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Stay Home: Bring Durham To You

Estimated Read Time:
3 minutes

Bring home the best Durham has to offer from locally owned boutiques, eateries, and specialty shops.

Posted By Ashley Strahm

From handcrafted tableware, fresh meat and produce from nearby farms, to Durham-made beverages and sweets ... surround yourself with beauty.

Luckily, there are multiple opportunities to order from retailers for delivery and pick up — but if you do decide to venture out to pick out your favorites in person, keep in mind that over 200 Durham businesses have taken comprehensive steps to get "Back on the Bull," a campaign that ensures that business owners indicate practical steps they'll take to reduce risk for customers. Look for their signage in storefronts to identify who has taken part in the program.

Back on the Bull campaign

Set the Scene

Create that Southern atmosphere with the classic scent of North Carolina: try a beautiful (Beyoncé endorsed!) Bright Black Candles, or Greenleaf Magnolia Aroma Decor Diffuser Oil at Morgan Imports in the Brightleaf District.

Parker and Otis’ sister shop Chet Miller overflows with carefully curated home décor items and gifts. Plan a fancy meal for two (or just you), with delicate champagne coupes and crystal wine glasses, intricately designed china, and notes to send to pen pals that declare “Durham is awesome.” Enjoy specially curated wares from Bungalow, a beautiful boutique downtown in Five Points.

Span international boundaries wherever you call home by purchasing hand-sourced, sustainably crafted wares at Bull City Fair Trade; your purchase will undoubtedly keep the circle of gratitude open this season.

Finally, pick up a beautiful centerpiece of locally grown and seasonal flowers from Pine State Flowers, or set your summer reds and browns beside lush or dried greens from Zen Succulent or Bowerbird.

Find more Durham boutiques and retailers that have adapted to socially distanced methods for your convenience.

The Freshest Food

Stumped on what to cook? Order from Parker and Otis to grab the latest cookbooks from North Carolina chefs like Vivian Howard, Ashley Christensen, and Katie Button. If you’d prefer to skip the prep work altogether, the kitchen at celebrated Foster’s Market is providing completely prepared family meals. Pick your favorite hors d’oeuvres, soups, main courses, sides, and desserts from a huge menu of Southern favorites. Standouts have included the baked brie wrapped in puff pastry, bone-in cured ham, sweet potato casserole with spicy pecans, and Foster’s famous cheddar herb biscuits.

Plan to make a special trip for locally-sourced protein (especially at darling Black family-owned farms like Grass Grazed). Since 1956, one needn't wander far past downtown to arrive at Kings Red & White Supermarket, where the freshest cuts of meat are provided by their long-standing butcher shop, or downtown at Old North Meats. The Durham Farmers’ Market, South Durham Farmers’ Market, Perkin's Orchard, and Durham Co-op are excellent outlets for seasonal produce like squash, gourds, apples, pumpkins, and baguettes with local honey. Make sure to grab sweet or savory meal accompaniments at Bull City Olive Oil as well.

To add some international flavors to your meal, visit the locally owned global markets like Al-Taiba and La Superior for unique spices and diverse products.

Sips and Sweets

Listen, no one cares about your quarantine diet.

Make any semblance of moderation a major no-no with something sweet. Rose’s Noodles, Dumplings & Sweets and East Durham Bake Shop is known to provide an array of delightful post-dinner treats, including Bourbon Caramel Apple, Malted Pumpkin, Banana Toffee Cream, and Lemon buttermilk pies, among many, many others.

If you fancy cake, pick up a boozy, brown sugar vanilla rum cake from Chez Moi Bakery, or a delectable dessert at Afters in the Durham Food Hall.

Backyard chilling is perfect for Durham-made beverages. Make a batch of spiked summer punch with gin from Durham Distillery, or try Krupnikas (a honey-spiced liqueur) from Brothers Vilgalys. On the softer side, sip seasonal beers such as the aptly named 'Humidity' brew from Durham-based Fullsteam Brewery, or enjoy bottles of North Carolina wine from The Wine Feed.

Just in time for these summer rays, unwind with a glass of wine from Durham-based Honeygirl Meadery, which specializes in meads (honey wines) made with seasonal fruits, flowers, herbs, and honey in flavors such as hibiscus lemon-thyme, strawberry, and blueberry. Luckily for the oenophile in your life, they recently partnered with VinoShipper to ship online orders to 35 states.

Bull City-Made Treasures

Peruse through a collection of Durham-made gifts from Dolly's Vintage, BullCity Apparel & Customs, Horse & Buggy Press and Friends, and a variety of retailers at TheBullCity.org, an online hub of local products ranging from apparel and candles to magnets and pet products. Durham City Goods is another online shop for Durham-branded mugs, canvas tote bags, stickers, and t-shirts, and if you're in need of accessories, support Simply Samone, a flourishing enterprise started by Nyla Symone when she was just nine years old!

Ask anyone: Durham will make its mark on you. With so many items available to enjoy and gift to loved ones (or keep for yourself!), you can begin a socially distanced adventure at any time.

About the Author

Ashley Strahm

Jersey roots, Durham fruits. Lover of all things edible, egalitarian and true. Find me clad in Birkenstocks, seeking Bull City Beautiful stories by trail, wheel and spoke.