6 Delicious Restaurants in The Denver Area
If you’re passing through or moving to the Denver metro area, you might be curious as to what restaurants are good. Well, this list of Denver restaurants should provide some delicious and affordable answers.
1. The Kitchen American Bistro
First on our list of Denver Restaurants, The Kitchen. Located in central downtown, this restaurant may be a bit on the fancier side, but the food is well worth it. The Kitchen offers a variety of lunch and dinner options, as well as brunch on the weekends. While I’m not much of a drinker myself, the cocktail menu and wine selections are worth checking out as well. The establishment offers both indoor and outdoor seating, and the interior is spacious and well-maintained.
If you want recommendations for specific dishes, the Savory Cruller from the dinner Menu is an excellent appetizer, and the Kansas City Strip steak, while the most expensive entrée on the menu, is well worth the price. When it comes to the lunch offerings, I would personally go for either the double stack Cheeseburger or the Tagliatelle with Bolognese. The Kitchen also offers vegetarian and gluten-free dishes to those who ask. It is also within walking distance of the 16th Street Mall, Union Station, and Auraria Campus, so give it a try if you’re in that area. I’m not in the dating scene myself, but I would absolutely bring my date here if i was if I was.
2. El Noa Noa.
Another great options when it comes to Denver restaurants is El Noa Noa. A family-owned Mexican restaurant on Santa Fe Drive, El Noa Noa offers delicious, authentic food at a very reasonable price. However, I would say that what truly elevates this establishment is the ambiance and atmosphere. El Noa Noa features a beautiful garden patio, a colorful and well-decorated indoor dining area, and often live mariachi. The family-owned establishment has operated in Denver for well over 30 years and is in the Santa Fe art district. Another plus is that it is within walking distance of the Auraria Campus, making it a great place to hit up with some friends after a long day of classes. The margarita menu is also quite extensive, and I would recommend giving the House Margarita a try if you’re an enjoyer of such things.
In terms of menu items, the Mexican Hamburger is a unique experience that should be tried at least once. If you’re craving more classic fare, I’d go for the El Noa Noa Special or the Enchiladas. While the vegetarian options may be somewhat limited, El Noa Noa is a wonderful local eatery that is worth visiting if you live or work in the area. It is a good “casual restaurant” where you can go with some friends for drinks and tacos to kick off the weekend. The staff are friendly, the food is delicious, and the atmosphere is spot-on.
3. Pints Pub.
At number three, we have a places slightly less denver-y when it comes to Denver restaurants. A British-style gastropub near the Denver Art Museum, Pints has quite a lot going for it. First and foremost, the drinks. Pints has brewery in its basement where they produce their own beer and ale. The Ale that Pints produces is Real Ale, the “Champaign of the Beer world” and certain areas of the pub have glass flooring, allowing the guests to view the brewing equipment below. Drinkers with a bit more disposable income should also check out their selection of single-malt whiskeys, which is the largest of all Denver restaurants. The food is also worth talking about, with a variety of both classic British pub fare and a few local specialties. The burgers are grilled over open flames, and absolutely worth getting.
The Pub’s atmosphere is also excellent. The space is cozy and decorated with just enough British memorabilia to really sell the “across the pond” experience. The building has dining areas on both the first and second floors, and has a very homey atmosphere. It is also very near to both The Denver Art Museum and Auraria Campus, making it a great place for food and drink whether you’re a student or a tourist. With regards to specific dishes, I recommend the Sheepherder’s Stew, their house-made lamb stew. In summation, great food, great drinks, cheaper than a flight to London provided you don’t order their most premium whiskeys.
4. Sams No. 3
At number four on our list, we have one of the most iconic and historic of all Denver restaurants. This diner, located in Downtown Denver, has been in business for almost a century, which should speak volumes about the quality of both the service and the food. The menu is quite expansive at over 100 different offerings, so there’s something here for just about everyone. It’s safe to say that nowhere else in Denver has this much variety. Sam’s No. 3 also offers Gluten Free and vegetarian options upon request, so this variety can be enjoyed regardless of dietary restrictions. This place is a quintessential diner experience and is a great place to go for brunch.
If you enjoy alcohol there’s even more to like, as Sam’s No.3 offers a variety of beverages, including seven different kinds of Mimosas. They also have alcoholic coffees if you feel like living dangerously. They also have a massive dessert menu with pies, cakes, sundaes and milkshakes. Basically, there’s no reason not to go there if you’re in the area.
5. Illegal Pete’s
Number Five on the list of Denver restaurants, we have a chain that’s more or less synonymous with Denver itself. Imagine Chipotle, but boozed up and ready for a good time, and you have Illegal Pete’s. These quick-service, “mission-style” burrito joints are similar to Chipotle or Qdoba, but with more options, generally better food, and best of all a full bar. Quick, affordable, and pretty good, I wouldn’t exactly consider this a place to go for a date or important event, but that’s kind of the point. If you’re a college kid and want a burrito and a beer at a reasonable price, or an office worker on your lunch break, Illegal Pete’s is a solid option. There are multiple locations scattered throughout the Denver area, including ones near both Auraria and Denver University. Illegal Pete’s is the most college-kid focused of the restaurants on this list, and that’s not a bad thing. Due to how the menu is geared towards building your own entrée, I don’t know if I can make any specific recommendations, but their queso is quite tasty.
6. Matsuhisa Denver
Rounding out the list of Denver Restaurants is a high-quality Japanese Bistro. Founded by chef Nobu Matsuhisa, this restaurant’s unique style of Japanese cooking incorporates culinary elements from all over North and South America and combines them with Japanese culinary tradition. Matsuhisa’s cooking style is truly unique and can only be found in Colorado, so it’s certainly worth checking out if you’re a foodie, or just feel adventurous. Matsuhisa’s menu is very large and has a variety of options that range from middle to high end in pricing. I’d recommend this place as somewhere you go for special occasions, as it’s a bit upscale, but the food quality is well worth the price of admission. I don’t have any specific recommendations for it because everything is so high quality. But if I had to pick, I’d say the New Style Sashimi is the must-try dish, as it is the crystallization of Nobu Matsuhisa’s culinary style. As someone who greatly enjoys Japanese food, this place has some of the best in the entire area.