Food critics can really roast a restaurant.

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But Nicholas Hall, food reviewer and contributor for the Houston Press, reportedly did the opposite earlier this week, helping to save Riel from certain incineration after a fire reportedly broke out outside the Montrose eatery.

Hall said he spotted the fire driving his kids to school, when he passed by the restaurant and noticed commotion; he said he joined another bystander already stopped on the scene alerting a few people inside the building about the flames.

Hall then said he used a small fire extinguisher in his trunk to help control the fire, and a neighbor brought over stainless steel bowls of water; a man Hall said he believed to be associated with the restaurant eventually brought out a larger extinguisher.

Hall’s daughter reportedly called 911.

According to reports, Houston fire officials saved the building from extensive damage.

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Authorities said they believe the blaze began when a recycling bin outside the restaurant ignited — possibly from a pedestrian’s tossed match.

The investigation is reportedly ongoing at this time.

Anna Caplan contributes to Rare Houston and Rare Animals. 
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