FORT WORTH — A fire heavily damaged a noted restaurant in the Stockyards early Tuesday, but no injuries were reported.Firefighters took 20 minutes to extinguish the blaze at Lonesome Dove Western Bistro, 2406 Main St.Heavy smoke damage throughout the dining room will force it to be closed for about 60 days, chef-owner Tim Love said.Love said that private parties will resume this weekend or next week. The restaurant’s private dining room, the Dove Lease, was not affected, he said.“All. Thank you so much for support,” Love tweeted Tuesday afternoon, adding that Lonesome Dove will return very soon and making a reference to a slogan from the TV series Friday Night Lights: “Clear eyes and full hearts can’t lose! Thanks FWFD!” The message is repeated on the restaurant’s Facebook page.The fire was reported just before 6:30 a.m. Firefighters reported heavy smoke and fire coming from the back of the main restaurant, where a rear deck overlooks Marine Creek.Fire officials did not have damage estimates or the cause of the blaze.The fire was contained to the rear of the restaurant, Fire Department spokesman Tim Hardeman said.North Main Street was closed between Northwest 24th Street and Exchange Avenue for more than an hour Tuesday morning as firefighters fought the blaze and remained in case of flare-ups.Love opened Lonesome Dove Western Bistro in 2000, and it gained popularity when he won on a Food Network episode of Iron Chef. Love also owns the Love Shack burger stand and White Elephant Saloon bar in the Stockyards along with Queenie’s Steakhouse in Denton. He operates the Woodshed Smokehouse patio restaurant in Fort Worth under agreement with the Tarrant Regional Water District.
Thanks for the outpouring of support. @lonesomedovefw caught fire early this morning. Everyone is safe. We will reopen stronger!— Tim Love (@cheftimlove) August 20, 2013Staff writer Bud Kennedy contributed to this report.
Domingo Ramirez Jr., 817-390-7763 Twitter: @mingoramirezjr