Booze

Celebrate the end of Prohibition at Denver's oldest bar

Yes, the Buckhorn Exchange boasts liquor license number 1 -- but that's because the venerable restaurant was first in line after Prohibition ended in 1933, when new liquor licenses were issued. The oldest saloon in town is My Brother's Bar -- city registries indicate that 2376 15th Street was a bar back in the 1880s, and although the name has changed over the decades (it's been My Brother's for merely the past forty years), the building's purpose has not.

But the Buckhorn, a classic spot at 1000 Osage Street, deserves its own spot in the history books: It dates back to the 1890s.

Either bar would be a fine place to raise a glass this weekend, to toast the 77th anniversary of the end of Prohibition. (For a good history, read this installment of Sean Kenyon's Ask a Bartender.

Fair warning, though: My Brother's is always closed on Sunday -- the official anniversary is December 5 -- so you'll want to raise your glass there before last call on Saturday night.

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Patricia Calhoun co-founded Westword in 1977; she’s been the editor ever since. She’s a regular on the weekly CPT12 roundtable Colorado Inside Out, played a real journalist in John Sayles’s Silver City, once interviewed President Bill Clinton while wearing flip-flops, and has been honored with numerous national awards for her columns and feature-writing.
Contact: Patricia Calhoun