Fort Collins residents are having a war of words over the new Illegal Pete's coming to town. Some have taken offense to the use of the word "illegal," but as restaurant names go, it's not the worst we've seen. Without making judgments about the quality of food or service, here are ten Denver restaurant names -- past and present -- that we wish were illegal.
While this new French restaurant in the up-and-coming Jefferson Park neighborhood may have intended its name to evoke gathering or coming together, the word "amass" comes across as "a mass." Rather than thinking of elegant dining in a hip setting with close friends, the name has a more biological connotation. Reader Eyeroll said it best in a comment on our announcement of the eatery's opening:
That is an atrocious restaurant name. I visualize pounds of half-digested chicken amassing (and subsequently compacting) in my colon.
9) The Hole
The Hole was an ill-fated doughnut shop and bar that may have just been ahead of its time on a stretch of Tennyson Street in the Berkeley neighborhood that's now red hot when it comes to restaurant openings. But we think its lack of popularity was probably due to the name, which conjured images of dark, creepy places more than the empty space in the middle of a doughnut. Also right up there in terms of orifice-based restaurant monikers is the South Broadway pizza joint Pie Hole.
Yes, this tasty homage to Gulf Coast seafood and the pleasures of bib-and-fingers dining serves crab, and lots of it, in a variety of sauces. But if the crab on the table starts crawling, it's time to ask for the check. And even if the idea of seeing your food alive first isn't troubling, nobody wants to visualize anything crawling with crabs right before dinner.
We love the fresh and flavor-packed bowls at Troy Guard's fast-casual subterranean eatery, and we even love the Asian puffed rice snacks called bubu arare that give the place its name and lend crunch to the healthy dishes that feature Hawaiian, Thai, Southwestern and Japanese flavors. But for most of us in the landlocked state of Colorado, bubu isn't a snack food, it's just an alternate spelling for Boo-boo Bear (Yogi's angst-ridden sidekick), or, even worse, frightening reality TV starlet Honey Boo Boo.
Keep reading for more of our least favorite restaurant names.
For fans of Colorado craft beer, Old Chub Scottish ale from Oskar Blues is a familiar name, so it's not much of a stretch that the brewery would name its "craft casual" burger bar after one of its beers. But even with that knowledge, the mashed together and typographically annoying CHUBurger just hurts the eyes. How are we supposed to pronounce that: "Chew-burger?" "Chub Urger?" And trying to figure out sibling bike bar CyclHOPS is just a complete buzz-kill -- we're irritated just having to type it more than once.
There are many ways to make a great taco. Mexico City Lounge features tacos dorados (golden fried tacos), and if you hunt around enough you can even find steamed tacos. But of all the adjectives that can be applied to tacos, two of the least appealing are rusty and fuzzy. Although we're pretty sure we don't want our tacos Pinche either.
Keep reading for more bad restaurant names.
3) D.P. Dough
D.P. Dough is a calzone company that specializes in delivery originally founded in Massachussetts by mother and son team, Penny and Dan Haley, hence the initials. But couldn't they have called it P.D. Dough instead? Because nobody wants to think of pornographic threesomes while noshing on Italian-American pizza pockets.
This place came and went in Cherry Creek North in the mid-2000s, when that neighborhood was booming and money was loose. In 2005, Jason Sheehan questioned the wisdom of opening a restaurant "named after a murderous, psychotic Socialist despot." Almost ten years later, it's still a bad idea. So restaurateurs -- keep the Idi Amins, Mussolinis, and Pol Pots to yourselves.
The name of this Parker sports bar hits all the worst notes when it comes to restaurant names: bad typography, unpronounceability, and bodily fluids. Once you hear someone say it out loud -- "Fuh-new-geez" -- it isn't much better, but at least it doesn't end in "jizz." If you're inviting a friend, it might just be better to say "that sports bar in Parker."
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.