Openings and Closings

Larimer Street is hot -- but Chelo's has gone cold

Upper Larimer Street was busy Saturday morning -- as it is almost every Saturday these days. That wasn't the case twenty years ago; even as LoDo was starting to boom, this stretch was known as NoDough, and filled with pawn shops, empty storefronts, dive bars and hole-in-the-wall eateries. But today it's one of the hottest restaurant areas in town -- which means any remaining hole-in-the-wall eateries are on the endangered list. And Chelo's, at 2012 Larimer, is now gone for good.

See also: Best Chile Relleno 2000 -- Chelo's

For years Chelo's and Johnnie's Market next door made the 2000 block of Larimer a must-stop destination for fans of real Mexican fare. But now Chelo's has closed, and a sign on the window advises fans of its tamales to head a block away, where La Popular is still in business.

For now.


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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