Latitudes brings international flavor to Knightdale

Posted by Greg Cox on May 23, 2014 

Imelda Castro, owner of the North Raleigh Salvadoran restaurant La Cocina de Mama Greta, has teamed up with 20-year food service veteran Sandy Delgado to open Latitudes in Knightdale. Billing their offering as “dishes that span the globe from a wide variety of cultures,” the owners have drawn inspiration from their life and travels spanning much of the Western hemisphere from Latin America to New York, where Delgado owned a restaurant in the mid-90s.

The extensive menu offers a gastronomic tour from Argentine churrasco steak to Peruvian lomo saltado to Cuban ropa vieja to Mexican burrito. Occasionally, the tour even ventures into fusion territory for the likes of Buffalo chicken empanadas and Latin-spiced penne.

The Cuban pulled pork sandwich has already become a best seller in the few days since the restaurant’s opening last Saturday, according to Delgado. You’ll find it under the Sandwiches heading, cheek-by-jowl with the likes of meatball parmesan, pimento cheese with fried green tomato, grilled portobello and Maryland-style crab cake. Burgers are made with eight ounces of house-ground beef and are available in a number of suitably international variations.

The owners have given the former El Fogon space a complete overhaul, installing a 22-seat bar with a selection of a dozen draft beers. Pool tables and dart boards reinforce the owners’ aim to give the restaurant the sort of laid-back feel alluded to in the Jimmy Buffett song, “Changes in Latitudes,” which inspired the restaurant’s name. Needless to say, one of those beer taps at the bar dispenses Buffett’s LandShark lager.

Latitudes (7425 Knightdale Blvd.; 919-295-2888; latitudesknightdale.com) is open for lunch and dinner daily.

Greg Cox, the longtime N&O restaurant critic, also covers restaurant news. Tune in to hear his radio show at 11 a.m. Saturdays on WPTF. Reach him at ggcox@bellsouth.net.

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