The signature offering at a northwest-side store/restaurant is more smoked than honey baked after an early morning fire Tuesday.

Soon after the electrical fire broke out at the HoneyBaked Ham & Cafe, 7090 N. Oracle Road, the chain's corporate website posted a notice that it was "temporarily closed due to water damage."

The Northwest Fire District was alerted to the blaze at 5:38 a.m., when "an automatic fire alarm activation was received," said Capt. Adam Goldberg, spokesman for the district.

The first engine company arrived within six minutes "to find an audible alarm sounding, flooding from the front door from the automatic sprinkler systems that had been activated and smoke also coming from the entryway," he said. "A full alarm was requested, which brought three additional engine companies, a ladder company and support units to the scene."

Deputies from the Pima County Sheriff's Department evacuated several construction workers from a neighboring suite in the complex.

The HoneyBaked Ham store was closed and there were no employees in the store at the time of the incident, Goldberg said.

The fire, behind a large refrigerator unit, was kept in check by the sprinkler system and crews extinguished the remaining hot spots. They also opened the attic space and walls to determine whether the fire had spread. It took 11 minutes to bring the fire under control.

Investigators at the scene determined the cause of the fire was an electrical malfunction related to the refrigerator unit. Damage was estimated at about $20,000.


Keith Kurz, chief operating officer for the Ohio-based HoneyBaked Ham Co., does not know how long the northwest-side Tucson store will be closed for repairs, but with Mother's Day coming up, "we want to make sure we get the store open as soon as we can."

In the meantime, people living and working on the northwest side can place orders for delivery through the company's central Tucson location at 5350 E. Broadway.

Kimberly Matas