METCALFE — This community has been “gutted” after fire ripped through and destroyed a popular eatery and gathering place, a longtime resident says.
Metcalfe’s Main Street Grill & Pizzeria was completely engulfed in flames during the three-alarm fire that drew Ottawa firefighters to the Victoria Street address shortly after 1 a.m. this morning.
A passing snowplow operator noticed the building was on fire and called 9-1-1, says Jason Isaac, whose parents live down the street from the establishment and noticed the smell of smoke at around the same time.
“Mom was going to call 9-1-1 and then she saw the first firetrucks go by. They had 10 trucks down there — including two water tankers. It took them two and a half hours to put it out,” Jason Isaac told Nation Valley News. “It’s total devastation.”
Despite local competition, the aging restaurant — also known as Main Street Bar & Grill — continued to draw its regulars each week. “On Friday nights the entire congregation of Metcalfe Anglican Church would go down there for a group dinner. And you would have the hunting guys and retired guys from Hydro Ottawa there every morning.
“The locals always went there, no matter what. It’s going to be a giant gaping hole in the downtown of Metcalfe now.”
Isaac says the building was an icon of Metcalfe’s retail history, having been a general store for decades before a former owner turned it into a restaurant.
No one was injured in the fire, and the Ottawa Fire Services continues to investigate the blaze.
Ottawa Fire on scene of a Working Fire at 8210-8212 Victoria Street in the Village of Metcalfe. The fire is in the Main Street Grill & Pizzeria. This now a 3rd Alarm fire. No reported injuries and a OFS Fire Investigator has been dispatched. #ottnews #ottcity #ottfire pic.twitter.com/INihSjLtYe
— Scott Stilborn (@OFSFirePhoto) February 10, 2020