Taco Uprising opening on Welton Street in Denver’s Five Points

A new restaurant is trying to stage an uprising in the Five Points taco scene.

Taco Uprising expects to open by early November at 2849 Welton St., with plans to be an all-day establishment with breakfast items and alcoholic beverages.

The project is the brainchild of co-founders Matias Gutknecht and Samuel Valdez. They leased the property last October.

“After a few visits and doing some research, we found that Five Points is a home for some of Denver’s most enticing and exciting foods,” Valdez said.

Valdez, who grew up in Mexico working at his uncle’s grocery store that doubled as a grill, has always dreamed of starting his own eatery.

Gutknecht, meanwhile, grew up working at his family’s European sausage factory in Denver, as well as a deli they owned in Cherry Creek.

“I was really impressed with how they built up a team that truly felt like family and how they grew businesses that ended up being a really important part of the community in terms of the Swiss European community specifically,” Gutknecht said.

The two men met by pure chance, Gutknecht said. Both partners are endurance athletes who got to know each other 11 years ago in southern Denver, where Gutknecht was working as a trainer. They discovered that both had shared dreams and visions of one day starting their own business.

Valdez will mostly manage the culinary end, while Gutknecht works on the marketing and business side of the operation. This will be a full-time job for both of them.

“We expect to be boots on the ground every single day,” Gutknecht said.

The restaurant brands itself as a fast-casual, Mexican-inspired taqueria y coctelería.

“We’re not really authentic, we’re not Tex Mex. So, you’re gonna get a variety of different flavors in there,” Valdez said.

The uniqueness of the concept, he said, is the variety of options available under one roof: breakfast tacos, all day tacos, fresh juices and coffee and alcoholic beverages. Many of the flavors are inspired by cuisine from Northern Mexico. Unique flavors like blossom flower and pork adobo are some examples of what will be available.

“The menu offering is what’s going to separate us from our competitors. You’re going to have tacos at Taco Uprising for breakfast and all-day that you can’t find at other locations,” Valdez said.

The duo expects to begin construction on the property within the next few weeks. They’ve also already received their liquor license. Valdez and Gutknecht are still working through menu offerings and pricing, though they plan to have a few menu items that will not be tacos.

Anticipated hours are 7 a.m. to 9 p.m. Monday through Thursday, 7 a.m. to 10 p.m. Friday and Saturday and 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Sunday, Gutknecht said in an email.

He said Taco Uprising falls under the parent company Uprising Hospitality Group, which he and Valdez own. The duo plan to eventually launch other concepts.

Much of the investment for the new restaurant has come from Gutknecht and Valdez directly, though some friends, family and professional connections have kicked in capital as well. In the future, the team will look to bring on passive investors that can contribute funds for future expansion.

Taco Uprising will occupy a 1,853-square-foot unit within a larger complex known as Jackson’s Corner. The property was previously home to a laundromat and other industrial services and was renovated in 2019 into a shell for retail, restaurant and office space.

According to a LoopNet posting, the rental rate for the entire property, 2847-2863 Welton St., is $24 per square foot.

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This story was reported by our partner BusinessDen.

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