Scott and Nicole Mattson, the owners of Nocturne Jazz & Supper Club in RiNo, were ready to get down to the hard work of opening a new bar last fall when their plans were abruptly cut short. They had selected the vacant building at 3763 Wynkoop Street, left behind by the August closing of Rebel Restaurant, as the sight of Noble Riot, a natural wine bar they had been planning with partner Troy Bowen. But a change in ownership at the property, which had held a long series of dive bars before Rebel's three-year run, ended with Noble Riot being left out in the cold.
But the trio didn't give up, and instead kept looking for a new location. As luck would have it, they found one this month — right across the alley from Nocturne. Noble Riot will move in where Greenlight Lab just closed at 1336 27th Street.
"It was a bit shocking when the space fell through for us, but we are so excited that we've found a great home for this concept," Nicole explains.
Scott's wine knowledge has already been on display for the past four years at Nocturne, and Bowen is the founder of the Colorado Natural Wine Consortium and an organizer of the annual Denver International Wine Week. Their combined sommelier skills will be put to good use in a roster of wines that producers and proponents refer to as "low-intervention," allowing grapes to grow and ferment in much the same way they did before the dawn of industrial farming. Scott notes that there's still plenty of debate in the wine community about the phrase "natural wine," so he's avoiding the term and explaining instead that " drinking and learning about wine is a damn good time" and that Noble Riot will serve "wines that have integrity and make people happy."
The new bar will take over where LIVstudio founder Brad Anderson had been operating Greenlight Lab, a craft cocktail bar, for just over a year. The Noble Riot team is taking over the entire LIVstudio space, not just the bar, but they'll initially start out small, with the intent of utilizing more of the square footage down the road to offer wine classes and other events. A patio will be part of that expansion, too. Joel Kampfe, a wine professional from the San Francisco Bay area, will join the team, and Noble Riot will also offer an adventurous menu of small plates and cheese and charcuterie boards to go with the wine.
The owners expect to open the wine bar this spring, with the patio and other additions coming later in the summer. You can follow their progress on the Noble Riot Instagram page.
Keep Westword Free... Since we started Westword, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Denver, and we would like to keep it that way. Offering our readers free access to incisive coverage of local news, food and culture. Producing stories on everything from political scandals to the hottest new bands, with gutsy reporting, stylish writing, and staffers who've won everything from the Society of Professional Journalists' Sigma Delta Chi feature-writing award to the Casey Medal for Meritorious Journalism. But with local journalism's existence under siege and advertising revenue setbacks having a larger impact, it is important now more than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" membership program, allowing us to keep covering Denver with no paywalls.