Although the flame has died, the king still lives.
The Red Flame restaurant, a long-standing Davis County eatery, permanently closed its doors June 27.Closing the restaurant had nothing to do with financial difficulty or slipping business, however. Instead, it is a matter of stamina and priorities, said owner Jack Brimhall.
"I'm 78 years old and don't have the energy to do it anymore," he said. "After 25 years, I feel like it's time to do something different."
Instead, Brimhall will renovate the restaurant and rent the building out as office space. The only remnant of the Red Flame will be the kitchen area, where Brimhall's relatives will continue to operate the catering business, which calls itself "The Catering King."
After considering passing the business on to the next generation, Brimhall decided that the same amount of money could be made by leasing the building, and he didn't want to pressure his relatives into work that required 16 hours a day, six days a week.
Shutting the doors on the restaurant has not sat well with some residents, however.
"I got my bum chewed for three weeks by customers," he said. "Every time I stopped by a table, they cussed me."
Even the regulars who complained about the closing couldn't sway Brimhall, who has decided he would rather spend his time with his family, traveling, and more involvement with The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.
Not that the closing hasn't spurred some emotions within him.
"I felt like a mother (when it closed) who has raised a person until he's an adult, and then he gets married," he said. "You feel happy and sad at the same time, but you know it is the right thing."
For others, the restaurant could signify the end to more than just fine dining. The Davis County Sons of Utah Pioneers, for example, have held their monthly meetings at the Red Flame for years. Now, they fear that another place with the amenities of Red Flame may be tough to find.
"It's a real blow to our group," said Fred Baird, president of the group.
Not only was the restaurant large enough to host the almost 60 members each month, it also was all on the ground floor so the primarily senior citizen group would not have to climb stairs. Additionally, the restaurant had a piano and gave the group an opportunity to have musical performances during their meetings.
"(Brimhall) gave us such fine service," Baird said.