Denver Restaurants

As befits a multiethnic crossroads, Denver lays out a dizzying range of eateries. Head for LoDo, the Highland District, the RiNo Art District, or south of the city for the more inventive kitchens. Try Federal Street for cheap ethnic eats—especially Mexican and Vietnamese—and expect authentic takes on classic Italian, French, and Asian cuisines. Throughout Denver, menus at trendy restaurants focus on locally sourced, organic, and healthier options; Denver's top chefs continue to gain the attention of national food magazines and win culinary competitions, but between the increased exposure and the rapid influx of residents, prices have skyrocketed to match or exceed those of larger cities.

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  • 1. Biker Jim's Gourmet Dogs

    $ | Hot Dog

    Quite the character, Biker Jim was hawking his gourmet hot dogs—split down the middle, with Coca-Cola-caramelized onions and a squirt of cream...Read More

  • 2. City Cafe

    $ | Downtown | American

    Everything is made from scratch at this charming little bakery and café, including the stocks for the French onion soup and other daily restoratives...Read More

  • 3. Illegal Pete's

    $ | LoDo | Mexican

    With nine metro-area locations around Denver and Boulder (the original) and one in Fort Collins, this hip, homegrown chain of burrito joints...Read More

  • 4. Le Central

    $$ | Central Denver | French

    A real find, this homey bistro serves excellent mussel dishes and provincial French specialties, including beef bourguignon (braised in red...Read More

  • 5. Pizzeria Locale

    $ | Highland | Pizza

    This casual pizzeria is a franchised offshoot of the original in Boulder. They had set out to make inexpensive pizza the way it was done in...Read More

  • 6. Sam's No. 3

    $ | Downtown | Diner

    Greek immigrant Sam Armatas opened his first eatery in Denver in 1927, and his three sons use the same recipes their father did in their updated...Read More

  • 7. Tacos Tequila Whiskey

    $ | Highland | Mexican

    Originally a food truck, the name of this taqueria showcases exactly what it specializes in: queso a la plancha tacos and seared ahi tuna...Read More

  • 8. The Kitchen Next Door Union Station

    $ | LoDo | Modern American

    With more reasonably priced offerings and a more casual setting than the other Kitchens in Boulder and Glendale, Next Door's comfortable pub...Read More

  • 9. Tom's Home Cookin'

    $ | Five Points | American

    Get there early, because Tom's usually runs out of the abundant portions of finger-licking-good Southern-style comfort foods and soul food made...Read More

  • 10. Mangiamo Pronto!

    $$$ | LoDo | Italian

    Snag a booth at this small, casual café three blocks from Coors Field whose name is Italian for "let's eat now!" A larger version of the tiny...Read More

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