Since 2016, Hudson Hill has occupied a quaint and cozy space on 13th and Pearl — bringing in early birds and nights owls alike. And now, the owners of that beloved bar have opened a second in Denver’s LoHi neighborhood. Lady Jane, a new California-inspired lounge, just opened on 32nd Avenue and the owner Jake Soffes believes that like his previous venture, it’s just what this community needs.
“Hudson was the first business that I owned personally and I really loved doing it,” stated Soffes. “I really love hospitality, I love working with people, I love bar programs and good food and coffee… Hudson was dipping a toe in the water for me and I have just genuinely enjoyed it so much that I wanted to do it again.”
So he did — but now with Lady Jane. Taking over a space in the Alexan LoHi apartment building, Soffes and his team created a lounge that combines the breezy vibes of Palm Springs in the 1960s with the attention to drink and food detail that we’d become accustomed to at his first establishment. And it all seems to have come full circle, considering Soffes has had his eye on The Lady Jane location since 2016 when he opened Hudson Hill.
“For us here, it was like how do we take the model of Hudson and just tweak it a little bit for LoHi?” explained Soffes as he described the original vision for Lady Jane. “You’ve got Cap Hill which is up and coming and still very affordable and a little bit more of the creative types live in the neighborhood. LoHi tends to be more people who lived in Cap Hill and moved up here to have families or for whatever reason… I just think this neighborhood has a little more spit and polish than Cap Hill does, so we wanted to create a space that really reflects that.”
From the orb lights hanging above the bar to the sea-green accent walls and palm trees sprouting up from the floor — walking into Lady Jane is like stepping back into a California of days past. And the drink program, run by A. Minetta Gould formerly of Ste. Ellie on Platte street, for the most part, is just as classic as the decor. From the happy hour (4 p.m. – 6 p.m.) which features timeless concoctions like the old fashioned to main menu creations like the One Summer Rum Swizzle with Brugal, Curacao, citrus, mint and a Fernet float — Lady Jane is both retro and new-age. Even the same renowned grilled cheese from Hudson Hill is on the menu.
“One thing that came to bear with Hudson and a core mission statement for what we do here is that this is really the modern neighborhood bar,” explained Soffes. “It’s a place where you can come and have a very reasonable drink. Because when you think neighborhood bar you think cheap shots, cheap beer. And for a neighborhood like this, we want to be able to accommodate that value and that everyday accessibility. But the people in this neighborhood have exceptional taste and some of the best restaurants in Denver are within three or four blocks of here so we have to have a top-notch cocktail program.”
If you stop by Lady Jane for a drink you’ll be able to tell quickly that they did just that. Apart from mixing up quality cocktails, a respectable wine list and some mouthwatering food offerings like Marcona almonds and a cheese board, the team here is serving each drink in unique collected glassware, something that Soffes believes gives his bar a distinct edge in the city.
“We just want to bring the best product at the best value, which is what we did at Hudson and what we’re going to do here as well,” he said.
Lady Jane just opened at 2021 West 32nd Avenue, Denver. You can visit between 4 p.m. and midnight Monday through Wednesday and 4 p.m. to 1 a.m. Thursday through Saturday. The lounge is closed Sunday. For more information stay tuned here.
All photos by Danielle Webster.