Cafe Society

Regulars raise a glass to Racines on its thirtieth anniversary

As quickly as restaurants come and go these days, it's not often we see a place with the staying power of Racines, which celebrated its thirtieth anniversary last month. In honor of the occasion, we asked a few regulars to share some of their favorite memories. Their toasts follow:

See also: A closer look at Racines

"When I take people there for breakfast or lunch, the people I host are always amazed at the number of people in the restaurant that are key community leaders. I often say: 'Look over at that table, there's a state senator, or former governor. Over at that table is the president of the Chamber of Commerce, or a state association. And over at another table is the head of an advocacy group in town trying to pass a bill.' ... Racines is like Denver's version of the famous Cheers bar in Boston - when you go there, everybody knows your name!" - Tim Jackson, President/CEO, Colorado Automobile Dealers Association

"I'm a Denver native, so Racine's has been a family spot for birthdays, graduations and holidays since it was at its old location. As an adult I love it because it's an old-school establishment; I actually get waited on by a staff who is congenial and good at their jobs. There's an atmosphere, too, something I think a lot of fast-casual replacements are missing. It feels like a restaurant I want to be in, and it has always been a place where I feel like all are welcome. Before it was hip, Racine's was the LGBTQ place to go. The food is like upscale diner food and I love that you can go to get a nice cup of coffee before work or after an evening movie." -- Bree Davies, Westword arts and culture writer

"I have been eating at Racines since I moved to Denver in 1993. On many mornings I get to see Lee Goodfriend walking her dog on Seventh Avenue while I am jogging, then I see her shortly after at the restaurant. It is comforting, with all the great changes in Denver, that some things stay the same. Racines may be in a relatively new building, but the tradition, consistency and great food of Goodfriends, Dixons and Racines are alive on Sherman Street." - Josh Hanfling, partner, Sewald Hanfling Public Affairs

"For 23 years Racines has been my breakfast-for-business place! The location is convenient, the service is great and the Molly breakfast is consistently good!! I have laughed and cried at Racines! Congratulations, Lee and David!" - Molly Broeren, owner, Molly's of Denver

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Gretchen Kurtz has worked as a writer for 25 years; during that time she's stomped grapes in Napa, eaten b'stilla in Fez, and baked with Buddy Valastro, aka the Cake Boss. Her work has appeared in publications including Boulevard (Paris), Diversion, the New York Times and Westword. Our restaurant critic since 2012, she loves helping you decide where to eat and drink tonight.
Contact: Gretchen Kurtz