Denver says sweet goodbyes to Debbie Kuehn’s Santa Fe Cookie Co.

Outside the Santa Fe Cookie Co. on July 17. (Aimee Maravi/Denverite)
Outside the Santa Fe Cookie Co. on July 17. (Aimee Maravi/Denverite)
Outside the Santa Fe Cookie Co. on July 17, 2017. (Aimee Maravi/Denverite)

By Aimee Maravi

You could smell the cookies almost 30 feet away from the small cookie store sitting at the bottom of a staircase. A fast-moving line led into the store off the 16th Street Mall on Monday, and people poured out of its exit with white cookie bags.

It was a busy day for the Santa Fe Cookie Co., but it was also its last.

Owner Debbie Kuehn, a woman passionate about serving her cookies to the people of Denver, passed away last month at age 57, the Denver Post reported. Kuehn was well-known for her honor-system cookie sales and kind heart.

The shop at 303 16th St. in Republic Plaza had re-opened Monday for the last time as a tribute to Kuehn. Those waiting in line for cookies ranged from friends to people who had just heard about the shop from their co-workers. And the wait seemed to be worth it:

“We’ve been coming here for years, when it was a quarter of the size it is today,” said Christine Washburn.

“The cookies are extraordinary,” added Nita Drasan, “She was always nice. We called her the cookie lady.”

Others shared memories of Kuehn’s personality and her delicious cookies.

“She had a love for films, an interest in foreign films and old films,” said John Madden.

 

Do you have fond memories of the Santa Fe Cookie Co.? Tell us about them at tips@denverite.com

Aimee Maravi is Denverite’s high school summer intern.