Denver’s famed burger joint, The Cherry Cricket, will make the leap into the suburbs when it opens a third location in Littleton next year.
The spot will include many elements familiar to Cricket fans, including its signature marquee sign, guest-favorite fish tank, expansive outdoor “burger garden” and nostalgic design features.
“We’re interested in the suburbs because we think there’s a strong demand down there,” said Lee Driscoll, CEO of The Cherry Cricket’s parent company Breckenridge-Wynkoop LLC. “We’re familiar with Littleton because of the Farm House Restaurant at Breckenridge Brewery, and we’ve always been well received, so it makes a lot of sense for a target area for us.”
Breckenridge-Wynkoop purchased the 6,659-square-foot building at 819 W. Littleton Blvd. in December 2021 for $1.5 million, according to Arapahoe County property records. It has been home to several restaurants, most notably the Crestwood Restaurant, for more than 40 years.
“Generally speaking, it’s preferable to own the property,” Driscoll said. “It gives you a much greater degree of control. There’s always inherent tensions in the landlord-tenant relationship, and if you can be on both sides of that, you can deal with unanticipated circumstances.”
The company is completing an extensive, multi-million-dollar renovation on the property and expects to open the new location by late April or early May 2023. A great deal of the interior has been demolished to build out the 400-seat restaurant, but Breckenridge-Wynkoop plans to keep the integrity of the lava rock building’s facade as a nod to Crestwood. (MA Architects and Jordy Construction will handle the project.)
“Most people would demolish it, but we’re renovating the building,” Driscoll said. “It’s not the most attractive building you’ve ever seen, but it has this throwback charm to it that we really like and think will fit well with the Cricket.”
The Cricket is a Denver institution. The restaurant first opened in Cherry Creek in 1945 and moved to its current location about five years later. It has had multiple owners over the years, including Sen. John Hickenlooper and his restaurant business partners, and was purchased by the company that is now Breckenridge-Wynkoop in 2000. It added a second location in the Ballpark neighborhood in 2018. (You can also find its burgers at Empower Field at Mile High.)
In May, Breckenridge-Wynkoop closed another one of its restaurants, Ale House at Amato’s in LoHi, which is now being replaced by Chicago-based The Hampton Social.
And in June, The Cherry Cricket’s building in Cherry Creek, which the company leases, was sold to developer Alpine Investments. Driscoll said Breckenridge-Wynkoop is part of that development group, which said in a statement that it will “ensure The Cherry Cricket is able to continue operating in its current location for many years to come.”
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