Talk to anyone who's lived in North Carolina in the last four decades and there's a good chance they'll remember eating more than one meal at a Darryl's. One of the first casual dining restaurants, Darryl's was known for its off-the-wall, eclectic décor, friendly atmosphere, and unbelievably good food.
At its peak, Darryl's had 36 restaurants operating in nine states. What began as an idea for a pizza and burger joint, sketched out on a napkin over a late night dinner by the three owners, turned into one of the most successful restaurant chains North Carolina has ever produced. People loved Darryl's not just for the great food, but also for the family-friendly environment and the memories created inside the antique covered walls. Mother's Day, Valentine's Day, anniversaries, engagements, first dates, girls/guys night out –customers stood in lines that circled the block, then flocked through the doors and filled the bar, tables, and booths, day and night.
My first memory of Darryl's is from a birthday party when I was a kid. It was my favorite restaurant. I remember looking out over the restaurant from the second floor jail area. Darryl's was unique and special.
Over the years, the Darryl's chain was bought and sold a handful of times. Because of too many changes and a lack of resources to keep up with the times, it dwindled from 28 restaurants in the late 90's all the way down to one and was about to close for good.
That's when I decided to rekindle the fire and bring Darryl's back to its original glory. The restaurant has undergone a $2 million renovation and expansion. We've added great new features like our fire pits, brought back the original Darryl's recipes, and put together a world-class team.
I hope your memories of Darryl's are as special as my first memory.
Sold to General Mills, Inc.
Thad Eure resigns
GM sells its 27 Darryl’s restaurants to W.R. Grace &
Co. Inc of NY, a chemical manufacturer and owner of Houlihan’s Old Place
and El Torita Mexican restaurants. Darryl’s then became a part of
Two east coast businessmen, Philip Pilvesky and Arthur G.
Cohen, win control of the chain in a leveraged buyout of Houlihan’s and
the company files for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection and reorganizes
Restaurateur Dan Scoggin leads an investment group to take over Houlihan’s Restaurant Group and becomes CEO
The original Darryl’s fails a health inspection and is forced to close. The restaurant reopens after a $75,000 renovation
Houlihan’s Restaurant Group filed for Chapter 11
Hillsborough street Darryl’s closes
Last remaining Darryl’s restaurant purchased by Kotis Properties, Inc.