Elvis is about to leave the building.
The news was posted last week on the Nick’s Cafe Facebook page: “It is with great mixed emotions that I announce the closure of Nick’s Cafe. After 30 years, it is time. Our last day will be the 10 March. We have had clients become friends and have seen couples become families and families grow. We are blessed in so many ways to have shared so many memories with you all. We will be donating some of our treasures to History Colorado. Thank you for your support over the years and God bless you all.”
Nick Andurlakis was a teenager working in the kitchen of the legendary Colorado Mine Company in Glendale when Elvis Presley was ushered in through the back door for dinner one night in 1976. The restaurant was known for its big steaks and high-profile visitors , but he had a big sandwich, the Fool’s Gold, a giant peanut butter number with a giant price tag, put on the menu by owners Buck and Cindy Scott like a lark. As Andurlakis recalled a few years ago, “Elvis told me to bring him a big burger, but bring the sandwich too, because he wanted to try it. He ended up eating three.
The King was such a fan of the sandwich that he and a party celebrating his daughter’s birthday flew to Stapleton Airport one night on his private 727 to pick up a large order.
From there, Andurlakis’ dream took off. A decade later, when he opened Nick’s Cafe at 777 Simms Street in Lakewood, he made the restaurant a sanctuary for all things Elvis, attracting fans of music and Greek cuisine – as well as the Fool’s Gold Sandwich : a hollowed-out loaf of sourdough bread covered in margarine, filled with a jar full of creamy peanut butter and another jar of sweet blueberry jams, topped with a pound of crispy bacon, then buttered and baked .
But now, after more than three decades of doing business, followed by all the challenges of the pandemic, another Colorado classic comes to a halt. On March 10, Andurlakis will turn off the oven, put away his memories and turn off the lights.
And Elvis will leave the building.