Bonnie Brae’s Saucy Noodle Next on the Chopping Block

It looks like another Bonnie Brae family fixture, The Saucy Noodle Ristorante, is facing the wrecking ball. We wrote about their neighbor across the street, Bonnie Brae Tavern, facing the same fate with development plans to shutter and construct a 3-story building with 43 condos on the top two floors, ranging from 650 to 1,940 square feet, and four 400-square-foot retail units on the first floor.

Now, the tennants of the Saucy Noodle Restorante are facing the same fate.

The Saucy Noodle Ristorante has been operated by the Badis family since 1964. This local neighborhood fixture has been operating at the same location, 727 South University Boulevard, serving Italian cuisine to families and students throughout the University, Washington Park, Cherry Creek, and Bonnie Brae neighborhoods. The family restaurant is known for its pizza and red sauce as well as it’s bright red and white awning which reads, “If you don’t like garlic… go home!”

When it was time for the original owner, Sam Badis, to retire, he sold the enterprise to his granddaughter Erin Markham who operates the restaurant with her husband, Nathan, and two children, Sawyer and Graham.

The Badis/Markhams family was met by this unexpected demolition notice in their storefront window this week:

Notice Saucy Noodle

The Badis family responded on Facebook to the surprise notice:

Dear Saucy Noodle family.
Today we were totally blindsided by the picture. We have had no communication from our landlord regarding this notice and we are extremely saddened by this on all levels. We have been tenants here for 55 years. We deserved to be notified, to let our staff know at least, they deserved better.
We currently have a lease to occupy the premises until December 31st of this year and have not been told anything otherwise. 
We know the community is concerned about the future of the neighborhood, and sadly this only confirms your fears.
Please come talk to us and we will share as much as we know when and if we do. 
Also please don’t abandon us, we need you now more than ever.
Thank you
The Markhams and Saucy Noodle family

Out of 404 Google Reviews, the Saucy Noodle Restorante has a strong 4.4 star ranking by customers.

Since the restaurant is located mid-block, it would come as no surprise to see other neighboring tenants get the same treatment as well. The incredibly popular Bonnie Brae Ice Cream shop is located at the southern end of the same retail strip.

All of these changes are, perhaps inevitable, but this was certainly poorly managed by the landlord. And yet another long-time family-owned business and their employees are facing turbulent times in the ever-changing Denver restaurant business.


Photo: Courtesy of Westword

3 thoughts on “Bonnie Brae’s Saucy Noodle Next on the Chopping Block”

  1. Do your home work! Bonnie Brae ice cream owns the building, Bonnie Brae Tavern filed for the non-historic designation, so all are uniquely different. As for saucy noodle do you know the owner’s intent, other than designating the building eligible for demolition? It may be a way to protect the investment.

  2. If Bonnie Brae Ice Cream owns the building it is even more pitiful that they do not have a relationship with a 50+ year tenant. Also, if they applied for a non-historic designation, similar to Bonnie Brae Tavern across the street, it’s safe to assume the building could be headed for the wrecking ball just like the tavern. Communication eliminates speculation – and ‘homework’.

  3. BTW, Bonnie Brae Retail is the listed landlord and have managed the Saucy Noodle since it opened. Bonnie Brae Ice Cream opened more than 20 years after the Saucy Noodle began operations.

Leave a Reply