Golden’s Buffalo Rose has a long history that dates back to 1859 when the first of the five buildings that comprise the Rose was originally constructed. Since then, the landmark has housed a grocery store, public hall, paper mill, mercantile, saloon, barbershop, hotel and even an indoor swimming pool. When current owner Chris Cone purchased the buildings in April of 2016 his goal was to preserve the rich history while creating a modern restaurant and event space. “We wanted to maintain as much of the historical character of the buildings as we could,” he said.
Cone does not have a restaurant-industry background but saw so much potential to develop the space that it just made sense. “We purchased the structure in April 2016 and spent a year and a half working on the concept before the project started in late 2017,” he explained. The first phase of the renovation — The State Room cocktail bar and Buffalo Rose event venue — was completed in January 2019 and has held over 50 concerts and private events since its opening. The second phase — the Buffalo Rose restaurant and bar — was completed this May and welcomed nearly a thousand guests in its Memorial Day weekend grand opening. “I feel really good about the staff we have and the ability to service a thousand people over the weekend,” said Cone.
The new kitchen in the Rose is over 1,400 square feet with brand new equipment and services the restaurant and both bars. Cone describes the food as “Colorado American West” and is a fusion of regional American cuisine with a Latin twist. Notable items include the chorizo jalapenos ($9), bison ribs ($21) and achiote grilled prawns ($12). The menu also offers a wide variety of vegan, vegetarian and gluten-free options like the quinoa poblano entree ($13) and BBQ jackfruit sandwich ($10).
As Golden continues to expand its food and nightlife scene with new restaurants, bars and venues Cone predicts that more tourists and Denver locals will begin to frequent the town and turn it into a culinary destination. “From a culinary standpoint, Golden is really coming into its own. It used to get quiet after 5 p.m. but that’s beginning to change,” stated Cone.
The venue at the Buffalo Rose hosts about three to four concerts each week and has a great summer lineup ahead with genres ranging from bluegrass to heavy metal. A few upcoming shows include Gasoline Lollipops on June 29, Jason Eady on July 6, Adam Hood on August 1 and Quiet Riot on August 24. You can find a full lineup of upcoming shows on the Buffalo Rose website.
The Buffalo Rose is open Sunday 11 a.m.- 9 p.m., Monday – Thursday 11 a.m.- 10 p.m. and Friday – Saturday 11 a.m.- midnight.