The Matador, a new Mexican-themed restaurant located in the former Heidi's Deli space at 32nd and Lowell, will open its doors to the public on Friday, November 22. The eatery and bar is owned by Seattle-based restaurateurs Nate Opper and Zak Melang who are excited to bring their concept to Denver and to become part of the Highland neighborhood.
The remodeled space that can seat up to 120 guests showcases local reclaimed barnwood, handcrafted inlaid tables, collected vintage lighting, ornate metalwork, an interior fire pit, and Mexican hacienda inspired décor. Lighting accumulated from northwest antique markets and artifacts collected from frequent trips to Mexico were added to the eatery aiming to give the interior a rustic feel.
The food at the Matador is described as "fresh Mexican cuisine" made with locally sourced produce, house-made marinades, rubs and sauces, along with coffee, breads and desserts from Denver favorites Dazbog Coffee, Denver Bread Company, and Little Man Ice Cream.
Veteran chef Franck Forbeau, whose resume includes stints at Balducci's in Los Angeles, Gordon James in San Clemente, and Le Cordon Bleu in Pasadena leads the kitchen at the Matador. Among the signature menu items, Forbeau will serve the Carne Asada or Surf & Turf with habanero prawns, Braised Pork Sope with handmade masa and Cotija cheese, Pork Tacos al Pastor with slow roasted pork in spicy citrus salsa fresca, Stuffed Jalapenos with fresh goat cheese, and Grilled Carne Asada Enchiladas Picante with a habanero chile sauce.
On the beverage side, the Matador will showcase a curated collection of over 100 superior tequilas. The beverage menu features specialty margaritas, rare tequila flights and twists on the classics such as the Mexican Old Fashioned with Espolon Reposado, Patron Citronge, bitters, cherry and orange.
Below are the menus for the Matador.
The new Highland spot will be open daily from 11 a.m. to close, with two happy hours (4 to 6 p.m. and 10 p.m. to 1 a.m.).