Goodbye and Thank You

The end happened as quickly as the beginning. Just three years ago Frank was sliding a check across a table to our future landlords and we were in the restaurant business.

On Sunday, sitting on the patio of Frank’s Kitchen, the buyer’s accountant was sliding a check over to Frank. It was a down payment to our asking price. And just like that, we closed our restaurant.

For all our stunned customers, friends and supporters let me tell you how we got here.
I was not lying when you came in and asked how is the business and I said doing well. After about a year and half it was paying for itself. It probably would have turned the corner in the third year, especially if we obtained a liquor license.

It was in the pursuit of a beer and wine license that we came to a realization about who we are and the kind of life we wanted to live.

The alcohol licensing was going to take six months. We probably weren’t going to be able to serve beer and wine until November. Our lease is up in December. We needed the warm spring and summer months to recoup the investment in the license and product. That meant we would have to sign a new lease, most likely for five years.

The thought of another long-term lease made us both sigh, heavily. A little too heavily.  That’s when we knew. We have worked extremely hard and for long hours day in and day out since we opened. Frankly, we’re tired and did not want to keep going. Some people have the restaurant business in their blood. We had to admit we did not. This was no longer what we wanted to do with our lives.DSCN1578

We listed the restaurant for sale on Craigslist.com.

Joe Van Dyke, aka “Jammin’ Joe,” a blues guitarist and restaurateur from Virginia was our first serious response to the ad. Jammin’ Joe has owned and or operated several restaurants in his life. He carved out a pretty good reputation for barbecue back east and wants to do the same in Denver. He liked our restaurant and accepted our price. He plans to open in early July.

Thank you everyone who supported us in our endeavor. We appreciated it more than you know.  And thanks to our awesome employees. A few are staying on with Joe. May God bless all of you.

Shalom,
Dina (and Frank)

About Frank's Kitchen Diary

Frank and I opened Frank's Kitchen in May 2011 at 2600 High St., in Denver and we closed it June 24, 2013. It was our first restaurant endeavor. We strove to be a popular neighborhood restaurant. We offered freshly made sandwiches, burgers, hot dogs and regional dishes at reasonable prices. It was a labor of love, until the labor weakened the love. No regrets.
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22 Responses to Goodbye and Thank You

  1. Patrick says:

    So so so very sorry to see you guys go . . . We will miss all the great dishes you served, especially the jerk chicken! I’m sure you will find a better place- in whatever you chose to do next. Thank you for your smiling, kind, warm and welcoming restaurant.

    -Patrick + Salimah

  2. So sorry to hear this, Dina and Frank. I’ve only been there once — I’m about as far from your location as it’s possible to be in the metro area, but the food was great, and I especially loved that you were closed on Shabbat. May the Lord bless you in your next endeavor as you’re walking in the dust of the Rabbi.

  3. Emily Hoch says:

    Everyone here at National Jewish Health is very sad to know you are closing. You have been the BEST catering business we could have ever asked for! Your food is amazing and no one could come close to providing what you have provided us for the past 3 years. We wish you and Frank the best in the years to come, and if you ever decide to do catering again you better let us know!! Sincerely ~ Emily, Michele, Wendy, Jennie and everyone on the IRB and IACUC board.

  4. Well, I hope to see you around. Loved the food! Loved the service. But the folks behind the counter . . . priceless.

  5. Michael Warren says:

    You two will be greatly missed!!

  6. Karen Mortimer says:

    Shock, sadness, but completely understand. Will miss the wonderful food…but will mostly miss seeing you two – I so appreciated the way that you blessed our community through your kindness. Thank you so much for being “more than a restaurant” in our community.

  7. Alex says:

    Noooooooo! We loved your restaurant, my wife and I, but we understand the drag running a business can put on a couple. Best wishes to you both! We’ll really, really miss $1 taco night.

  8. abcmagpie says:

    Our family enjoyed your warm welcoming restaurant “home” on several occasions and we will greatly miss the food but most of all the lovely spirit you shared with all your customers. Congratulations on your success and best wishes to both of you on your new adventures.

  9. Jess says:

    I am sorry to see you leave, but you are taking the path that is best for you. Tell Jammin’ Joe to keep that portabella mushroom sandwich on his menu. I just lost one of my pleasures for coming to Denver from Atlanta.

  10. Nick says:

    Absolutely gonna miss the best brisket sandwich in town! And, damn, your sweet potato fries were amazing. I HOPE the new owner does well to fill our stomachs, but our hearts are now missing some filling!

  11. Howard says:

    There’s sadness hearing this news all the way to Florida. Linda and I want only the best for you two. We love you guys.

  12. Wendy says:

    So sorry to hear you closed the business. Please keep in touch!!!

  13. Kelly says:

    I will miss Frank’s – especially the Hoj, and the brisket, and the shakes. Oh and those fries… And the amazing proprietors…

  14. Susie Street says:

    Dina and Frank– you all are wonderful and Frank’s was my weekly respite from work. I enjoyed walking over between basketball games at Manuel and introducing my kids and their friends to you. You did wonderful things for our Children’s Center. Thank you for all that you do and many blessings as you take the next step in your journey– Susie

  15. jeremy says:

    Wow! Frank and Dina you were a great addition to the neighborhood. The shakes, the tacos, the crested butte (what will I eat hungover…?), your food and your personalities will be missed! Good luck going forward. Hope to see you two again. Peace…

  16. Jason says:

    This is Jason … you often knew me by voice on the phone when I ordered for pick-up. During busy season, we spoke weekly (sometimes more often that that!). I am REALLY going to miss you. I mean YOU, the people (not just the food … although, I’ll miss that A LOT). Thank you so much for offering comforting food and warm smiles when I needed it most. Good luck in your future endeavors. Please know that you touched souls in addition to stomachs. Thank you.

  17. Bill Mullen says:

    I am going to miss you both and coming in and enjoying the great food and hospitality. The restuarant business in one of the most demanding there is with the daily responsibility and longer hours that one’s customers know. Although I am saddened that I won’t be able to enjoy coming in to Frank’s, I congratulate you both for the fine job you did serving us all and also for the wisdom and courage to take this step. Many would have hung on and had their lives negatively impacted. You are indeed a team with the gift of hospitality.

  18. The Stannies - Stan and Annie Li says:

    We so agree with all of the other comments, incredibly wonderful food made just right and unable to duplicate at other restaurants. We both have some restaurant background and we know it is all consuming. We are happy you are courageous enough to stop and say it’s time for a new adventure. When we drove up last night and saw the papered windows and the “closed for repairs” sign, we had a pretty good idea of what that meant – though we were hoping to be wrong. After reading your blog, we are happy for you. While your food (& milkshakes & sweet potato fries – hold the seasoning!!) brought lots of pleasure to us, the true pleasure was being a small part of what the two of you brought to our neighborhood – you helped create community. Sometimes Stan would offer to stop and pick up dinner from Frank’s on his way home but I always wanted to meet him there instead. Part of the treat of going to Frank’s was to see Frank and Dina. May your kind hearts and fabulous smiles be fully rewarded in new success in whatever lies ahead. You will be missed and you will always be loved. Thank you.

    • Cheryl says:

      Frank and Dina…you will be missed! Dina, I’ll see you at sorority meeting someday (I do plan to attend at least one meeting this year!) Best wishes in your future endeavors….so long for now

      Soror Cheryl

  19. Art says:

    Well Frank and Dina, you may have heard it all, but. I think that it is time that you got out of the business. I know in my heart that you were just around the corner from being so well known that you would have given some/all of the big names a run for their money. Olive Garden, Red Lobster, just to name a few could not compeat with your food. It is wounderful. But when God closes a door he opens a window and whatever your next endevor is you will do well. We love you all, Keep in touch. Be Blessed.
    In Love your Brother and Sister Deb and Art G.

  20. I’m not sure how I’m going to break this to my son that we will not have our weekly grilled cheese (or kids spaghetti, or chicken fingers, or hot dog). Thanks for making every Wednesday night dinner easy for us this past year!

  21. carled says:

    Your closing was a shock, but I’m very glad to hear that you closed on your own terms and that you had the courage to listen to your own guidance. You were a great addition to the neighborhood; both of you such lovely and gracious individuals. You are already greatly missed. Best wishes to you both in the next phase of your lives.

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