Teller's Taproom & Kitchen opens in the culinary wasteland that's Lakewood

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Lori Midson
After spending the weekend scrounging for food in Lakewood -- more accurately, Applewood -- I was ready to give up. I'd pushed away an inedible pizza, spit out sushi, sobbed over the limp and cold fries at Smashburger...and even the frozen yogurt I got to console myself sucked. The best food I had was at Lutheran Hospital -- and it wasn't even food; it was iced tea.

It's no secret that Lakewood (and, while we're at it, Wheat Ridge) is a vast culinary labyrinth of chains and uninspiring independent restaurants that force suburbanites to empty their change in downtown meters. And that's what inspired Larimer Associates COO Joe Vostrejs, his brothers Steve and Matt, and Rod Wagner, acquisitions and project management partner for Larimer Associates, to open Teller's Taproom & Kitchen in a former 7-Eleven in Applewood.

"We recognized that the neighborhood really needed something like this, a third place to hang out, drink great beers and eat great food after spending time at work and at home," says Steve Vostrejs, who inked the deal on the space eighteen months ago and completely gutted both the exterior and the interior.

"It's a comfortable place to hang out, whether you just want a beer at the bar or you want to bring in the family and eat," echoes GM Chris Cunningham. "We're excited to fill a niche that the community has been missing -- a nice neighborhood restaurant and bar for people to come and commune."

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Lori Midson
And the space, which Vostrejs describes as "steampunk" -- an intersection, he says, "of the Victorian era and modern industrial," achieves that and more: The marble-topped 1890s mahogany bar, which originally resided in the Lamar train station, overlooks thirty tap handles, thirteen of which are brewed in Colorado, and they're poured in appropriate glassware, including double steins if you're ordering a domestic brew. There's a long community table for conversing; sodas, iced tea and water are served in Mason jars; the chairs are all mismatched; modern garage doors open to a covered patio; the wooden booths are complemented by black park-bench seating, and just outside the partially open kitchen hangs a chalkboard that lists the local breweries and food purveyors with whom Teller's has partnerships.

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Lori Midson
"Eat local/drink local is a huge component of what we're doing here," explains Cunningham, who designed the beer syllabus. "We want to support local businesses as much as possible, and as we move forward, those partnerships will continue to evolve and grow."

As will the menu, which currently hustles 100 percent Angus beer burgers; beer-battered fish and chips, made with fresh cod; oysters and mussels; starters like fried Brussels sprouts; salads and housemade soups; and sandwiches like the "Melted Monk," crafted with Chimay cheese, Granny Smith apples and onions caramelized in Colorado honey.

"We're starting a new dinner menu in a few weeks, where we'll be adding half-roasted chickens, barbecued ribs, a killer meatloaf and different steaks," says Vostrejs, adding that weekend brunch -- including mimosas and bloody Marys -- is also on the horizon. "We're taking our time, because we want to get everything right, but so far, our guests -- I call them urban-suburbanites -- love what we're doing, and we're a having a lot of fun doing it."

Teller's is open daily for lunch, dinner and happy hour. For more info, call 303-237-1002.

Location Info

Teller's Taproom & Kitchen

1990 Youngfield St., Lakewood, CO

Category: Music


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14 comments
Tyson2k10
Tyson2k10

This place is as uninspired as anything else over here(applewood)... Mediocre service, mediocre food and way over priced. Good beer selection though, and drink prices are right on par...

Mantonat
Mantonat

I was prepared to take offense at the statement "culinary wasteland," but it's not exactly inaccurate. Union between Alameda and 6th has the most potential, but you really have to do a ton of driving to get to the (relatively) few hidden gems. Lakewood has a population nearing 150,000 (compared to Boulder at about 100,000), so it really has nowhere near the amount of quality food that you'd expect. Or maybe it's just normal and Boulder is above average.

sal
sal

Also Cafe Jordano, Johnny's NY Pizza, Jose O'Shea's, Chad's, Simm's,Yardhouse.....

davebarnes
davebarnes

Wheat Ridge has:Red Tango, MyPie, Large Marge

namijoh
namijoh

Been a few times now and the place has potential. Now if they could make their prices more reasonable, I'd probably visit more.

Guesto
Guesto

food in Boulder sucks. Go to Honolulu for a couple weeks and eat and then tell me if you want to pay for anything in Boulder ever again.

I will eat at Thai Avenue, Gurkhas on the Hill, Amu, Sushi ZanMai, .... not much else

Frasca is terrible, Strings is a perfect example of how Denver does everything bettter AND CHEAPER than Bouulder 

Lovetoeat
Lovetoeat

Talk of the Thai (TOTTS) at Garrison and Alameda isn't bad for lunch.

Mantonat
Mantonat

Simm's, really? And the Yardhouse is a chain - there's one downtown too.

Nimart
Nimart

MyPie? Really? I think that's the inedible pizza Lori's talking about. 

Frank
Frank

Lakewood has: 240 Union, Frijoles Cuban Cuisine, D'Corazon. Nothing uninspired about Lakewood. Like anywhere, you just need to know where to look...

Mantonat
Mantonat

Reasonable compared to what?

huh?
huh?

i don't understand the comparison of Boulder to Honolulu. They aren't even remotely similar locales.

Mantonat
Mantonat

I'd love to go to Honolulu for a couple of weeks and eat! You buying? What's the population there anyway - and isn't it a major international crossroads? Not much of a comparison there - kind of like saying the atmosphere on the Earth really blows away the moon. And to say that Frasca is terrible is really just ridiculous.

Guesto
Guesto

compared to how much money i have in my pocket. 

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