Saturday, October 17, 2009

Pickle Barrel Closed by Fire

Image courtesy of Milledgeville Fire Department Lieutenant Greg Hood

I'm sorry to report that the Pickle Barrel Café and Sports Pub suffered a structure fire early Saturday morning. From the U-R Web site:
Milledgeville Fire Department Lieutenant Greg Hood told the Union-Recorder that city fire crews responded to a call about the fire at approximately 7:49 a.m. Hood said the 1800 block of North Columbia Street was engulfed in a thick blanket of heavy smoke when the fire department arrived on the scene. His agency then requested the assistance of volunteer crews from the North Baldwin and Hardwick stations of the Baldwin County Fire Department.
“We were on the scene until 11:16 a.m.,” he said. “It took about two hours to get the fire under control.”
Hood said the fire originated on the south side of a hallway in the rear of the building. “The fire spread from the hallway into the dining area, and the building sustained heavy smoke damage throughout,” he said.
At this time, Hood added, it remains unclear whether the structure will be salvageable or not.
The cause of the fire is still under investigation, though Hood said there is no suspicion of foul play.

My wife and I have spent a lot of our Friday nights imbibing in adult beverages and enjoying the great food at the Pickle Barrel since she moved down to Milledgeville. In fact, we were there this Friday night, just hours before the blaze that will now have us searching for a new place to unwind after long work weeks.
Adding to the spooky feeling that always results from having recently been at a place that--for all intents and purposes--doesn't exist anymore, I paused for a good while last night to take a long look at all the picture collages in that same hallway where the fire broke out this morning.
As you can imagine, there's going to be some time before we know the future of this popular local hangout. And my thoughts go out to restaurateur Bob Jaworski who was out of town Saturday when the fire occurred.
Jaworski's other venture, the South of Philly Market Street Deli, was shuttered unexpectedly earlier this year and remains for sale just up North Columbia Street from the Pickle Barrel location.
Both restaurants always received top billing in Kate and I's list of recommended local grub spots.
Here's to you Mr. Jaworski--please don't leave Milledgeville hungry for your delicious entrepreneurial ventures.

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