Refectory Cafe

4.5
307 Reviews
$30 and under
American
Established in 2005, The Refectory Cafe was the first “Green” restaurant on the Duke campus and was located at the Duke Divinity School. The Refectory Cafe focused on social & environmental sustainability, healthy dining and sourcing from local farms.
The award-winning Refectory Cafe was to be a “one-of-a-kind” local farm to table restaurant where omnivores, vegetarians, vegans, plant-based, KETO and gluten-free diets could all happily share a table together in the same facility. Every diet classification could delight in delicious, satisfying, creative food from a common menu, while enjoying the health benefits of consuming nutrient-dense meals devoid of chemical additives – all while practicing social & environmental sustainability.

Offers

  • Afternoon Delights!

    Multiple dates available

    Mon - Fri 2:30 PM - 4:30 PM, Sat 3:00 PM - 4:30 PM

    Enjoy a variety of small-plates Monday-Friday from 2:30pm-4:30pm and Saturday from 3pm-4:30pm

Safety precautions

Cleaning & Sanitizing
  • Surfaces sanitized between seatings
  • Common areas deep cleaned daily
  • Digital, disposable or sanitized menu provided
  • Sanitizer or wipes provided for customers
  • Contactless payment available
  • Sealed or wrapped utensils used
Physical Distancing
  • Limited number of seated diners
  • Distancing maintained in common areas
  • Extra space between tables
Protective Equipment
  • Waitstaff wear masks
Screening
  • Sick staff prohibited in the workplace
  • Staff temperature check required
What 307 people are saying
Overall ratings and reviews
Reviews can only be made by diners who have eaten at this restaurant
4.5based on recent ratings
4.6
food
4.4
service
4.3
ambience
4.3
value
Noise · Moderate
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T
vipTheaterpatron
Raleigh
7 reviews
Dined 3 days ago
Overall5food5service5ambience5

When I made the reservation on Wednesday morning. When I texted it to the OOT couple we were having dinner with they happened to be driving there for breakfast. By the time we picked them up Thursday night for dinner they told us they had breakfast both mornings and lunch. They loved and we did to. The food was excellent and the service was superb!

MA
MikiA
Raleigh
1 review
Dined 5 days ago
Overall3food4service2ambience4

Shrimp and grits were too salty, BUT: Order the pistachio cheesecake. You won’t regret it. Our group of four enjoyed our lunch outing very much.

OT
OpenTable Diner
Raleigh
4 reviews
Dined 7 days ago
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Love the people who work there and the food is amazing.

MJ
MikeJay
Atlanta
27 reviews
Dined 7 days ago
Overall4food4service4ambience3

In town to visit our daughter for Duke Parent Weekend, and wanted to do brunch before leaving. Food was good. Like the little reserved card with our name and time. Nice touch! Overall glad my wife found the Refactory!

Refectory Cafe
Responded 6 days ago

Thank you! Delighted that you loved the food & service. :-)

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K
Karen
Dallas
1 review
Dined on October 16, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Everything was wonderful…food, service and atmosphere!

l
lisa
New York Area
4 reviews
Dined on October 16, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Visiting our son @duke
Brunch with two other families - great good
Staff was exceptional

Refectory Cafe
Responded 6 days ago

Thanks very much! We look forward to serving you again on your next visit!

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T
Trevor
1 review
Dined on October 16, 2021
Overall5food5service4ambience5

The Refectory Cafe is a great restaurant with stellar food.

Refectory Cafe
Responded 6 days ago

Thank you very much, we love "stellar food" and "great restaurant" - we strive for both. Thanks for the 5-star review!

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J
vipJellybean
New York Area
3 reviews
Dined on October 15, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

I had the special of the day, Halibut, both the presentation and taste are superb! My daughter had chicken Marsala, great! My husband had bolognese pasta, classic but great! Super friendly service! I will definitely go back again when we visit our daughter in college.

Refectory Cafe
Responded 6 days ago

Thank you Jellybean! We appreciate the shoutout and look forward to serving you again soon!

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k
ksh88
1 review
Dined on October 15, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience4

Fantastic, fresh food and terrific service. We had a great time.

Refectory Cafe
Responded 6 days ago

Many thanks ksh, we appreciate the 5-stars and the shoutout!

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C
Chasyz
Raleigh
4 reviews
Dined on October 10, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Awesome service and the food was top notch. We had the vegan huevos rancheros and vegan pancakes. Very nicely prepared and flavorful. The latte was a nice addition as well.

Refectory Cafe
Responded 6 days ago

Thank you Chasy! Love the "top notch" review. We strive to produce the best food and service consistently.

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GT
vipGrayT
Western NC
15 reviews
Dined on October 9, 2021
Overall5food5service4ambience4

We had the Halibut special, the gnocchi and the Bolognese. All were delicious. The severs were a bit overwhelmed at first but things got into the grove after a while

Refectory Cafe
Responded 6 days ago

Many thanks Gray, we are grateful for the 5-star review.

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l
viplucyfromboston
Washington DC
33 reviews
Dined on October 8, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Great vegetarian and vegan options. Everything was delicious! Good service and excellent value.

Refectory Cafe
Responded 6 days ago

You rock Lucy from Boston! Thank you for the amazing review. We are grateful you enjoyed your experience and hope to serve you again soon! Happy travels!

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IL
IvyL
1 review
Dined on October 8, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

The Brussel sprouts was delicious as was our entree. The lemon pie chocolate latte pie were the best. Staff helpful and very attentive but she did not hover! Overall, excellent choice for dinner! Thank you!

Refectory Cafe
Responded 6 days ago

Thank you Ivy, we appreciate the 5-STAR review, it means a lot to the entire staff. We are grateful. :-)

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C
vipCharming
London
17 reviews
Dined on October 5, 2021
Overall4food5service5ambience4

The food was delicious and creative. Service was great and the outdoor seating was covered and pleasant. Desserts were wonderful and a nice wine list! Definitely will be back on our next trip through Durham!!

BD
BeckyD
1 review
Dined on September 25, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

A great place to meet friends and enjoy the many choices of foods. Service was quick and the food temperature was perfect. Plan to return frequently

JH
JamesH
Raleigh
1 review
Dined on September 24, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience4

After two visits this is now our go-to restaurant, with wonderful and imaginative food, excellent service and ambience.

OT
OpenTable Diner
San Francisco
2 reviews
Dined on September 23, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Love the diverse menu. My avo toast was fantastic!

OT
OpenTable Diner
Baltimore
1 review
Dined on September 18, 2021
Overall3food4service2ambience2

Food overall wasn’t bad but some of the sides were cold compared to main items placed on top maybe just a timing issue wait staff was struggling you better plan to only have one drink because you won’t get asked for another we were missing silverware staff gladly brought us some with one napkin so I hope you like sharing napkins and you probably shouldn’t bring kids took 15 minutes to find a kids menu.

DP
DarcyP
Baltimore
7 reviews
Dined on September 18, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Arrived before brunch ended thankfully! Portions were great for the price, and the mimosa flight was perfect. Would definitely recommend.

CK
CindyK
Denver
1 review
Dined on September 18, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

The chicken quesadilla was flavorful and big. The carrot pumpkin cheesecake was a nice treat.

WO
vipmlh100WOW
Raleigh
30 reviews
Dined on September 15, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

As always a great choice for meeting friends for a meal.

OT
OpenTable Diner
Raleigh
1 review
Dined on September 11, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Everything was perfect! Drinks, dinner, and dessert all 10/10

OT
vipOpenTable Diner
Raleigh
4 reviews
Dined on September 11, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

other than one surly waitress, the wonderful food and wonderful ambiance created a truly special experience

L
Lance
Raleigh
1 review
Dined on September 8, 2021
Overall3food3service5ambience4

Solid experience. Nothing spectacular. Simply over priced.

d
vipdyner
San Francisco
33 reviews
Dined on September 5, 2021
Overall5food4service5ambience4

Everything was good. Service was excellent though more than one person at the register would have made the wait less significant. Food was also excellent but they need to work on the toast. Two of us had toast as part of our meals and it was as hard as a rock. Someone needs to see about that.

J
Josh
Raleigh
4 reviews
Dined on September 5, 2021
Overall5food4service4ambience5

The food was great and an excellent value. The menu is creative and the food did not disappoint. Waiting to order was a bit long, but we were there at the most crowded Sunday brunch time.

L
Localfoodie
Philadelphia
32 reviews
Dined on September 3, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Fabulous halibut special. Loved the music, service, food. Best restaurant we have visited during our trip to the Durham area!

SF
SandraF
1 review
Dined on August 31, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience4

Went out with a friend and we shared the Hoisin Short Ribs and the Gnocchi with chicken, both dishes were excellent and I would get them again. We also had the Hoisin Brussel Sprouts which were outstanding. The service was great and the atmosphere welcoming. Will be returning soon.

Refectory Cafe
Responded on September 3, 2021

Thank you Sandra, we are thrilled that you were so happy with the food & service! We aim to please! We look forward to serving you again soon! Bon Appetit! Laura

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CJ
CecilyJ
Atlanta
10 reviews
Dined on August 29, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Chicken & waffles were great, huevos rancheros the veggies were so fresh & the short rib so tender.

Refectory Cafe
Responded on September 3, 2021

Wow, Cecily, many thanks for the 5-stars across the board! Our pastry Chef makes that waffle recipe and OMG those Huevos, we agree with your assessment. On behalf of the entire staff, thanks very much for the recommendation. We look forward to serving you again soon! Gratefully, Laura

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JP
JoshP
1 review
Dined on August 28, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Easily one of the bet meals I have had in a while. Their salmon was to die for, and the cheese plate starter was delicious.

Refectory Cafe
Responded on September 3, 2021

Thank you Josh! Sustainably raised salmon and it is delicious! We love that whipped Feta on the cheese plate, our Executive Chef knows what he is doing. :-) Thanks very much for the 5-star review - our staff works to provide a 5-star experience to all of our guests. We are delighted that you enjoyed "one of the best meals in a while" at The Refectory Cafe. Many thanks, Laura

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WO
vipmlh100WOW
Raleigh
30 reviews
Dined on August 27, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Couldn’t have been any better!

Refectory Cafe
Responded on September 3, 2021

Woohoo!! Thank you very much. WE love celebrating with our guests. Thank you for choosing The Refectory Cafe for your special day AND for sharing your experience. Happy Birthday! Laura

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OT
OpenTable Diner
Birmingham
1 review
Dined on August 21, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience4

Excellent food and service. Definitely will go there next time we are in Durham

D
vipDavid
Charlotte
59 reviews
Dined on August 20, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

As always service - food and staff were all fantastic- always recommended this wonderful restaurant

Refectory Cafe
Responded on September 3, 2021

Thank you very much David - we love "fantastic" and are grateful for your recommendations. Gratefully, Laura

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R
robertR
New York Area
2 reviews
Dined on August 20, 2021
Overall3food3service4ambience3

I ordered the brkfst with cheese grits. OK. Cheese grits too salty; bacon too leathery. Egg seemed to be poached rather than fried. Only one slice of toast and when asked for jam only a dot was brought.

B
Bill
1 review
Dined on August 20, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Food = great, as always. Warm and welcoming staff, as always - with extra gratitude for young woman staff who was so patient and welcoming (including bringing water in dog bowl) for my visiting brother-in-law's dog (we ate outside). Wonderful service, both for visiting dog and us two humans = beyond the call of duty... heartwarming and endearing - adding to confirmation that The Refectory is a Favorite of mine, with or without out-of-town visitors! [One explanatory note: My previous response of "moderate" as to how noisy was: we were outdoors with outdoors ambient noise - so my response was not meant to be a 'negative' nor it was something that needed correcting.]

Refectory Cafe
Responded on September 3, 2021

Thank you very much Bill. I loved your review and delighted that you so love The Refectory Cafe. We are lucky to have you. Thank you for taking the time to share your thoughts. The staff loves to read these reviews, they are great positive reinforcement and we are so fortunate to have everyone who works at The Refectory Cafe. This meant a lot, Laura

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s
vipshbc64
New York Area
29 reviews
Dined on August 19, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

So many great options and the fig special was outstanding!

Refectory Cafe
Responded on September 3, 2021

Woohoo! Thank you. You made our day! Gratefully, Laura

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M
Morton
Western NC
3 reviews
Dined on August 18, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Excellent service and food. First time dining there. Would definitely return

LO
LarryO
1 review
Dined on August 17, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Excellent food and service. Met my husband’s dietary needs with ease. Quaint. Superb desserts.

OT
vipOpenTable Diner
Minneapolis
2 reviews
Dined on August 10, 2021
Overall4food5service3ambience3

Food was great. Service was slow. No refills on drinks, multiple servers stopping at our table seemingly unaware of where we were in our meal. Asking about desert after an appetizer etc. I would go back I think it was an off night. They clearly run a great restaurant

L
Lori
Philadelphia
1 review
Dined on August 9, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Charming. Ate outdoors. Reminded me of the diner in Waitress, in a good way.

FAQs

Refectory Cafe offers takeout which you can order by calling the restaurant at (919) 908-6798.

Refectory Cafe is rated 4.5 stars by 307 OpenTable diners.

Yes, you can generally book this restaurant by choosing the date, time and party size on OpenTable. Due to local restrictions, this restaurant may not be accepting reservations at the moment.