Cherry Cricket re­open­ing on April 11

The Denver Post - - FEATURES - By Allyson Reedy Allyson Reedy (areedy@ den­ver­post.com) is food writer for The Den­ver Post. On Twit­ter @AllysonBTC and In­sta­gram, AllysonEat­sDen.

Cherry Cricket Watch 2017 is nearly over: Lee Driscoll, one of the Cricket’s own­ers, said that the iconic restau­rant, which closed due to a fire back in Novem­ber, will re­open on April 11. And just in case you were wor­ried that the Cricket might have been brought into the 21st cen­tury with a facelift or re­model, rest as­sured: It will be ex­actly the same.

“We didn’t let any fancy restau­rant de­sign­ers any­where near the place,” Driscoll told us. “The light­ing is still a lit­tle gar­ish. The thing about the Cricket that we love, and that we hope the pub­lic loves, is that it’s an au­then­tic place. Our main goal was to bring the Cricket back to where it was be­fore.”

To cel­e­brate the grand re­open­ing, Driscoll and com­pany have a fes­tive week of events planned. A rib­bon-cut­ting cer­e­mony on April 11 kicks things off, fol­lowed by cake and cham­pagne — or sparkling wine; this is the Cricket af­ter all — in­side the restau­rant.

On April 12, the Cricket will host a food drive for Metro Car­ing: Any­one who brings in more than three cans gets a free bas­ket of fries. It’ll also pay trib­ute to the fire­fight­ers who put out the Novem­ber blaze with a new Fire Belly burger. A dol­lar of each Fire Belly burger sold will be do­nated to the fire­houses that helped save the restau­rant.

“They were fantastic,” Driscoll said of the fire­fight­ers. “They saved our beloved Cherry Cricket.”

Alas, it’s not all rib­bons and fry bas­kets: Let us not forget those who per­ished in the Novem­ber fire. At 5 p.m. on April 13, a me­mo­rial ser­vice will take place for the three fish that lost their lives in the fire. There will be bag­pipes. There will be dancers. There will al­most cer­tainly be tears. RIP, name­less fish.

Ev­ery­one will be back in a cel­e­bra­tory mood on the 14th, when the Den­ver Bron­cos bus will be parked out front — per­fect for self­ies and QB de­bates. Staff will hand out Easter candy over the week­end — be­cause what bet­ter place to cel­e­brate a res­ur­rec­tion than at the newly res­ur­rected Cricket?

Speak­ing of the staff, Driscoll said that ev­ery­one will be back.

“We’re as proud of that as any­thing,” he said. “That we have that kind of loy­alty from our staff.”

And as for that new Ball­park Cherry Cricket lo­ca­tion we re­cently told you about? That’s go­ing to have to wait un­til late fall or early 2018. The wheels are in mo­tion for the Cricket to take over the cur­rent Breck on Blake space, but the own­ers want to make sure it’s done right.

“We don’t want to do a cookie cut­ter or a chain or a knock­off ver­sion. We want to ex­em­plify the good qual­i­ties of the Cricket in a dif­fer­ent space,” Driscoll said.

For now, we anx­iously await April 11 and the re­open­ing of the orig­i­nal, when ev­ery wrong will be righted and ev­ery right will be re­warded. Or maybe we’ll just be able to get peanut but­ter on our burg­ers again.

Nathan W. Armes, Spe­cial to The Den­ver Post

A Cricket Burger. Yum.

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