The lights have gone out at Restaurant Fire.
The recent second-time winner of a Florida Trend Golden Spoon award, the
Fire owner Brenda Darr declined an extended interview about the closing but did say the decision did not come easy. But for her at this time, "it was the right thing to do."
Director of Operations Mario McNally said his former boss just wanted to be able to spend more time with her family in
"Her son lives there and she has new twin granddaughters she wants to spend time with. She's been working it a long time and when you work in the restaurant business, you don't get time off to spend with family," said McNally. "It has been hard. She was like a mother to me."
Darr hired McNally as a server when she opened the original Fire restaurant in an old abandoned fire station in
Darr sold the restaurant to third-generation restaurant-owner Drew Messina of
"It was like it was God arranged," said
"It worked out beautifully," said
Gone is the large portrait of a firehouse Dalmatian that formerly hung in the entryway, and a large TV takes its place.
Where the large TV used to hang over the bar, a large chalkboard is being installed where all the restaurant's bourbons will be listed, along with the bourbon of the month. More than 40 different bourbons, 10 single-malt Scotch, and blue-cheese-stuffed martinis will be offered.
The restaurant's signature drink will be an Italian milk punch.
As for the food,
"The popular place used to be Sandestin, but from being in this area, I know the beaches of 30A have taken over from Sandestin and it continues to grow," he said.
The restaurant will be open seven days a week for lunch from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m., and dinner from 4 to 9:30 p.m. Saturday and Sunday brunch will be from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Takeouts will be available, including bag lunches for the beach. Call 267-9020.