December 16, 2008 | 1:03pm
Downtown Littleton has a new neighborhood joint: Merle's, which occupies the old Merle's Alignment Center at 2609 West Main Street, which started life as a gast station in the 1930s. The building was unoccupied for a number years; and a group of partners all chipped in and bought the place, turning it into a modern, auto-themed restaurant.
"We've kept some of the remaining accents from Merle's Alignment Center and are showing a lot of history of the place. We have garage doors that open and we've even kept the two bays that were used to lift up the cars," says front-of-the-house manager and minority owner Theresa Reynolds.
The two main owners are brothers-in-law David Svenson and Mark Teets. Svenson had built Cafe Terra Cotta, which he subesequently sold; Teets and his company did the construction work on Merle's. The project included creating a cozy bar and a rooftop patio that's sure to attract bar hoppers during the warmer months.
But Merle's wants to be more than just a place for a drink or a late-night snack. "We serve progressive comfort food for the city of Littleton, and we want to be something for the whole community," Reynolds says. "We have a great kid's meal and we want families to come. People have already been coming up and saying that Littleton needed a place like this."
The "progressive comfort food" includes barbecue (with a vinegar-based sauce), tasty wings and burgers that are ground in-house; chef David Baudier moved here from Virginia to run the kitchen.
With upscale, relatively expensive restaurants such as Cafe Terra Cotta
and The Melting Pot
only steps away, Merle's should doi well in this community, which can really use a neighborhood hangout. For more information, call 303- 797-6008 or go to the Merle's website
for more information. -- Tyler Nemkov