Making the Most Out of New Year's Eve

By: Tim Ciesco Email
By: Tim Ciesco Email

Get ready to pour the champagne! It's almost New Year's Eve. While many across the Grand Valley are getting ready to celebrate, others are having a rough time trying to make those last minute plans.

"We are booked solid," said Jim Keith, Head Chef of The Winery Restaurant.

If it's fine dining you're looking for, several restaurants say it might not be easy to fit you in.

"For the best choices we have probably had calls for the last four months," said Keith.

"It's really important to call at least two weeks in advance," said Brenda Wray, owner of 626 On Rood.

But they add it's not impossible to find a table. Restaurants like The Winery, 626 On Rood, and Pantuso's say they're pretty full during prime dining times, but have other slots available.

"Grand Junction tends to like to eat between 6:00 and 7:30," said Wray. "We have some seatings before and after that."

Some restaurants are even offering incentives to get those last minute planners to come out. The Winery is opening an hour earlier and closing an hour later to help accomodate walk-ins. Pantuso's is giving customers the option to continue the celebration even after it closes.

"Keep your receipt when you come to dinner and go over to Bub's Lounge," said William Lampshire, a waiter at Pantuso's. "They'll be running drink specials for all customers at Pantuso's."

These restaurants say they're planning on being packed New Year's Eve, so just because you made a reservation doesn't mean you're in the clear.

"Be here on time," said Keith. "If you're even a little bit late, you could still sacrifice your table."

In some cases, you could be sacrificing even more. 626 On Rood is offering a six course meal and champagne toast for $125. Before customers can start chomping, however, they have to give the restaurant their credit card information.

"When we buy all this special food and have special staff come in, it's really important to not cancel at the last minute," said Wray.

It's estimated that 10-20 percent of people who make reservations won't show up to them. But that's not stopping restauranteurs across Grand Junction from getting ready to pop the bubbly.

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