Whole Foods Bringing Back Capitol Hill Store, Adding a Taproom

It's easy to get thirsty when grocery shopping.
It's easy to get thirsty when grocery shopping. Jonathan Shikes
Whole Foods is applying for a license to run a beer taproom at its vacant Capitol Hill store, according to documents recently filed with the City of Denver.

In November, representatives of Whole Foods Market Inc. applied for a taproom license with both the Colorado Department of Revenue and the Denver Department of Excise and Licenses, the city agency responsible for regulating businesses that serve or sell alcohol. The Denver department will be holding a hearing regarding the taproom license application on February 3.

The Whole Foods store at 900 East 11th Avenue has been closed since late 2017, when the company opened up a larger store near Union Station. The Capitol Hill property is zoned for three stories; owner Doug Antonoff attempted to have it rezoned for five stories for a mixed-use project, but the neighborhood objected.

Now he confirms that the neighborhood is getting its store back, with a bonus.

The store was a place where Capitol Hill neighbors met up, recalls Chris Hinds, the new Denver City Council representative for the area. "It was the hangout place for the people in Cap Hill," he explains. And that's why he thinks the addition of a taproom could be particularly intriguing.

The proposed floor plans for the taproom show both indoor and patio seating adjacent to the main store.

Whole Foods has already installed taprooms at locations in states such as California and Texas.
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Conor McCormick-Cavanagh is a staff writer at Westword, where he covers a range of beats, including local politics, immigration and homelessness. He previously worked as a journalist in Tunisia and loves to talk New York sports.