If you didn’t get a chance to check out Ace Gillett’s sexy makeover during the slim window between its reopening in February and the COVID closures in March, don’t worry—you can still experience the Armstrong Hotel’s sharp supper club and lounge on its social distancing-friendly patio in the heart of Old Town Fort Collins. And while the inside is still worth a peek if you feel comfortable venturing indoors, the main draw—a new menu of drinks by the Death & Co. team—might taste better al fresco anyway.

The pros at Proprietors LLC (or as drink lovers know them, the masterminds behind Death & Co.) created the snappy cocktail menu, where the most expensive drink costs $11 and most are just $8 or $9. Cocktails are divided into two sections; first, the updated Ace Gillett’s originals, where you’ll find the tangy-sweet Ruby So New (Aperol, gin, grapefruit cordial, lime, elderflower, and seltzer) and spicy Savory F. Avery (tequila, green chile, carrot juice, lime, peach, and hot sauce). The classics side picks from the canon of prohibition-era cocktails, like the French 75, Mexican Firing Squad, and Stinger.

The Savory F Avery cocktail at Ace Gillett‘s. Photo by Ryan Sheets

In addition to the Death & Co. drinks, Ace Gillett’s is sporting a new food menu. It’s a tight collection of yesteryear comfort foods, like Old Bay-poached shrimp cocktail, grilled cheese and tomato soup, and cumin- and cinnamon-spiked meatloaf. The weekend brunch, served from 9 a.m. until 3 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday, features something called the Wafnut, which is a cross between a waffle and a doughnut that sounds like something we could all happily stress eat right now.

Whenever you’re comfortable eating and drinking indoors, the newly renovated, decade-old subterranean lounge is one of the best spots to get a drink in the state. Boulder’s Shalls Design Studio nailed the stately vintage vibe throughout Ace’s mini labyrinth of cozy nooks, super-sexy booths, and sophisticated dens. With new furniture, art, and accessories from NINE dot ARTS, each room has its own distinct, classic club feel. The underground rooms are bedecked with leather, plaid, bookshelves, and moody lighting—all the makings of a smart space in which you want to linger. In fact, the layout and design feel far too homey and snug to be called a bar or restaurant, hence the supper club and lounge moniker.

Ace Gillett’s renovated interior. Photo by Ryan Sheets

For now, though, if the only spot you want to linger is on Ace Gillett’s 24-person patio directly outside the Armstrong Hotel, the drinks and Old Town vibe won’t disappoint. Patio seating is open Monday through Friday, 11:30 a.m.–9 p.m., and Saturday and Sunday, 9 a.m.–9 p.m.

239 S. College Ave., Fort Collins

Allyson Reedy
Allyson Reedy
Allyson Reedy is a freelance writer and ice cream fanatic living in Broomfield.