10 Serious Restaurants in Denver
Denver’s dining scene is constantly changing, and you’re a busy person, so it can be tough to keep up. But that’s OK, because you’ve got us. Winter may have brought chilly temps, but new restaurants certainly weren’t hibernating. Scroll down to check out the best new restaurants that opened this past winter in Denver… keep scrolling, and you’ll hit our picks for best of the best, the Mile High establishments that never cease amaze us and keep us fed. The best of the best has shifted in the past year, with relative newcomers quickly becoming top dining destinations. So get hungry, because there’s a whole lot of can’t-miss food you need to try in the Mile High.
#1. Julep (RiNo)
Southern eats with a refined twist
Though it’s only been open since February 1st, this spot’s already made a big impression thanks to a dinner menu that isn’t your typical heavy, fried Southern food. Go against your instincts and order something veggie-centric, especially the delicate, almost dessert-worthy rutabaga and onion tart and the savory broccoli with bright blood orange and shaved cured egg yolk. And if you can, snag the table upstairs to enjoy bird’s eye view of the action in the kitchen below while you sip a signature julep.
Address & Telephone Number: 3258 Larimer Street, Denver, CO +1 (303) 295-8977 http://juleprino.com/
#2. Ultreia (Union Station)
Spanish and Portuguese pintxos and tapas from one of the city’s most celebrated chefs
Rioja, Stoic & Genuine, Euclid Hall, and Bistro Vendôme have all been lauded as some of the Mile High’s best. They are also all part of the Crafted Concepts restaurant group, as is this new addition headed up by James Beard winning chef Jennifer Jasinski. The menu offerings include an entire section of gin and tonics to choose from, a selection of some of the best hams in the world, and a litany of small plates that are meant for sharing (though you’ll have a hard time giving up those bites).
Address & Telephone Number: 1701 Wynkoop, Denver. +1 (303) 534-1970
#3. The Family Jones (Highland)
A distillery with a tasting room and shareable eats
The house-made spirits are the main draw at this elegant spot with a sleek, modern design so if the quality of your beverage is as important to you as the food, this is your spot. But they also serve a three cheese fondue in a pumpkin, complete with dippable accompaniments including buttered bourbon croutons. Other food highlights include a Colorado lamb stew and a meat and cheese plate that pairs perfectly with carefully crafted cocktails like the tea infused collins and avocado daiquiri.
Address & Telephone Number: 3245 Osage St. +1 (303) 481-8185
#4. Bitter Sweet (Wash Park)
A neighborhood gem with artisitcally plated dishes and impeccable technique
From the cool-toned, streamlined decor, to the suave service and the painterly compositions on your plate, dining at chef-owner Olav Peterson’s hidden-in-plain-sight neighborhood gem is like visiting a modern art gallery. Only instead of pretending to appreciate how an all-white canvas represents the decline of civilization, you can actually appreciate silken fresh pastas, salads like tiny flowering gardens, and the revelation that is properly cooked roast chicken, washed down with a beer from Estonia or Spain that you’ve never tried .
Address & Telephone Number: 500 E Alameda Ave, Denver +1 (303) 942-0320
#5. To The Wind Bistro (East Colfax)
A small eatery putting out big flavors
In a barely there East Colfax storefront, Royce Oliveira, Leanne Adamson, and their tiny crew serve up a slice of the good life with such intelligence, skill, and verve that, immensely satisfying as it is, you can’t get enough. Not so much a restaurant with an open kitchen as a kitchen surrounded by some tables and chairs, the twinkling two-room space sets a casually intimate mood enhanced by the chance to interact with the easygoing Oliveira while he’s cooking — and whatever’s he’s cooking, you’ll want it, be it perfectly pan-fried whiting with crème fraîche, rye croutons and golden raisins, or luscious chicken and dumplings in mussel broth.
Address & Telephone Number: 33333 E. Colfax Ave, Denver +1 (303) 316-3333
#6. Beast + Bottle (Uptown)
The epitome of whole animal, farm-to-table cuisine
Relationships can be a lot of work, right? But (usually) you’re only involved in one at a time. At Beast + Bottle, though, there are countless relationships being managed all of the time. From the local purveyors who supply the restaurant with an ever-changing lineup of fresh ingredients to the diners who are each treated to a dose of old-school hospitality on every visit, everything is orchestrated flawlessly by the team of Paul and Aileen Reilly, who have yet another kind of relationship: they’re brother and sister.
Address & Telephone Number: 719 E. 17th Ave, Denver +1 (303) 623-3223
#7. Mercantile Dining & Provision (LoDo)
Elevated comfort food and a European-style market
Though Chef Alex Siedel’s Fruition is a perennial Mile High favorite, it’s his addition to the redesigned Union Station that’s become a hotspot thanks to creative dishes elevated with fresh ingredients served in a bustling atmosphere. Nothing here is ever boring — even trendy ingredients like shisito peppers get a memorable boost from sesame caramel and crispy pig’s ears. As Mercantile’s name denotes, you can do more than just dine here. Be sure to browse their selection of charcuterie, preserved goods and more, or pick up a coffee and sandwich to go from the counter.
Address & Telephone Number: 1701 Wynkoop St., Denver, +1 (720) 460-3733
#8. The Plimoth (City Park)
Seasonal, classic cuisine with a modern twist
This restaurant touts a qualifier after its name: “neighborhood eatery.” If only all neighborhoods had a place like this. But no matter where you live in Denver, don’t wait to dine here. The menu changes constantly, offering up new takes on classic ingredients each time you visit. Right now you’ll find dishes like country style pork rillette, smoked brisket pot-a-feu, and cracklin’ chicken. No matter what you get, don’t skip dessert. The offerings always go beyond the average sweets so stay a while and refresh your palate with ruby red grapefruit sorbet, or indulge your chocolate craving with gianduia pot de crème with hazelnut almond streusel.
Address & Telephone Number: 2335 E 28th Ave. Denver +1 (303) 297-1215
#9. Hop Alley (Five Points)
Chinese that pushes the spicy, salty limits
If you still think Chinese in Denver means too sweet beef and broccoli and chow mein, you’ve been missing out. Owner Tommy Lee has been serving up ramen to the droves of customers that show up every night at his other hit, Uncle, for years. Now it’s Hop Alley, with a hip-hop soundtrack and high energy atmosphere matched only by the bold flavors that’s earning a whole lot of loyal followers. And once you taste the fried chicken with mouth-numbing (in a good way) Sichuan pepper and bone marrow fried rice, you’re sure to be among them.
Address & Telephone Number: 3500 Larimer St., Denver, +1 (720) 379-8340
#10. Mizuna (Capital Hill)
Creative American cuisine using French techniques
Chef Frank Bonanno’s Denver restaurant empire includes plenty of spots that are beloved, but right now, it’s Mizuna that stands out. Since 2001, this restaurant has been serving up creative American cuisine using French techniques. It’s all about indulgence here, with dishes like pan roasted foie gras and their often lauded lobster mac and cheese. Planning for a special occasion? With an intimate setting, stellar service and impeccably executed food should put this eatery at the top of your list.
Address & Telephone Number: 225 EAst 7th Ave, Denver +1 (303) 832-4778