By Molly Brewer
A fire apparently broke out in the kitchen Wednesday morning in the yet-to-be-opened 63 Bar and Grill in Chicago’s Edgewater neighborhood.
Chicago firefighters were called to the scene at about 8:45 a.m. There were no immediate reports of injuries.
After the iconic Hamilton’s Bar and Grill closed in the fall, restaurateur Matt Fisher has since purchased the vacant space, which has been in the renovation. 63 Bar and Grill was expected to open this spring.
Loyola University Chicago, which recently purchased the building, issued the following statement:
“Today at 8:45 a.m., a fire broke out in a Loyola property located at 6341 N. Sheridan. The fire was contained to second floor apartments, which house nine Loyola students. No one was injured and the Chicago Fire Department quickly arrived on the scene to extinguish the fire.
Student Development is working closely with the displaced students to relocate them. At this time, the cause of the fire is unknown.”
Loyola students, who were loyal patrons of Hamilton’s, were anticipating the opening of 63 Bar and Grill.
Students living in the two apartments above 63 Bar and Grill evacuated at approximately 9:20 a.m. according to Katie Hoffman, 20, sophomore, who’s boyfriend is a resident of one of the apartments.
“The apartment next to Mason’s was way worse … They were smashing the windows in over there,” the economics major said of the apartment neighboring her boyfriend’s.
Robert Jackson, 22, senior, finance and economics double major, was one of the occupants evacuated this morning and believes the fire to have started in the kitchen that is currently being renovated in 63 Bar and Grill.“CFD responded quickly and Loyola has been very accommodating so far,” Jackson said. “But I don’t know what is going to happen going forward yet.”
The damage is still unknown and there isn’t much that can be done, according to Jackson.
Fisher, the owner of 63, recently opened The Boarding House restaurant. He also owns Bistronomic, which is near Loyola’s Water Tower Campus.
Hamilton’s Bar and Grill officially closed its doors in October after serving hundreds of customers who stopped by to have one last drink in honor of the closing.
After 80 years of business, Hamilton’s was purchased by Loyola University Chicago. Hamilton’s approached the university with an offer to sell the bar.
An array of customers including, Loyola students, Loyola alumni and longtime customers filled the bar during its final day to pay their respects to one of their favorite community establishments.