By the numbers, there were a lot of restaurant openings in March — at least nineteen in metro Denver, by our count. But many of those were new locations of existing concepts, including national chains such as In-N-Out, Smashburger, Jet's Pizza and Raising Cane's, which continue to draw big crowds when they debut.
Homegrown multi-location restaurants expanded, too, including Snarf's, Chook Charcoal Chicken, Yak & Yeti, GQue BBQ and Homegrown Tap & Dough.
Groovy Bar, which is located in the downstairs area of the Post LoHi (formerly Lola), made a splash thanks to its retro decor
, and it wasn't the only drinking-focused establishment to debut. New Image Brewing opened its new Wheat Ridge location
, which is also home to pizza truck Social Dough, and Disco Pig is a new late-night dance party
option in Larimer Square.
Aurora got two new chicken joints. BB.Q Chicken, which is one of South Korea's most popular chains, opened its doors on South Havana Street and is planning to add fifteen more in the state over the next few years. Fire Wings, a chain based in California, also made its Colorado debut in Aurora.
And on the two-year anniversary
of the first indoor dining shutdown on March 17, 2020, Glo Noodle House served its first customers
in the former home of Brazen, which closed in December.
The biggest food story in March, though, was the shuttering of Welton Street Cafe, a beloved community hub in Five Points. After 36 years in business, 22 of which them at 2736 Welton, it cleared out of that space as it prepares to open in a new location up the street later this year. Welton Sreet Cafe has been crowdfunding
to help finance the buildout, and is one of many businesses now speaking out about the FlyFisher Group
, an investment firm owned by Matthew Burkett. The group began buying up properties in Five Points and, in 2020, went public with its plans to help preserve the area and its Black-owned businesses. But now Welton Street Cafe and others say that FlyFisher has hurt, not helped, the neighborhood.
Here's the complete list of restaurants and bars that opened and closed in metro Denver in March:
Restaurants and bars that opened in March:*
, 2495 Havana Street, Aurora
Chook Charcoal Chicken
, 2500 East Orchard Road, Greenwood Village
, 1403 Larimer Street
Dirty Pit Craft House
, 51 West Dry Creek Court, Littleton
, 13950 East Mississippi Avenue, Aurora
Glo Noodle House
, 4450 West 38th Avenue
, 1575 Boulder Street
, 7085 West Alaska Drive, Lakewood
Heady Coffee Co.
, 4800 Baseline Road, Boulder
Homegrown Tap & Dough
, 12622 Ken Caryl Avenue, Littleton
, 5470 Factory Shops Boulevard, Castle Rock
Jeannot's Patisserie & Bistro
, 2770 Arapahoe Road, Lafayette
, 2306 South Colorado Boulevard
Lucina Eatery & Bar
, 2245 Kearney Street
Mika Sushi 5
, 7400 East Hampden Avenue
New Image Brewing
, 9505 West 44th Avenue
, 201 East 136th Avenue, Thornton
, 200 Quebec Street
, 125 Adams Street
Yak & Yeti
, 4101 Kipling Street, Wheat Ridge
Restaurants and bars that closed in March:*
Cafe Chihuahua, 2250 South Federal Boulevard
Giordano's, 24 Broadway
Nick's Cafe, 777 1/2 Simms Street, Lakewood
Sugar Bakeshop, 277 Broadway
Taco Bar, 215 East Seventh Avenue
Welton Street Cafe, 2736 Welton Street
*Or earlier and not otherwise reported.
Know of something we missed? Email us, [email protected].