What’s better than great beer and food? How about great beer and food with the best view of downtown Raleigh thrown in!
We remember first coming to this site six years ago when it was formerly called Boylan Bridge Brewpub. We liked it then (well, the location at least), but we LOVE it now as Wye Hill Kitchen and Brewing.
You know when you go to a place and love it, whether it’s a restaurant, a brewery, a coffee shop or even your vacation spot and it becomes your go-to place for many reasons and occasions – that’s Wye Hill for us!
We’ve recently been here to celebrate my birthday, to celebrate getting our Green Cards, for brunch, lunch, and just to enjoy an afternoon beer and cocktail, or three!
But our love for this location started even before current owners Chris and Sara took over in 2019 and renamed and totally revamped the space.
I remember the days of Boylan Bridge Brewpub, sitting outside on the patio overlooking downtown Raleigh with our local friend talking of our love of travel and of Raleigh, and dreaming up ways we could somehow call Raleigh our permanent home.
The beer and food wasn’t great back then, but the views and memories always stand out!
Fast forward to 2020, we’ve made our dream come true and now when we sit atop the hill by the Wye Junction in the railroad tracks that flows beneath the historic Boylan Bridge, we not only get to savior that same fantastic view (although new buildings have gone up), but the beer and food at Wye Hill has gone way up too!
What you can expect at Wye Hill Kitchen & Brewing
As they say, come for their refreshing brews and creative food and stay for the fantastic views!
Chris and Sara and their team totally revamped the space, the food, and the beer and the much needed facelift now lives up to the prime location.
To be honest, I can’t even recall any of the former menu options or beers, they just weren’t memorable. Now we’re always talking with friends and recommending out of towners eat here. Same story with the beer!
When you come here, you can expect innovative meals with a healthy twist, an amazing outdoor patio area or cozy indoor seating, refreshing craft beers, signature cocktails, and wine.
There’s a fun casual atmosphere that’s perfect for a group of friends, a date, or a family like ours.
We’ve been eating and drinking our way through Raleigh restaurants and breweries, and all across the USA and around the world for 20 years and we’re happy to call Wye Hill one of the best places to eat in Raleigh.
First and foremost, let’s talk more about the outstanding patio space. In my mind, it’s the best patio in Raleigh, certainly with the best views of the downtown Raleigh skyline.
The improvements they have made since the old Boylan Bridge Brewpub days and continue to make are very noticeable and a vast improvement.
The updated pergola has a covered roof for shade and rain protection, there’s heaters for the cooler months, and misters/fans to help make the North Carolina midday heat and humidity in summer more bearable.
If you don’t want to sit undercover, you have that option too (our favorite on a gorgeous fall afternoon or summer night).
There’s plenty of space between tables and you can take in the views no matter where you are seated.
Keep in mind the patio does not face the setting sun, but you get gorgeous light saturating the downtown skyline as the sun sets behind you!
All up, it’s a beautiful outdoor space, and in this crazy year that calls for outdoor dining, it’s hard to beat – dog friendly too!
Inside there’s a cozy bar and small lounge area with a large screen TV for watching the game. We haven’t personally dined inside yet, but just from walking through here it seems like a comfortable space to hang out if the weather drives you indoors.
I don’t hesitate when I say some of the best, and most interesting and diverse food we’ve eaten in Raleigh is at Wye Hill.
Their chef is obviously talented and creative and it amazes us that they can even make broccoli taste good!
Whilst it has the name “brewery” attached, don’t come here expecting your typical pub grub or brewery food, there’s nothing really traditional here – this is more innovative, like a Gastropub (specializing in high-quality food) with an emphasis placed on North Carolina ingredients and unique twists on familiar dishes. This is one of the best local restaurants, period.
There’s a welcome offering of choices for everyday carnivores to vegetarians and several choices for those seeking gluten free options like us, and some vegan offerings.
And they typically have a children’s menu which we appreciate as a family.
Their food is always fresh, original and the presentation on point and served in a timely manner.
We’ve dined here for lunch several times, brunch, and at other times just ordering small plates from their Snacks & Shareables list with drinks!
On the main menu are creative starters, plus larger plates and sides. Our favorites being the Roasted Beet Hummus and Charred Broccoli.
For brunch recently (we are currently on the hunt for the best brunch spots in Raleigh), we enjoyed the Steak and Egg Frites, and our kids the French Toast. And if you like omelettes, the Mushroom Omelet has a nice balance of egg to filling ratio.
Other popular items are the Deviled Eggs, Fried Green Tomatoes, Beer Cheese Fries, Shrimp & Grits, Southern Saltimbocca, and Falafel Waffle (vegan).
What we like is that their menu changes relatively frequently, so each time we go back we can eat our favorites, or try some new interesting choices.
Lawrence BBQ Popup
Another cool food option at Wye Hill is the Lawrence BBQ popup each Monday and Tuesday from 5pm – 9pm.
We love that the folks at Wye Hill allow a food truck to take over their kitchen for two nights – great community sharing – and their BBQ is good, we got it to go recently!
Definitely put Wye Hill on your list of Downtown Raleigh restaurants.
I’m happy to say that the beer selections and quality greatly improved under the new name and ownership as well, and this is one of our favorite Raleigh breweries even without the views and food!
And whilst this is a Brewpub, there are some great signature cocktails and wine on the menu too.
Now, the beer list might be short, but every beer I’ve tasted has been worth the purchase and refreshing and flavorful, and would rank them among the best breweries in Raleigh.
Depending on the season, they serve a range from IPAs to Pilsners to Porters to Ales and Stouts – there’s always something for all beer lovers.
In the past I’ve enjoyed their Virtual Insanity IPA and Mango Hefeweizen (in summer). And they also sell 32 oz growlers to go.
Their cocktails are well crafted with quality ingredients and spirits. At our recent brunch outing we enjoyed The Retox Cocktail (Watermelon Margarita) and the Seasonal Mimosa (Apple Cider Mimosa).
In my experience, I find the staff friendly, attentive and courteous, and the service prompt.
We’ve chatted a few times with the owner (Chris) who is often on property and personable and welcoming, and you can tell they have wonderful management all round.
And in these trying times of 2020 they are respectful of space and boundaries, and all staff are wearing the appropriate PPE.
Where to Park?
As for parking, we typically park on the street in Boylan Heights (one of the best Raleigh neighborhoods) and walk across Boylan Bridge, or up and down W Hargett St.
There are also parking lots and structures in the Warehouse District (an easy 5 minute walk) and on W Hargett Street.
I think a great way to start at Wye Hill Kitchen and Brewing would be to come for a few drinks one afternoon or early evening, and order a few small plates off their Snacks & Shareable’s menu.
This allows you to get a taste of the food and drinks, and to take in the views – don’t just take my word for it or look at my photographs!
Or, just jump right in for brunch, lunch or dinner.
When you visit Raleigh NC, I don’t think you’ll regret whether you come here for a night out with friends, a date, or a family gathering. Did I mention the views?!
Book your reservation on Resy.
- Address: 201 S Boylan Ave
- Website: Wyehill.com