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The Gold Hill General Store and Pub

Honoring the Past, Innovating for the Future

Article by Kelly Ernst

Photography by Anna Tucker

Originally published in Boulder Lifestyle

Our modern lexicon praises grit, sacrifice, and the scrape-the-skin-off-your-back pride of resilience. Yet, within resilience, what is often overlooked is intention. 

Representing an authentic ‘public house,’ people have gathered at the Gold Hill General Store and Pub since 1889. Whitey DeBroux, the Pub’s new owner has taken to the challenge of leading with intention and grace. For DeBroux it has been critical to prioritize cultivating conversations around preserving the past and sustaining the future of the spaces designed for the community. 

It’s so much more challenging, but of course rewarding, to make old things simply work better. “It is so important that we honor the authenticity of the past. There is a lot of history in these walls, you can feel it” says DeBroux. Take the bar; built from a local fallen pine, the bar top follows Gold Hill history marked in pencil at many of the rings.  

This intentionality is what attracted Jay Clark, world-class chef and restaurateur, to jump on board as head chef and manager. As Clark puts it “ a world that is being bulldozed so rapidly into strip malls, putting love into a community space is invaluable.”

When COVID-19 hit, DeBroux and Clark had to be nimble in their response, truly testing the balance of past preservation and future innovation. 

“We thought at first we would have to close but quickly realized how essential we were to the community” says DeBroux. The two quickly stocked the shelves with essential groceries to save trips into town. They organized with Black Cat Farms to get fresh veggies to locals. “We’re here because we love Gold Hill and are so honored to be a part of this community. We wanted to be a resource” says Clark.

The Gold Hill General Store and Pub is the product of the resilience of a mountain community and steadfast symbol of intention.  Next time you find yourself surrounded by family and friends at the pine timber bar be sure to raise a glass to all who have walked in through those doors– the past, present and future.