ORO is one of our March Premium partners for Raleigh, so we headed over there to get the DL on how to have the best experience possible. Whether you're Premium or not, read on to learn why ORO is awesome, what dishes not to miss, and pro tips for making the most of your time (and moolah).
Not in Premium (or not even sure what we're talking about)? Learn more here about this monthly subscription for exploring your city and get on the waitlist (or ask one of your Premium friends for a referral to skip the line!).
Over the past seven years, ORO has earned its reputation as one of DTR’s most destination-worthy restaurants. It’s a chic spot, serving up incredible, internationally-inspired small plates and cocktails like you’ve never seen before.
As a frequent international traveler, ORO’s Head Chef is always bringing fresh, worldly flavors back to the restaurant, presenting avant-garde dishes that’ll engage all your senses. There’s smoke-filled jars, dry ice, and plenty of other playful accents throughout the eclectic menu of small plates. In short, it’s a little flashy and a lot of fun.
With high ceilings, lots of glass, and sleek, white decor, ORO certainly feels upscale—and it is, just without stuffiness of your typical hoity-toity restaurant. The staff are friendly, the dishes have soul, and—most importantly—everything we tasted was the fire emoji, personified.
Everything on the menu is small-ish and shareable meaning you’ll get to order multiple things on their seasonal menu. Whether you’re at ORO on a date or for a night on the town with friends, you should be able to make a decent dent in the menu. Here’s what we loved most.
The Truffle Mac & Cheese ($10) has always been a customer favorite (this is the South, after all). It packs a punch with a strong, earthy truffle flavor, and crispy panko topping for added texture.
The Smoky Ribs ($16) come to your table covered in a glass dome filled with smoke. Revealed tableside, you’ll find a hearty stack of succulent, fall-off-the-bone ribs.
Sesame Cauliflower ($12) is like an elevated, veggie version of General Tso’s Chicken. Tempura-battered and served with a sweet chili sauce, it’ll satisfy carnivores and vegans alike.
If you’re craving succulent seafood, the Grilled Octopus Skewers ($18) and Seared Scallops ($22) are both excellent, perfectly seared, sharable options.
And FYI: There are plenty of vegan, vegetarian, and gluten-free options for those with dietary restrictions.
These are drinks with dramaaaaaa. The Weird Science ($14) is a cucumber-melon cocktail that’s fluorescent green, served over smoking dry ice and looks like something out a mad scientist’s laboratory. The Smoke & Mirrors ($14) literally comes to your table in a smoke-filled box—unlatch the door, watch the smoke cascade across the table, and reach inside for an extra-special old fashioned.
All of their drinks are an experience in and of themselves, but worry not—they don’t sacrifice taste for theatricality. Perfectly balanced and surprisingly smooth, each drink is a full sensory experience.
You’re probably familiar with Campfire ($15), the DIY s’mores dessert that lets you roast marshmallows right at your table. They’re Insta-famous and sort of an obligatory order, if you ask us.
But also don’t overlook the Banana Bread Pudding ($8), a homemade recipe that uses buttery croissants and features a fully brûléed banana. Who says you can’t have two desserts?
Reminder that these are small plates. Two to three items per person should cover you. They each come out as they’re ready.
Reservations (especially on weekends) are strongly encouraged.
They’ve got a Family Tasting Menu that’s just $40 per person. Just leave it up to the Head Chef extraordinaire to choose your dishes for you (and know you’re in good hands). Chef Chris will prep you a few of his very favorite items—all bound to surprise and delight you. Your Premium Perk can be used towards this menu (huzzah!), but know that your whole table must opt in.
After you use your Premium Perk, come back for their newly unveiled “Social Hour,” where, from 5-7p, Monday-Friday, you can nab a number of choice items—all for just five bucks a pop. (Unfortunately, you can't use your Premium Perk for this, but why would you want to waste it on something that's already such a good deal?!)
While you can’t use your Premium Perk on the lunch menu, it’s worth noting that their mid-day menu features a $10 Bento Box with a salad, main, side and dessert.