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“Some restaurants just get it and ORO is one of them” 5 of 5 stars
Review of ORO Restaurant & Lounge

ORO Restaurant & Lounge
18 E. Martin Street, Raleigh, NC 27601
(919) 239-4010
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Ranked #46 of 1,212 restaurants in Raleigh
Price range: $30 - $30
Cuisines: Tapas
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Dining options: Reservations, Late Night
Dining style: Casual Dining
Cross street: Wilmington
Description: ORO features generously portioned, sharable tapas-style comfort food re-interpreted for a modern palate.
Senior Reviewer
6 reviews 6 reviews
5 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
7 helpful votes 7 helpful votes
“Some restaurants just get it and ORO is one of them”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 3, 2013

ORO is unlike any other restaurant in Raleigh and that is why I like it so much. It's menu is fresh and different and with many small plates to sample and Chef Chris's way he prepares them all it makes for a social and culinary delight. While it is great for couples out for a fun night, we have had great experience taking my teenagers to ORO. The plates are small enough to try something new and my kids all love the Truffle Mac and Cheese. Pork bellies are something that I would not have selected but my 14 daughter cannot get enough of them and after trying them I would have to agree. The staff is welcoming and warm and while attentive not intrusive. I would love the sidewalk to be bigger so you could dine outside but that is my only "wish". I love ORO and will continue to go as long as I am here in Raleigh.

  • Visited July 2013
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Food
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57 reviews from our community

80% Recommend
Rating summary
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Any
English first
Raleigh, North Carolina
4 reviews 4 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed August 25, 2013

Living downtown and having gone here only once when it first opened, my boyfriend and I thought we'd stop in for a drink recently just to "do something different". My memories of the first couple weeks it opened were decent, but someone else had paid for my meal, so I might have been biased.

Nothing special on the menu from my memory...seems like every other restaurant in Raleigh was doing similar versions of mac and cheese, street corn, yada, yada. Anyhoo, on this night, two drinks was all we needed, so why not? Some cocktails sounded interesting, although it seems like everything on the drink menu was made to be as sweet as possible to please the douchy weekend crowds that would pay $12 for a "fun drink". Tried the "old fashioned with a skirt". The bartender seemed to have a bit of an attitude, but when I saw what she was forced to work with, I don't blame her bad attitude. She muddled a day glo cherry from a jar (really, this place is SO hip and expensive they can't spring for REAL maraschino cherry in my $11 drink?). I could see the bottle of "finest call fake passionfruit" sludge in the well beneath her. I started to think maybe I was at TGIFriday's with this cheesy, cheap selection. And NOT a good selection of liquors to add to these expensive drinks. My boyfriend tried the watermelon-cumcumber-mint-something-or-other with the promise that it wasn't "too sweet". It wasn't "too sweet" but wasn't "too good" either. The sharp taste of cheap well gin and a flimsy dried out slice of cucumber thrown haphazardly on top was none too impressive for the $12 we paid for it. The wine in the Enomatic wine dispensers were to be avoided. The greatest hits of overpriced, California swill...but just "known" enough that a man on a date with the young affair can impress her.

Two meh's down. Where is the creativity?

  • Visited August 2013
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Cary, NC
Top Contributor
83 reviews 83 reviews
53 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 22 cities Reviews in 22 cities
33 helpful votes 33 helpful votes
“Hip restaurant in D/T Raleigh with a Great interior layout”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 23, 2013

My wife and I visited ORO during Raleigh Restaurant week and had delicious three course meals, as opposed to their normal tapas oriented menu. The location is great, with ample parking nearby and the inside is clean, bright and you get a great view from the second level balcony seating. The service was great and the meals were delicious. My wife and I both had the truffle Mac and Cheese (which was very good) and she had shrimp risotto and I had Duck and Waffles for the second course. For dessert, I choose the cheesecake and my wife choose the bread pudding. Ironically, neither of us normally order (or like) bread pudding or cheesecake, but these renditions were awesome. Absolutely, the best cheesecake I've ever had. Home made graham cracker "disc" crust with a super creamy and light citrus based cheesecake filling on top. It was accompanied with a wild berry compote on the sides.
For the wine aficionados out there, they have a Enomatic dispenser for some of their high end wines, allowing you to get a smaller (and more affordable) pour of high end wines.

We will definitely return.

  • Visited August 2013
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Food
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
13 reviews 13 reviews
11 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 8 cities Reviews in 8 cities
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
“Incredible food, less than good service”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed August 21, 2013 via mobile

Some girlfriends & I decided to try a new place during Downtown Restaurant Week & Oro sounded very good & different. Well, we were all VERY impressed with the decor & the menu. Definitely did not feel like we were in Raleigh which was very fun. The executive chef came by our table to greet us before we had even been served, which was a very nice touch. All of our 3 course meals were delicious. They were hot, tasty & very unique. Also, the plating was exquisite. However, our server really put a damper on the entire evening. She had an attitude from the moment we sat down. We were there to have some time away from the "duties" of our families and were expecting to be well taken care of in a high class dining atmosphere. For whatever reason, she seemed put out with us so pretty much ignored us all evening. The only out of the ordinary request that we had was we asked for a different table because the AC unit was dripping condensation on our table, in our glasses, on our heads, etc. She said they were completely booked and it was just water :-(. Not good customer service at all. We finished our meal with coffee which was never refilled. Our checks took forever to come and our payments to be processed. We would have all easily given this restaurant a 5 but just could not because of the poor service. We'll try again & hope to get another server. By the way, the person who actually brought our food to the table was lovely & had a great attitude!

Visited August 2013
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Cary, North Carolina
Senior Contributor
40 reviews 40 reviews
29 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 14 cities Reviews in 14 cities
13 helpful votes 13 helpful votes
“Love the iPad ordering system”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed August 7, 2013

Went to Oro specifically because I read that the waiters use iPads to order the food. Our waiter was very gracious and was willing to show us how the system worked. He was also very forthcoming about the pros (can spend more time with customers, greater accuracy of orders) and cons (long time to close out at the end of a shift) of the system. Once the food arrived we forgot about the ordering system and focused on the food. All the tapas were excellent - especially the dumplings and the fish tacos. Will definitely return.

  • Visited July 2013
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 4 of 5 stars Food
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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