Early yesterday morning, two fires hit popular Gulf Coast restaurants. The first, and much worse, was a fire that started at about 2:30AM at Ocean Springs, Mississippi's popular barbecue joint, The Shed. The restaurant was completely destroyed before firefighters were able to contain the blaze. The Ocean Springs location is known as the Original Shed, opening as a small 300 square foot take out joint a little over ten years ago, notes Mississippi's Sun-Herald. Subsequent locations have opened up in Mobile, Destin, Gulfport and Scott, Louisiana. The Original Shed has long been a popular stop for New Orleanians headed to the beach, especially after it was featured on Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives.
But it wasn't all bad. Owner Brad Orrison had pork and brisket cooking on the smoker overnight. That batch?"the last pulled pork cooked at the original Shed"?made it through unscathed.
"The firefighters took me back to the smoker and we opened it up and the brisket and pork shoulders were perfect," said Orrison. "Usually we take them out at 4 in the morning. It was like 4:30 and they had the fire out enough to where we could get back and open the smoker and sure enough there was the most tender pork waiting, as if nothing had happened."The Sun-Herald also notes that customers, friends and other restaurant owners have been very active in giving support and donations. Orrison and his sister/co-owner Brooke plan to rebuild the original location.
Meanwhile, another fire that started around 9AM damaged, but did not destroy, Chalmette's Creole-Italian institution Rocky & Carlo's. According to the Times-Pic, "The iconic Creole-Italian restaurant has heavy fire damage in the kitchen and smoke damage throughout." Rocky & Carlo's is closed on Sundays, and nobody was injured in the fire.