ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (KRQE) – A cafe in the Northeast Heights is temporarily closed due to an overnight fire last weekend. “We actually got the call around two in the morning,” said Mandy Nguyen. “I panicked instantly.”

April 1 was no joke for Burrow Cafe co-owner Mandy Nguyen. “My chef, Teddi, actually messaged at us and I woke up to that message that there had been a fire in the cafe,” said Nguyen.

That fire started in the washroom – closed off from the rest of the restaurant. “We kinda benefited from the way the build-out is set up because it was able to be contained to the room,” said Nguyen.

While the layout saved the restaurant, it also is a big reason for the entire cafe now being closed. Crews have to come in and not only fix damage from the actual flames but also the smoke and soot. “It sent plumes of smoke out over the entire restaurant,” said Nguyen.

Anything that smoke and soot touched, like food, utensils, and take-out materials had to be tossed. “The chemicals from that fire can actually corrode equipment,” said Nguyen.

This means thousands of dollars lost and at least $20k just for clean-up and repairs. “That process right now just feels very overwhelming,” said Nguyen.

Investigators believe the fire started from chemicals they, and many other businesses, use to clean.

“The working theory right now is that our cleaning rags spontaneously combusted with the chemicals that we use to clean the restaurant. Sometimes if those get too compressed or warm, I had heard that that could happen,” said Nguyen.

Nguyen says she’s followed every rule and practice when it comes to maintaining a clean and healthy business environment.

“These are things that we’re required to us to clean, they’re safe to clean, they keep things sanitized, I mean it’s what I imagine almost every restaurant uses,” said Nguyen.

Owners are planning to figure out a new process for cleaning their rags but for now, their mindset is on cleaning up and re-opening. “As a family, our income kinda relies on this restaurant so when we have to close for an extended period of time it really does impact us,” said Nguyen.

Nguyen says they don’t have a GoFundMe page but they would love for the community to come out in full force once they can open again.