Hahn's Peak Cafe opens in North Routt

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— The owners of the Hahn's Peak Cafnow that it will take more than the views of Hahn's Peak and Steamboat Lake to lure patrons to the Mexican restaurant.

Dana Morton said she wants to make eating there a unique experience for diners.

The cafpened May 18 in what was the Mountain Recreational Company ski rental shop, which sold sandwiches and other food during the summer season.

Morton purchased the building in February and had plans of continuing the ski shop until friends convinced her to do something different.

She said expanding the food service portion of the building gave her space to bring out the home-style atmosphere of the caf

"Trying to make a successful restaurant has a lot to do with ambience," Morton said.

Local resident Mark Heydon said the cafas added a lot to the town and has become a great location for locals to meet for a good meal. He said he has visited the cafrequently since it opened.

The restaurant has a deck that is used to serve people who wish to see the landscape while enjoying their meals.

Morton said while she has gotten a lot of local support for her restaurant so far, she expects this week to be her busiest with lost of visitors in the area for the Independence Day holiday.

The cafe menu offers traditional Mexican food including burritos, enchiladas, quesadillas, salads and tacos. Morton said the restaurant also offers daily specials.

"We're just constantly working on expanding our menu," she said.

Morton, who has spent many years working at various guest ranches around the country, said she hopes opening the cafill allow her to stay in one place for a while.

One of Morton's previous coworkers at Dutch Creek Guest Ranch, Jennifer Berry, now works full time in the kitchen as a cook. She said Berry's experience in cooking and her energy has been an essential addition to the caf
Morton said two of her friends with expertise in cooking, Brett Stenberg and Sharon Ashburn, helped establish her menu. She said they recommended specializing in Mexican food and had the background in cooking to get her started.

She said in the North Routt area, residents have to make their own work.

The cafmakes it possible for me to stay in the area," she said.

In addition to the cafpart of the building is being leased as a fly-fishing shop that Morton plans to use in the winter to rent skis. She said she plans on keeping the cafpen year around. The cafours are from 11 a.m. to 8 p.m.

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