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June 3, 2020

Hartford’s Firebox restaurant shutters amid COVID-19 ‘uncertainty’

Photo | Firebox Firebox restaurant in Hartford has closed.

Hartford farm-to-table restaurant Firebox has closed its doors for good due to "uncertainty" caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.

The restaurant, launched by the Melville Charitable Trust 13 years ago on Broad Street in the city's Frog Hollow neighborhood, in a statement this week announced it would not be able to maintain operations beyond the ongoing health crisis.

Restaurant officials say they will work with an undisclosed number of Firebox staff to find them new jobs.

"As a result of the pandemic, and the uncertainty it has brought, it has become clear that we are simply unable to sustain the restaurant in its current form going forward," restaurant operators said. "Small businesses, and particularly restaurants, operate on very slim margins, and the pandemic economy has effectively eliminated those margins, with no real end in sight.”

Despite Firebox's closure, representatives from Melville Charitable Trust said nonprofit partner Forge City Works, 140 Russ St., still plans to resume operations sometime this summer. The company’s other local affiliate, the Kitchen at Billings Forge, is reopening its takeout and catering services on June 8, officials said.

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