One of Baltimore’s more notable beer bars, the Metropolitan Coffeehouse and Wine Bar in Federal Hill, suffered a serious fire in the wee hours of July 6th. At approximately 3:30 a.m., an electrical fire hit the overhead lights between the bar and the kitchen.
“The fire marshal said it was either a defective light fixture or defective wiring to it,” said Bruce Dorsey, manager of the bar and restaurant. Structural damage was minimal thanks to rapid response by the Baltimore City Fire Department, but the heat was severe enough to melt a ceiling-mounted television and several shelves’ worth of plastic spice bottles, as well as pop the corks on many bottles of wine. Fortunately for beer aficionados, there was no discernible damage to the beer taps or beer inventory (although it’s likely that, upon reopening, there might be a special on Rauchbiers?).
At press time, insurance adjusters were still assessing the damage, but a preliminary guess was that the bar would be closed for two months for clean-up and repairs. Meanwhile, a planned monthly gathering of the Society for Preservation of Beers From the Wood scheduled for Metropolitan the following Thursday had to be hurriedly rescheduled. Fans of the establishment can follow its website at www.metrobalto.com or its MySpace site for rebuilding updates.
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