The Toro Effect

Jack Tar rooftop

Durham loves itself. It is not narcissistic, but empathetic love. That love is on display in the window at 101 East Chapel Hill Street.

On November 4th, 2013, a fire caused substantial damage to Pizzeria Toro, adjacent businesses, and apartments above the restaurant. Residents of the apartments have since relocated and surrounding businesses reopened. Pizzeria Toro to this day has not returned. The restaurant is a favorite of the booming culinary scene here in Durham. Unfortunately, two fires in 2013 have put an end to Pizzeria Toro for the foreseeable future…1

Pizzeria Toro 2

As we have previously documented, Durham is nationally recognized for its many talented chefs and delicious eateries. Stop on any block downtown and you are within arms reach of coffee shops and bakeries to your heart’s content. Each new restaurant creates healthy competition for the rest which raises the overall level of success. Pizzeria Toro exemplified that success.

If you can’t stand the heat… come back to the kitchen, please. WE NEED YOU, TORO!

Before they were forced to vacate, Pizzeria Toro staked its impression in the brick and mortar of downtown Durham. The cinders that remain symbolize gratitude. Gratitude rising from the ashes of bad circumstance and opportunity is born again. The plethora of aforementioned eateries in downtown Durham are written across the glass at 101 East Chapel Hill Street with the title Viva Downtown. At their weakest point, Pizzeria Toro reminds us that we are all in this journey through life together. An outreached hand of support will pull us all through our past pitfalls. Those afflicted by the fire received a swell of support from friends, family, and customers. Adversity created an opportunity to highlight our strengths, not our weaknesses. Next time you walk by the window, take a look at the restaurants listed. The strength of the people at the core of those restaurants is what will uphold Durham’s future.

1 Update: Our wish was granted!

Columnist Justin Laidlaw is a renaissance man. His interests range from the music business to politics, from Durham’s history and culture, to the world beyond. The co-host of Clarion Content’s podcast, he is fast becoming a veteran columnist. He is a fashion model, a tech sceptic, a business manager and more.

Comments are closed.