It’s hard to imagine that A Southern Season (, Chapel Hill’s sprawling 60,000-square-foot gourmet market, began in 1975 as a small coffee shop and roaster. In part, that’s because the store has lacked a coffee bar in recent years. But having undergone a series of renovations recently, A Southern Season is reclaiming those roots.

The store re-opened a coffee counter in mid-May. “In the original location, by Trader Joe’s, it had a coffee bar,” says the counter’s supervisor, Reiko Tanaka. “It was only natural for that to come back.”

The coffee bar features local roasts from Counter Culture, Carrboro Coffee Company, Larry’s Beans and Stockton Graham & Co. But Tanaka says more is available: Any coffee or tea stocked in the store can also be brewed fresh at the bar by request.

The coffee counter features five seats and free Wi-Fi access. It’s also open early, as the store recently extended its hours. A Southern Season is now open Monday–Thursday 8 a.m.–7 p.m., Friday and Saturday 8 a.m.–9 p.m. and Sunday 10 a.m.–7 p.m.

See what’s happening inside other local spots June 4–10 during Triangle Restaurant Week (, when more than 80 restaurants will offer prix fixe meals. Depending on the location, dinners are available at two rates: $20 or $30. Some spots will also offer lunch for $15. Prices do not include taxes or gratuity.

The week kicks off at 7 p.m. on June 3 with “Yelping in Wonderland.” Held at Marbles Kids Museum, the event will feature food and drinks from local restaurants including Five Star, Blue Mango, Sugar Buzz, Jenny’s Cupcakery and more. In addition, DJs and a magician will perform.

Entrance to the party requires an RSVP plus two canned foods. All items collected will benefit the Food Bank of Central & Eastern North Carolina. To attend the kick-off, respond via Yelp’s event site at For more information about weeklong specials, including a list of participating restaurants, visit Triangle Restaurant Week online.

The Rice Diet Program ( will host a panel discussion entitled “A Biodynamic Approach: Amending Our Soil and Farm Bill to Cultivate a Viable Local Food System” at its center in Durham on June 5.

The evening begins with hors d’oeuvres at 6:15 p.m., followed at 6:30 p.m. by a discussion led by Rob Bowers, of Whitted Bowers Farm, and Roland McReynolds, executive director of the Carolina Farm Stewardship Association.

Kitty Rosati, nutrition director for the Rice Diet Program, says the discussion will help people “realize the worth of organic and biodynamic foods” as well as understand how current legislation may affect local and national food systems in the future. To reserve a spot at the free event, see the Rice Diet Center’s website.

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