Winter Park / Restaurant: Steakhouse sizzling in Silverado II |

Winter Park / Restaurant: Steakhouse sizzling in Silverado II

by Cyndi Palmer
Sky-Hi Daily News

The restaurant space at the Silverado II complex in Winter Park is now serving up a sizzling new menu. David and Karen Murphy opened the doors to their Silverado II Steakhouse March 19.

To celebrate, the Murphys are hosting a grand opening celebration 3 to 7 p.m. next Saturday, May 24. During the event, they’ll be offering free appetizers, $2 beers and $3 well drinks, as well as a full dinner menu that evening for paying customers.

Locals who enjoyed it as McDougal’s during its early years, or as the French restaurant will be happy to know that after being vacant for the last two years, the place open again. The restaurant needed some very minor renovations, but was essentially ready for business.

“People tell us that 15 years ago this place used to be jammin’,” Dave said, adding that it is his and Karen’s hope to get the restaurant back to that reputation.

The homeowners association, which recently took back responsibility for the condo complex, hated to see the space wasted. And HOA board member, who was a friend of the Murphys, immediately approached them about the possibility of opening a restaurant there.

“This was a good opportunity for us to build a business here,” Karen said. With a full ski shop, rental facility and free covered parking, Dave said you “can’t beat what amenities the place has.”

The two love the area and Dave had always wanted to run a restaurant.

“Winter Park is the place to be. This was just the natural place for us,” he said. “Between our business backgrounds and our experience … it’s something I always wanted to do.”

Karen worked for the Yellow Pages for about 30 years and Dave was a computer consultant for 25 years. They built a home in Grand County in 2000 and felt it was finally time to leave the corporate world for good about two years ago when they moved here full time. Since then, they’ve enjoyed serving as Realtors for Prudential, Winter Park ” something they’ll continue to do.

They thought the restaurant would serve well as a steakhouse. The space offerings include a main dining area that can seat about 35 people, a full bar with lots of character (and a big screen TV), and a dining room across the hall that can seat about 40 more people.

“We really want to have some fun,” Karen said, adding that she and Dave also want to bring in some live music and on-site catering. There is a ballroom upstairs available that can easily accommodate 200-plus people. With great acoustics and versatile additions, it might be one of the largest indoor concert venues in the county. It has its own restroom facilities, a fireplace, full bar, massive outside deck area, and Silverado II has the necessities to expand both the dance floor and bandstand.

The steakhouse offers what the Murphys said is “a balanced pub menu with a focus on choice steaks.”

Dave and Karen also hope to offer local beers, as well as nightly wine and food specials. The everyday, no-frills menu features standard favorites like hamburgers, grilled cheese and grilled chicken sandwiches, as well as their popular pizza (delivery within Silverado II available), bratwurst, and reasonably priced, high-quality steaks.

The 14-oz. ribeye is the most popular for its cut and flavor. There’s also a 12-oz. N.Y. strip, 8-oz. bacon-wrapped filet, and a manly 20-oz. porterhouse. All steaks are USDA “choice” beef “just like those you can find at The Fort, Sullivans, and other nice restaurants on the Front Range,” Dave said. Their supplier has been bringing the Murphys choice cuts for their private use for years now and they continue to work with that purveyor.

“We think the meat speaks for itself,” Karen said.

“It’s simple and well-grilled, without the fancy sauces,” Dave added.

“Business took off really well,” Karen said of their first couple months in business as a restaurant. “We wanted to create a comfortable place for locals to enjoy. That’s really what it’s all about.”