Fire causes $100k damage at Downtown eatery

DOWNTOWN CINCINNATI (FOX19) - An accidental cooking fire in Metropole Restaurant's kitchen Sunday caused $100,000 in damage, fire officials said.

Fire crews responded to the blaze at the restaurant at 21c Museum Hotel on Walnut Street at 5:15 p.m. Sunday, said District 1 Fire Captain Matt Rotert.

When they arrived, they saw flames coming from a large vent on the north side of the restaurant, he said.

Flames in the kitchen's wood cooking fireplace got too big and extended into the vent, which had grease buildup and caught on fire, he said. From there, the fire spread through the duct like a chimney fire to the second floor and out of the building.

The fire was brought under control within 30 minutes. It was contained to the second floor and the outside of the building.

The restaurant sustained smoke damage, and water and smoke damage were reported on the second floor, he said.

Extensive overhaul of the ventilation system kept firefighters on scene for about 90 minutes.

No injuries were reported.

All guests at the adjacent 21c Hotel were sheltered in place.

On Monday, representatives with 21c Museum Hotel said it had been cleared to reopen:

The fire at Metropole was confined to the duct work and fireplace exhaust. Only the second floor banquet kitchen sustained minor damage.

The fire closed Walnut Street between Sixth and Seventh streets Sunday while authorities investigated "light smoke" reported by the fire department, according to a Tweet from Cincinnati police.

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