Matthew Konar Architect
• Experimentation. Durham is artistic, diverse and creative. Food is an art! • Talent. Durham has chefs, farmers, suppliers, nonprofits, farmers’ markets and many more food activists who are all passionate about local food and apply their individual skills to every aspect of the food system.
Nana’s Restaurant, NanaSteak, NanaTaco, Bar Virgile would say one of the biggest reasons would not be in number of restaurants but in “execution.” Dishes are generally well thought out, true to ingredient integrity and taste like what it is. Many restaurants talk wildly on the menu and then all you taste is one thing. I think the restaurants in Durham execute their food, thus actually pulling it off.
• Agriculture. Durham and its surrounding area have a strong historical agricultural base. And great ingredients are the start of a great dish! • Community. Durham has a strong identity that its community fosters, accepts and supports. Durham relishes what it is, including its “rough” edges, and then infuses its food, culture and traditions with its strong identity.
Katie Spencer The Museum of Durham History
ewcomers have been coming to Durham from elsewhere for a very long time, and they mix their own food traditions with those that are homegrown. Here’s a quote from a news story in the “Durham Morning Herald” in 1927. I love the quote because it shows how meaningful food traditions are to people far from home: “When [Durham restaurant owner] George Niccaulu was asked why he went into the food business, he explained that meringues reminded him of the clouds of home; grape juice, the sea; cakes with icing, the temples, ‘So, to keep from dying of homesickness, I opened a restaurant. Now I make new clouds, new seas, new temples, every day.’” September 2016