Openings and Closings

Lark Spot Closing Spells Trouble for Larkburger Chain

Larkburgers are much harder to find than they once were.
Larkburgers are much harder to find than they once were. Mark Antonation
The larks are flying the nest.

At the beginning of 2019, Colorado fast-casual chain Larkburger announced that it would re-brand all of its restaurants as Lark Spot, starting with its eatery at 8770 Wadsworth Boulevard in Arvada. But only ten months later, that Lark Spot is closed, with a notice on the door indicating that the restaurant has been seized for failure to pay taxes.

click to enlarge The Arvada Lark Spot has been seized. - MARK ANTONATION
The Arvada Lark Spot has been seized.
Mark Antonation
This is the second Lark outpost to close because of unpaid taxes; Larimer County seized the Fort Collins Larkburger in October.

This has not been a good year for the Larkburger company, founded by chef/restaurateur Thomas Salamunovich in 2006 as a casual offshoot of Vail's Larkspur. At one time, burgers — always cooked to temperature (a rarity in quick-service burger joints) — were sold at at more than a dozen Larkburger locations, but now the company is down to just two.


click to enlarge The Arvada Larkburger converted to Lark Spot at the beginning of 2019. - COURTESY LARK SPOT
The Arvada Larkburger converted to Lark Spot at the beginning of 2019.
Courtesy Lark Spot
The big plans for several Lark Spots never materialized; the Arvada location was the only member of the Larkburger family to change to the new concept, which included automated ordering kiosks and an updated menu. At the time it announced the Arvada Lark Spot, the company closed four Colorado links in the chain and two other outposts located in Kansas City. And while there were plans to open a brand-new Lark Spot at 599 Crossing Drive in Lafayette, which had previously been Uturn BBQ, that has yet to happen.

In the meantime, the company suffered other problems. The original Larkburger in Edwards experienced a fire this past summer and has been closed ever since, leaving only the Boulder outpost at 2525 Arapahoe Avenue and the Greenwood Village spot at 8000 East Belleview Avenue still open.

Larkburger's corporate offices have not responded to requests for comment.
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Mark Antonation is the former Westword Food & Drink Editor. In 2018, he was named Outstanding Media Professional by the Colorado Restaurant Association; he's now with the Colorado Restaurant Foundation.
Contact: Mark Antonation