visit and enjoy a hot and fresh pizza pie.
Siu mai: small pork dumplings. Each has a thin wrapper that needs to be delicately pleated by hand. Easily, they’re one of the most labor-intensive items at Phoenix Restaurant in Chicago, where each weekend this Chinese restaurant serves 80 different varieties of classic dim sum snacks.
This little fact about the siu mai is one of many surprising stories I learn from Eddy, the chef at Phoenix, where he also handles a million other tasks to keep the restaurant running smoothly. When I first came in, he was waving at a group of regulars while on the phone haggling with a seafood vendor.
“What we are serving in this restaurant is what we are eating in Hong Kong. ... It’s very typical,” Eddy says.
In 1996, Phoenix was one of the first restaurants to introduce dim sum to Chicago. Its customer base has grown over the years, and today, even with other dim sum restaurants up and down the block, you’ll find long lines winding out the door on any given Sunday.
Sound intimidating? It doesn't have to be.
Here's our guide to dim-sum dining, with a few tips from Eddy.
On the weekend: order dim sum off a cart
On weekends and special holidays, the wait staff winds traditional dim sum carts around tables, lifting lids off stacked steamer baskets to reveal the enticing contents. Should you see something you like, they leave the basket on your table and put a checkmark on your bill (it’s tallied at the end).
Phoenix is one of the only dim-sum restaurants in Chicago that still uses these carts. When I ask Eddy why they keep them, he says “tradition.” Not only to impress the tourists who come in, but also to let Chinese-American customers share this bit of culture with their kids.
Hot tip: if you want to experience the pushcarts without the crowds, head over on a Saturday, which tends to be less busy than Sundays, Eddy says.
On a weekday: order dim sum off the menu
Cartless weekdays offer a quiet, more peaceful atmosphere for ordering off the paper menu, which you can find near the hostess stand. Don't be intimidated—the menu has pictures; it has numbers; it has names written in both Chinese and English. And best of all, you need only point to what you want to have it brought out from the kitchen.
So what should you get?
“Everyone has their favorites,” Eddy says. The most popular dishes with Westerners are ha gao (shrimp dumplings) and siu mai (pork dumplings mentioned above). Kids gravitate toward the crunchy, easy-to-grip shrimp rolls and sweeter fare, from mango pudding (pictured above) to custard rolls.
Foreign travelers, especially those from Latin America, and adventurous eaters alike seem to love the chicken feet (pictured at bottom-right of top photo), a more exotic dish consisting of skin and tendons. While all these dishes are traditional, the chefs can tweak the recipes to accommodate for special diets or food allergies.
When diners are new to dim sum, Eddy encourages them to experiment. He’ll point out a few of the more popular dishes; if there’s something they don’t end up liking, it can easily be swapped out for something else. This way, by the second or third visit, diners will have a better idea of what they like.
And don't forget the tea
At dim sum, the tea is equally important to the food. Phoenix serves three different types: green tea, white tea, and brown tea. “Each one has its own usage,” Eddy says. While we talk, we drink jasmine tea, which is good for getting rid of toxins.
You can show your dim sum know-how by obeying proper tea etiquette. When your teapot is out of water, prop the lid off to the side. This signals to the wait staff that you need more hot water.
Eddy pours more tea and tells me to tap my fingers lightly against the table when the cup is nearly full. “When your friend or host fills your tea, this means ‘thank you’,” he says. “It’s part of the custom.”
Photos by Andrew Nawrocki, Groupon
I had no idea what to expect upon arriving at Elizabeth, the Michelin Star winner from Chef Iliana Regan. But an unmarked, unremarkable storefront between a tire shop and a sporting-goods store certainly wasn’t it. With few exceptions (Schwa, most notably), Chicago’s upper-echelon restaurants boast exteriors that match their illustrious River North and Restaurant Row addresses.
But as it turns out, Regan has no taste for that sort of superficial flash. She dons no chef’s whites. She displays no awards. She does not raise her voice to the Gordon Ramsay–level roar or even the Rachael Ray-ish rollick that TV cameras eat up.
Instead, this northwest Indiana native quietly built her reputation as someone who hunts for frogs and spears them herself. Someone who has suffered tick bites and poison-ivy rashes foraging for wild flora. Someone who has penned an essay on intensity for Lucky Peach and once themed an Elizabeth tasting menu after those violent and visceral A Song of Ice and Fire novels.
So yeah, I was kinda terrified to eat her food.
I’d never done a tasting menu before. And I wouldn’t necessarily classify myself as a picky eater, but I’m not a particularly adventurous one either, particularly when it comes to meat. (I can barely look at plated octopus without shivering.) I’d heard that Regan once served edible ants. Which are, like, bugs.
My nerves were calmed upon walking into Elizabeth, though. Austere yet charming, the whitewashed space was accented by light fixtures made from bare tree branches; dining chairs draped with faux-fur slipcovers; a chef’s counter armed with Elder Scrolls and Vikings Funko Pop! dolls. It was all in support of the season’s menu theme: vikings.
There were two options: land or sea. Or, as the first in a delightful succession of servers explained it, “Imagine a viking ship has reached the shore. One group goes on land to look for food, the other into the sea.” My friend Erin and I opted to order one of each to share and, despite my trepidation of certain meats, placed no restrictions on what we would eat. (You can arrange for some allergies and dietary needs in advance.) We wanted to go all in.
After the amuse-bouche—a surprisingly complex roasted whey carrot dressed with goat’s-milk cheese and edible flowers—came our first courses. The land dish was … a bowl of rocks. The server assured me the top “rock” was actually a baked potato coated in edible clay. But it was very convincing as a rock, so I bit in with trepidation. As Erin ate the rest, dipping it into the cheese and butter puddings it was served with, I forked into her langoustine with lingonberries. (Pro tip: don’t try to tear off the claw without looking. You will stab your finger on a spine.) So far, so very good.
As the servers continued to weave their culinary narrative, I realized there was an unmentioned character in their tale—Elizabeth itself. The restaurant is small, seating about 16 or so, and the kitchen is wide open. It was impossible not to get caught up in what was happening back there, particularly when sous chefs were wielding brûlée torches and “plating” on gorgeous pieces of handmade pottery. And the line between front and back of house was practically nonexistent. One moment, you’d see someone in the kitchen stirring and slicing; the next they’d be presenting your next course or clearing your table. (Chef Regan included.)
This created an unexpected intimacy, one that removed any hesitation when asking about a particular dish. It’s clear the teammates take a deep yet quiet pride in their collective work. They spoke warmly about where ingredients came from, excitedly about the preparation techniques used. They always used “we” or “our,” never “me” or “Chef Regan.” (Again, Chef Regan included.)
Over the next few courses, there were so many charms. An herb-rolled, soft-boiled quail egg served in an actual nest; impossibly chewy seaweed bread darkened by squid ink; a cauliflower-mushroom soup that Erin about died over. I was particularly fond of a course called Barnyard: headcheese dusted with beet powder, paired with a collage of root vegetables and flavored puddings reminiscent of something out of the Art Institute of Chicago’s Modern Wing.
And that’s the thing. Never in my life would I have thought that I’d be fond of headcheese. I would have probably never eaten it if it weren’t for this meal. But it was fun to break out of my culinary comfort zone.
The other surprising thing? How full we were, considering it was a tasting menu. By the time we were served the entree courses—rare lamb medallions wrapped in swiss chard and pickled fish in a sauce of its own bones—we were taking deep breaths between bites. I’m pretty sure they were the only two plates we didn’t completely clean.
We managed to buck up for our “one-and-a-half” dessert courses, as the server put it. (The “half” was a palate-cleansing sorbet.) Our favorite was Under the Sea, a spongy coral-seaweed cake so realistic looking it prompted me to ask the server just how much of it we could eat. “All of it,” she said. We complied.
Maybe, as a writer, I’m just a sucker for a good story. But I was enchanted by Elizabeth, both in backstory and in not knowing what was coming next throughout the culinary adventure. And while I probably won’t be buying headcheese any time soon, I’m excited to see what Chef Regan has up her non-chef’s-whites sleeves next season.
Shop Chef Iliana Regan's tasting-menu experience at Elizabeth Restaurant:
Watch her explain her approach to fine dining:
As useful as WD40 and much more edible, coconut oil is a powerhouse. In fact, just one jar of the stuff can replace several household staples, from kitchen ingredients to baby wipes. Here’s how to substitute it for 16 total items in 3 rooms of the home:
1. Coffee: Coconut oil is a reputed energy booster. Swallowing a spoonful or two in the afternoon can be a healthful alternative to a cuppa.2. Coffee creamer: Emulsified and poured into coffee, it’s much tastier than (and probably just as nutritious as) that bulletproof stuff.3. Butter or oil (when sautéing): Coconut oil’s high smoke point makes it great for cooking on the stovetop, especially at high heat. Try swapping it in when making stir-fries, scrambled eggs, or pancakes, especially if you like a very mild coconut flavor.4. Oil (when baking): The oil imparts a delicious je ne sais quoi to baked goods—even boxed ones. Use it to give from-the-box brownies an upgrade, and you’ll dream about them for days.5. Condiments: Drop it into quinoa or oatmeal for added nutrients and healthy fats. You can also put it on top of sweet potatoes instead of butter!
6. Moisturizer: It works on your body and your face. It’s naturally SPF 4, so it offers a bit of protection from UV rays, too.7. Leave-in conditioner and anti-static agent: Rub a small amount between your hands and smooth them over your hair to control flyaways.8. Lip balm: It soothes sore, chapped lips, and other skin irritations.9. Eye-makeup remover: Rub it between your fingers until it liquefies, smear it on your lids, and wipe it off with a cotton pad.10. Face wash: Add a little water and rub it in your hands until it foams.11. Hand and foot cream: Massage it into cracked knuckles, or slather it onto your soles and stick them into socks for an overnight soak.12. Shaving cream: It’ll give you a smooth shave, plus additional moisture for your skin.
13. Ouchie ointment: Dab it on cuts and scrapes, which will benefit from its antimicrobial properties.14. Anti-itch cream: Coconut oil reduces itching from bug bites, and helps to calm sunburn, eczema, and cradle cap.15. Diaper cream: A layer on baby’s bottom guards against (and soothes) diaper rash flare-ups.16. Baby wipes: Simply mix it with hot water and pour it over a stack of paper towels that you’ve cut in half. Keep the towels in an airtight container so they stay moist.
Check out more coconut-oil coverage:
Oil Pulling Whitens Your Teeth and (Maybe) Makes You Invincible
The Five Best Uses for Coconut Oil You’ve Never Heard Of