The Foodie Bucket List: 27 Of The Best Restaurants In Denver, According To Denverites

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The Foodie Bucket List: 27 Of The Best Restaurants In Denver, According To Denverites

The Foodie Bucket List: 27 Of The Best Restaurants In Denver, According To DenveritesThe Foodie Bucket List: 27 Of The Best Restaurants In Denver, According To Denverites by GuardandGraceDenver via Instagram

An ode to some of your favorite can’t-miss eateries.

We asked you a simple question: “Where would you take someone who was visiting Denver if you could choose one place” and boy, did you guys deliver. From Texas BBQ to farm-to-table to Japanese and Mexican, elegant and casual, mom and pop to chains, we truly think this is the ultimate guide for eating your way across Denver. We hope you enjoy!

by ElFive via Instagram

Welcome to El Five. We’re starting this list off with a bang–one of Denver’s rooftop bars nestled in the LoDo neighborhood. Take in scenic skyline views while scarfing down some killer seafood, burgers, and bar bites, and that’s not even mentioning their delicious cocktails.

by WatercourseFoods via Instagram

This cute bistro has some Watership Down-inspired murals and classic vegan comfort foods. Watercourse is all about doing things that cause the least amount of harm to the environment and the community, and we couldn’t agree more with their message. Here, you can get a bunch of different types of vegan bar food, like vegan cauliflower wings or truffle fries or even fennel sausage bolognese.

by Tavernetta via Instagram

Tavernetta has got some delicious Italian and Mediterranean vibes going for it with elegant and elevated plates to match. From handmade pastas like Tagliatelle with Lobster and Anolini with Dandelion to seafood like Halibut and Sea Bass. Don’t skimp out on their extensive worldly wine menu as well.

by HillstoneRestaurants via Instagram

You know Hillstone is good when it’s got other locations in big cities like New York and San Francisco, but lucky for us, one of their central locations is in Denver and offers some of the best food in the city. They’re more upscale eatery than casual (their website says hats and flip flops are a little too casual for them) so keep that in mind before heading over. Hillstone has some good American classics like Rotisserie Chicken, BBQ Ribs, and Trout, so it’s a great option for everyone.

by LosDosPortillosMexRest via Instagram

Who doesn’t love Mexican food? The owner of Los Dos Portillos, Jose Ramirez, grew up determined to make an authentic no-frills Mexican eatery here in Denver, and now you can enjoy Portillos in multiple areas of Denver! We’d recommend some Ceviche since its summer right now, but you can’t go wrong with a heaping plate of Carnitas nachos either.

by HappyCamperDenver via Instagram

Happy Camper is another great addition to the list with a lovely outdoor patio and great looking menu that has some of the best food in Denver. The layout involves a perfect green lawn, pull up chairs, fire pits, and communal wooden benches and tables to eat. The menu is centered all around pizza, but they’ve got a big list of bar snacks as well. Come with your friends on a warm summer evening and enjoy a couple of pizzas for the table to cross this spot off your Denver foodie bucket list.

by NocturneDenver via Instagram

If you’re in the mood for a lounge with live jazz, then Nocturne is the perfect place. Located in RiNo, head over to the elegant and art-deco style turquoise door with gold accents, and be taken down into a dark underground lounge. Sip on cocktails like their Lady of Lavender Mist with London Dry Gin, Creamy Sherry, Lavender Chamomile Rosemary Syrup and Lemon or a crisp glass of vino, and finish the night off with a “old fashioned” croissant bread pudding or an affogato.

by PostOakDenver via Instagram

One of the best places to eat in Denver is here at PostOak where they’re making some delicious and authentic Texas BBQ. They’re dedicated to keeping the Texas BBQ traditional alive, and that’s why they only use authentic Post Oak delivered from Texas. Get a meat-laden sandwich like the Ron Swanson with a full pound of brisket, pork, turkey, and pork belly, or get BBQ tater tots or Mac and Cheese.

by PotagerDenver Via Instagram

Potager’s patio will make you feel like you’ve stepped into a fairy tale, and is definitely a great spot to cross off your foodie bucket list. Enjoy New-American cuisine in a rustic restaurant meets wine bar. They’ve got small plates, appetizers, entrees and desserts, as well as daily specials which are eclectic and incredibly fresh. Potager’s is also issuing help from local farmers, makers, and the seasons to create a local and fresh menu perfect all year round.

by PigandSprout via Instagram

Pig & Sprout is a two-level, gastropub with multiple bars serving up American food and cocktails and is one of the best restaurants in Denver. They’re also doing a brunch menu on the weekends. Pig & Sprout is two-fold: on the pig side of the menu, you’ve got your meats dishes and on the Sprout side, you’ve got a vegetarian, pescatarian, and vegan side of the menu. Served all day, they’ve got a breakfast burrito on both sides. The Sprout side serves it with tofu and the Pig side serves it with bacon.

by HapaSushi via Instagram We hope you’re not too bummed that it took this long down the list to get to sushi, but here she is. Hapa Sushi, a Japanese restaurant right here in Downtown Denver. They’re late night happy hour has just returned, with deals running from 10pm to midnight on Friday & Saturday, making this an excellent late night stop. by JovaninasBrokenItalian via Instagram

Jovanina’s is a wood-fired modern Italian restaurant (through a Colorado lens) here in the heart of LoDo that has a great track record. Their dinner menu is perfect for sharing, and their pizzas and pastas are hand-made. Their ‘Broken-Italian’ style Margherita pizza is topped with fresh and creamy burrata, torn basil, arugula and garlic parmesan chips, and they’re even doing the Roman speciality: cacio e pepe pasta.

by HopAlleyDenver via Instagram

Hop Alley is a cute bar selling up unique renditions of Asian-inspired dishes. One of their newest summer snacks is their Coriander Summer Melon Salad, with seasonal melon, cucumber, green coriander, and berry viniagrette. Pictured above is their rendition of dim sum classic, the turnip cake, with lap cheong sausage and shrimp, turnip green relish, pickled hakurei turnips, and black garlic sauce.

by BeckonDenver via Instagram

Beckon is one of Denver’s chef counters where chefs are serving up pre-paid, reservation only seasonal meals, and you can watch from a beautiful, sleek black chef’s table. They’ve also got a sweet, outdoor garden patio as well so come in, take a seat where you’d like, and enjoy some culinary delights. Reservations are available Wednesday through Saturday and their number is 303.749.0020.

by AjsPitBBQ via Instagram

Texas Style Pit smoked BBQ. That’s it. That’s the tweet. Haha, no but on a serious note, just look at that fluffy, dense cornbread. And that’s not even getting into the delicious cuts of meat Aj’s offers. From ribs to pork belly to sausage, you definitely won’t leave this place feeling hungry.

by QualityItalian via Instagram

Quality Italian is a globally successful and elevated Italian restaurant, serving up some elegant takes on classics like Spicy Lobster Rigatoni Alla Vodka, homemade ricotta for the table, and even Prime Dry-Aged Tomahawk Ribsteaks. Definitely one of the best restaurants in Denver and if you don’t believe us go try it yourself.

by WeltonRoom via Instagram

The Welton Room is an incredibly popular and fun cocktail bar here in Five Points, where their speciality is liquid nitrogen cocktails. Their other whimsical cocktails are topped with edible flowers, interesting ingredients, and even popsicles it seems. You’ll not want to miss this place on your food tour of Denver.

By Annette_scratchtotable via Instagram

Anette’s is a cozy and sunny spot for seasonal, modern farm-to-table American plates plus craft cocktails. Try a plate of shrimp and squash blossoms, or something a little more adventurous like the grilled beef tongue and marrow toast and revel at one of the best restaurants in Denver.

By BarcelonaWineBar via Instagram

Barcelona Wine Bar transports you to the Cosmopolitan city of Barcelona along the Mediterranean coast. Sample from fresh tapas like nutty Jamón Iberíco, Manchego Cheese, Olives, and paella of course. You’ll feel like you’ve been transported to Europe without the expensive plane ticket.

by Senorbear via Instagram

Señor Bear is a contemporary Latin American restaurant that’s considered one of the best places to eat in Denver that’s serving up fresh dishes like Albacore Tuna Ceviche and Argentinean empanadas. Don’t skip out on their fresh and fruity summer cocktails either!

by Cart_Driver via Instagram

Denver’s resident “not just a pizza place,” this pizzeria–located in RiNo and LoHi–has gotten quite the reputation since it’s open. From amazingly unique and well-made pies which chewy, thin crust to fresh-off-the-coast oysters, not to mention signature cocktails. Their wood-fired pizza come in a variety of different ways, from seasonal squash to white pizza to even clam pizza.

by SuperMegaBienDenver via Instagram A Latin American restaurant in the style of dim-sum? Count us in. SuperMegaBien offers a delicious and unique concept here in Denver with a “eat with your eyes” style of delivery. Check out the menu for a list of what they’ll bring to the table then wait for the plates to start arriving and pick what looks good. From the ceviche to the carne asada with chimichurri, you really can’t go wrong, especially when you know that James Bard Award nominee Dana Rodriguez is in the kitchen as executive chef. P.S. They don’t take reservations so expect a wait or arrive at an earlier or later time than the standard dinner time. by The New York Times via Casa Bonita Official and South Park on Instagram

Beloved and a bit infamous, Casa Bonita was Denver’s niche spot for cliff divers, sub-par Sopes, and mariachi music. Now, Matt Stone and Trey Parker, creators of South Park, are owners of Casa Bonita after the pandemic caused its original owners to file bankruptcy and close the Mexican restaurant indefinitely. After a long time waiting, Casa Bonita has finally re-opened and any Denver foodie will want to get on this wait list. They’ve just opened beta-testing for their dinner menu and will be pulling exclusively from their mailing list, so head to their website to sign up and cross your fingers for a chance to check it out before the public. The food menu has been updated with Chef Dana Rodriguez of Super Mega Bien fame as executive chef!

24. La Diabla Pozole y Mezcal

by LaDiablaDenver via Instagram

Chef Jose Avila has been making waves with 3 exciting and delicious concepts: La Diabla Pozole y Mezlca, X’Tabai Yucateco, and El Borrego Negro. The first restaurant offers amazing and flavorful renditions of classic and contemporary pozole that can be washed down with smoky brands of mezcal. The second is a food truck dedicated to Mayan recipes and prehistoric cooking techniques, and the final concept, El Borrego Negro, offers whole-animal barbacoa for those who love to pay their respects to the entire animal when eating. He was nominated for a James Beard Award and any of these restaurants can be considered a can’t miss for any Denver foodie out there.

by GuardandGraceDenver via instagram

A steakhouse by Chef Troy Guard and named after his daughter, Guard & Grace is an essential steakhouse in Denver that should be on any foodie’s bucket list. A bit more pricy than some of the other choices on this menu, it’s not one to be pissed. Featuring excellent raw seafood, cooked dishes like octopus, and of course, juicy perfectly seared steak with delicious sides, this one’s a classic that is well worth the price point.

by sapsua via instagram

sắp sửa is one of the most anticipated openings this year, featured in many food magazines and websites that detail the story behind this modern Viatnamese restaurant. Located in East Colfax, the restaurant is run by Tuan “Ni” Nguyen and Anna Nguyen who have been working on the concept for the last 10 years. Expect modern and innovative takes on classics like bahn mi and meats like crispy pork ear, braised beef rib, and curry mussels. Anna is also a pastry chef so don’t skip out on her creations like her ginger cake made with flavors of lemon grass and orange caramel.

27. Kiké’s Red Tacos

by kikesredtacos via instagram

Kiké’s Red Tacos’ has now got a brick and mortar. Once a food truck, it has now established its first physical business, and the hype is real. While the lines may be long, it’s absolutely worth the wait for well-priced delicious tacos like vampiro tacos keto-style with melty cheese and their signature beef birria tacos. Wash it all down with a delicious margarita flight.

What do you think? Did we list your favorite restaurant or are we still missing some of the best places to eat in Denver? If you’ve yet to give some of these iconic places a try, we suggest you make a plan of attack and visit a new one every weekend. Have fun and happy eating.


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