Popular New Jersey deli ready to bounce back after fire

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Lots of regular customers are disappointed over the fire that shut down a landmark deli. (WPVI)

Kevin Johnson, a local senior citizen from Oaklyn, arrived at his favorite sandwich deli late Monday morning, only to find it shut down as the result of a scorching fire.

The fire broke out around 9 p.m. Sunday at Amato Bros. on White Horse Pike.

To say the least, Johnson and lots of other regular customers are disappointed.

"People come from Camden and Philadelphia to get sandwiches because they were fresh," Johnson said.

"It's a very good place to eat, had good wings, good sandwiches, surprised to see what happened," customer Darin Mack said.

Investigators say there is no sign of foul play.

Deli owner Mike Amato tells Action News the fire started in a storage area; the business was closed at the time.

It took nearly an hour to control the blaze.

Amato met with his insurance carrier late Monday morning still reflecting on this nightmare.

"This is my only income for myself and my family. I was blown away," Amato said.

Other local food service merchants have been contacting Amato offering to help him out.

The fire consumed many thousands of dollars of inventory including meats and cheeses.

"Very unfortunate that happened, especially around Super Bowl season, this is when it seems to get busy," Dan Radovich of Shamrock Deli said.

Less than 24 hours after the fire, Mike Amato says he will reopen here and his plans for major expansion down the road remain intact.

"We're trying to get it renovated and get it opened as soon as possible," Amato said. "We may even go as far as opening up a smaller location across the street here temporarily until the renovations are done."
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