Patti’s owners will rebuild after kitchen fire

GRAND RIVERS, KY – A Patti’s 1880s Settlement restaurant spokeswoman says the tourist attraction will rebuild and be even better after a fire ravaged the kitchen Monday morning.

Spokeswoman Ann Martin tells us other than the kitchen and office space above it, the rest of the shopping and retail staple was spared by the fire, despite minor water and smoke damage.

The fire started around 8 a.m., according to Grand Rivers Mayor Tom Moody. Employees were inside preparing food. Thankfully, everyone made it out without injury.

When I arrived shortly after 9 a.m., I saw a group of employees watch the smoke billow from the place where they earn their living. We also found Grand Rivers Tourism Commission Executive Director Brian McDonald watching as the crown jewel of his city was burning. “I stepped outside, and I heard the alarms, and I heard the fire department coming, and my heart dropped at that point,” McDonald says.

McDonald says the largest part of the commission’s budget comes from sales from Patti’s. With a closure will come less revenue. “Patti’s is huge to Grand Rivers,” McDonald says. “They’ve been here over 40 years. The Tullar family had played a huge role in Grand Rivers’ success and development.”

Martin says the main thing is all the employees who were there are OK. And the damage could have been worse, she says. “Our dining areas could have been a total loss. There are treasures in there that can’t be replaced. This was Ms. Patti’s house, and a lot of her stuff is still there,” Martin says.

On Patti’s Facebook page, a statement reads:

“First of all we are thankful that all of our employees are safe. We would also like to thank the area fire departments and first responders for their quick response and all they did to keep the fire contained.  With this being said plans to rebuild are already in process.  We would like to assure our 200+ employees that their jobs are secure. We are humbled by the outpouring of support from our town of Grand Rivers and surrounding communities.”

We do not have a timeline for when Patti’s will be able to serve their 2 inch pork chops and “mile-high” meringue pies, but Martin hopes it will be soon. “We’ll just go tomorrow, and start looking toward the future. We’ve got to rebuild. I think the dining rooms are OK, which I’m sure there’s smoke damage. The kitchen is a loss. Well rebuild, and we’ll be better.”

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