The Hangar in Breckenridge opens for ‘BreckFast’ in old Muncheeze location
After 23 years blowing glass, artist and entrepreneur Jamie Lang bought his way into the Breckenridge restaurant scene, giving rise to a multi-pronged business endeavor that, in many ways, is still evolving.
The newest addition to Lang’s restaurant and bar, The Hangar, came Friday with the popular lunch and dinnertime eatery in Breckenridge expanding into the early morning hours. It’s called “BreckFast at the Hangar,” and the newest layer to Lang’s growing business at 1600 Airport Road is the brainchild of one of his good friends, 25-year-old Larry Zimmerman.
“The idea is to be faster than fast food with better ingredients at an affordable price,” Zimmerman said before Friday’s launch. “The way I look at it is, you want to go skiing, hiking, biking — all the things we love to do out here — and you want a good breakfast.”
Retracing his steps, Zimmerman said he saw a big need for more quick breakfast options in Breckenridge a couple years ago but struggled to find the footing — or commercial real estate — to get his idea off the ground.
It pays to have friends.
With money made in real estate and auto sales, Lang had done well enough in business to find a small piece of financial security, especially considering he was living in Kentucky, where the cost of living is lower than it is in many other states. However, instead of resting on that nest egg, Lang chased his love of snowboarding west and later decided to buy an existing business, Muncheeze Café and Pizza Bar.
That was about nine months ago, and the 42-year-old artist-turned-restaurateur, who also happens to be a musician, has been working hard to rebrand the pizzeria into more of a counter-style restaurant and bar. He’s gutted much of the inside to bring in new woodwork, add “more cozy” furnishing and create space for regular live performances, while at the same time dismantling the “Pizza Hut-feel” that he inherited.
While all that’s been happening, Lang has also pursued his work as an artist, and he is in the process of getting a glass-blowing business, the Breckenridge Glass Studio, up and running. In an unexpected marriage of the two businesses, Lang made room for an art gallery inside the restaurant and bar.
As far as their menu goes, both Lang and Zimmerman take great pride in the ingredients and the value found inside it. As far as the ingredients go, Lang said he targets local sources, including a rancher out of Edwards, Sara’s Sausage in Palmer Lake and a number of local breweries, just to name a few.
For BreckFast, Zimmerman has created a menu with a number of interesting and creative twists on standard to-go breakfast items. He also has a make-your-own menu option featuring various ingredients organized into three levels borrowed from ski runs: green, blue and black.
The green items will be the “entry-level” toppings, Zimmerman said, while blue ingredients are the “more intermediate” items and black is reserved for high-dollar stuff like salmon, chorizo and bison. They also have meatless and gluten-free menu options.
For Friday’s opening, Zimmerman intentionally kept the menu simple with plans to add to it — things like pancake tacos or a French toast sandwich — as they build the BreckFast business.
“One item I’ll tell you about that we’re really excited about is called, ‘The Golden Nugget,’” Zimmerman said, explaining a new take on the chicken ‘n’ waffles classic. “So it’s a waffle with buttermilk fried chicken and bacon in the middle.”
The Hangar currently offers online ordering, and Zimmerman said they are working on doing the same for the BreckFast menu, including through a smartphone app.
Ultimately, Zimmerman hopes to capitalize on growth he’s noticed on and around the Airport Road area. It’s hard to get in, he said, but for those who find a place, it’s a good time to be here.
“It’s crazy that everything is moving this way, and that’s why this is so perfect,” Zimmerman said, adding that Friday’s opening “went off without a hitch” and BreckFast did “way better than we expected.”
The Hangar is open noon to 9 p.m. daily. Meanwhile, BreckFast at the Hangar is being offered from 7 to 11:30 a.m. Thursday through Sunday, but there are plans to move that to seven days a week soon. For more about The Hangar, go to HangarBreck.com.
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