Bars

The Company Behind Seven Grand Is Taking Over American Bonded and the Crimson Room

American Bonded will be back, but the "Liquid Sunshine' art won't be.
American Bonded will be back, but the "Liquid Sunshine' art won't be. Molly Martin
After finding success with Seven Grand, the whiskey bar at 1855 Blake Street, Pouring With Heart Hospitality is expanding its presence in Denver. The California-based hospitality group recently purchased American Bonded in RiNo and the Crimson Room in Larimer Square. It also plans to open a brewery at 1550 South Broadway, though a name and opening date for that project have not yet been announced.

Pouring with Heart currently operates over twenty venues in California, Texas and Colorado, with a focus on preserving bars and nourishing careers in hospitality. “Our venues, from employees to guests, are people focused," said director of operations Erbin Garcia in a press release. "We understand that a bar is not just cocktails, rather it is who is in the bar, who pours your drinks, that creates the story of it and makes people return night after night, and employees stay. Pour with heart and show you care, because the more regulars we build, the more careers we create, and the more we can change the perception of what working in bars means.”

American Bonded originally opened in 2018 at 2706 Larimer Street and was created by Williams & Graham founder Sean Kenyon along with Lisa Vedovelli and Justin Anthony. Following the recent transfer in ownership, it closed after New Year's Eve for renovations and staff training. It plans to reopen February 9 under the same name, continuing its previous mission to serve affordable high-quality drinks. "[Pouring with Heart] really just gave us all a place to flourish," says Will Blankenship, a former Seven Grand employee who is now one of the new American Bonded managers.

However, gone are the days of adult hot pockets from previous restaurant partner T.S.R. (the brainchild of pandemic startup Chimichurri Bros) and the "Liquid Sunshine” jigger sculpture, which was removed as part of the renovations. The kitchen, which has housed a number of concepts over the years, including the chef-driven sandwich shop Open and Katsune Bento Boxes, will be bringing in a new resident food program, Soi Kowboi.
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Blake Blacksberg is moving Soi Kowboi to American Bonded.
Andrew Miller
Led by Blake Blacksberg, the self-proclaimed Soi Bois are no stranger to the RiNo area. After a name change in early 2022, Soi Kowboi started slinging Thai hot Chicken sandwiches and Spam kimchi sliders at the pop-up kitchen at Gold Point last May. In September, it made the move over to Zeppelin Station as part of a major reboot for the food hall.

But with Zeppelin Station still finding its footing, Blacksberg says it was a no-brainer for Soi Kowboi to make the jump back to Larimer Street when the lease opened up at American Bonded. The opening menu will include some fan favorites, including smashburgers, a vegan burger and its spicy chicken tenders.

Over at Larimer Square, the news about the Crimson Room is just the latest change as North Carolina-based Asana Partners continues to try to fill the historic block with new retail shops and bars. It's also gearing up for major renovations, which recently led to the closure of Bistro Vendôme (reopening in February in Park Hill), Green Russell and Russell's Smokehouse.

Formerly a hidden jazz club and martini bar located under Ted's Montana Grill, the Crimson Room closed in 2020, in part because of the impact the pandemic had on the live-music scene. Now it's slated for a summer grand opening under Pouring With Hospitality, though it will no longer be a live-music venue; instead, it will be transformed into a tropical rum bar.

Though Pouring With Heart was founded out of state, its commitment to building a team in Denver, promoting from within and helping to save spaces that may otherwise be fated to become chains or to be torn down for more apartment buildings, bodes well for its future in the Mile High. 
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Mike Marini is an enthusiast of all things local with a large appetite and a curiosity for the history that surrounds us.

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