Welcome back to Durham for Moogfest 2018. It's going to be a marathon so plan accordingly. Stay hydrated, stretch, take a couple deep breaths, and prepare yourself for a hazy, adventurous weekend. Here's a few recommendations for shops, galleries, restaurants and bars to round out your festival experience. Godspeed, Moogfesters.
From Durham's hottest food truck to the second floor above The Pinhook, Pie Pushers has made its name as one of the best, and few, places downtown that serves food after 10pm. Plus, it's in close proximity to the footprint of the festival.
Best Selection: Dan's Zza
One of the best deals in all of Durham. Start your morning off right with an assortment of flatbreads, croissants, and other baked goods that will have you on your way to carb heaven.
Best Selection: Any of the day's flatbreads.
A relative newcomer to the downtown food scene, their ramen rivals that of any other options in Durham (sans homemade recipes). Find it tucked away in the alley next to The Durham Hotel.
Best Selection: Toss up between the ramen and the chicken sandwich.
The Parlour Ice Cream
The lines are always long but have patience; it's worth it. Using fresh, local ingredients, the creamers at The Parlour always keep a steady diet of classic and unique flavors to test your palette.
Best Selection: Vietnamese Coffee
With all the coffee options downtown, consider taking the path less traveled and choosing from a substantial collection of teas and infusions available at their Geer St. location near Motorco Music Hall. For the real adventure, take a trip out to their Lakewood location for a break in the action, a place to catch up on your reading and enjoy delicious churros.
Best Selection: Chai Latte
Location: 420 W. Geer St, Durham, NC 27701
Great service and a solid coffee selection! Pop in midday, find a window seat and watch the hustle and bustle of downtown Durham as you savor a sweet and spicy Runaway Latte. *This is not a paid endorsement. We traded.*
Best Selection: Runaway Latte
Started by Tatiana Birgisson in her dorm room at Duke, MATI Energy is one of the fastest growing companies in the region. Oh, and the drinks are delicious and effective! Plan on keeping one on you at all times during your stay.
Best Selection: Blueberry Pomegranate
The Durham Hotel
Take a load off and stop by The Durham Hotel for a tranquil view of downtown. Grab yourself a drink from their selection of coffees, juices, and teas and contemplate life's greatest mysteries.
Best Selection: Coffee Soda
Location: 315 E. Chapel Hill St, Durham, NC 27701
For those of us who get more competitive the more they drink, challenge your friends and your alcohol tolerance to a night of darts, pool, shuffleboard and bocce ball. Bring in the weekend's festivities on a high note with a visit on Thursday night for $5 Bourbon & Bud and cap it off at Release: A Festival Closing Party with Moogfest alum Hubbble. Godspeed.
Best Selection: Bourbon & Bud for $5 (Thursday Only)
It's easy to lose yourself in the ambiance (and the deep selection of bourbon). The weird art and great bar staff make us feel right at home.
If this was the ramen fueling America's colleges, we'd have solved all the world's problems by now. Not to mention the sake list is one-of-a-kind. For all my music heads, make sure to ask for Gabe. He's like real-life Wikipedia.
Best Selection: Mazemen
Ponysaurus Brewing Co.
Take a break from the fancy cocktails and get yourself a real drink. Appetizers include cheetos, wasabi balls, peanuts and Swedish fish. Can't go wrong.
Best Selection: Scottish Ale
Get a two-for-one when you visit the museum hotel as you grab a drink from Counting House and explore the carefully curated exhibitions that line the 1st and 2nd floor galleries. Want to try your hand at something avant garde? Leave the bathroom door unlocked. You'll create a real masterpiece.
Make a point to stop by Pleiades during your journey through downtown on Durham Third Friday. The work of Pleiades' talented member artists will be on full display.
Best Selection: FREESTYLE exhibition curated by member artists.
Paperback purists, rejoice! The digital revolution hasn't won just yet. Inhale the sweet scent of pen and ink while you grab a copy of the newest Coates or keep it local with 27 Views of Durham. And remember, fuck Barnes & Noble.
Best Selection: 27 Views of Durham
Come get abducted at the Mothership (formerly Mercury Studio and The Makery) and pick up an assortment of high quality goods from local Durham artisans.
Best Selection: The Mothership Skull Tee
Carolina Soul Records
Vinyl might outlast us all. Carolina Soul keeps a well-stocked, well-curated collection of classics and current jams. Stop by on the right evening and you'll find producers and beatmakers from Raund Haus diggin' in the crates and making sweet analog/digital love.
Best Selection: Any record Stones Throw releases.
Location: 117 E. Main St, Durham, NC 27701
We'll leave the lights off for you.
Best Selection: Take your pick.