Owner bids farewell to sushi, hopes 609 Yampa will bring good times at riverfront location
STEAMBOAT SPRINGS — A new name, a new menu and the same riverside location has restaurant owner Kier Delaney excited about what he is bringing to Yampa Street.
“Our menu is certainly similar to others in town, but nobody has this location,” Delaney said. “My goal is to give people value. There is not really an affordable place on the river, so I want to put out really good food for a good value.”
Delaney has changed the name of his long-running business Sake2U, which offered sushi and Asian-inspired foods, to 609 Yampa. Delaney said he would have loved to continue to offer the menu at Sake2U, but getting and keeping a sushi chef in Steamboat Springs proved to be too much of a challenge. Making it work financially during the slower season was always hard for the 120- to 200-seat restaurant.
“I just decided that it was time to make a change and stop stressing about where my next sushi chef was coming from,” he said. “It got to a point where I said, ‘I’m tired of this battle, and let’s just give this place what it deserves,’ which is to be a good time place on the river.”
The transition began a couple of weeks ago, and Delaney said he held off on making a big announcement until after his chef, Josh “Puch” Puchner had the menu dialed in a bit. Delaney said Puchner grew up in the Chicago area, and that is reflected in the menu.
Now instead of California rolls, customers will find beer can chicken, a full rack of St. Louis-style ribs and a Sterling Farms filet. Sandwiches will include a pork tenderloin, a corned beef Reuben and a Chicago-style hot Italian beef sandwich topped with giardiniera relish.
The new menu will serve up a monstrous corned beef Reuben mac, that combines the Rueben with macaroni and cheese and candied bacon. Those with a smaller appetite can order a macaroni and cheese on its own or family-style.
The doors of 609 Yampa will open during the week at 4 p.m., and the restaurant will open at 11 a.m. on Saturday and Sunday for football specials. The specials also carry over to Monday and Thursday night football.
During happy hour and football games, Delaney said the restaurant will offer drink specials on draft beers, margaritas, well drinks, wine and more.
“It’s hard to think that anybody is doing a quarter-pound burger with fries for $5, but that’s what we are doing,” Delaney said. “There are endless drink specials at the bar.”
The Yampa Street restaurant will also continue to bring in live music as part of its 13-week concert series, which takes place Sunday during the summer. Delaney said he would love to see more live music in the future.
Last summer the Sapporo beer tent outside hosted the Rockin’ on the River concert series that included Eric Delaney and Friends, Buffalo Commons, Dream Feed, Alabaster, Jay Roemer Band and more.
“It was bittersweet, but it was time,” Delaney said of making the change. “It was time to give this building what it deserved.”
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