When an electrical fire broke out on the roof of California Street Pub in early March, owner Christian Cole feared the worst for his business. The fire caused smoke damage and charred parts of his bar, and there was water damage from the efforts to douse the blaze.
As he sat inside his remodeled complex Friday morning during the pub's grand reopening, he expressed gratitude to the local fire department and the city of Lodi for their help getting his business back on track.
"The fire department kept the damage to a minimum, and the city was on time with inspections," he said. "The city of Lodi was a pleasure to work with; they didn't make anything difficult."
The repairs and renovation cost in the neighborhood of $20,000, Cole said, but was worth it. California Street Pub features new light fixtures, new tile behind the bar and a bamboo hardwood floor.
Besides city workers and emergency responders, Cole credited his employees and friends for the quick turnaround. He complimented his business partner, Greg Stanley, and bar manager, Rudy Mendez, as well as Tony Reech and Shawn Songer, for their help in making the situation as painless as possible.
"Everyone pitched in to get us up and running," he said.
The renovation was something go for because the opportunity presented itself, Cole said.
"I just figured I'd close and re-do everything," he said.
While there are aesthetic changes, the pub's dedication to its customers and innovative services will continue, he said.
The pub offers a courtesy shuttle service Thursday through Saturday from 9 p.m. to 2 a.m. The vehicle used is a 1998 Lincoln Towncar limousine. The phone number for the service is 570-4988. The service is free, but tips are encouraged, Cole said.
Cole knows that food and drink go hand-in-hand, so he's continuing to tempt his customers with bar food created by someone who is in the process of becoming a classically trained chef. The cook, known by regulars simply as "Tony," is about to graduate from the Le Cordon Bleu culinary academy in Sacramento.
The bar's menu includes tortas made with steak, chicken or pork topped with Pico de Gallo and sour cream, as well as ceviche tostadas. Food is available from 9 p.m. to 2 a.m.
California Street Pub is located at 310 California St. The phone number is 224-8550.