Beast + Bottle in Denver, pictured on Thursday May 9, 2013. (Cyrus McCrimmon, Denver Post-File)
A month and a half isn’t the longest lead time for a restaurant to announce it’s closing, but it should be enough for fans to get a seat for one last meal.
Such is the case with Beast + Bottle, a Denver restaurant that has served real farm-to-table dishes from an intimate dining room along 17th Avenue for the past eight years.
Owners and siblings Paul and Aileen Reilly and JP Taylor Jr., Aileen’s husband, announced this week that they will be closing Beast + Bottle after the service on Saturday, June 5th.
“We knew that day was coming, but we weren’t entirely sure when it might land, mainly because COVID threw a strange wrench,” said Paul Reilly.
Reilly said his original Denver restaurant was closed because the building had been sold and was being demolished and redeveloped – along with an adjacent salon, the former Tony P’s and a building around the corner in Clarkson. But it has nothing to do with COVID-19, he says.
However, Beast + Bottle remained closed for much of the pandemic. The restaurant started at the end of November a “hibernation” that only ended in mid-April when the Reillys and Taylor secured and reopened a second round of PPP funding.
So they contacted all of their old employees and explained the circumstances – that the restaurant wouldn’t be back until the extended lease expired – and everyone agreed to come back to work, Reilly said.
“We see the next five weeks as a kind of celebration rather than a funeral for everything we have achieved here and for everyone who joined us on the way to the ride.”
In addition to preparing for the spring season bounty, cooking Colorado lamb and pork from local farms, the restaurant team will continue to search for a new home for Beast + Bottle. But they are not convinced that they will find the right place.
“(Beast + Bottle) is very important. It’s intimate, it’s romantic, ”said Reilly. “In order for us to be able to continue the name, we would have to comply with it. But that doesn’t mean we won’t have another really farm-oriented concept, it might not be called Beast + Bottle. “
So customers can plan to dine by June 5th. You can also visit the Reillys’ other restaurant, Coperta, down the street. And maybe Beast + Bottle will come back or evolve.
“I think we opened at a very happy time,” said Reilly. “Denver was hungry for such a concept when we opened, and we’re just so grateful for how the last eight years have gone. It’s a shame we have to close this chapter for now. But we hope it’s a “see you soon” as opposed to a “goodbye”. “
719 E. 17th Ave., 5 p.m. to 9 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday (June 5), 303-623-3223, beastandbottle.com
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