Itâ€™s not heard to imagine the opening strains of â€œBorn to Be Wildâ€ racing through oneâ€™s head as one opens the door and enters the latest business to make the scene on N.C. 16 in Denver, AlleyCat Biker Junction. And that rumbing sound you might hear wonâ€™t be engines revving but stomachs growling in anticipation, as the owners, Denver resident Patty Treadwell and her friend of 20 years, Jackie Nutt, have combined their love for food with their passion for everything motorcycle.
For Treadwell, motorcycles and food is a natural progression and smooth transition, as she worked for Harley Davidson before opening AlleyCats.
â€œI would help design showrooms and purchase inventories,â€ said Treadwell. â€œI decided one day that I might as well do something here in my own community since I love Denver and Lincoln County.â€
The name of the restaurant came from a group of women that used to work with Treadwell.
â€œThey called themselves the Alley Cats,â€ said Treadwell. â€œWhen they brought the name to my attention, I thought it was great.â€
Treadwell said she cautiously proceeded with the idea of a motorcycle-themed restaurant.
â€œI started putting this business plan together about a year ago,â€ said Treadwell.
Part of the plan was a telephone call to Nutt, who Treadwell pitched the idea, one that Nutt readily accepted.
â€œThis is something I knew I wanted to do, so I packed up my daughter and two dogs and moved from Florida to Denver,â€ said Nutt.
Then, the duo started to develop the restaurantâ€™s menu.
â€œWe sat down one night and started naming sandwiches,â€ said Nutt. â€œWe wanted to create a place thatâ€™s special and different.â€
Nutt estimates it took six months to bring AlleyCat Biker Junction from idea to reality.
One thing special about AlleyCat is whatâ€™s not in their kitchen: a deep fryer.
â€œNothing on the menu is fried,â€ said Treadwell. â€œEverything is baked.â€
That includes wings and special smiley-faced potatoes that are on their kidâ€™s menu.
Many dips, including ranch dressing, cole slaw, and the chicken salad for chicken salad sandwiches are homemade.
â€œWe also make our baked beans from scratch,â€ said Nutt. â€œThey have real pork and bacon.â€
One popular menu offering is the Hurricane Hoagie ($7.50), which has roast beef, turkey, ham, salami and cheese on freshly-baked bread.
Another draw is the AlleyCat Rocket Reuben ($6.95), which has homemade thousand island dressing, sauerkraut, and corned beef on toasted rye bread.
â€œWe also offer pulled pork, where we bake the meat and take all the fat off,â€ said Nutt.
In developing AlleyCat, Nutt and Treadwell noticed the trend that more women are increasingly riding and enjoying motorcycles.
â€œBiking has become for everybody,â€ said Treadwell. â€œWe promote safe riding and the use of helmets and proper gear.â€
The restaurant does it part to help promote safe riding by closing at dark.
â€œWe also want to promote responsibility among adults in riding,â€ said Treadwell..
She also plans on offering a discount to Lincoln County law enforcement, firefighters and EMTs.
â€œWe want to be a very family-oriented place,â€ said Treadwell.
AlleyCat Biker Junction is located on N.C. 16 in the old Corner CafÐ¹ location. Closed Monday, the restaurant and store are opened 11 a.m. – 9:30 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday and noon – 7 p.m. on Sunday. For more information call (704) 483-1766.
Delicious, homemade spinach artichoke dip with a homemade bread bowl i
s just one of many items on the menu. Jon Mayhew / LTN Photo
by Jon Mayhew