Album covers from the likes of Ozzy Osbourne, Bon Jovi, and Kiss may grace the walls at FNG, Troy Guard’s latest restaurant, but comforting fare and a stellar in-house charcuterie program is what graces the plates. “I used to drive by this space, which used to be Highlands Asian Grill, and think to myself, ‘One day, I’ll do something there,’” Guard says. That day is officially (almost) here, for FNG’s doors are scheduled to open to the public at 4 p.m. on Friday, December 1.

The concept’s name can be explained two ways: FNG is common restaurant industry slang for a “F-ing New Guy,” but the abbreviation also refers to the quality of the food, cocktails, and service, which Guard says are all “F’n Good.” “It’s a place where Highlands residents can come by two or three times a week and never get bored,” Guard says. “It’s comfort food, but with a little rock n’ roll thrown in. And everything is made from scratch.”

Like a gussied up diner, the food menu goes heavy on the classics (mac and cheese, a fried chicken sandwich, a quarter-pound burger made with a chuck-brisket-short-rib blend), but also includes a few welcome surprises. Rabbit enriches the tangy, spicy green chile stew, and there’s a savory meat pie section of the menu that ventures into Aussie tuck shop territory. Another standout? Chef Josh Elliot’s house-made charcuterie, which has been aging since June. Meats such as jerk coppa, aged pancetta, cherry-wood-smoked ham, and Angus bresaola are paired with grilled toast and scratch-made pickled vegetables, grainy mustard, and bacon-cherry mostarda. Also expect house-made brats, fresh pastas, and daily specials that run from salisbury steak to fish tacos. On the sweet side, pastry chef Joy Williams will be dishing up two kinds of pie—a killer banana cream and sweet-and-salty caramel topped with peanuts—and an Oreo cookie parfait.

FNG will begin service with dinner, then slowly ramp up in the new year to include lunch and weekend brunch. In the meantime, Denverites looking to #dinehard, as Guard suggests, have a new neighborhood spot built for doing just that.

3940 W. 32nd Ave., 303-963-5931

Denise Mickelsen
Denise Mickelsen
Denise Mickelsen is 5280’s former food editor. She oversaw all of 5280’s food-related coverage from October 2016 to March 2021.