It was the message that fans of the popular Santa Monica restaurant had been waiting to hear for months.

“We’re baaaaaaaack,” the Facebook post boasted.

Last Monday’s announcement, which explained that Tar & Roses will reopen its doors to patrons Jan. 8, came more than six months after a fire broke out at the restaurant on the southeast corner of Santa Monica Boulevard and 6th Street.

Andrew Kirschner’s eatery, which has been widely acclaimed in the culinary world, is now taking reservations for what figures to be an important period in its roughly 4-year history.

“Once Tar & Roses reopens, it will be as if it had never closed,” Joy Limanon, a spokeswoman for the restaurant, said in an email response to a Daily Press inquiry. “The dining room wasn’t affected, and guests will enjoy the same space and experience they have come to expect and love.”

The reopening of Tar & Roses marks a pivotal juncture for Kirschner, who now has two restaurants on the same block. In April he established Santa Monica Yacht Club, a nautically themed seafood spot near the corner of Santa Monica Boulevard and 7th Street that offers whole fried snapper, mussels with green curry and tuna poke, among other fish dishes.

Asked how the closure of Tar & Roses has impacted the wellbeing of the new restaurant, which was in its infancy when the fire broke out, Limanon said it’s “really hard to tell.”

“SMYC has been doing well and continues to grow,” she said.

It’s been a long road to recovery for Tar & Roses, where heat from the restaurant’s wood-burning oven caused a fire June 10. Santa Monica, Los Angeles and Culver City firefighters responded to the blaze, which started before business hours and which did not cause any injuries. Heat from the oven flue had spread into the attic space of the multi-story building, leading firefighters to use a truck company’s ladder extension to access the roof.

Kirschner said in a Facebook post in early August that he hoped to have Tar & Roses back in action by late September, but that turned out to be wishful thinking. In early September, Tar & Roses informed its followers that all repairs had been completed except those involving the oven flue, which required approval by the City of Santa Monica. Kirschner expected the restaurant to open a few weeks after the flue work began.

On Dec. 21, Tar & Roses announced that its dinner service would commence in early January.

Limanon noted that the fire wasn’t caused by anyone in the kitchen but that safety will be a focus going forward.

“We’ve always been thorough and will continue to train accordingly,” she said.

The Tar & Roses fire was the first in a series of recent blazes involving Santa Monica restaurants. On Aug. 12, a fire broke out at Cafe de Paris after a car slammed into the back of the Montana Avenue restaurant’s building. Meanwhile, Fork in the Road remains closed following a fire at the Main Street restaurant in early September.