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Scooping up old-school nostalgia with Kayla’s Kones

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WILMINGTON –– “I remember when I was a kid, my friends and I would hear the ice-cream truck music, and we would stop and take off running through Hillcrest,” Nikishiea McKnight said. The entrepreneur always had a preference for the Nutty Buddy.  She now serves it on her own ice cream truck, Kayla’s Kones, which McKnight […]

A coastal casual approach: Blue Surf debuts second restaurant with open-air space in Arboretum West

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WILMINGTON — Thirty years ago Military Cutoff Road was two lanes and pretty barren, Cathy Pleasant said as she sipped a glass of red wine with her husband Scottie at the newly opened Blue Surf Cafe Arboretum West. The Pleasants have lived on “this side of town” for more than 30 years, they concurred. “There was […]

Smashing onto the scene: Grimm Burger food truck debuts Saturday

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WILMINGTON — Nearly burnt edges, juicy thin patties — that’s what Grimm Burger is all about. The new food truck will launch Saturday at Randall Parkway’s Flying Machine Brewing Co. “Smash burgers cook really quickly and still have a lot of flavor,” owner Matt Grimm told Port City Daily Tuesday. Grimm and his wife, Sammy Jo, […]

Triple sales, double capacity: Ogden nets its own Carolina Fish Fry, set to open by end of summer

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NEW HANOVER COUNTY –– Carolina Fish Fry Co. owner Tyler Morgan said it’s normal to churn out 180 orders of fresh fried fish a night. And that’s working with only three fryers in his 1,800-square-foot Market Street eatery.  By the end of the summer, Morgan will be operating a second Carolina Fish Fry, double the space […]

Mobile eatery Point Break revs up to expand operations, open first brick and mortar

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NEW HANOVER COUNTY –– “Some people are calling me ‘chef’ now,” restaurateur Ryan Trotter told Port City Daily Thursday. “I’m not a chef. I’m just a systems guy who can create processes, which is how to create consistent products.” Trotter has been operating a meal-package and catering service, Point Break, out of a ghost kitchen (a […]

From pepperoni to shrimp, the Vinny’s brand on Carolina Beach expands with new seafood express

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CAROLINA BEACH, N.C. — In the world of Vinny Doria, seafood and pizza are mainstays. The seasoned restaurateur just launched his second eatery, Vinny’s Seafood Express, on Carolina Beach after operating Uncle Vinny’s Pizzeria Ristorante for 11 years. It marks the 40th restaurant Doria guesses he has opened during his 43 years working in the […]

Flying Machine Brewing Co. prepares to open first taproom and cookery in Wrightsville Beach

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WRIGHTSVILLE BEACH –– Flying Machine Brewing Co. is getting into the restaurant game. Co-founders Grant Steadman and David Sweigart are a few weeks away from launching location number two: Flying Machine at Wrightsville Beach Taproom + Kitchen. It will boast a special cocktail program featuring its beers, as well as coastal cuisine.  “We thought at a […]

Niche Kitchen and Bar closes its doors, points to unemployment policies adding to the decision

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NEW HANOVER COUNTY —  Carolina Beach Road has one less restaurant serving the south side of the county. Niche Kitchen and Bar announced on its answering machine and on a note posted to the business’ doors that it’s closing after 11 years in business. The note points to the government’s unemployment benefits as the cause […]

Front Street Brewery transforms third-floor event space into The Tap Room

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WILMINGTON — On June 1, Front Street Brewery (FSB) blew out 26 candles, celebrating more than two decades as Wilmington’s first craft brewery. It’s also ushering in the transformation of what was once its third-floor event space, the Beam Room. According to public relations manager Ellie Craig, The Tap Room at Front Street Brewery, which opened […]

‘You never know what life’s gonna bring’: Britts Donuts’ owner talks passing the baton, helping build a local institution

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CAROLINA BEACH — “We have worked hard,” Bobby Nivens said, reflecting back on his 49 years owning and operating Britts Donuts in Carolina Beach. “We never take a day off during the summer unless we have to go to a funeral.” Nivens has been running the local institution six out of 12 months a year, churning […]