Food News

People to Watch 2023: Daniel and Luis Ramirez, Hosts With the Most

Daniel (left) and Luis Ramirez have big plans for their family's growing restaurant group.
Daniel (left) and Luis Ramirez have big plans for their family's growing restaurant group. Karlee Escobar/Ramirez Hospitality Group
"My father created his American dream; now we have the ability to create the American dream for others," says Daniel Ramirez. In 2019, he and his brother Luis took over as co-CEOs of the Ramirez Hospitality Group, which was founded in 2002 when their father, Jose, opened the first Los Dos Potrillos location in Centennial after working in Denver's food scene for decades.

Now with four locations, a brewery that operates out of the Parker outpost, and a food truck, the Ramirez brothers, who are both under 35 years old, aren't slowing down at all. "In five to eight years, the goal is to have over 25 stores in Colorado," says Daniel, who was diagnosed with testicular cancer in 2021. He continued running the family business with Luis while undergoing treatment, and his prognosis is good. "As we continue expanding, I want to continue advocating for cancer awareness," Daniel says.

The ambitious expansion plan will begin in 2023 with the opening of the first Los Dos Potrillos Cocina y Cantina, a fast-casual offshoot that will serve all of the Los Dos bestsellers, including beers and margarita flights. It's expected to debut in Northglenn in late February and will be outfitted with a drive-thru window where online orders can be picked up. The brothers hope to develop an app for ordering, too: "We want to make sure we nail this as close to perfect as possible so that we can streamline and scale at the pace we want," Daniel says.

In August or September, the group will add another new concept to the mix: Los Tacos, a smaller operation focusing on tacos and beer that will join an outdoor food hall in the works across from the Gaylord Rockies Resort & Convention Center. A Fort Collins location of Los Dos is also a possibility, though the details haven't yet been finalized.

The company's biggest 2023 project is a massive new build in Castle Rock. "It's going to be the Mona Lisa of Los Dos Potrillos," Daniel says of the location, which the group hopes to open sometime next fall. At 8,200 square feet, "it's going to be big," he adds, complete with a large patio and more production space for the brewing operation, which will allow Los Dos to expand its presence in liquor stores and on menus at other restaurants and taprooms.

"It's been a fun challenge," Luis says of getting into the beer game, a move that made the brothers one of a small (but growing) number of Latin brewery owners in the state.

As the company grows, though, people remain at the heart of everything it does. "Our motto is, 'We're a family serving other families,'" Daniel explains. "We want to create the best version of yourself when you come work for one of our locations. We see this industry as a career, and we want to continue creating leaders in the hospitality industry."

Other people to watch in 2023:

"Jami Duffy, Leader of the Band"
"Kourtny Garrett, Downtown Defender"
"Nga Vương-Sandoval, Welcome Committee"
"Michael Gadlin, Arts Ambassador"
"Penelope Wong, Top Shef"
"Cole Chandler, Speaker for the House"
"Michael Spencer: Anchor Man"
"Robert Kenney, Power Broker"
"Scott Gilmore, Playground King"
KEEP WESTWORD FREE... Since we started Westword, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Denver, and we'd like to keep it that way. With local media under siege, it's more important than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" program, allowing us to keep offering readers access to our incisive coverage of local news, food and culture with no paywalls.
Molly Martin is the Westword Food & Drink editor. She’s been writing about the dining scene in Denver since 2013, and was eating her way around the city long before that. She enjoys long walks to the nearest burrito joint and nights spent sipping cocktails on Colfax.
Contact: Molly Martin

Latest Stories