Frazier’s on Hillsborough Closes for Good

June, 25, 2012, by Jedidiah

Frazier’s on Hillsborough Closes for Good
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Back in 2010, Frazier's on Hillsborough closed its doors, only to reopen later that year as a Wine Bar (with food). Unfortunately, it looks like the high-end establishment of Urban Food Group has decided to close its doors for good. The owners of the restaurant sent Greg Cox, restaurant critic at the N&O, a letter this weekend stating their intentions of closing the bar. 

Urban Food Group also runs some of the other best restaurants in Raleigh, including Porter's next door on Hillsborough, Vivace and Coquette in North Hills and Chow. Frazier's will be missed but unfortunately it seems that such a high-end establishment just can't make it on Hillsborough Street. The faculty and staff of NC State are probably most of the clientele for Frazier's and they leave each day around 6pm. Hillsborough Street doesn't have the biggest night scene, especially for a higher dollar crowd. 

See the Frazier’s {categories show="257|236|256|96" show_group="9" limit="1"}{category_name}{/categories} page.

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Urban Food Group


  • Susan
    06/25 11:44 AM

    So bummed to hear this!  We would have gone a lot more often, but parking is so tricky.  Sure wish they could relocate!

  • LP
    06/25 11:47 AM

    Relocate! Please!!!!

  • pecola
    06/25 12:45 PM

    This is sad to hear.

  • DaveM
    06/25 01:06 PM

    Can’t blame Hillsborough Street for the closing of this once thriving, cutting edge restaurant. With their early success with Frazier’s the owners decided to expand by opening other restaurants and unfortunately this dilution of attention is what spelled the end for Frazier’s. It was, in my opinion one of the best restaurants in Raleigh until they decided to take the Calamari off the menu. Constant menu, management and staff changes didn’t help either.

    Well, I’ll always have great memories of the restaurant in it’s heyday.

  • tc
    06/25 01:09 PM

    This breaks my heart….LOVE that restaurant, one of my favorite in the triangle.  Great service and staff too.  If it was in downtown, would have thrived.  I worried this might be coming….they were never really that busy.  Now I wish I had gone more often.

  • D
    06/25 01:52 PM

    Never thought that Frazier’s was a great restaurant, but Hillsborough Street IS a problem.  Porter’s Tavern, which is an appropriately priced and nicely executed restaurant next door, is often empty or close to empty despite its well placed price-point.  The city did a nice job with the Hillsborough Street re-design, but for some reason, the crowds haven’t materialized.  It doesn’t help that NCSU has closed all the Hillsborough Street exits of neighboring DH Hill Library making access to the street unnecessarily circuitous.  Their recent renovation of the ground floor food court which provides a plethora of eating options erodes the Hillsborough Street eatery business even further.  A lot of potential that remains unrealized.

  • Panda Balls
    06/25 02:24 PM

    Sad to hear this. I had some great meals and service here.

    But, I hope that there will be more attention paid to Coquette now as it can be wildly inconsistent. The place peaked in the first six months and has been drifting since.

  • 1imagination
    06/25 08:20 PM

    Thanks for being one of the firsts Fraziers.

    You guys lasted for a good long run and proved that something other than a chain can thrive on hillsborough street.

  • Jon Williams
    06/25 09:18 PM

    ... (a brief moment of silence for that calamari) ...

  • NW Man
    06/25 09:37 PM

    what goes around comes around at the end of the day. the owners are complete jerks.

  • LJ
    06/25 10:39 PM

    Fraziers was a great place to eat. Quaint and hard to get into in it’s prime.
    They tried to make changes to a good thing.  There is competition now, but we all like to go to the places we feel comfortable.  Frazier’s menu before they change it to the venue they have now was one of the best kept secrets in Raleigh.  You got an excellent meal for less than the competition.  Why would you change a good thing?  Rethink this Urban Group.

  • RaleighRob
    06/26 08:53 AM

    Sad to see this.  I will make some attempt to try to help support the good places still on Hillsborough Street soon—Porters and David’s Noodle Bar.  I think something in the Fraziers’ spot with a moderate price point would help, as Fraziers was always just a good deal too high.  I think Porters would benefit from having more specials to bring in the penny-counting students, too. 

    Anyone know if the folks who run Durham’s Toast would consider a second locale??  That would be ideal.

    06/26 09:12 AM

    Have you been to Vivace at North Hills?  Also run by Urban Food Group and HUGELY successful.  It’s like walking into a Kardashian themed restaurant.  Hugely successful and it’s fucking gross!  Frazier’s of the past few years was just too subtle to succeed on Hillsborough Street.  I loved it but those Vivace people with the club shirts and spray tans aren’t looking for Frazier’s homemade charcuterie plates, pickle plates and grilled watermelon salad.  Porter’s, next door, is fine but it is one of those restaurants that has sewer gas leaking into it somewhere; it looks clean but smells like a fresh fart.  I really like Coquette, the other UFG restaurant at North Hills but fear it will eventually shift from a theme of French casual to Vegas party.

  • Obvious is Obvious
    06/26 09:52 AM

    RDU WTF—-welcome to Raleigh.

  • steelcity36
    06/26 12:29 PM

    The problem with Hillsborough street is the fallacy that the Student is the target demographic. Students don’t spend money here, they spend it at on Campus Fast Food restaurants or at racist bars on GloSo. Hillsborough Street needs to involve the surrounding University/Cameron Park neighborhood to succeed. There is a current push in that direction with movies in the parking lot and street festivals, but there needs to be more events like music on the porch,  etc that draws out the families. I think the city has done its part to attract a new demographic to Hillsborough St with redevelopment and more on-street parking, but reality is that rents are probably too high for local chefs/restaurant owners to take a chance on Hillsborough.  Player’s Retreat has adapted well, now it is time for rest of Hillsborough Street to follow.

  • Dallas
    06/26 12:42 PM

    Agree with Davem, was great in the early days as was Porters. It has gone down as well. Classic case of opening to many restaurants and not keeping consistent. Parking is not the problem if you are good, people will deal with it.

  • Dallas
    06/26 12:47 PM

    BTW: You can get the calamari at Porters, however it is not as good as it used to be also. They now serve the sauce on the side and you have to mix or dip it yourself. Just not the same!

  • Talulah F.
    06/26 02:34 PM

    I’d like to personally thank the city of Raleigh and their assinine Hillsborough redesign for this one. If anything, I want to drive down Hillsborough even less than I did before if was redone. I personally really loved the new take on Frazier’s and thought the food was outstanding. If it were on Wilmington St. it would be the hottest restaurant in town.

  • Wilson
    06/27 12:49 PM

    While we are talking about Hillsborough Street there are about to be even more issues with congestion.  This month’s lane makeover has added dedicated bike lanes(yey!) but has dropped auto lanes of traffic in several sections of the street(i.e Oberlin and Dixie trail sections)  Add to that the roundabout lane reduction from two to one lane in July along with the new plans to block auto access to Dan Allen drive with a gate during the weekdays and you have a big problem.  Traffic will be much worse than pre-roundabout/makeover days.  I will probably be avoiding that street entirely come summers end except for biking.

  • Bill
    06/28 01:17 PM

    The redesign of Hillsborough St was to encourage people to use another street unless Hillsborough St is your destination.  It was not to increase capacity on the street.  The roundabouts do work to calm traffic and keep it moving slowly, instead of in fits and starts.  I drive on it every day and I like the improvements.  I think SteelCity is correct:  The businesses need to develop a sense of community with the adults and families that live in the surrounding neighborhood.  The students haven’t been reliable customers since the drinking age was increased to 21.

  • kim
    07/06 01:26 PM

    When Frazier’s was a full-service restaurant and not a wine bar, we routinely went there for fantastic dinners out.  My husband and I both thought it was among the best restaurants in Raleigh, and its location on Hillsborough Street was an advantage since it is closer to our home than downtown is.  Still, we went out of our way to eat at Frazier’s. 

    The first mistake was for the owners to transform the fantastic, elegant yet comfortable restaurant into a wine bar.  We will go out to dinner, but what’s the point of going out to a wine bar where your dining options are limited to small, over-priced plates?  None.  So we didn’t bother with it anymore.

    There is definitely a market, and there always will be, for delicious upscale food served at what had been pretty reasonable prices, considering the quality of the food.  This was the old Frazier’s.  A fancy & expensive wine bar, on the other hand, has a limited clientele and will not be “destination dining.”  We would love the old Frazier’s to return, but I am afraid that horse has already left the barn, which is a shame.  Frazier’s was by far the best restaurant among the Urban Food Group’s holdings.  We have tried all the others they own, and while we go to Porter’s (location!  and good burgers), we have not bothered to return to Vivace or Coquette, for example, because we didn’t think the food was quite good enough to make the trip or expense worthwhile.

  • kim w
    09/25 01:36 PM

    yes, please please relocate!  Or let us know if the chef opens a different restaurant.  That was my Fiance and my go-to place for a night out of amazing food, service, and wine.
    Will be missed.

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