Denver, Colorado is becoming the number one place for single people, young families, and tourists. With everything that Denver has to offer, it certainly does not lack when it comes to food. I have compiled 10 restaurants that are known and loved by the locals of Denver, who love a good local establishment!
1. Palace Arms, The Brown Palace.
The historical Brown Palace hosts guests each day for lunch and dinner favorites as well as high tea at their in house restaurant, Palace Arms. They offer a luxurious, fine dining experience to guests. Want to make a girl’s day special? Invite your friends, Get dressed in your Sunday best, and have a fabulous time having High Tea with the girls!
2. Pasta Jays
As a Colorado native who grew up between Denver and Boulder, Pasta Jays became a family favorite. We would often dine at the establishment every weekend. Nestled in the heart of Boulder on the Pearl Street mall, Pasta Jays was opened in 1988 by Jay Elowsky and his family. They feature delicious classic Italian foods, wine, and handcrafted drinks. A few of my personal favorites are the Roasted Brussel Sprouts, Garlic Knots, Tortelloni Alfredo, or the Gnocchi with a glass of their house Moscato! I have never once been disappointed when I make a visit to Jays.
3. Abos Pizza
Abo’s Pizza is also a Colorado institution that makes some of the best NewYork style Pizza Pies. Abos was founded in 1977 by Steve Abo who moved to Colorado from New York City. He opened the first Abos restaurant “On the Hill” at The University of Colorado in Boulder. This allowed for Abos to become a very popular restaurant amongst the college students and locals. Abos has since opened multiple locations throughout Colorado including in Northglenn, Niwot, Louisville, and North Boulder, all fun towns to visit when passing through Denver!
4. Japango Sushi
Japango is a Boulder local favorite for sushi and Japanese cuisine located in a Modern Asian setting. Japango Japango opened in 1999 and has been serving locals and tourists ever since. Their head chef, Iwasa Yukiji has been with the restaurant since their opening and has perfected the craft of Japanese favorites. Their green lip mussels are delicious and vegetable tempura is to die for and their spicy tuna roll is out of this world! It is a must-try for every sushi lover.
5. Benny’s Tacos
When it comes to Local Taco’s the quaint town of Longmont is winning. Colorado natives have a high opinion on whether Qudoba or Chipotle has better food and many (if not most) of us would say Qdoba. However, given the option to go to Qdoba or a local taco shop, ALL of us would choose a local shop. One of my favorite family-owned Taco restaurants is Benny’s Tacos on Main St. in Longmont. Benny’s offers an amazing array of Hispanic cuisine, from Tacos and Huevos Rancheros to Vegetarian Burritos smothered in green chili. In Denver, we sure love our green chili. Take a longer lunch and check out Benny’s Tacos, you will not be disappointed.
6. Walnut Cafe
Another local favorite is the Walnut Cafe. The cafe is a “Quirky Standby” known for its incredibly delicious, very ‘Colorado’ breakfasts. Vegan and gluten-free options available, Obviously. Walnut Cafe has been opened for over 30 years and has continued to excite the community, offering creative omelets, delicious French toast options, and an ever-changing pie menu. This restaurant made me love omelets as a kid, and that’s no easy feat!
7. Flagstaff House
Walking into the Flagstaff house, the first thing you will notice is the impressive views of the Rockies staring back at you from the window encased restaurant. Nestled in the beautiful Rockies at 6000 feet, Flagstaff House offers beautiful landscape views and classic American cuisine, and one of the most incredible wine lists around. Flagstaff House is the winner of the Wine Spectators Grand Award, a top restaurant in Forbes Travel Guide 42 times running, Open Tables 100 Most Romantic, and Good Foods 100 Restaurants.
8. Work & Class
Located in the heart of Denver, Work & Class is a relaxing, warm restaurant serving appetizing Southern and Latin American cuisine alongside a state of the art cocktail menu. Their motto? A Square meal, stiff drinks, and a fair price! They believe in simplicity and serving food and drinks that are loved by all. Work & Class has become a Denver staple, serving a wide variety of favorite dishes including, mouthwatering Empanadas, delectable shrimp and grits, and a very inviting dessert menu.
I have fallen head over heads for Poke and customizable bowls within the recent year. If it’s on the menu, I’m probably getting it, I have even begun to experiment with my own at home. My absolute favorite restaurant for bowls is Bubu in Downtown Denver. Chef Troy Guard has taken global flavors and fresh ideas and has transformed the customizable bowl business. Bubu has become a lunch favorite within the city. I urge you to take a visit but try to beat the lunch rush, it will be BUSY!
10. Illegal Pete’s
Illegal Petes has become a true Colorado staple! With locations across Colorado; Denver has five locations, and there are locations in Boulder and Fort Collins. Pete’s offers an intriguing eating experience with buildable, healthy meals centered around Taco Bowls, Burritos, and Nachos. Opening in 1995 by Pete Turner, Illegal Pete’s has achieved an energetic, “exciting atmosphere” on The Hill in Boulder. The restaurant became so popular among the locals, they expanded into Denver and Fort Collins. At Illegal Pete’s they embrace differences, have fun, and work to include each and every customer.
Denver has a wide array of tasty food, with delicious eats on every street, from local chains to family-owned restaurants! You can not go wrong when choosing a place to eat. As a true Native to Colorado, I have hit nearly all of the locally loved restaurants, these are just a few that I would recommend trying as they have continuously been a source of great food and a great time!
Originally from Denver Colorado, Chloe is 27 and now living in Asheville, North Carolina with her Son. Chloe loves everything Fashion, Style, and Design. Everything from clothing to home decor!