Cary’s Hemingway Place

One of the area's best restaurants is in downtown Cary across the street from Harris Bank.

Ernest Hemingway was at his best as a writer when describing lunch.

Dig the chalkboard Saturday night at Tapas Culpe in downtown Cary – all verbs and nouns and very few adjectives. It’s as if Hemingway wrote it.   

Dinner specials for tonight:

Entree ~ Slow Roasted Leg of Pork (fresh oranges, apples, and ginger) served with roasted new potatoes, brown sugar glazed Acorn Squash, ham au jus . . . $16

Entree ~ Chicken and Chorizo Paella with tomato, artichoke heart, eggplant, sweet red pepper, and green onion in a saffron-chicken stock and baked rice . . . $16

Tapas ~ Grilled Gulf Shrimp Wrap with avocado, lettuce, tomato, mozzarella, and a roasted tomato-pepper sauce alongside a fresh Tarragon-cucumber salad . . . $12

Tapas ~ Baked Flatbread topped with Italian Sausage, fresh roasted vegetables, Plum Tomato sauce, and Provolone Cheese …

Wow! That’s literature!

Hemingway’s novel “The Sun Also Rises” put me in a seat at his table in a post-war Paris café. Reading Hemingway's novels, I felt as if I shared a meal with Papa.

Dinner Saturday night at Tapas Culpe gave me a Hemingway flashback. I sometimes forget what it’s like not to rush through dinner, to enjoy every moment and every morsel and have a conversation.

I was with Carol – my regular dining companion – and neighbors Sue and Jon.  

Nick, the owner, came to our table with an armful of wines from Italy, Spain and France and made recommendations.

My dining companions ordered the wine from Italy. I was the oddball ordering beer. But it was no ordinary beer. It was a Peroni beer in a neat pilsner glass.

We ate tapas style. Originating in Spain, tapas style is making a meal out of appetizers.  I liked the shrimp and the flatbread pizza. But my favorite was the red pepper stuffed with salmon.

As Hemingway is a must-read for sophomore English, so Tapas Culpe is a must-dine for the sophisticated hungry.  If you’ve never eaten here you’re missing something.

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