El Chapultepec celebrating its eightieth birthday this week
What's the oldest family-owned restaurant in the metro area? So far, we haven't found anything to top the Blue Parrot, the red-sauce emporium that the Colacci family opened in Louisville back in 1919, and has been run by members of that clan ever since. Within Denver city limits, we'd thought the closest contender was the Bonnie Brae Tavern, which the Dire family opened on South University Boulevard back in 1934, when the road outside was just a stretch of dirt. But turns out, there's another watering hole that beats Bonnie Brae by many months...El Chapultepec.
- Is Blue Parrot the oldest family-owned restaurant in metro Denver?
Tony Romano opened the bar at 1962 Market Street right after Prohibition ended in 1933; Jerry Krantz, his son-in-law, inherited El Chapultepec in the 1970s. When he took over, Krantz kept the kitchen (great green chile) and the mariachi acts that Romano had been featuring on the weekends, but soon started booking jazz acts. The 'Pec eventually gained a global reputation as one of the best jazz clubs in the country.
Krantz passed away last year, but his daughter, Angela Guerrero, is carrying on the tradition of live music there. And a kitchen that keeps things cooking late.
El Chapultepec is celebrating its eightieth anniversary all week; the party started last night and continues today with Corona and shot deals. And if you come in wearing wear a throwback 'Pec T-shirt, you'll get a special eightieth anniversary T-shirt for just $5. Find the complete anniversary entertainment lineup here.
Get the Dining Newsletter
The week's top local food news and events, plus interviews with chefs and restaurant owners, dining tips, and a peek at our print review.