Downtown Littleton’s New Hot Spot

merles-signThe transition from Merle’s Alignment to Merle’s Restaurant is complete. After opening in November the eatery quickly became the new hot spot in downtown Littleton. We made our first visit today for lunch. With lots of buzz about the burgers we couldn’t resist. Bob ordered the Mountain Burger with mushrooms, smoked peppered bacon and Swiss cheese. I chose Mark’s Burger with Anaheim chilies, guacamole and Monterey Jack cheese. Both were worthy of the buzz. Meat for burgers is ground fresh daily, bun was fresh and an appropriate size. A pet peeve of mine is a bun that overwhelms the meat or one too small to cover the patty.

Besides the signature burgers you can build your own selecting either beef, buffalo, chicken or veggie, customizing from a list of 9 toppings and 7 cheeses. Burgers are usually served with fresh cut fries but the kitchen willingly substitutes kettle chips, fresh fruit or creamy coleslaw. Bob ordered the kettle chips – a very good choice. They were warm, thin, salty and very tasty. I had a generous serving of coleslaw, unremarkable but very acceptable. The ice tea was fresh, our glasses kept filled by an attentive but unobtrusive waiter.

Bob admired a basket of cornmeal encrusted calamari with chipotle pepper cream and a fish and chips order as they were served to a neighboring table. Next time I want to try the Carolina BBQ pork sandwich.  Entrees range from ribeye steak and meat loaf to ahi tuna and ginger salmon.

merlesThe drink menu includes lots of specialty drinks, more than a dozen wines by the glass, 10 beers on tap as well as bottled domestics, imports and micro brews.

Since the 1930s Merle’s has been a local institution on the corner of West Main and South Curtis. First as a gas station, followed by an automotive garage and alignment shop.

The original garage doors and signage were incorporated in the completely renovated building. In mild weather the doors can be rolled up. The dining room is broken up into several smaller areas which creates a more comfortable feel and noise level.

When You Go: Merle’s is located at 2609 W. Main Street, Littleton, CO, 303-797-6008. Open seven days a week from 11am. Closing times are changeable, limited late night menu available after 10pm. Burgers, sandwiches and salads priced in the $9-$11 range, entrees $11-$23.

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