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Busy Bee Cafe

Not Rated.
Busy Bee CafeBusy Bee Cafe

62 Ratings
Ratings: 62
Reviews: 27
rAvg: 4.39
pDev: n/a
Taps: 19
Bottles: 120
Cask: Y
Beer-to-Go: Y
[ Bar, Eatery ]

225 S Wilmington St
Raleigh, North Carolina, 27601-1433
United States
phone: (919) 424-7817

visit their websiteWebsite view map and get directionsMap 

Place added by: rtratzlaff on 04-18-2009

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Ratings: 62 | Reviews: 27
Reviews by slowbie:
Photo of slowbie
4.83/5  rDev +10%
vibe: 5 | quality: 5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 5 | food: 4.5

Went to Busy Bee on 1/22/2010.

Not that busy for a Saturday night, so no wait for a table which was nice. The atmosphere was quieter and the decor is just my style. Exposed brick walls with a nice clean and classic bar.

First things first: the beer. This place is not a place with a giant tap list, but it is definitely a place that reminds me that you don't need a giant tap list to have great beer. Lil' Sumpin' Wild, FBS, Knob Creek barrel aged Foothills People's Porter, and DFH Burton Baton are just a few highlights from their 15ish taps. In the past week they've tapped two kegs of Hopslam, tonight they are tapping Backwoods Bastard, tomorrow Hoptimum, and on Wednesday a keg voted for on their website (looks like it will be Terrapin Big Daddy Vladdy). For the record I went for the barrel aged People's Porter and the wife got Brooklyn Cuvee Noire. There are a lot of bottled choices for those who want more options too, but I rarely get bottles.

The service was good and our waitress seemed to be knowledgeable about beer, although we didn't ask any tough questions.

The food menu isn't huge either, which wasn't a big deal because I once again found something I wanted quite easily. It's basically high end bar food, but I can honestly say that I have not had a better burger in the state of North Carolina. There are some more interesting choices too such as fish tacos, shrimp and grits, and chicken pot pie.

The beer is a bit more expensive than other places around, but I still gave it the $$ rating because the food is reasonably priced and they don't seem to do the rarity pricing that some places around do. I got a generous pour (listed as 12 oz. but I'm pretty sure I got a full 16) of barrel aged people's porter for $6, and I have a feeling that I could name a few establishments around here that would have sold me a 10 oz. pour for $8 or more. So don't expect to get a $3 pint, but the pricing relative to the quality of beer is actually very good.

More User Reviews:
Photo of GoldenArms
4.63/5  rDev +5.5%
vibe: 5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.75 | selection: 4.75 | food: 4

Photo of Cynic-ale
4/5  rDev -8.9%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4 | food: 4

Photo of Macsimus
4.38/5  rDev -0.2%
vibe: 4.25 | quality: 4.75 | service: 4 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4

Photo of CptBlackBeerd
4.74/5  rDev +8%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.75 | food: 4.75

One of my favorite beer places in North Carolina. Super tap & bottle selection, great food & service and all at a reasonable price.

Photo of Penguins66
4.5/5  rDev +2.5%

My wife and I came here twice during a long weekend in Raleigh--first for drinks on a Saturday afternoon, then for Sunday brunch. Beer selection was amazing. They had some beers on tap that I had only ever seen in bottles--Dogfish Head Red & White for instance. Prices were very reasonable.

On both our visits we sat at the bar. Service was pleasant--we had the same bartender both times. Sunday brunch was tasty although the ham biscuit I ate was way too salty for my tastes. Ambiance was fine--not too noisy, a long bar with an exposed brick wall behind it. Only negative is the location. Busy Bee Cafe is next door to a bus terminal so you may have to dodge some folks asking for spare change.

Photo of CavemanRamblin
4.25/5  rDev -3.2%

Photo of Michael_Comstock
5/5  rDev +13.9%

Photo of Soto
4.5/5  rDev +2.5%

Photo of delapowicz
4.7/5  rDev +7.1%

Photo of daryk77
4.5/5  rDev +2.5%

I really enjoy this place. Great beer and great food. Love the servers, very knowledgeable. This is definitely a must stop if you are in the area. Great place to bring you non-beer nerd girlfriend/boyfriend since the cocktails and food are absolutely superb as well. It's a win all around.

Photo of wesbourne
4.5/5  rDev +2.5%

Photo of Mantooth
4/5  rDev -8.9%

Photo of Zimm
3.75/5  rDev -14.6%

Photo of Highbury09
4.25/5  rDev -3.2%

Photo of Dreizhen
4.89/5  rDev +11.4%
vibe: 5 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 4.75 | food: 4.5

I had the great pleasure of visiting the Busy Bee Cafe and the accompanying Hive on a recent trip through Raleigh. I can not say enough nice things about the place.

Food was very good and reasonably priced. Our group ordered a decent variety of items from sandwiches to desserts and everyone was pleased with their selections.

The beer selection was very impressive with a number of bottles I had never seen before. The waitstaff was great at making suggestions and steered our choices in the right direction. Wide variety of styles and prices. Very impressive list.

The atmosphere was lovely, the upstairs patio is gorgeous, and the bar has a fun yet tacitly reserved demeanor.

The service was absolutely incredible. I can't do justice for the experience we had with only a review, but know that the service was perfect. Ask for Catherine. The owner was incredibly hospitable and quite the gracious host.

It would be a crime to not visit the Busy Bee if you have the chance.

Photo of jak
4.25/5  rDev -3.2%

Photo of MIchael_D_Larkin
4.5/5  rDev +2.5%

Photo of dunix
4.25/5  rDev -3.2%

Photo of Brewski
4.5/5  rDev +2.5%

Photo of beatleszoso86
5/5  rDev +13.9%

Photo of macuistin
4.5/5  rDev +2.5%

Photo of jophish17
4/5  rDev -8.9%

Photo of dailyminefield
4.25/5  rDev -3.2%

Photo of woodchip
4.5/5  rDev +2.5%

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Busy Bee Cafe in Raleigh, NC
96 out of 100 based on 62 ratings.