Carbondale is the talk of the Centennial State these days, with an influx of new restaurants and hotels popping up and old venues coming back to life. Kade Gianinetti (the Way Back, American Grind, Method Roasters, Wendell’s) is performing the latter trick when he opens the Way Home in the former Six89 space on Main Street on August 7.

Gianinetti comes from a five-generation Carbondale family—his parents and grandparents live next door to each other just down the road from the family’s farm—and is excited to bring something unique to his hometown. “It means a lot to Carbondale for our family to take over the [Six89] property,” Gianinetti says. “It’s the new and the old coming together.” Locals Lacy Hughes (formerly at Six89 and Town Carbondale; current proprietor of Silo) and executive chef Flip Wise (Open Fire Catering) have joined Gianinetti on the project, deepening the Carbondale connection; Hughes will run front-of-house operations as a managing partner while Wise leads the restaurant kitchen.

A view of the (still under construction) dining patio at the Way Home.

The team has practically gutted the turn-of-the-century house at 689 Main Street, and are nearing completion on their plans to turn it into a welcoming spot for Carbondale residents and tourists alike. There will be a street-side bar patio strung with twinkling cafe lights; an outside dining area with fire pits set under towering pines; a 70-seat restaurant replete with a four-season sunroom, a lounge, two dining rooms, a full bar, and early-day counter service; two modern hotels suites tucked away on the house’s second floor; and a community event and gathering space located on the 1.5-acre back lot. “I’m imagining all-you-can-eat barbecue, a beer garden, and film festivals, too,” says Gianinetti. Eventually, he plans to construct an additional building to offer more lodging. “We want to be the Ace Hotel of the mountains,” Gianinetti says, “and act as a conduit between local farmers, our restaurant, and the Carbondale community.”

Gianinetti, Hughes, and Wise will use their connections in the area to create one-of-a-kind experiences for their guests. Hughes and her team will act as personal concierges, leading guests to unique agro- and adventure-tourism opportunities in the area, from cycling and skiing to ranch tours. And the Way Home’s restaurant kitchen, which will offer “simple, all house-made, American fare with northern Italian influences,” will be fully stocked with produce, meat, eggs, and more from Roaring Fork Valley farms.

One such farm has been in the Gianinetti family for 99 years: an 83-acre parcel just nine blocks from the restaurant/inn. Currently in use as a tented event space, Gianinetti intends to enhance the property with a permanent 5,000-square-foot event barn that will anchor the five acres of the farm set aside for weddings, conferences, and educational outreach. Tiny-house-style lodging is another possibility.

Inspired by the agriculture-hospitality model of Blue Hill at Stone Barns in Tarrytown, New York, Gianinetti wants to lease parcels of the remaining land to area farmers for growing vegetables and raising livestock—from chickens to pigs to cattle. The overarching dream is to turn the property into a combination of for- and non-profit endeavors that will augment the Roaring Fork Valley’s agriculture, tourism, and hospitality industries.

But in the meantime, the Way Home’s restaurant and first two hotel rooms will open to the public on August 7, during what is shaping up to be a very busy summer in Carbondale.

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.