Every generation of artists has its hangout, and from 1984 until 1999, that place in Denver was the topsy-turvy City Spirit Cafe, on Blake Street in early LoDo. It was as much a work of art itself as it was a place for artists — and anyone, really — to gather in laid-back comfort. The project of developer Mickey Zeppelin and artist Susan Wick, City Spirit might have been the spawn of the fern bar, but one with an edgy, mosaic-muraled, new-wave overcoat indicative of the times. RiNo fixture and Denver County Fair co-director Tracy Weil, who worked there and eventually managed and booked the place, might have the fondest memories of all, particularly those of pouring the cafe’s signature cocktail, the La La, a memorable concoction with a kick.
Naturally, it will be Weil behind the bar mixing once again at the City Spirit Cafe Reunion, tonight from 7 to 10 p.m. in the newly re-vamped cafe at Zeppelin’s Taxi complex in RiNo. For the cafe remodel, Wick brought the City Spirit bar and booths out of storage. “So many conversations took place over that bar,” Weil says. “A lot of people in my generation made their first connections with friends there. Now they’ve all gone on their merry ways to embrace their lives, but it’s nice to think of the past, when they hung out at the bar, drank La Las and chatted about politics and other stuff. In a way, Susan is resurrecting at Taxi what might become the next rendition of City Spirit, since that community is growing in a similar fashion.”
Join Weil, fellow bartender David Zimmer and a couple hundred of their very best friends at Taxi Cafe, 3455 Ringsby Court; DJ K-Nee will provide spins, and Jux County is rumored to be playing a set to close out the evening. Admission is free, but drinks and revived City Spirit snacks are not; go to the Facebook event page for information.
Fri., Nov. 16, 7-10 p.m., 2012