Two Summit locals expand their business and one Broadway veteran sets down roots
Two restaurants and a new shop open in Frisco and Breckenridge
In the past two months, three new businesses have opened in Summit County. Whether started by Summit locals or a New Yorker with a love for Summit County, these business owners are excited to open their doors to the community.
This fine-dining location is the second restaurant opened by Matt Vawter, owner and creator of Rootstalk in Breckenridge.
“The name translates in Italian to deeply rooted,” Vawter said.
Before he officially named the restaurant, Vawter reached out to a friend who makes wine in Italy to ensure they had the correct definition.
“He talked to a couple of his Italian friends out there and one of the guys sent us back a voicemail that kind of just hit it on the head,” Vawter said. “He said, if you are very ‘radicato,’ your energy, your time is in the place, and you want to be in that place.”
Vawter said the word both alludes to Rootstalk with its “rooted” definition and the restaurant’s carefully curated Italian cuisine.
Vawter’s first business, Rootstalk, earned its name from his close connection to Summit County. Vawter is a Summit County native and Summit High School graduate. He returned home to the mountains to open Rootstalk in December 2020.
Radicato’s menu is seasonal. Only open for six weeks, the menu has already changed twice. Vawter highlighted a fresh ravioli that represents the seasonal cuisine. At $27, it is a Robiola ravioli, with Olathe sweet corn and Chanterelle mushrooms.
He was also excited about a Palisade peach dish priced at $22. It is a salad with speck, Buffalo mozzarella and pine nuts.
The style of the restaurant is slightly different from Rootstalk, with an emphasis on family-style dining, Vawter said.
A tasting menu is available, $79 per person, with five courses shared by the entire table. Wine can be purchased by the glass, but Vawter said he encourages customers to buy by the bottle to reinforce the family-stye experience.
For the menu, visit RadicatoBreck.com. Its hours are 4 p.m. to 9:30 p.m. seven days a week and is located in Breckenridge at 137 S. Main Street on the second floor.
Boom Boom’s Late Night Happy Eatings
Scott Mikrut estimates that from the McDonald’s in Idaho Springs all the way to Glenwood Canyon, he has a monopoly on late-night food.
In the five weeks Boom Boom’s Late Night Happy Eatings has been open, Mikrut has served customers until 2 a.m. seven days a week.
One night, a few weeks back, Mikrut happened to ask a customer who came in at 1:30 a.m. how they heard of him. The customer reportedly said they came all the way from Black Hawk, almost 50 miles away. Mikrut said the customer had Googled “food” late at night and Boom Boom’s popped up.
Mikrut came up with the idea after years of answering Ollie’s Pub and Grub phone late at night, where he worked for 11 years, just to tell hungry customers the kitchen was closed.
At one point, it occurred to him that if 10 other restaurants down the street were doing the same, that’s 100 possible customers.
Mikrut runs his business out of a space no larger than a closet right inside the doors of Co. Bar, which is open from 5 p.m. to 2 a.m. seven days a week, along Main Street in Frisco.
The menu is built around a rotisserie spit, with Louie’s Greek Gyro starting at $14, Palisade honey and buffalo yogurt dip and veggies at $12, and a gyro pita crunch melt at $13.
Boom Boom’s is open from 10 p.m. to 2 a.m. from Sunday through Thursday and 11 p.m. to 2 a.m. on Friday and Saturday.
Wit’s End Antiques and Mercantile
Wit’s End was named so for a reason.
Co-owner Peter Sarafin worked as a prop designer on Broadway for almost 20 years. He helped to design 68 shows, his last show being “Macbeth.”
Part of Sarafin’s job as a prop designer was to travel around the country — and at times around the world — to collect very specific items for shows.
After a production ends, Sarafin said oftentimes there’s nothing more to do with props other than to throw them in a storage unit. However, storage in New York City is few and far between, and therefore, very expensive.
“So I would hold onto stuff, and the deal with the producers was, ‘This is mine now,'” Sarafin said. “If we need it again for a show, I’ll rent it back real cheap. But I’m paying the exorbitant amount of money to warehouse this stuff.”
For seven of his last years in theater, Sarafin increasingly became frustrated with the “chaos” of the theater business, hence reaching his “wit’s end.”
Out of his misery, however, came a running joke that someday he would take all of the props he had accumulated over the years and open an antique store in the mountains.
That joke turned into a dream that finally came to fruition in July of 2022 when he moved from New York City to open Wit’s End in Frisco with his co-owner and fiancé, Rebecca Freund. Sarafin chose Frisco as he’s visited the area for over 20 years on vacation, so it seemed like the perfect place.
At Wit’s End, customers can find a phone used by actor John Goodman in the Broadway play “The Front Page,” tools, axes and sledgehammers used by actor Daniel Craig in “Macbeth,” and though he already sold out of them, Sarafin had a few typewriters typed on by actor Tom Hanks priced at $250.
Not every item in Sarafin’s inventory was picked up by a famous celebrity, however. Sarafin has products as little as $5, all the way up to $15,000. One of his favorites is a small, antique hair dryer that still “works like a charm,” Sarafin said, and is priced at $35.
Wit’s End is open from 10 a.m to 6 p.m. on Monday, Tuesday and Thursday, is open 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. on Friday, and 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday. The shop is closed Wednesdays. The store is located at 605 E. Main Street in Frisco. The store can be reached at 718-415-9798.
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