Notable Boulder County Restaurants: A Timeline + Commentary

[Over 4 decades]
1967 The Greenbriar Inn
1971 The Flagstaff House
1981 The Boulder CORK*
1993 Q’s in the iconic Hotel Boulderado

[Just 1 decade]
2003 L’Atelier + Brasserie Ten Ten
2004 The Kitchen + Frasca
2005 Jill’s at the St. Julien + Colterra
2006 Sugarbeet + Black Cat
2009 SALT
2010 Oak at Fourteenth + Basta
2012 Bramble & Hare
2013 Volta

Of the notable restaurants still open in Boulder County, in the late 60’s and 70’s, The Greenbriar Inn [1967] and The Flagstaff House [1971], were the fine dining options.
The Boulder CORK joined next [1981], adding a new alternative in that decade, and Q’s in the iconic Hotel Boulderado [1993], in that one.
Other restaurants came and went during that time, and in the time since, but with a focus on those still operating, these 4 opened in as many decades.
In the 10 years between 2003 through 2013, a new, thrilling crop of 13 joined the Boulder County restaurant scene – 12 of them independents.
Of these 17 total, 14 of them are in Boulder proper.
A world-class city has excellence in spades – from its aesthetic value and public transport options to its cultural opportunities.
Wonderful restaurants are cultural opportunities, as much as going to see an elite dance troupe performance or hear a Philharmonic play.
A great city also has a good feeling about it – it welcomes, energizes, excites.
A place can only be as welcoming, energizing and exciting as the people who populate it and those who choose to bring businesses to life there.
Here’s to the restaurateurs who take the risks that must be taken, to bring us so many exciting options to experience the culture – especially the food culture – of our incredible area.

*Operated as part of Cork ‘n Cleaver franchise from 1969, until they became current iteration – their own independent concept, Boulder CORK – in 1981.

A special nod to both Laudisio – a Boulder institution for over 25 years – and John’s – who provided food love to the community for a decade – both of which closed last year.
You also can’t talk about Boulder dining in general, without mentioning Dave Query’s Big Red F group, which has done more for solid, casual dining in Boulder than anyone [Jax – the first location, Boulder’s, opened in the early 90’s and in 2013 a 4th Colorado Jax opened in Cherry Creek – could be considered upscale dining; the line is very thin in Boulder, where even more seemingly laid back places, can be thought of as upscale in this casual town].

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