Saladelia Café

coffee shops durham nc saladelia cafe outside 1

4.3 miles from downtown Durham
4201 University Drive, Durham
COVID Hours: Mon – Fri 10:30AM to 8PM, Sat & Sun 11AM to 7PM

coffee shops durham nc saladelia cafe outside 4
Tuesday, October 27, 2020 @ 12:53 PM


Patio dining, takeout, curbside pickup and delivery are available 7 days a week from 10:30am – 8pm Monday thru Friday, and 11am – 7pm on Saturdays & Sundays at their flagship location, here on University Drive. Their menu of traditional Mediterranean fare, house made baked goods, and coffee drinks is as robust as ever. For takeout and pickup, go here to order online. In light of COVID, they are not accepting cash at this time to minimize contact. For delivery, you can order here.

The Vibe: Comfortably pleasant, contemporary, inviting
durham nc coffee shops saladelia cafe

Tuesday, October 15, 2019 @ 1:54 PM

I arrive just before 2 PM. The café is relatively quiet – post lunch lull, perhaps – but there are people here, it doesn’t feel empty. There are two couples sitting outside, and several students in the main room, on their computers.

I locate to the far right room, and I have the entire space to myself. There is no music playing so it’s a great time for thought or have a business meeting or call. Later, a grad student and her advisor site two tables away and openly discuss their studies. Impressive landscape paintings by James Keul hang on the walls.

Three hours later, as I packed up to leave, classical music plays over the speakers. The volume is so low, however, that you have to concentrate to hear it. On this particular day, you could get a lot of work done.

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Wednesday, January 23, 2019

Saladelia Café is known more for its food and catering than as a destination for coffee. But, along with delicious Mediterranean cuisine, Saladelia offers a full range of coffee drinks and, most importantly, it’s a great place to hang out.

This independently-owned business has been in the area since 1988 and has five locations in Durham. Three of them mostly serve the Duke University community (two locations are actually in university buildings), a fourth is in American Tobacco Campus, but the one we are talking about here is what Saladelia calls its “Main” location on University Drive.

The Setting

While not much to look at from the outside – it’s located in a strip mall alongside a Pizza Hut and a vape shop – the inside is extremely comfortable and pleasant. Saladelia’s layout consists of three spacious rooms divided into roughly equal size. In total, the café can probably accommodate 100 people, but its capacity is deceiving. Each room, or area, while not dissimilar, feels separate from one another. There is plenty of space to spread out, and the setting and environs encourage you to stay a while, with contemporary furnishings, quality works by local artists, sturdy table tops and comfortable chairs (this location also features live music on occasion, mostly jazz, on Fridays and Saturdays).

Speaking of music, they are playing things like Chad Lawson, Daniel Ketchum, and Explosions in the Sky – classical, easy listening, piano and instrumental  – soft stuff that is barely audible above the conversation that fills the room.

The crowd today is mostly middle-aged to older, casually professional. People seem to be here to discuss work, but not talk business, rather talk about their projects and inspirations.

And, despite the fact that it’s in a strip mall, Saladelia does a good job of creating a surprisingly nice outside seating experience. Because the café is on the end of the building, they were able to carve out their own outdoor space with wooden benches, plants and other greenery.

Saladelia, it’s kind of your go-to corner café that creates “an atmosphere that engages your senses”, serves good eats, and is a very nice place to spend time.

If you like this review, click here for a list of all the other reviews of coffee shops in Durham.

Published by Pet Coyote

Pet Coyote allows YOU to voice your authority with each touch point, interaction, and experience you have that uniquely tickles your fancy. Share the experiences that define, refine, and embody everything that is YOU, and then connect to people with similar tastes so that you can encounter new experiences that please your soul's palette.

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