The Cavalier Daily
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Local bar Coupe DeVille's plans to reopen late summer

More than seven months have passed since a grease fire forced the establishment to close and rebuild

Seven months ago, a grease fire caused Coupe DeVille’s — a popular bar and restaurant located on Elliewood Avenue on the Corner — to close down for renovations. Though the establishment owner initially hoped to reopen this spring, the opening date is now predicted to be late summer.

Last September, a grease fire concentrated primarily in the kitchen of Coupe DeVille’s broke out, causing immediate damage to the kitchen and smoke damage to the upstairs seating area of the establishment. 

At the time of the fire, Coupe Deville’s manager Ryan Rooney wrote in an email to The Cavalier Daily describing the damage that happened as the equipment was undergoing routine cleaning.

“As we were opening the restaurant at around 5 p.m., the frying equipment was being routinely cleaned in preparation for service,” Rooney said. “A fire started during that time and spread very quickly. The fire suppression system activated and the damage was primarily limited to the kitchen. Some smoke damage made its way to the upstairs offices.”

According to Rooney, had the fire damage been confined primarily to the structure of the building, Coupe’s could have reopened before Christmas. However, the damages included kitchen equipment, which has been difficult to replace due to recent supply chain shortages. 

Rooney said in an email statement to The Cavalier Daily that the damage to the kitchen equipment compounded with a widespread labor shortage in “various trades,” which has stalled construction. Subsequently, the opening was pushed back to late summer in time for the return of students for the 2022-23 academic year.

“Coupe’s will most likely open in the late summer,” Rooney said. “We have experienced what many people and companies are also dealing with, and that is there is just such a shortage of labor and availability in the various trades.”

At the time of the fire, Coupe’s management decided to redistribute employees to other local food establishments, including Trinity or Boylan Heights.

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