WALLINGFORD — The owner of Wood-n-Tap expects to reopen Wednesday after the bar and grill was forced to close following a kitchen fire Saturday morning.
Business owner Phil Barnett said the cause of the fire is believed to be a steam table that was left running overnight, causing a nearby towel to catch fire.
Barnett said the fire itself, which began at about 3 a.m., was extinguished quickly and caused minimal damage. The business was forced to close, however, after water used to extinguish the fire damaged several appliances and excessive levels of smoke and soot impacted air quality in the building.
“It was a very small fire in the kitchen,” Barnett said. “It put up a lot of smoke. The damage is really [from] the smoke, not the fire, and then the water to put out the fire damaged some equipment.”
Barnett said the restaurant passed several health inspections, indicating the space is now safe for customers to dine in, but said the business will remain closed until midweek to give chefs enough time to prepare meals and ingredients lost during the fire.
“The biggest challenge right now is we have to spend a day getting ready to prep all the food.” Barnett said. “All that stuff was made in house.”
The fire department responded early Saturday morning to the fire at the 970 N. Colony Road restaurant.
Firefighters forced entry into the kitchen area and extinguished the fire quickly. No injuries were reported at the scene.
“It was nothing too extensive,” Battalion Chief Kris Sundwall said. “It was isolated to that area of the kitchen.”
The official cause of the fire is under investigation by the Fire Marshal’s office.
Wood-n-Tap is a chain restaurant with multiple locations around the local area.