Old School Diner Still Thriving on Tennyson

North Denver, at its best, is a mix of new and old, and few streets show that blend more than Tennyson. 

Kyle Janes owned Kyle’s Kitchen from 2004 until last month when she sold the business to Lisa Sanchez and her son Corry, who renamed it Nug Nugs Diner. Over those years, the street has seen many other businesses come and go, but the restaurant, with its four tables and long L-shaped counter, still has the same small diner feel. 

“Customers love the lack of change,” said Janes when asked about the business’ longevity. 

Kyle Janes, left, and Lisa Sanchez

Sanchez agreed, saying she’s keeping the breakfast and lunch menu as they are, with the same offerings customers know and love. Most of the staff stayed, too. She is, however, planning on adding evening hours next spring. 

Nug Nugs Diner

Janes and Sanchez sat down with The Denver North Star over a cup of coffee and from-scratch coffee cake to talk about the small diner’s past and future.

“I tried to make it a customer place,” Janes said, noting she never minded substitutions or otherwise ensuring customers could get exactly what they wanted when they came in. 

“Down home cooking is few and far between,” said Sanchez. Sanchez, who also owns the Berkeley Inn down the street, loves both businesses but is glad to be shifting most of her focus to the diner. Sanchez worked at the Inn since 1992, and bought it 20 years later.

A customer favorite at the diner? Corned beef hash, which both Janes and Sanchez said you can’t find almost anywhere else and has been popular since Janes started serving it about 12 years ago. Both scoffed at the notion of canned alternatives, saying nothing compared to the real thing.

Whether you are interested in trying the local favorite or any of the array of breakfast foods on the menu, check out Nug Nugs next time you’re hankering for some real diner food.

Nug Nugs Diner is located at 4018 Tennyson St. and open from 6 a.m. to 2 p.m. Mondays through Saturdays and from 7 a.m. to 2 p.m. Sundays.


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