In February Rancho Bravo got a larger trailer, only to see it catch fire and go out of commission just a week later. The original, smaller trailer was still on-site, so owner Freddy Rivas had that reinstalled while the new trailer was fixed.
The fire started, Rivas told us, because there was plywood between the interior layer of stainless steel and the exterior layer of aluminum on the panel behind the commercial burners. That’s a recipe for a conflagration. He said he was unaware that the plywood was still in there, and has made sure that the whole rear section now has no wood in the walls.
As for the future of the Winchell’s space that Rivas has leased, he said, “We’re still undecided as to what we’re going to put in there. We’ve been tossing around a lot of ideas and have been getting feedback from our customers, so I’m hoping we will have a decision soon.” The decision has been difficult, he said, because “I want to make it something that I love, that I think the neighborhood will love and love for a long time. I would like it to be there 50 years from now. I don’t want to put in just anything.”