Ignite! will open on December 26, with a post-Christmas gift of free lunch

As the end of the year approaches, owners are scrambling to finish restaurant projects. Last year, Lou's Food Bar, Bittersweet and Aria all managed to get their doors open right before the start of 2011 -- which meant they could also get tables booked for New Year's Eve.

Dozens of restaurants are in the pipeline right now, but there's only one definite opening scheduled between now and 2012: Ignite! , an "urban gastropub" in a former pawn shop at 2124 Larimer Street.

Ignite! is a project by Concept Restaurants -- owned by Frank Day (the founder of Rock Bottom, among many ventures), R. Kevin Brown and J. Allen Adams -- and is right next to Trillium, Ryan Leinonen's restaurant that made its debut earlier this month.

Ignite! is opening on December 26, and it's got a deal for you: If you show up for lunch on any of its first three days in business and buy a beverage, your lunch is free. And from 5 to 6 p.m. December 28-30, Ignite! will offer complimentary spirits tastings in the bar.

Ignite! has a strong motive for opening: While the rooftop deck won't be available for dining until spring, it will have a great view of the downtown fireworks on December 31.