Blue Corn Cafe
716 Ninth Street
Durham, NC 27705
Hours: Mon-Sat: 11:30-9, Sun: 5-9
Review Date: February 25, 1998
Reviewers: Rondi Elliott and Shelli Fein
At the outset of our review at the Blue Corn, the waitress was very accommodating and friendly. She understood what our needs were and seemed to be familiar with the ingredients in the food - always a boon! I was excited to see a vegetarian fajita option and ordered it (zucchini, peppers, squash, onions, and mushrooms sautéed with Mexican oregano and served with refried beans, lettuce, and tomato; $9.95).
The vegetables were plentiful, fresh, and did not taste greasy. Rondi ordered a Green Enchilada (spinach with corn enchilada; $7.95) with Spanish rice and black beans. She found it to be an inventive entrée that she had never seen before on a menu.
For dessert, we shared a sopapilla (deep fried flour tortilla with cinnamon, honey, and powdered sugar; $1.95, $2.95 with ice cream). It was very sweet but very good, and reminded us of fried dough or funnel cakes.
Blue Corn has an excellent variety of foods. All except one salad was vegetarian ($3.75-$4.95); same for the appetizers ($2.50-$6.50). Eight vegetarian dishes were offered, ranging in price from $7.50-$9.95. Though none was vegan as listed, all could be made vegan. Four "light bites" (smaller or low fat dishes) dishes, from $4.75-$8.25, were vegetarian. All side orders were vegetarian as well ($.50-$2.50). What was most unique was that all five desserts ($1.95-$4.95) could be made vegan. Unfortunately, they may not be wise choices for the health conscious diner as they were all deep fried.
The restaurant is nicely decorated and there is enough room to comfortably eat without feeling you are on top of the next customer. Rondi liked its openness and convenience to Duke University.
Overall, the restaurant is an excellent place for the vegetarian diner. I am not a Latin-American food aficionada, so do go and have a taste of your own - I think you’ll leave pleasantly satisfied.