Matt Fern’s Favorite Places to Eat & Drink

The owner of Person Street’s sandwich spot, (ish) delicatessen, share’s his favorite spots to dine and sip around town
by Catherine Currin

For our 2024 Guide to Where to Eat and Drink in the Triangle, we asked ten food and hospitality industry folks to share their tried and true spots for everything from a casual lunch to happy hour to a place that’s worth hopping in the car and heading out of town.  One of those was season industry pros Matt Fern. Fern opened (ish) delicatessen in July of 2021, but he’s been in the Triangle culinary world since 2003. Fern helped open Raleigh favorites like the former Nana’s Chophouse, Vivace, The Longleaf Hotel Lounge and served as the beverage director of AC Restaurants. Here are his picks.

Where do you go for happy hour?

Person Street Bar

What’s a place that’s worth the drive?

Skylight Inn BBQ in Ayden, Fonda Lupita in Sanford, Lantern in Chapel Hill, Pizzeria Toro in Durham

Where do you go for lunch?

Chido Taco, State of Beer

If it were your last meal in the Triangle…..

Poole’s Diner

What’s your favorite new spot?


Where do you go for coffee?


What’s your favorite place for a bite to go?

Gym Tacos

photo credit: Juli Leonard

Where do you take out-of-town guests?

Players Retreat at some point. Death & Taxes to show off the cool wine cellar!

Char-Grill or Snoopy’s?


What are you most excited for?

Nana’s, Fiction Kitchen 2.0, Natural Sciences

This article was originally published on December 28, 2023 on