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House restaurant closes, giving the former Cozy Cottage a new home

House, which opened in 2009 in the former Gemelli's space at 4363 Tennyson Street has closed, as has the Cozy Cottage, which had spent the last four years residing at 2423 South Downing Street, in a space the size of a rabbit hole -- but there's a twist: the Cozy Cottage, whose last day flipping flapjacks at the Downing Street address was yesterday, is taking over the home previously occupied by House.

"We closed on the Tennyson Street property on the fifteenth of November and found out on the eighteenth of November that we had lost our lease on the Downing Street location," explains Michael Mueller, who, along with his mother, Jeanette, opened the original breakfast and lunch spot in October of 2005.

The original plan, notes Mueller, was to keep both stores open, but Jeanette was recently diagnosed with lung cancer, making it difficult to run two joints on opposite ends of the city. "I was planning to operate the new one, and my mom was going to continue to operate the old one, but between her lung cancer diagnosis and not having the option to renew our lease, it's good that we just have the one property to concentrate on," says Mueller, who hopes to re-open at the new address on December 15.

"This space really fits our concept -- it fits what we do -- and it's a great up-and-coming area that kind of reminds me of what the Washington Park/DU area was like fifteen years ago," says Mueller. "There are all sorts of neat things going on in the Highlands/Berkeley Park neighborhood, and we wanted to be a part of that."

While Mueller is currently remodeling the space, turning the alcohol bar into an espresso bar and retail shop hustling honey, coffee and housemade jams, jellies and pancake mixes, he says the menu -- a sweet and savory board of crepes, pancakes, French toast and egg dishes including omelets and Benedicts -- will remain largely unchanged. "We'll tweak it a bit to fit the neighborhood, but, by and large, we're going to stick with what we're known for," insists Mueller. "The only thing that we're going to change is the lunch menu, which we'll expand to include more high-quality, deli-style ingredients."

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And while Mueller won't be pouring alcohol -- "no one in my family drinks," he says -- he will be offering an English-style afternoon tea service. "We're shopping different teas right now, but the idea is to have a great English Earl Grey tea and a snack cart with scones, English biscuits and pastries."

The tea service will be available daily from 3 to 5 p.m., while breakfast and lunch will be offered from 7 a.m. to 3 p.m. seven days a week.

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