Cuzzo’s Cuisine forced to close after early morning fire

CHARLOTTE — A structure fire in west Charlotte shut down a beloved restaurant on Wednesday, according to the Charlotte Fire Department.

Firefighters were called around 6:15 a.m. to Cuzzo’s Cuisine on Tuckaseegee Road near Glennwood Drive. At the scene, firefighters saw smoke and flames coming from the building.

A Channel 9 crew was on the scene as firefighters worked to control the fire. Tuckaseegee Road was closed while they worked.

After an investigation, firefighters determined the cause of the fire was accidentally caused by an electrical problem. A resident was driving by the restaurant Wednesday morning and called 9-1-1 to report the fire.

According to the department, the total estimated loss is $125,000.

The restaurant’s whole crew gathered at Cuzzo’s northwest Charlotte location to save anything they could. Channel 9′s Anthony Kustura spoke with co-owner Andario Johnson, who woke up and watched his restaurant burn live on Channel 9 this morning.

“It was a shock, it was a shock, just gotta get through it, man,” Johnson told Kustura.

At the moment, the owners are working to assess the cost of repair. Kustura saw significant damage including debris, busted windows, and loose, hanging wires.

This fire is not only disappointing to the owners, but their faithful customers who refer to the restaurant as a staple in the neighborhood.

“It really livens up the neighborhood to see so many people coming back and forth,” customer Junius Sicard said.

The restaurant was opened by Johnson and his cousin, Anglee Brown, seven years ago after having a successful food truck, which they may return to during rebuilding to continue serving the community.

“Just gotta stay in good spirits ya know, things happen,” Johnson said, “We just gotta keep your head up and keep moving, that’s the Cuzzo’s way.”

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