Vancouver commissary kitchen fire impacts several businesses, including food trucks

Mar 26 2023, 6:09 pm

The owner of Top Rope Birria says he is “still in shock” after a fire broke out at his business, which operates shared commissary kitchen, and has ultimately caused it to close until further notice.

On Saturday, Vancouver Fire Rescue Services responded to the second-alarm fire on the 500 block of East Hastings Street in the Downtown Eastside.

In an update Sunday, VFRS told Daily Hive buildings on each side of the building were evacuated but they did not sustain any damage.

“The damage was just to the main address,” a spokesperson said.

The area is next door to the St Francis Hotel, where many DTES residents reside.

In an Instagram post, Kevin McKenzie from Top Rope Birria expanded on the damage sustained to the building.

“We are grateful that everyone is okay, however the building is destroyed as is our kitchen and all of our equipment,” he said. “I won’t get into the details of just how much this complicates things for us but I’ll just say that the timing is really, really bad.”


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A post shared by Top Rope Birria (@birriayvr)

Fire Rescue confirmed that the one-level building was vacant at the time of the fire and there were no injures.

Vancouver Police told Daily Hive the fire has been deemed suspicious and “arson investigators are investigating.”

The pop up food truck vendor is now closed indefinitely, McKenzie confirmed.

“I can’t tell you how much that hurts to write,” he said.

“I’d love to say this is just the beginning, or watch out for top rope 2.0, flying elbow, plenty of fish or whatever but I really don’t know [right now].”

Since Top Rope Birria is also home to a shared commissary kitchen, meaning several other businesses will be impacted by the fire as well, McKenzie wrote.

“It wasn’t just my business that this causes hardship for. Our dear friends and family Mom’s Grilled Cheese Truck, Green Coast Coffee, Modern Perogie, [and] Āyurvedic Bone Broth, have been lovely and supportive commissary kitchen friends and I’m so greatful for our time together. I’m heartbroken for your losses but confident you all will bounce back, because that’s the kind of people you are.”

With files from Sarah Anderson

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