This week, the talk around town is undoubtedly the closure of Lower48, a Ballpark favorite. This unfortunate event reiterates the volatile nature of Denver’s growth—and adds to the onslaught of bemoaned restaurant closures this fall. On a positive note, Bar Dough, the highly anticipated Highland Italian eatery, announced an official opening date, and the beer scene received some news.

After Two Years, Lower48 Closes

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Plate of small “bites” at Lower48. Photo by Glenn Ross.

Where: 2020 Lawrence St., Denver

Neighborhood: Ballpark

The Low Down: On October 20, business partners Mario Nocifera and chef Alex Figura announced that they are closing Lower48 Kitchen, following service on Saturday, November 7. Led by Frasca Food and Wine alums, Nocifera and Figura, the Ballpark restaurant built a reputation for its creative, contemporary American fare, earning several accolades, including Westword’s Best New Restaurant for 2014 and a spot on 5280’s best 25 restaurants last year.

In a statement released to announce the closure, Nocifera wrote “with a heavy heart” about the difficult decision to close Lower48, and thanked the restaurant’s supporters, friends, family, landlord, and investors for their “generosity, belief, unwavering support and tireless work to help grow and develop Lower48 into what it is today.”

Nocifera invites Denver diners to Lower 48 in the coming weeks to “join us in celebration and reflection of two great years serving the community.”

Bar Dough Opens Monday on West 32nd Avenue

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Pizza will be a focal point at Bar Dough. Photo courtesy of Bar Dough.

Where: 2227 W. 32nd Ave., Denver

Neighborhood: Highland

The Low Down: Westword recently announced that Bar Dough, the highly anticipated concept from restaurateurs Juan Padró and Katie O’Shea Padró, owners of neighboring Highland Tap and Burger, and chef-partner Max MacKissock, former executive chef at the Squeaky Bean, will open doors at 2227 W. 32nd Avenue on Monday, October 26.

While pizza cooked in the space’s wood-burning oven will be the centerpiece of Bar Dough, the menu will include hand-made pasta, small plates, and favorites from East Coast Italian eateries. “The menu is not regionally specific to any one part of Italy,” MacKissock told Westword. “But we’re applying fine-dining technique to everything we do.” A talented staff, including transplants from Leña, Old Major, Rioja, and Euclid Hall, will round out the kitchen.

In addition to food service, the bar will feature fifty Italian wines, classic cocktails and Colorado spirits, and a focused, international beer program. The casual spot allows guests to enjoy a $10 pizza and beer combo, or a traditional five-course Italian family dinner. Bar Dough will be open for lunch and dinner, seven nights a week.

New Brewer At Ratio, Little Machine Beer Opens in Jefferson Park

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Ratio Beerworks. Photo by Candace Peterson.

The Low Down: Last week, Ratio Beerworks, the 8-month-old brewery located in RiNo, announced the addition of Ali Benetka to their brewing team. Benetka, a Denver native, recently returned from a seasonal brewing job at Gold Rush Brewery in Skagway, AK. No stranger to the Colorado beer scene, Benetka has worked with Left Hand Brewing Company, as a packaging technician, and Renegade Brewing Company, both as an assistant brewer and head brewer.

According to Denver Eater, Little Machine Beer will open at 2924 W. 20th Avenue on Thursday, October 29. The Jefferson Park brewery and taproom will debut five beers on opening day: Colorado Stock Ale Pale Ale, Sniff IPA, The Reason Saison, Tractor Beam Oatmeal Stout, and Alternating Currant Black Currant Kettle Sour. Head brewer Brett Williams brings twelve years of brewing experience to Little Machine, including time as head brewer for Dry Dock Brewing Company.

Other Industry News:

Chef Rotations at Jezebel’s, the Nickel, and Old Major—Eater Denver

Ohio Chain to Open in Upcoming LoHi Apartment Community—Westword

River North Brewery Celebrates Last Weekend at Original Location—Denver Post


The Inventing Room to Open Halloween—Westword

Carve Barbecue to Open November 5—Eater Denver

Globe Hall to Open November 6—Eater Denver


Rosa Linda’s Mexican Café to Close October 30—Westword