The owner of Oggi Cosi Si Mangia awaits the report from his insurance company, but based on the fire damage, it could be a year before he reopens the restaurant.
Louie Maglieri, the restaurant’s owner, got the call at 7:12 a.m. Thursday morning from his alarm company that motion had been detected at the entryway.
What turned out to be a fire brought out 34 firefighters after neighbors reported smoke billowing from the restaurant.
“Just looking in there, I saw all my appliances melted, holes in the roof, and water everywhere. I knew it was a complete loss,” Maglieri said.
The fire that began in the kitchen melted metal trays, scorched appliances, and contaminated Maglieri’s extensive wine collection.
The insurance company told him it should take six months to get his Italian restaurant back open, but based on everything that needs to be done, Maglieri thinks it will be closer to a year.
He compared his fire to one at nearby Livingstone’s, which had to close for two years.
“I’m guessing a year, but I’ve heard insurance estimators say six months, but there’s no way it’s going to be six months,” Maglieri said. “I mean, I hope it is, but I don’t think they’re going to make it, you know, pulling permits and all that.”
Smoke Penetrated Everything in the Restaurant
While firefighters say the fire was quickly contained, the smoke penetrated nearly everything inside the restaurant.
Soot settled on dishes and goblets still set on the tables. The wiring overhead melted. Maglieri said the furniture will stink of smoke even after cleanup, requiring either new finishing on the wooden chairs or replacement.
Considering the heat’s effect on his “substantial” wine collection, Maglieri said he won’t be able to serve that to diners.
The fire also comes during what is typically the busiest part of the year for restaurants. People come out to the posh restaurant during the holiday season for a fancy dinner.
His restaurant plays host to several holiday parties every year.
But Maglieri looks forward to greeting his customers once again.
“Come and eat when we’re back going again,” Maglieri said.