Spice Street is an unexpectedly trendy restaurant to have in the quite University Mall in Chapel Hill. The restaurant has a cavernous interior with high ceilings, warm burnt orange walls, and dark mahogany furniture. The high ceilings are bought down into the space with huge, ivory linen light fixtures. They were quite stunning! The dining area is very large with a few separate dining spaces and a bar area with a long cement bar and several bar tables. The techno music was faint and added a nice funkiness to the space.
I was skeptical of Spice Street when I saw the eclectic menu, which includes Mediterranean, Japanese, and Chinese dishes. Restaurants which venture into so many styles of food rarely do any well. Given this decided to try it one night when we were just looking for drinks and appetizers. We sat at a bar table and ordered a glass of wine as we studied the appetizer menu. We tried the Spice Street Platter, which includes chicken satay, lamb/beef kefta, pot stickers, spring rolls, and calamari and each is paired with a dipping sauce. The chicken satay, pot stickers, and spring rolls were all quite tasty, though nothing stood out. The kefta was very flavorful with lots of herbs and was served with a tangy yogurt sauce. The calamari was also very tasty with a light breading which wasn’t oily.
Given my low expectations, I was pleasantly surprised. The lovely setting is perfect for a drink and some nibbles at the bar. With the large variety of choices it would also be a good option for groups as everyone should be able to find something that suites their tastes. The food is well prepared, though I am not sure I would rush back to try the entrées.
201 South Estes Drive