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June Arts Focus: Denver’s Brightmarten Restaurant in Bonnie Brae

Updated: Jun 1, 2020

We had the rare opportunity of going into a restaurant this last Wednesday, to interview Brightmarten's co-owner Jared Riggs. Throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, Brightmarten in Bonnie Brae has received a great amount of support from the surrounding community. Now offering new dishes, cocktails, and wine every night from their carry-out menu, Brightmarten has made it through the last two months while staying creative with food, drinks, and service.

Bonnie Brae means "pleasant hill" in Gaelic. The name Brightmarten is inspired by the pine marten, which is native to both Scotland and Colorado. Check out their crocheted mascot at the bar when you visit. Brightmarten completed a stunning renovation when they opened 2.5 years ago, completely transforming the old 730 South location. Now a light filled, aspen-contemporary inspired neighborhood eatery, we think you'll love the cozy feel and amazing service! Kudos to the co-owners: Jared Riggs, Wade Nelson, Jake Grant & Josh Prater.

This past Wednesday, 5/27/20, Denver restaurants were given the go-ahead to reopen. While some restaurants chose to open their dining rooms, others have decided to wait. Brightmarten, a restaurant that aims to operate independent of trends or norms, is decidedly waiting to see how things play out in the next few weeks.

Jared Riggs, Wade Nelson, and Heather Truhan at Brightmarten Restaurant & Bar.

That said, they are now offering a limited take-home menu which changes daily, and everything is made from scratch! Nightly family meals and dinner for two/$30 are now available for pickup if you order online at Brightmarten.com. You need simply to visit the site, give a pick-up time, and come to the restaurant at that time to pick up your meal!

Wine & Cocktails to-go at Brightmarten in Bonnie Brae.

When the restaurant does reopen, they plan to do so gradually, opening to limited menu for outdoor seating and limited seating indoors. Restaurants are now operating under new guidelines which encourage social distancing. Patrons should expect longer wait times, and are encouraged to call ahead and reserve a table in advance. As many patrons hope to secure tables around the 6pm dinner hour, it is important to recognize that wait times will be longer at that time. It may be prudent for patrons to push back their dinner time to 7pm or 8pm, if their schedules allow the flexibility.

“Sláinte mhaith” (slan-cha vah) to you, which means “Good health” in Gaelic.

In the heart of Denver's Bonnie Brae neighborhood, close to beautiful Washington Park, Brightmarten is located at:

730 South University Blvd, Denver CO Google Map

What we recommend for take out:

Old Fashioned

Piña Colada or any frosé

Cilantro-Lime Shrimp Tacos

Note: family-style menu changes daily, all made from scratch! Nom.

Follow Brightmarten! website | facebook | insta | 720-541-7696

Special thanks to Tara Curry, Marc Bayes & Erin Bates for the connection to this amazing restaurant.

Jamie Nagode: social post. Ken Truhan: video.

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