Openings and Closings

Max's Wine Dive hot on the spot where Cold Comfort got left in the cold

The former home of Colorado Lace has stood empty at 200 East Seventh Avenue for years, despite being in a prime restaurant neighborhood. Or is it empty because of that? With Racines just down the street at 650 Sherman Street and Mizuna, Vesper Lounge and Bones across Seventh Avenue, neighbors weren't eager to approve a liquor license for the Cold Comfort Tavern, which tried to take on the spot three years ago. In fact, that attempt got left out in the cold -- and even a plea to that famous former brewer, Governor John Hickenlooper, didn't help their case. and other restaurateurs who looked at the location moved on. But now the property is heating up again.

See also: Cold Comfort Tavern seeks neighborhood support

Max's Wine Dive, a Texas-based chain founded by Jerry and Laura Lasco that currently has six locations, hopes to open stores in Chicago, Atlanta and Denver this spring.

But to open one here, it will have to survive next month's liquor-license hearing.

According to the website: "The inspiration for MAX's Wine Dive came after realizing that while we (owners Jerry and Laura Lasco) loved trying out fancy new restaurants, the places we enjoyed hanging out at most were laid-back dives that were unpretentious and comfortable. Shortly thereafter, the MAX's mantra was created:

"'Fried Chicken and Champagne?... Why the Hell Not?!

"At MAX's, we're all about bringing "gourmet comfort food" to our guests alongside a constantly curated selection of wines from around the world, some of which cannot be found anywhere else, all served with a down-to-earth, rock-n-roll style.

"MAX's is a 'dive' that's fun, funky, eclectic and a complete juxtaposition that captures the qualities of a casual, industrial feel with a top-notch food and wine program. The menu consists of two pages--the first of which contains MAX's Classics that are common to all MAX's locations. On the other half of the menu, you will find seasonal changes, unique to each location, comprised of the Chef's creativity and local ingredients. And don't forget the wine--if you find ones you like, take some home with you! Ignoring the typical mark-up you see at most restaurants, we offer quality wines at reasonable prices.

"MAX's appeals to diners who are hungry for all the rich flavors of fine dining without the stodginess that often accompanies a "fine-dining" experience. Serving up dinner seven days a week, lunch at select locations, an indulgent weekend brunch, plus Happy Hour Monday through Friday, we're certain you will find what you like here at MAX's.

"So come in, grab some wine and rock out to the jukebox as we serve you up a meal you won't forget!"

But only after that liquor license is approved....

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