How many cocktails would it take to convince you to drop $2,500 on a pair of Jordans?
Luckily for me — a person with poor impulse control, a love of shoes and a fancy for fancy drinks — the high-end sneakers on the menu at SneekEazy are men’s shoes and I don’t have to worry about finding out the answer to that question.
If you’re the man version of me, proceed with caution.
But really, don’t be scared off. While shoes are literally on the menu at the new bar at 11th and Broadway (that wasn’t a figure of speech), you don’t have to be a sneakerhead to appreciate SneekEazy.
In the loft above Element Kitchen & Cocktail, Jon Spadafora, a partner in Element Hospitality, built the kind of bar he wants to hang out in and one that he says fills a hole in the Denver market.
“We always knew we wanted to do a lounge up here, but we didn’t know what we wanted to do with that lounge,” he said. “We spent a lot of time going around to bars in Denver and talking to people and seeing where the opportunity was.”
But why sneakers?
“The story behind the sneakers is that we always wanted to do some type of a speakeasy, and this is a huge room obviously. We had to let people know that there is a bar behind it because we felt that if it’s your traditional speakeasy and people are kind of sneaking in, we’d never find that sort of mass. So we were looking at different concepts and saying, ‘How can we make the library, per say, that people would walk through, sort of special?’ One of our investors has a sneaker store in Las Vegas, and he said Denver is one of the hottest markets in the country for online sneaker sales and it doesn’t have a whole bunch of stores. So we started doing research and said, ‘What if we made the library a functioning library?’ Like you can buy a book if you want, except obviously instead of books it’s a collection of sneakers.”
On the menu right now you’ll find Adidas Harden Vol. 1 Boose for $140 on the low end and Retro High Banned Air Jordans for $2,500 on the high end. In between, they’ve got a collection of Y-3s running $320 to $950, a selection of Air Jordans starting at $250 and more.
“My partners wear sneakers. I’m still wearing the same pair of chucks. It’s not me. But I’m getting there, I’m learning about it,” Spadafora said. “It’s not for everybody — you’re probably not going to buy your kid’s school shoes — but for people who are into it, it’s a very well curated collection of unique shoes from all time periods, all brands.”
For everyone not looking to buy shoes, of course, there’s the regular menu. SneekEazy will have a small bites menu of food from the kitchen downstairs at Element, with plates going for $10 each.
And as I mentioned earlier, the cocktails are fancy — and delicious. SneekEazy also has a wine and beer selection and something truly terrifying called Sneeky Disco Punch. That’s Hennessey VS, Leopold Bros. Peach Whiskey, J.W. Wray Rum, Bitter Truth golden flanerum and Rekorderlig passion fruit cider.
As always, we’ve got a few cocktails for you to ogle:
Hours at SneekEazy are 5 p.m. to 2 a.m. daily, and you can pop in just to shoe shop during the day. And if you’re looking for something they don’t have in-house, you can contact them to discuss ordering the shoes there. When you pick them up, Spadafora says, they’ll be nicely wrapped and come with a cocktail.