Piper’s Deli (3219 Old Chapel Hill Rd.), a self-described “Durham Institution since 1984,” is a surprisingly good lunch/dinner spot that specializes in deli sandwiches and burgers.
As the decor (heavy on Duke/UNC paraphernalia and ESPN on flatscreen TVs) and menu suggest, Piper’s isn’t hip or exciting, but what they do have on offer is great. We got a couple of burgers, some soup and salad, and a buffalo chicken sandwich.
I had heard some good things about their burgers and I wasn’t disappointed. The provolone and bacon helped but the burger itself was super fresh and flavorful. Not as heavenly as Wimpy’s but big and just greasy enough, wrapped in a big poofy Kaiser roll. The buffalo chicken sandwich was pretty amazing too — just spicy enough and not drowning in sauce. Like the burger, it ran about $7. The frozen bag fries were the only disappointment.
Even the soup of the day (Italian wedding soup) was great. The cake of the day, chocolate cake with cream cheese icing, was passable, but honestly it’s hard to compete with the best lunchtime cake ever. They also bake their own cookies daily, which is another incentive to go back.
Most of all I was impressed by how fresh everything tasted, and the burgers are so good they soften the blow of OnlyBurger’s untimely end. And they have $1 Miller High Life every day!
Monday-Friday: 11 am – 9 pm
Saturday: 11 am – 3 pm