Five weeks after the fire, Charlestown Cafe still waiting

Quick check-in with Charlestown Cafe owner Larry Mellum, five weeks after the fire that shut down his restaurant: Still waiting for word from the landlord whether they’ll proceed with costly repairs required by the city; hoping for word within a few days.

13 Replies to "Five weeks after the fire, Charlestown Cafe still waiting"

  • PSPS March 10, 2008 (6:26 pm)

    I drive by there every day, and it’s always disappointing to see that there’s absolutely nothing at all going on there. No workers, no cars, dark as a tomb inside. Very sad.
    Apparently there are plenty of non-WSB readers who do the same thing. Very often when I’m driving by rubber-necking the place, there’s someone else (a hungry potential customer) slowing down, about to turn in to have something to eat. I can visualize the question marks coming out of their car. They might take a pass through the empty parking lot before driving away, despirited and unsatisfied, in search of “the next best thing.”

  • charla March 10, 2008 (6:36 pm)

    It would help if they took down the huge OPEN sign in the front :-) Hope springs eternal, but it seems unlikely that we’ll ever see the Charlestown again. Does anyone know why they chose to close in the first place, instead of reopening elsewhere?


  • c March 10, 2008 (6:53 pm)

    I hate to think that the landlord is looking for an easy way out. If there is no Charlestown their will be no protest when it gets developed.

    Makes my kids very sad.

  • LAintheJunction March 10, 2008 (7:27 pm)

    I was dreaming of pancakes earlier today…

  • Protest?! March 10, 2008 (7:42 pm)

    c- does every development in West Seattle REQUIRE a protest? Protesting is for ass-clowns.

  • JanS March 10, 2008 (7:48 pm)

    Yes, one gets the idea that this has given the landlord the “out” that he wanted….I picture him dragging his heels on this until it’s simply too late…very sad, indeed….

  • TheHouse March 10, 2008 (9:29 pm)

    I miss CC as well and really hope it returns. By the way, I never post under any name other than TheHouse in case you thought that was me that posted the comment above.

    It wasn’t me, but agree with that person 100%!

  • missthecc March 10, 2008 (9:43 pm)

    mmmmmm….curry chicken salad….

  • call me naive... March 10, 2008 (10:37 pm)

    …and I am going NUTS!!!!! I have to cook every day for the first time in ages!!!! What I would give for one of those salads…NOW!!!
    My own pain aside, I miss the cafe and what it is to our community and I keep hoping the owner will step up and do what is right for our community. You can pretty well bet that in all the splashy new things happening in the Junction there will not be an opportunity for a couple of local business people to create a true gathering place for all ages like the Cafe has been for us. Maybe it is time for a letter writing campaign or…TV coverage.

  • call me naive... March 10, 2008 (11:24 pm)

    really naive. I did not intend to post my thoughts in duplicate! Sorry.

  • Garrett March 11, 2008 (2:08 pm)

    It is a shame how a tradition for so many ages can be cast aside for development. The meals shared with families, the pleasant bantor between Ron and his patrons most of which are old friends by now. The memories of stacks of pancakes topped with whatever enticing topping the customer desired that overwhelm young eyes but always bring a smile as placed on the table. The meals remembered with love ones now departed. All of this not happening everyday that the Charleston is not open!

  • CMP March 11, 2008 (3:38 pm)

    I know you’re all sad about having to cook your own meals instead of heading to CC, but don’t blame the owner for trying to find an easy out. There is a damage/destruction clause in most commercial leases that addresses this problem. If the damage is extensive, the owner might be allowed to terminate the lease. And if the damage was caused by the tenant (I thought it was a fire in the fryer?), then their insurance might have to cover the damage. Most leases do give a reasonable time frame for landlords to perform this work so you just have to be patient. To look on the bright side, if Charlestown Cafe has to close permanently, it sounds like there will be plenty of new real estate at the Junction for them to pursue. I hope they reopen, as I have yet to eat there and would like to try it after hearing such great things about their food. Best of luck to Larry in getting a favorable outcome!

  • Tony Canta March 13, 2008 (10:53 pm)

    Hello Larry and Ron. Rob and I miss you guys and the wonderful crew of Webster’s Cafe. Your landlord is not very wise if he can’t figure out that if he doesn’t assist in the repair of the building that he is making a lot of people angry. Also, if he thinks that this is his chance to do away with your restaurant and construct as he wishes like minded people as myself will boycott the premisses. PS I miss having my blueberry pecan buttermilk pancakes!!!!!

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