Travis and Annie Holton, owners of the Lost Mesa Grill, officially opened their doors in Cedaredge on May 15. The renovated restaurant at 130 West Main Street is one of several the couple has owned over the years. The former residents of Dillon have been in the restaurant business since the early 1980s when both came to Colorado with the intention of enjoying the Rocky Mountain ski slopes.
The self-described ski bums arrived in Dillon with different aspirations. Annie had graduated from college with a degree in geology and she just wanted to visit for the winter then head off for graduate school. Travis had, he admits, "flunked out of some of finer southern universities" and he had no intention of returning to academia.
While not on the slopes, she worked as a cocktail waitress. Travis washed dishes at the restaurant next door. They became a couple, she recalls, because he persisted in asking her out. "He made me laugh," she admits.
In 1984 a co-worker decided to open a restaurant in Silverton and Travis signed on as manager. That move launched a 23-year career in the restaurant business that included among other enterprises a steakhouse, a Mexican restaurant, a brewery and a fine dining establishment.
The couple sold everything in May 2017 and moved to Cedaredge where they had purchased an old homestead on Cedar Mesa. They set about restoring the old 1911 house and expanded the property by purchasing an adjacent acreage. They really hadn't intended to open another restaurant but they noticed the downtown Cedaredge restaurant for sale and they also took note of the Grand Mesa Arts & Events Center coming to life just down the street.
"To me," Travis recalls, "Main Street was beginning to look like beachfront property."
The couple had been involved with the arts in Dillon and they decided they wanted to be a part of Cedaredge's artistic evolution. "I understand big dreams," said Travis, "And what it takes to realize them. We feel blessed to be a part of it."
In their old establishments, the couple managed large venues with as many of 70 employees. Now, at Lost Mesa, they're down to 14 tables and a much smaller work crew.
"We're getting used to it," Annie said, "We have good people and they've really stepped up and taken ownership."
Right now Lost Mesa is open Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday and Sunday 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. The menu features "awesome" Eggs Benedicts, fish tacos, fish and chips, craft burgers, and craft beers. Travis is particularly fond of his selection of Colorado craft beers served in cans.
Cedaredge has embraced the new restaurant and the question the couple hears most often is "When will you be open for supper?" Well, Annie and Travis have an answer. They will still be open 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. for breakfast and lunch every day but Monday and beginning July 6, they're extending their weekend hours on Friday and Saturday to 8 p.m. Happy hour is from 3 to 6 p.m.