Linger, the brainchild of Justin Cucci (whose restaurant group, Edible Beats, is behind local favorites like Root Down, El Five and Ophelia’s Electric Soapbox, among others), is housed in what used to be Olinger Mortuary. Founded in 1890, the mortuary was a Denver landmark for decades, instantly recognizable by the oversized neon sign on the roof. Now, only the ‘O' is blacked out, with the restaurant’s name illuminated across the LoHi neighborhood skyline.
Fortunately for Denver diners, its former life didn’t deter Cucci. Instead, he made the building's history part of the concept, making it an 'eatuary' instead of a ‘mortuary’.
Inside the restaurant, guests are greeted at the host stand, made from a former church lectern – but don’t worry, this business is serving up drinks instead of sermons. The interior’s throwback 1970s vibe is far out, with cozy booths made for a tete-a-tete or more open seating at the counter. Much of the space is decorated with Cucci’s own thrift store finds (one of his trademarks).
But the real draw at Linger is the rooftop lounge, which not only offers great city views but houses Bar-V, a 1975 RV that’s been converted into a bar.
Linger takes the inspiration for its food from around the world: Morocco, Turkey, Asia, Italy, and India along with some American favorites. Menu favorites include: 5-spice pork belly bao buns, wagyu sliders and satay lettuce wraps. For drinks, choose from beers from local breweries like Ratio and Great Divide, wines by the glass, and inventive, globally influenced cocktails made with spirits from nearby distillery The Family Jones.