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Destroyed By Fire, West Portal Squat And Gobble Reopens Wednesday

More than a year after a fire shut its doors, the Squat and Gobble restaurant in San Francisco’s West Portal neighborhood will reopen Wednesday morning in a ceremony attended by local businesspeople, firefighters and Mayor Ed Lee.

Squat and Gobble sustained $900,000 in structural damage and $1 million in property loss in a four-alarm fire on Oct. 12, 2012.

After being shut for almost 17 months, the restaurant at 1 West Portal Avenue has been rebuilt from the ground up. It will reopen with a new interior design and an added second floor to be used as a private dining and meeting space, according to Phil Siegel, a spokesman for the restaurant.

Squat and Gobble is part of a local restaurant group with five locations in San Francisco. The first location opened 20 years ago on Fillmore Street, according to owner Issa Sweiden.

“We are starting our 21st year in a wonderful space that will be a gathering place for the neighborhood,” Sweiden said in a statement.

The blaze caused a total of $7 million in damage to three buildings, and two firefighters were injured fighting it.

Mayor Ed Lee will cut the ribbon to reopen Squat and Gobble tomorrow and thank firefighters for preventing the fire from spreading beyond the corner of West Portal Avenue and Ulloa Street.

Drew Himmelstein, Bay City News