In recent years, a large number of Denver’s
chefs have been recognized at the national
and even international level. For example,
many area chefs and restaurants have been
nominated for James Beard Foundation
awards. Other Denver chefs and restaurants
have been featured on the Food Network,
appeared on national cooking shows, and
been featured in national magazines. Zagat-rated chefs in Denver work at restaurants
including Fruition, Rioja, Mizuna, Frasca,
ChoLon, and more.
STEAKS AND MORE
Denver’s location near cattle country makes
it no surprise that excellent steakhouses are
plentiful in the metro area. No matter where
you are, you’ll likely be a stone’s throw away
from your craving for ribeye, T-bones, tenderloin or porterhouse. Local favorites include
Elway’s (named for ex-Bronco Quarterback
John Elway), the Denver ChopHouse, or The
Broker, or go for national chains with Denver
charm like The Capital Grille or Morton’s.
In the mood for something more exotic?
Experience history at the Buckhorn
Exchange—founded in 1893, it’s Denver’s
oldest restaurant and is known for serving
unusual meats like buffalo, elk, quail, and
rattlesnake. If you’re really adventurous try
the restaurant’s famous Rocky Mountain
oysters, a Colorado specialty that’s not for
the faint of heart.
LOCAL FLAVORS AND
CREATIVE CULINARY CHOPS
Seasonal and local ingredients shine at
restaurants throughout the Denver area.
Dozens of restaurants are committed
to serving innovative dishes using the
freshest ingredients. This is easy to do
with Colorado’s agricultural bounty and
Denver’s thriving farmer’s market scene—
and the results are delicious. Restaurants
of all kinds, from Italian to New Mexican
to classic American, have realized the
benefits of sourcing ingredients right in
Denver restaurateurs are also incredibly
proud Colorado’s thriving microbrew
industry and wines. A new brewery seems
to open in the Denver metro area each
week, and chefs are pairing these beers with
their dishes, and in some cases even incorporating them into the food itself. Notable
restaurants with a commitment to local
ingredients include Frasca Food and Wine
in nearby Boulder—an Italian favorite and
consistently named as one of the area’s top
10 restaurants and Mizuna in Governor’s
Park—acclaimed Denver chef Frank Bonna-no’s flagship restaurant (he also owns Luca
Di Italia, Osteria Marco and Bones, an
Asian-fusion noodle restaurant).
Denver’s restaurant scene is sure to
satisfy—and surprise. The following listings
provide a starting point for your culinary
adventures in Denver.
Learn more about Denver’s restaurant scene
by consulting the following dining guides,
restaurant review sources, local radio and television shows and national websites that feature
Denver-area restaurant listings and reviews.
5280 magazine is named after Denver’s
5,280-feet elevation (a mile high, to be
exact). The magazine is a valuable resource
for all things Denver, but it has a comprehensive restaurant section, including
reviews, openings, closings and more. Additionally, 5280’s annual “Top of the Town”
issue is available on local newsstands and
online, and there are more than 300 restaurant reviews on the magazine’s website.
This magazine about the city of Boulder
features an extensive listing of area restaurants, with reviews, profiles and more.
Photo by Steve Crecelius, courtesy of VISIT DENVER