DALLAS (CBSDFW.COM) – A fire damaged a popular and historic Dallas restaurant late on Tuesday night. The blaze broke out at the original Sonny Bryan’s Smokehouse around 11:00 p.m. and investigators are now trying to determine if the fire is a case of arson.
The fire started in a storage shed located in the back of the restaurant. The flames did not spread to the restaurant’s main building, located in the 2200 block of Inwood Road. When firefighters arrived on the scene, they fire was burning through the roof of that shed.
Emergency crews were able to extinguish the fire quickly and have been trying to find out the cause. One man was arrested at the scene, but it is still unclear what role – if any – he had in starting the fire.
Dave Rummel, the restaurant’s general manger, credits a cinder block wall and the quick work of firefighter crews with saving the location’s main building. “It could have gone up real quick. Everything inside is wood in the front part of the place,” Rummel said. “You got a wood ceiling and stuff like that. It could have gone up really quick.”
The original Sonny Bryan’s Smokehouse is a Dallas icon. Opened in 1958, the restaurant features vintage school desks and photographs of famous celebrities who have all eaten in that location. The restaurant has even been featured in some national television shows and magazines.
Because the main building was not damaged, Rummel said that the restaurant should be up and running again within a few days.