Take the kids to a beer garden? You bet! By Edan Goode

It’s great to be able to find a restaurant that is as appealing to the kids as the parents. Too often, the place the parents want to go isn’t really family-friendly and you spend the entire time trying to get the kids to behave like little adults. Or the places the kids love leave the parents feeling like they didn’t really have a treat of an evening out at all. The Lowry Beer Garden (yes, Beer Garden) is a great compromise.

The Lowry Beer Garden, 7577 East Academy Blvd., in the Lowry Neighborhood. Photo courtesy Larimer Associates.

Sitting right next to a popular family destination, Wings Over the Rockies Air and Space Museum, is the Lowry Beer Garden, a new but already very popular hangout for cold brews and good food and a good place to bring the kids – if you come early.

Beer and wine gardens are not a new concept. They have existed in Europe for hundreds of years. But the concept is a fresh one for Colorado. Like its European counterparts, the Lowry Beer Garden is open air, casual and self-service with communal, bench seating. “You come as you are, bring a large group and it’s no big deal,” says Joe Vostrejs, one of the owners of the Lowry Beer Garden, and also COO of Larimer Associates, a successful real estate and restaurant development company.

Being located in the Lowry neighborhood, the varied clientele seem to follow a schedule. Retirees come really early for a bite before the families descend. Then they tend to be gone in time for both early bedtimes and the arrival of the serious beer drinkers. It works out perfectly.

Because of the casual, open-air, communal environment, kids may feel it’s okay to run around. While the Lowry Beer Garden loves kids, they also know that things could get chaotic for other diners if kids were getting a little wild so they offer board and card games to encourage kids to not only have a seat and enjoy dinner but to also enjoy spending time with their families.

The kids’ menu features burgers, a hot dog and chicken nuggets, each $5 although the Super Giant Pretzel, served in a pizza-size box for $13 on the appetizer menu is also hard for kiddos to resist. Same with the Chicken Wings which kids manage to keep snatching from their parents, but who can blame them. With three levels of heat in the sauce to choose from, there are options for all.  Cool things off with soft-serve ice cream.

For adults, the food menu offers lots of options and will be evolving and growing as time passes and seasons change. Currently, it

Two of Lowry Beer Garden’s burgers: Choose your meat (including vegetarian, shown top) and your toppings. Photo courtesy CDM Communications.

focuses on a wide variety of burgers, sandwiches, brats, salads and other beer-friendly foods. Soon, they will start offering healthy appetizers like scratch-made hummus, peel-and-eat shrimp and more salads. As the weather turns colder, they will add heartier fare that pairs well with beer as well as special events such as cooking steaks out in the garden.

When those fall and winter breezes hit (practically unthinkable as I write this on a 98 degree day) it will be no problem for the Lowry Beer Garden. Beyond the outdoor “garden” area at the front, the covered Pavilion sits on a concrete slab that is kept warm by hydronic heat via a solar array on the roof. Clear, plastic walls will come down, making a cozy room for a couple hundred people. Heat lamps will warm up the open air garden area for heartier souls who just have to be out under the open sky.

Grab the kids and claim your spot on a bench, enjoy good food and drink for the family and maybe meet other families too who are relieved to find a place that makes the gang happy.

The Lowry Beer Garden is located at 7577 East Academy Blvd., Denver, in the Lowry Neighborhood, off of Monaco and Quebec.


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