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Ubuntu Space Finally Taken, Becoming Torc

The space in its Ubuntu days.
The space in its Ubuntu days.
Photo: jshyun/Flickr

Since its closure in late 2011, the fate of the lovely downtown Napa space that housed Ubuntu has been a subject of much speculation. Now, it finally has a taker: the first solo project from Sean O'Toole, the current Hotel Yountville/Hopper Creek Kitchen chef who's also logged stints at Quince, Bardessono, and with the Mina Group. As Inside Scoop reports, he's turning it into a contemporary American restaurant called Torc, which comes from the Gaelic word for "wild boar." In case you couldn't tell by his name, O'Toole is Irish, and boars, in addition to being Northern California's most huntable delicacy, played an important role in Irish feasts and hospitality. (It's also a nicely cheeky counterpoint to Ubuntu's crunchy, neo-hippie vegetarian leanings.)

O'Toole's plan is to take over the dining room and back patio as well as the mezzanine (which served as a yoga studio both during and after Ubuntu's time in business). He's not going to shake up the space much, crediting former owner Sandy Lawrence for giving the space "great bones" and "timeless" design. The target for opening is October.

· Sean O'Toole claims Napa's former Ubuntu [Inside Scoop]
· Ubuntu Still on Market, More Spots Up For Grabs [~ ESF ~]
· The Ubuntu Space Officially Hits the Market [~ ESF ~]


1140 Main St., Napa, CA