Food by VICE

Why Are Arsonists Targeting Montreal Pizzerias?

Three recent Molotov cocktail attacks have local restaurant owners shaken.

by Jelisa Castrodale
Dec 6 2018, 4:04pm

Photo: Getty Images

At around 3:30 on Monday morning, an unknown person or persons threw a Molotov cocktail through the window of the California Pizza restaurant in Montreal, Canada. That’s disturbing enough on its own, but it’s ultra-scary because in the past two weeks, there have been three Molotov-fueled attacks on the city’s pizza joints.

Each of the three incidents have several characteristics in common: The fires have all been reported in the early morning hours, firefighters discovered a single broken window in each restaurant, and each one has been a completely unprovoked attack on pizza. (It’s hard to suggest an upside to any of this, but due to the arsonist’s tendency to act before sunrise, there have been no injuries or casualties, and the restaurants have suffered minimal damage.)

The Takeout reports that, in addition to Monday’s assault on the California Pizza, some terrible person (or terrible people) also started fires at the Pizza Pita on Saturday, December 1, and at the same California Pizza location on Thursday, November 22. According to CTV News, firefighters have again notified the police department’s arson squad, who will be reviewing footage from the restaurant’s surveillance cameras; so far, no suspects have been identified and no arrests have been made.

“We had an arson fire on Shabbos morning at 5:55 AM,” Pizza Pita wrote on Facebook. “The police are investigating the case. Thank G-d, baruch hashem, the sprinkler system worked immediately [and] the alarm company dispatched police and fire department. The only damage to the restaurant was the drive-thru, mostly water damage [...] We are back in business as usual.”

This isn’t the first time Montreal’s pizzerias have been targeted by arsonists. In 2013, five pizza restaurants were hit by Molotov cocktails. At the time, the police were considering every possible motivation for the attacks, including the possibility of a connection to organized crime. During that cursed year, there were also three separate attempts to burn the Pizza Champion down; two men were arrested on the night they allegedly tried to set it on fire for the third time.

To whoever’s behind these recent incidents: What could you possibly have against pizza?

Molotov Cocktails