New Denver Restaurants and Closings From August 24 to 30, 2020 | Westword

Every Restaurant and Bar Opening and Closing This Week

Say so long to Lena and Gallop Cafe.
The fire's gone out at Leña.
The fire's gone out at Leña. Danielle Lirette
Share this:
Rising Sun Distillery has been turning out gin, vodka, whiskey and unique spirits like hibiscus-lavender liqueur for nearly seven years in a tiny warehouse space at 1330 Tejon Street. And now a second Rising Sun is coming up — to the west. Frisco is where you'll find the distillery's new restaurant and tasting room, where you can nosh on an eclectic variety of eats, including chicken tandoori kabobs, Korean barbecue and an intriguing entree labeled "bison, bacon, bourbon balls." The four Bs turn out to be bacon-wrapped meatballs served with rice and Mexican-style street corn; stop in for booze and balls next time you're in Summit County.

Closer to home, there's a new place to sip wine in the Berkeley neighborhood. Vin Rouge Wine Bar & Tasting Room opened earlier this summer, making the corner of Yates Street and West 44th Avenue even tastier, since Berkeley Park Sushi Co. and Amethyst Coffee already call the refurbished retail strip home. Owner Jenn Feinstein offers a worldly wine range along with charcuterie boards and other small bites in a comfy setting.

But while new restaurants are debuting, and some on-hold eateries are finally coming back, we're learning of others that will never reopen. For example, Gallop Cafe, a favorite in LoHi, is not coming back. And now we have news of another spot that will not return.

Leña opened six years ago this month, specializing in wood-fired Central and South American eats. And while the sky has been smoky in Denver of late, that smoke is no longer coming from Leña, which announced its closing on Facebook this week:

Due to the circumstances we have been dealt through this difficult environment, we have decided to close our doors. We would have loved to throw one last party but the stars did not align. Thanks for all of your support throughout the years! We enjoyed bringing some different flavors to the Denver community and we hope you enjoyed it as well. Stay safe out there and keep supporting your local small businesses!
We would have loved one last party, too, since this was just about the only place in town where you could enjoy Peruvian jalea, Brazilian queijo coalho and Argentinian-style grilled beef, or just go with a familiar Mexican burrito with green chile. But you can still drink a toast to Leña at owner Jimmy Callahan's other joint, Prohibition, at 504 East Colfax Avenue.

Here's our complete list of restaurant and bar openings and closings this week:

Restaurant and Bars Opening This Week*
The Doughnut Club, 3040 Blake Street
Kickin Chicken, 275 South Union Boulevard, Lakewood
Mimosas, 2752 Welton Street
Rising Sun Distillery, 1121 Dillon Dam Road, Frisco
Sexy Pizza, 2846 Fairfax Street
Vin Rouge Wine Bar & Tasting Room, 4412 Yates Street

Restaurants and Bars Closing This Weekend*
Gallop Cafe, 2401 West 32nd Avenue
Leña, 24 Broadway

*Or earlier, and not previously reported.

Do you know of any openings or closings that aren't on our list? Let us know in the comments, or send an email to [email protected].
Can you help us continue to share our stories? Since the beginning, Westword has been defined as the free, independent voice of Denver — and we'd like to keep it that way. Our members allow us to continue offering readers access to our incisive coverage of local news, food, and culture with no paywalls.