Biz Buzz: Jan. 13, 2013

There’s a growing perception that downtown Fruita is a laid-back, fun place to hang out, and a new brewery serving up tasty craft beers on tap is sure to add to that reputation.

The Copper Club Brewing Co., 233 E. Aspen, on the corner of Peach and Aspen streets, had a soft opening in December, but it is open now for folks to pull up a bar stool or settle into a comfortable chair and sample some of the home-crafted beers brewed right on the premises.

According to Lorie Gregor — who opened the Copper Club brewery with her husband Brian, as well as Daniel and Michelle Collins — thirsty patrons can get a taste of five beers on tap, along with a root beer as well.

They are pouring some unique brews, too. Try the 18 Road IPA, a Moonlight Rye, the Healthy Heart Oatmeal Stout, or their F Town Amber.  Brewers also partnered with Aspen Street Coffee on a specialty porter.

Gregor additionally mentioned the Hoocheweizen, a refreshing wheat beer with a subtle banana flavor. “So people can ask for some hooch,” Gregor amusingly said.

“It’s just been incredible. We have had 100 percent rave reviews on all the beers,” she said.

Half of the business is still Kettles Homebrew Supply, and the new sit-down brewery makes up the other half of the business. The new brewery — located in a building built in 1901 — includes a bar made of copper pennies, a knotty pine accented cooler, historic photos and decorations, five or six tables, and a stage area for live entertainment.

As for food, bar patrons are welcome to bring, or order from local restaurants like Munchies, the Hot Tomato and Rib City for delivery to the brewery.

A grand opening event and ribbon-cutting is set for Friday at 
2 p.m. and they’ll have live music and discount flights of all the brews. Gregor said people are encouraged to wear their favorite hat as a theme.

If you like a little entertainment with your dinner, and a chef’s show right in front of you, there’s a new restaurant option at 752 1/2 Horizon Drive — Tepanyaki Japanese Steakhouse and Sushi Bar.

It’s a family business for Sable Boo and her husband Minh Sy, who come to Grand Junction after more than 20 years in Utah, where you’ll find other family-run Tepanyaki locations.

They opened their Grand Junction restaurant in December, and since then have been dazzling diners with the preparation show. Trained chefs, who also tell a joke or two, show off their knife skills as your steak, chicken or seafood sizzles on the iron grill at the center of your eight-person table.

“There’s nothing like it here, a kind of restaurant with entertainment,” Boo said. “Sometimes you’ll sit with people, and you don’t know them. But, after dinner, maybe you’ll become friends.”

Along with the grill tables, there is also a fresh sushi bar and cocktail area at the restaurant, she said.

But it’s the chefs that people come to see. The head chef at Tepanyaki has more than 10 years experience, Boo said, and her husband has been cooking in restaurants for 31 years. And while her heritage is Taiwanese, she worked closely for many years at a Japanese family restaurant.

Tepanyaki is open seven days a week, even on holidays. Hours are 4 to 9 p.m. Sunday, 4 to 9:30 p.m. Monday through Thursday, and 
4 to 10 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays.

Off the restaurant beat, the proprietor of the specialty Traz Snow and Skate2466 Highway 6&50, No. 1, in the Grand Mesa Center — announced that he will be liquidating his inventory and closing the store’s doors when everything is sold.

Tom LeValley said in an email that there will be snowboards, boots, bindings, snowboard clothing and gear, skateboards, sunglasses, clothing and other accessories at discounts of up to 70 percent.

Traz first opened in 1994, at a North Avenue location, before moving to their current location across from Sportsman’s Warehouse seven years ago. LeValley said the store was “the first retail outlet for core skate and snowboarders and unique clothing.” He lamented the mass-marketing, and consequent big box price cutting, of some of his most notable brands, like Hurley, DC Shoes and GoPro cameras, which he said led to the difficult decision.

“Thanks to all who have supported us over the years, and we will miss the relationship we had with you!” LeValley wrote.


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