With the economic gridlock of the current preventative measures in place to stop the spread of COVID-19, many independent institutions find themselves struggling beyond their means. The government stimulus package promised relief to small businesses, but not all industries were given aid, and the indefinite temporary closures have racked up debt and uncertainty for the proprietors as they struggle to decide whether or not it is financially viable to open once this is all over.
This is not an easy list to make, but here are the restaurants and venues that have permanently closed their doors thanks to the pandemic.
We will update this as more closures are announced.
12 @ Madison
Jeff Osaka’s New American restaurant has shuttered its doors. The announcement came on the same day as the opening of restaurants statewide, with many restrictions, of course. Osaka owns many of Denver’s more popular eating establishments including Sushi-Rama, Osaka Ramen and Empire Lounge. 12 @ Madison was a critically acclaimed eatery in Denver.
The Lowdown: After 37 years, The Market on Larimer Square permanently closed as of Mid-April. The beloved spot was the home of the Spring Fling Cake, a Denver staple pastry. For more on the closure, go here.
Biju’s Little Curry Shop
The Lowdown: Biju’s Little Curry Shop was a fast-casual Indian restaurant that first started in the Five Points area. The hope eventually expanded to two more locations, before closing down and settling on Tennyson Street by 2020. The innovative curry shop has officially closed its doors as of the beginning of May. For more info check out 5280.
20th Street Cafe
The Lowdown: The downtown staple has been in business for 74 years. It was a family run business for three generations. The Rod and Karen Okuno, the diners current owners, were set to retire in a few years, but COVID-19 fast-tracked their decision. For their official statement check out their Facebook.
The Lowdown: The North Denver eatery and taproom has permanently closed after seven years. The restaurant announced its closure on Facebook on April 26, with the last day to order one of their delicious burritos being that next week, Wednesday, April 29.
Next Stop Brew Company (Formerly The Intrepid Sojourner)
The Lowdown: After changing its name and undergoing a rebrand this last fall, Next Stop Brew Company is calling it quits. Formerly known as The Intrepid Sojourner Beer Project, the brewery began with innovative beers that were meant to take drinkers around the world with exotic flavors (think Turkish Coffee Stout or a Basil IPA). But it seems this approach and subsequent re-brand did not win over enough customers as they cited growing competition in the beer world as well as COVID-19 for their demise. Go here for more info.
The Lowdown: The Berkeley diner announced its closure via their Facebook on March 17. The popular breakfast joint didn’t go into great detail as to why it would close.
The Lowdown: The South Broadway venue and dive bar has closed its doors after 14 years. The closure was announced on Instagram in Mid-May. 3 Kings was a classic rock dive bar and was also a coveted stop for UMS. Go here for more info.
The Lowdown; Live @ Jack’s was the first Denver venue to officially close due to coronavirus. Sandra Holman Watts, the managing owner of the establishment, posted a tearful video announcing the decision on Saturday, May 9. Go here for more info.
Le Cour Denver’s Art Bar
The Lowdown: Le Cour was a jazz club and French bistro on South Broadway that brought old charm and music to the masses. The owners and partners Janet Poth and Joe Monley wrote a statement on their Facebook page about the announcement.
The Lowdown: Euclid Hall was one of the first restaurants to announce its closure due to coronavirus. The restaurant was around for 10 years. Although they plan on closing down its location off of Larimer Square, co-owners of the establishment hope to find a new location with Euclid Hall concepts in mind once the pandemic is over. For more on the closure, go here.
Racines – Closing in 2021
The Lowdown: After more than 40 years in business, the owners of Racines have decided to retire. However, the all-day restaurant isn’t calling it quits until January 2021 in hopes they can have a proper goodbye. Go here for more info.
Tom’s Diner has been a staple part of the Colfax world for quite some time. Its relevance to our history is so impactful that the National Register of Historic Places protects the buildings structure. Nonetheless, the diner has closed its doors with no indication as to what it will replaced by. Although the move was coming up regardless of coronavirus measures, according to a historic-friendly developer GBX Group, the onset of the virus has sped up the buying and selling process. Tom Messina, the owner of Tom’s Diner, has sold the property. We can only await what’s in store for the cult-following of such a place.
For more closure information or announcements, please contact [email protected]