A restaurant in West Hartford damaged by a fire this summer reopened Monday with a renovated building and a new name.
During the early morning hours of July 10, a fire broke out in the back of Ruben's Deli on LaSalle Road. The cause of the fire is believed to be rags left on the job site that spontaneously combusted.
"We had to rip out the whole ceiling, gut the place as a result of the smoke damage," said owner Brian Hersh.
An entire area of the building had gutted after the fire. However, the spot where it started has not been replaced as a remainder of what they've been through and where they're going.
"It was a lot of patience, let's put it that way. I had a summer vacation I didn't anticipate having," Hersh said. "On the negative side, it was a struggle to push and push to get open, but we're open, we're here."
The delicatessen had been closed in June for six weeks to renovate the restaurant, according to its owner. Hersh had planned to open the new Thirty5 Bar and Grille in August; however, the fire set the opening back two months.
"You roll with the punches, you learn a lot about the insurance business," he said. "You learn a lot about renovating a restaurant for the second time."
The traditional deli used to cover lunch and dinner; however, Thirty5 Bar and Grille will also be open for dinner and added a bar to cut into the West Hartford night life.
"It's a booming dinner time, evening destination and as a deli it was hard to capture a piece of that," Hersh said.
Customers visiting the new dinning spot were happy with the changes.
"It's really neat, really changed dramatically," said Bob Edmunds of West Hartford.
Copyright 2012 WFSB (Meredith Corporation). All rights reserved.