Bud Starker’s story doesn’t start too differently from other small business people: he was a carpenter, started a construction company, and then decided to use those skills to build and own a restaurant: West 29th Restaurant. The difference between him and every other restaurant owner in the area? He’s also the mayor of Wheat Ridge.
“There are a lot of similarities” between owning a restaurant and being mayor of a town, Starker said, “Both are about service.”
Wheat Ridge’s mayor is a part time position, which means most of the city’s elected officials still have jobs outside of their elected office. When Starker isn’t presiding over city council meetings or working with other metro area mayors on regional projects, you can often find him in the kitchen or talking to customers about West 29th Restaurant’s new seasonal menu.
Stained glass panes hang over the bar’s seating area, depicting Starker’s family’s travels to Colorado. At the bar, try the fig infused manhattan. While enjoying your handmade cocktail, check out the food: West 29th’s new menu has options for carnivores and vegetarians alike to enjoy. Starker describes the menu as “American food with a French accent,” with options ranging from ratatouille lasagne made with sweet potato noodles to a gorgonzola stroganoff with beef tips.
Whether you’re more of a butternut squash bisque fan or prefer grilled salmon on quinoa, West 29th Restaurant likely has a dish you will love. After dinner? Don’t forget to try the seasonal pumpkin cheesecake.
And don’t miss out on brunch. West 29th offers an extensive brunch menu that includes breakfast egg dishes, burgers and even crepes filled with fresh sweet creme and topped with seasonal fruit — and delicious mimosas too!
West 29th’s kitchen is open and faces the warm dining area with a fireplace running during the cooler months, or you can enjoy the gorgeous fountain and meticulously cared for garden on the elegant patio when the weather is warm enough.
Restaurants like West 29th are a sign of Denver’s western suburbs changing, with more non-chain restaurants and local flair. Starker welcomes the change: “There’s a lot going on in Wheat Ridge. There’s more families and young people repopulating the area.” With restaurants like West 29th, there’s no question as to why.
West 29th Restaurant is located 5560 W. 29th St. You can view the menu, make a reservation and more at west29th.com.
Top photo courtesy of West 29th Restaurant.