Bonny and Read to open downtown late February

Bonny and Read Fresh Seafood and Steaks was originally supposed to open last October, when it would have joined The Rabbit Hole and Supernova in restaurateur Joe Campana’s stable of eateries. Unfortunately, code requirements held up construction, but now Campana tells the Report the first downtown restaurant dedicated to seafood should open at the end of February.

“Our goal is to do fresh fish,” Campana says during a recent tour of the property. “We’re going to be using [Denver-based] Seattle Fish Company. They’re two days out of the water, 48 hours roughly from where we’re at inland.”

When it’s all said and done, customers will enter the 120-seat restaurant under a blue awning, where they’ll find plush blue booths backed in mahogany — Campana estimated he’s spent $80,000 on booths, tables and chairs alone — grey floors, chandeliers, and aquarium projections on the walls.

Bonny and Read Fresh Seafood and Steaks, Joe Campana, The Rabbit Hole, Colorado Springs, Rocky Mountain Food Report
The future bar.

The $500,000 build out in what was mostly the former P.B. & Jellies New York Deli will result in black-clad waiters bringing upscale seafood entrées, like an eight-ounce swordfish with broccolini and red potatoes for around $25.

Chef Josh Kelly, recently of Whole Foods, will oversee a rotating menu of seven to 10 saltwater fish, as well as oysters, clams, multiple crab varieties, Gulf shrimp, live Maine lobster, caviar and more. Turf lovers will dig down on rib eyes and bone-in filets.

“We’re going to have a seafood tower, which is pretty cool,” says Campana. “It’s a two-tier tower: They stick King crab, oysters, clams and then we’ll have lobster tail and shrimp. Two towers, crushed ice, and then we’ll have the dry ice coming out of it with a light in it.” 

Behind a large bar backed with mirrors, Campana wants to serve Colorado beers and liquors on a menu full of simple drinks, like the gimlet.

I don’t want to be real crazy, like V Bar and what these guys are trying to do now,” he says. “They make drinks so complicated and drinks are really easy. I’m going to bring back some old school drinks, like some classic [drinks].”

(He also promises a Bloody Mary “with a big ass shrimp in it.”)

As far as sourcing goes, Campana says he’s in touch with the effect overfishing has on the planet’s oceans.

We’re definitely going to do some farm-raised products because the oceans are dying, and that’s one thing I did research on when I went to look at this,” he says. “Like, I don’t want to fucking kill the oceans any more than they already are.”

Joe Campana, Bonny and Read Fresh Seafood and Steaks, Colorado Springs, Rocky Mountain Food Report, The Rabbit Hole, downtown
Campana says he may open a fourth restaurant in the future, one focused on healthy living.

[Images: Bryce Crawford]