Ten days after a three-alarm fire destroyed his popular New Haven pub and five apartments upstairs, restaurant owner Peter Gremse is picking up the pieces.
Now Gremse and his wife are focusing their efforts on their second eatery, the Stone Hearth. It’s located just down the street from Delaney’s Taproom and Restaurant, now just a pile of rubble, and Gremse said he’s doing his best to keep Delaney’s customers happy.
“I brought my Delaney's menu over here immediately to try to keep my customers over there happy, while keeping my business alive,” he said.
Gremse said he’s also working to make sure his staff has a place to go. Three dozen employees have been without a job since last Monday’s fire destroyed the restaurant on Whalley Avenue.
“I was able to bring some of them over, but not all of them. I had 48 employees over there, and opening for lunch, I only really created seven new jobs, so I brought the guys that have been with me the longest,” he explained.
He said other restaurants have offered to take some of the Delaney’s employees and have been raising money for the fire victims.
O’Toole’s Irish Pub is donating funds from its September Undies Run, and Anna Liffey’s Irish Pub and Restaurant, at 17 Whitney Avenue in New Haven, will hold a fundraiser Saturday at 5 p.m.
“Some people came out of their house and they didn't have a dime in their pocket. Maybe one guy said he had a dollar in his pocket, and you have to go back and rebuild. You got to buy everything, socks shoes,” said Anna Liffey’s owner Patrick Mansfield.
Gremse says the support is overwhelming.
“I was just blown away. I mean, these guys are my competition, there's no two ways about it. We all have Irish names at the end, but we're competition, and for them, the outpouring, it's just unbelievable,” he said.
The Broken Umbrella Theater Company will hold a furniture, clothing and food drive to benefit tenants displaced by the fire Saturday and Sunday from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. at 446A Blake Street. Gift cards are also welcome.
You can send donations to:
Community Action Agency of New Haven
419 Whalley Avenue, Suite 400
New Haven, CT 06511
ATTN: Adrienne Sanders/Delaney’s
For more information on the relief fund, call the CAANH at 203-785-7614.