Facebook   Twitter   Instagram
Current Issue   Archive   Donate and Support    

Best Food — Denver



• CRITICS: Rioja, Larimer Square
Picking the best of Denver is really a state of mind. With so many great options offered by the Kevin Taylors and Frank Bonannos of the world, it can be darn right difficult to say with confidence that any of the elite restaurants are truly and consistently better than the others. That being said, more often than not, when hunger strikes us in a fancy mood, we pick Rioja. Part of its charm is being located in the historic Larimer Square district. The menu created by owner and executive chef Jennifer Jasinski always surprises. Examples include risotto stuffed calamari and Colorado classics such as a leg of lamb that always shines. The scene inside bustles and there are a bevy of entertainment options available just a short walk away following dinner. It’s all just amazing.

• CRITICS: Duo Denver, Highlands
This is a seasonal menu so don’t be disappointed if the following recommendation isn’t available on the brunch menu when you get to this Highlands gem—something else will shine just as much, trust us. The Cider Glazed Pork Benedict is not only delicious, but it is perhaps one of the most creative breakfast dishes you’ll every taste. Poached eggs are served with grilled sourdough and roasted cider glazed pork with a grain mustard sauce. It is absolutely divine. So is the rest of the menu—you really cannot go wrong.

Date Night
• CRITICS: Z Cuisine, Highlands; Cruise Room, Downtown
Z has received plenty of hype from virtually every publication that serves Denver—it’s all deserved. The tiny French sidewalk café seats about 20, tops (although with the recent opening of its wine bar next door, seats will be a little easeier). You’ll play footsie under the table (you have no choice since the intimate dining room is so small), munch on a blackboard menu that changes nightly and features the best French food outside of Paris, and sip on tasty a rosé to wash it all down. Once you’ve finished your leisurely dinner, head the two miles to downtown and check out the Cruise Room in the Oxford Hotel. Fashioned after, you guessed it, a cruise room, enjoy classic martinis in a chic environment that serves as the ultimate backdrop to end a date night.

• CRITICS: Del Friscos, Denver Tech Center
The drive all the way down south to the Tech Center is worth it for that special occasion steak dinner, whether it be for a bachelor party, birthday or retirement. The steaks are the best of an incredibly good and crowded chophouse market in Denver. The service is absolutely impeccable—a fleet of waitstaff is there to do little more than refill water glasses while someone else pays close attention to the wine situation while yet another clears crumbs constantly while yet another ensures you get the perfect steak, which is the reason you are visiting after all. Stay for a few hours—you’ll need the extra time to digest and sip cognac.

Leave a Reply