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The Carolina Inn’s Crossroads Restaurant Warms Up to Winter in New Seasonal Menus

Executive Chef Jimmy Reale Focuses on Proteins and Heavier Dishes

CHAPEL HILL, N.C. (January 2012) – The award-winning Carolina Crossroads Restaurant at The Carolina Inn – one of only three Forbes Four-Star restaurants in North Carolina and a AAA Four Diamond rated restaurant – warms up to winter with its new menus for dinner, lunch, lounge, burgers, breakfast and desserts.

Executive Chef Jimmy Reale provides insight on his various culinary choices chock full of local products and worldly traditions. Despite winter being the most challenging season to source a wide selection of nearby products, he is still able to base this tasty menu on proteins like Carolina Bison, Ashley Farms Quail, North Carolina Chicken and Catfish, Local Pork Chop and Rabbit.

“My goal is to create heavier and more substantial dishes and serve slightly smaller portions,” Reale said.  “Thus far, the lamb, bison and fresh catch have been big sellers. We receive our fish and seafood six times a week and really focus on serving fresh local products.”

His quintessential winter entrée offering is the Rack of Lamb served with Dukkah, Israeli Couscous, Baby Carrots, Zucchini, Kalamata Olives, Mint-Scented Chimichurri and Feta Cheese Fritters.

The Day Boat Catch is served with Crispy Calamari, Black Truffle Aioli, Creamy Lemon Risotto, Broccoli Rabe, Balsamic Roasted Tomatoes and Yellow Pepper Broth.

Reale’s Italian heritage is on display with the Red Wine Braised Veal Osso Bucco served with Truffled Bean & Rosemary Puree, Sautéed Spinach, Roasted Red & Yellow Peppers, Gremolata and Natural Jus.

Bursting with Asian flavor, the Poached Shrimp, Scallops & Cod are served with Red Curry Coconut Sauce, Forbidden Black Rice, Baby Green Beans, Napa Cabbage, Peppers and Ginger Cilantro Oil.

Reale has many appetizer favorites as well which all received rave reviews at a recent preview tasting dinner, especially for the many bacon lovers.

The Creamy Potato & Parsnip Soup contains Applewood Smoked Bacon and Black Truffle Crème Fraiche.

His signature Pan Seared Shrimp is served with Anson Mills White Cheddar Grits, Benton’s Smoked Bacon, Cremini Mushrooms, and Tomatoes with Creamy Lobster Velouté.

A most tasty appetizer is the Braised NC Bison Short Rib & Local Shiitake Stew showcasing Creamy Anson Mills Polenta, Hillsborough Cheese Company Fresh Chèvre and Crispy Parsnips.

His Mediterranean roots are revealed with the Marinated Rabbit Loin served with Fregola Sarda, Applewood Smoked Bacon, Tomatoes, Spinach and Madeira Butter Sauce.

The Organic Spinach & Frisée Salad is served with Caramelized Shallots, Mushrooms, Benton’s Country Ham, Radish, Latta’s Family Farm Sunny Side Up Egg and Cider Vinaigrette.

Three dessert favorites are the Chocolate Pot de Crème containing Sweetened Whipped Cream and Cocoa Nib Cookies, the Pear Sticky Toffee Pudding accompanied by Pecan Buttercrunch and Vanilla-Root Beer Sauce and the Warm Apple Turnover served with Classic Vanilla Bean Ice Cream and Caramel Sauce.

Make your restaurant reservation today by calling 919-918-2735 or visit

Built on the campus of UNC Chapel Hill in 1924 by John Sprunt Hill – distinguished alumnus, successful businessman and University trustee – The Carolina Inn’s original concept was “to provide for the special wants and comforts of the University alumni...and University visitors.” The historical Carolina Inn features 185 charming and well-appointed guestrooms including 7 luxury suites.

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