The Matador gets its liquor license -- and could soon be pouring tequila on West 32nd Avenue

Danielle Lirette
The former home of Heidi's Deli.
The Matador is moving into the original home of Heidi's Deli, at 3496 West 32nd Avenue. But not as quickly as it had wanted to. Initially, the Seattle-based Tex-Mex chain had hoped to open its eighth location (there are four in the Seattle area, two in Portland and one in Boise) by Cinco de Mayo -- a perfect date to roll out its more than 100 varieties of tequila. But that was before the Highland Mommies started complaining that the area already had enough Mexican restaurants (El Camino is just two blocks away, Pinche Taqueria three) not to mention enough liquor licenses. (Heidi's did not have one.) And the West Highlands Neighborhood Association officially opposed the liquor-license application.

See also:
- Last Call at the original Heidi's in West Denver
- The Highland Mommies are raising babies and raising Cain in northwest Denver
- Common Grounds will pour its last cup of coffee at original location

At the end of a lengthy hearing on April 8, though, the hearing officer, Kimberly Chandler, issued this recommendation: "Having considered the evidence described above, it is concluded by the weight thereof that the Applicant has sustained its burden to show that there is a need for the applied-for hotel and restaurant liquor license at the establishment known and designated as The Matador, 3496 West 32nd Avenue, Denver, Colorado, 80211, to meet the reasonable requirements of the neighborhood; and, that the inhabitants of the designated neighborhood desire that this license issue. IT IS RECOMMENDED that the license application be approved."

Tom Downey, the director of the Denver Department of Excise and Licenses, got more than two dozen objections to that recommendation, as well as a response to those objections from the applicant, Mat-Denver. And on April 30, he issued a final decision noting that he found no legal grounds for overturning the hearing officer's recommendation -- but also encouraged the restaurant's owners, neighbors and residents groups to "continue working together."

Location Info

Heidi's Brooklyn Deli - CLOSED

3130 Lowell Blvd., Denver, CO

Category: Restaurant

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To be clear, "Highlands Mommies" has not taken any official stance on anything beyond the business of moderating it's forum in at least the last year+.

Many Highlands Mommies  have opinions and stances on various issues. However, as an "organization", HM has not and is not likely to take a stance. While some members of Highlands Mommies may also be members of the West Highlands Neighborhood Association, Highlands Mommies as an organization is not affiliated with WHNA nor were/are we involved with this liquor license opposition. Our only interest for our community is it's vitality! 

Highlands Mommies is unclear where the Reporter who wrote this article acquired his/her information but what is clear is that it was not directly from Highlands Mommies. The reporter did little to no research to validate any involvement by Highlands Mommies. Please let it be known that Highlands Mommies an an organization, was NOT involved, period!

Laverne Herrera-Hay

Executive Director

Highlands Mommies


So 32nd Ave, between Irving and Newton, will now have 4 Mexican restaurants.

The ironic part is there is not a Mexican left living in the neighborhood. 

This is just as dumb as Tennyson; which is about to have 2 Sushi restaurants within 2 blocks of each other.


The lesson as always.  Don't F with the Highland Mommies.


"Seattle-based Tex-Mex chain"? Really?

That's as much of a non sequitur  as "Omaha-based Sushi chain"...


@laverne_hay Oh, Please!  Your vocal members ARE representing you, regardless of your attempt to distance the organization.  So your little letter here is ridiculous.

The Highland Mommies have not earned the nickname "Highland Mommies Mafia" for nothing.

ScubaSteve topcommenter


The best Mexican food I've had outside of Mexico was in a restaurant in Juneau, Alaska of all places.  It was owned and operated by a couple from Bellevue, Washington.

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