The owner of the Irish Embassy Pub on Bishop street is vowing to rebuild after a fire gutted the historic building housing the popular bar.
For owner Paul Quinn, it’s 11 years of hard work and memories gone up in smoke.
“A lot of personal stuff in the pub, a lot of family memorabilia you can’t replace,” Quinn told Global News. “It’s hard to believe.”
Once a bustling place, the Irish Embassy pub is now in shambles, waiting to be rebuilt from the ground up.
“I think it’s the extensive water damage,” Quinn explained.
“They’re going to have to gut everything out so we’ll be left with four walls and I suppose the supporting beams. We’ll build it right back up,” he added.
Two weeks ago, a massive fire broke out on the top floor of the pub spreading to nearby buildings.
“When I was originally called, I thought I was being badly pranked, I thought it was a joke in bad taste,” the pub’s general manager, Joe Cannon, said.
“When I finally got here, I realized it was the worst that it could be.”
Now, the partners say they’re in for at least $6 million in renovations. They estimate construction will keep them closed for the next six months.
“I have to let all staff go because it’s not a temporary interruption of business, which was shocking,” Quinn said.
But Quinn says Montreal’s community of bar owners has stepped up, hiring all his staff while the heritage building is being rebuilt.
“Everybody, it’s just been incredible, incredible,” Quinn added.
Other bars will help them keep their brand alive.
“There are about another 10 bars who said they’re gonna start carrying our products,” Quinn said of his craft beer.
And while things won’t be the same again once the pub is back up and running, Quinn believes that familiar feeling of home will still remain.
“When we open that door and start pouring the pints again, it’ll be there again.”