Sunsets has early mornings and late evenings covered
Aspen Times Staff Writer
From Bloody Mary to last call, the newest bar in Aspen stays open from sunrise to well beyond sunset.
Even so, Sunsets is the name of the coffeeshop and bar that opened a week ago at 315 E. Hyman Ave., a highly visible spot right across the street from the Wheeler Opera House. Open from 7 a.m. to 2 a.m., Sunsets offers coffee and pastries in the morning, will soon have light lunch fare, and stays open as a place to have a drink later at night.
“It’s a coffeeshop by morning, a cafe by day and a raging bar by night,” said Kevin Byford, the cafe’s managing partner. Grant Sutherland, manager at Mezzaluna, is the main owner of Sunsets. He is also part owner of Mezzaluna in Vail.
The cafe’s location features a patio dining area that is ideal in Aspen during the summer, Byford said.
Previously the location for Caffe Torino, then-restaurant owner Maurizio Trinchera struggled to keep the small Italian restaurant open for several years, before suddenly closing and leaving town this spring.
“Everyone warned us this place was jinxed, but maybe that was just because Caffe Torino was just one more Italian restaurant in town,” Byford said.
The Aspen Restaurant Group owns the lease to the cafe’s location and is also owner of leases at Mezzaluna and The Cantina. Very little remodeling work was needed to transform the former Italian restaurant into a walk-in cafe, Byford said. A sky with a sunset in the West was painted on the ceiling, and some drapes are planned for the patio area.
The morning coffeeshop serves pastries from Matterhorn Bakery, while in the evenings (or whenever ordered) the bar serves martini specials for $6 ? in flavors like chocolate, fruit loop and the Sean Connery special.
“It’s a great spot ? there aren’t many places in town where you can sit on a patio and have a drink, instead of in the middle of a restaurant,” Sutherland said. “We think this will be a great place.”
Byford said the cafe and bar will try to keep prices reasonable ? in the last week they say they’ve already garnered a strong local following.
“We need more places like this in town,” he said. “Genre, Elevation ? these are places that are all doing well.”
Naomi Havlen’s e-mail address is firstname.lastname@example.org
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