November 27, 2013

Fire temporarily closes new Boone’s waterfront restaurant in Portland

The manager expects to reopen Saturday after a fireplace ‘went overboard’ and damaged flooring.

By Scott Dolan
Staff Writer

An early morning fire Wednesday at Boone’s Fish House and Oyster Room has temporarily closed the restaurant on Portland’s waterfront.

click image to enlarge

This Sept. 19, 2013 file photo shows the main dining room at Boone’s Fish House & Oyster Room on the Portland waterfront, where a fire started early this morning in the fireplace, damaging floorboards and causing the restaurant to be closed temporarily.

File photo/Gordon Chibroski, Staff Photographer

The seafood restaurant on Custom House Wharf is expected to reopen Saturday after some quick repairs, said manager Andre Gennitti.

The fire started around 4 a.m. in a wood frame around the restaurant’s central fireplace, damaging the flooring around the fireplace and floorboards on the second floor, Gennitti said.

“Our fireplace kind of went overboard,” he said. “The smoke damage was so minor, and there was no actual fire damage. We will be able to get rolling soon.”

Firefighters put out the fire and left by 7:44 a.m.

Gennitti said they caused minimal damage in removing the floor. He said flooring will have to be reinstalled and the restaurant will have to be cleaned and inspected before it can reopen.

“It could have been a lot worse,” he said.

The Portland Fire Department issued a news release late Wednesday estimating the cost of the damage at $50,000.

Boone’s is chef Harding Lee Smith’s fourth and newest restaurant in Portland. It opened in August in a sprawling, two-story space, with a dining room downstairs and a raw bar upstairs.

Smith opened The Front Room Restaurant & Bar on Congress Street in 2005. The Grill Room & Bar and The Corner Room Italian Kitchen & Bar, both on Exchange Street, followed in 2008 and 2009, respectively.

The fire department was notified by a built-in fire alarm system at 4:03 a.m. Wednesday, and the first crews to arrive reported smoke in the building, prompting an “all hands” call, said Capt. Phil McGouldrick.

“The early notification of the built-in fire alarm system really helped us out,” he said. “There’s no downplaying the value of a working fire alarm system.”

Scott Dolan can be contacted at 791-6304 or at:

Twitter: @scottddolan

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