So long, Lodo’s Bar and Grill. After 25 years creating a reputation for itself and the surrounding neighborhood, the bar that began its life with a country-western theme is switching brands and getting back to its roots, this time with a famous name attached to it.
Dierks Bentley’s Whiskey Row will officially take over the spaces at 1942 and 1946 Market St. for construction and remodeling starting this spring. The other two Lodo’s operations, in Highlands Ranch and Westminster, will not be affected.
Lodo’s got its start in 1994 — a year before Coors Field came into play — as a country-western steakhouse before becoming the game-time hub and rooftop party that it eventually became known for.
“This neighborhood – and these buildings – have played an extraordinary role in Denver’s dynamic narrative and we’re thrilled to contribute to its growth,” Lodo’s owners Kenneth Monfort, Jason Marcotte and Matt Runyon said in a press release. “We’re optimistic that Dierks Bentley’s Whiskey Row will serve as the catalyst that transforms this area into a world-class Ballpark district that entertains and engages residents and visitors alike, day and night, 365 days a year.”
Monfort — son of Colorado Rockies co-owner Charlie Monfort — bought the Lodo’s property last year along with Marcotte and Runyon. At the time, the millennial team said they would be running LoDo’s business as usual.
“What we are excited about is building upon the legacy that has been created,” Monfort told The Denver Post in 2018. “There is a character to the neighborhood and there are things that don’t need fixing and don’t need changes.”
Then this year, they introduced the Neon Baby pop-up to an unused space next door to the bar.
“We see this as an opportunity to change the perception of Lodo’s,” Runyon said in May. “I think that its (relevancy has) waned over time.”
Sometime this spring, Neon Baby will close at the same time as Lodo’s for construction. And while there is no opening timeline yet for Whiskey Row, the new bar’s buildout will involve extending patios and rooftop spaces, building a two-story infill structure in an existing parking lot and redesigning the property’s streetscape and facade.
On its website, Whiskey Row brands itself as an American gastropub with “exhilarating nightlife and a rock & roll attitude inspired by Dierks himself.” Menu items range from pretzel platters with whiskey cheese to beer can rotisserie chicken. The brand already has four locations in Scottsdale, Tempe and Gilbert, Arizona, as well as in Nashville, Tennessee.
“Every Whiskey Row is located in a city and state that is very special to me,” Bentley said in the release. “Our first one opened in my hometown of Scottsdale, Arizona six years ago and our most recent location is in my adopted hometown of Nashville, Tennessee. I couldn’t be more excited about Whiskey Row now having a home in Denver as well. Colorado has always been a big part of my life and continues to be so as a place where I write and record music, spend time with family and put on our Seven Peaks Festival. Selfishly, opening a Whiskey Row there just gives me more excuses to head to the mountains!”
The changes to Lodo’s are just the latest in a string of announcements along Market Street. Last month, The Tavern Downtown and neighboring Cowboy Lounge shuttered after more than a decade in the neighborhood.
Updated Nov. 13 at 3:35 p.m.The following corrected information has been added to this article: Because of a reporting error, the age of Lodo’s Bar and Grill was previously incorrect. It is 25 years old.
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