July/August 2022 – The 11th Annual Best Of Issue

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Photographer John Michael Simpson and I had already been at Belltree Cocktail Club for a few hours on the Friday before Memorial Day weekend, adjusting garnishes and lighting so he could get the perfect shot for our cover. We were having a great time at the Carrboro bar, voted one of our readers’ favorite spots for cocktails – the friendly bartenders blasted music for us as we worked, and they crafted drink after delightful drink. As we packed up the lights and equipment, co-owner Nick Stroud encouraged us to stay a second longer and enjoy one of the lovely libations. I’d had my eye on The Violet. It was my kind of beverage, made with vodka and muddled blueberries and then topped with cava – an idyllic start to summer, my favorite season, with its long hours of daylight, warm weather and endless possibilities.

A couple of Fridays later, I left work at 3:30 p.m. (our company does early-release Fridays till Labor Day), scooped up my best girl and loyal pup Olive, and headed out for downtown Hillsborough. We grabbed a patio table at The Wooden Nickel, a readers’ favorite for wings and a place I frequent for the monthly rotating guest beer series. Sitting in the shade with a pint of Tripping Animals’ Limonada Rosada, a pink lemonade sour, was just the mini pick-me- up I needed after a week of editing stories for this issue. (Another thing that did the trick – a slice of Key lime pie from Kim’s Bake Shop next door.)

It’s been widely reported that Americans are terrible at taking their vacation time. (One 2018 report showed that U.S. workers failed to use 768 million days of paid time off that year.) So, consider this a friendly nudge to take that vacation, a long weekend away, a much-needed mental health day or every single Friday you can leave early. And when you are in town, patronize your favorite local establishments this season – trust me, after all the past two years have taken from us, just being out and about at your trusty haunts can feel amazing. So, turn to page 86 for the entire list of results from our Best of Chapel Hill poll, and get going on your summer! – Jessica Stringer, editor

THE 11TH ANNUAL BEST OF ISSUE

38 Stir It Up
We asked the winners of Best Place for Cocktails what to sip this summer

44 Best of Three
Lime & Lemon opened its largest location yet in Meadowmont

46 Cooking Like We Mean It
The chef behind Lantern talks cooking and eating in one of the best places in the world in an essay from a new UNC Press book

50 Comfort Food
In the wake of Beau Bennett’s death, the Beau Catering team leaned on one another, determined to provide his same level of enthusiasm

54 Beer Garden
Steel String Brewery marks the one-year anniversary of its Pluck Farm

60 Busy Bees
Catch up with the couple behind King Cobra Apiary’s buzzworthy honey

64 A Daily Dose of Kindness
Meet a local pediatrician who practices the golden rule

68 Summer Styles
Elevate your look this season with fashion from our readers’ favorite women’s boutiques

72 Room to Grow
Readers’ favorite architects and designers divulge how they cultivate kid-friendly havens

78 Dance With Me
Triangle Youth Ballet’s Lauren Lorentz de Haas cultivates a love of movement in her students

86 Best of Chapel Hill 2022 Winners

FEATURES

98 The 2022 Directory of Continuing Care, Assisted Living, Independent Living, 55+ Living and Cohousing Retirement Communities

110 Feeling the Fitness
A Zumba class for older adults offers both social and health benefits

116 Blank Canvas
Retirement means more time for one Carolina Meadows resident to paint

120 Healthy at Home
Experts share that there is more to aging-in-place design than meets the eye

DEPARTMENTS

6 Letter from the Editor

10 About Town
Events not to miss

22 Noted
What we’ve heard around our towns …

30 Dining Guide

WEDDINGS

133 Elkins & Nielsen
134 Nelson & Song
135 LaTorre & Perkins
136 Nelson & Perry

PEOPLE & PLACES

12 Welcome Center Grand Opening
14 Carrboro Day
15 Carolina Love Gala
16 Writers for Readers 2022
18 Tracks Local Music Fest
21 TABLE’s Farewell to Sam Howell

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