A Cavernous Cantina Returns to Denver, Cliff Divers and All

Colorado’s defining options embody superb mountain peaks, vivid seasonal colours, snowboarding and a widespread compulsion to train and eat properly. However for generations of Colorado youngsters, arguably probably the most generally shared expertise concerned Casa Bonita, an enormous, filthy, poorly-lit, underground restaurant with meals that many diners deemed barely edible.

Casa Bonita — sprawling over 52,000 sq. toes in Lakewood, a Denver suburb — served steamed refried beans, tacos and enchiladas to hundreds of individuals a day, buffet-style. The dinner leisure was a baby’s fever dream: waterfalls, cliff divers, Black Bart’s Cave, fake gold and silver mines, puppet reveals and an individual in a gorilla costume chased by a sheriff, who typically joined within the cliff diving. Casa Bonita’s curious childhood grip was chronicled in an episode of “South Park.”

After that episode ran, Trey Parker and Matt Stone, the present’s creators, have been often requested whether or not such a spot truly existed. “Oh, that’s a spot,” Mr. Parker would reply, he mentioned not too long ago. “It’s loopy. It’s bizarre.” Like so many Colorado youngsters, Mr. Parker had held his birthday events there.

Then, in 2020, Casa Bonita went bankrupt, hit by the pandemic hunch. The place was already in disrepair, crumbling from deferred upkeep, rife with electrical hazards, the air flow methods coated with grease and the carpet encrusted into one thing like concrete. The jokes in regards to the meals had earned it the nickname Casa NoEata. Nonetheless, its passing was mourned.

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