If you haven't "eaten in the Buff" then you haven't eaten in Boulder—that is, you haven't dined at the iconic Buff Restaurant behind the Golden Buff Lodge. Co-owners Christopher Meyer and Jacquelyn Sproul opened the spot in 1995 after taking over the old Golden Buff Grill. Over the years, their value-laden menu and Colorado-style comfort food has garnered a loyal following (including CU's football and basketball teams). In fact, the Buff's legendary breakfasts have been enjoyed by the likes of President Obama, Sean Penn, Mel Gibson, and (almost) Ryan Gosling. "Ryan came to eat here when we were closed, so we chatted with him but we couldn't serve him," Meyer says.
And so, it's no surprise that there was outcry when the news broke that both the lodge and restaurant will be razed and replaced by a new hotel and restaurant from the Pedersen Development Company. But Meyer and Sproul are choosing to look at the situation as an opportunity: "We were approached by the Pederson group to stay on at the new development, but we felt our interests were better served to move across the street to the old Original Pancake House location," Meyer says. "We have the time to remodel and almost re-create the look and feel of the old Buff in our new spot." (For Denverites, this sounds eerily similar to the Annie's Cafe situation from a few years back. Annie's ultimately moved to the old Goodfriends space—a fortuitous decision since the proposed hotel was never built. In fact, the site at Colorado Boulevard and Eighth Avenue sat dormant for five years until construction on Trader Joe's began in late March.)
The new Buff is slated to open in early fall. There will be minimal disruption in operations and service. Expect to see the same menu staples, including the green chile covered Ole Skillet (which President Obama ordered on his visit last fall), the beloved "Saddlebags" (pancakes stuffed with bacon or sausage), chicken and French toast (gluten- and dairy-free French toast-battered chicken), and the fresh fruit bowl (a fluted cantaloupe overflowing with fruit, yogurt, and granola). Of course, the 99-cent bloody marys (pictured) are also here to stay.
1725 28th St., Boulder, 303-442-9150