Denver is a hot spot for nightlife and foodie adventures with numerous new restaurants and cocktail destinations opening in the past six months. We’re here with the best restaurants in Denver to add to your itinerary.
5 Best Restaurants in Denver
I’ve always known that Denver was a hotspot for foodies, and now that Bravo’s Top Chef filmed their latest season in Denver and throughout Colorado, the world knows too. From fine dining to casual eateries, the Mile High City serves all types of dishes for all types of diners. Denver is also known for crafting unique cocktails and brewing craft beers. Five of the hottest bars and best new restaurants in Denver should be enough to keep you entertained for your next night out!
1. STK Denver
Located steps from Larimer Square and mere blocks from Union Station and the 16th Street Mall, the historic LoDo (lower downtown) neighborhood welcomed STK Denver (1550 Market Street) a little over a year ago. The bright lights and pulsating nightclubs of Vegas have nothing on one of the newest restaurant concepts to hit downtown Denver. Raise a glass to the new trendy STK Denver restaurant, the 14th restaurant of its kind, courtesy of The ONE Group Hospitality, Inc. (“The ONE Group”). STK’s posh steakhouse concept blends an intriguing and chic lounge into an elegant party atmosphere, with great food and a DJ keeping the vibe alive.
The menu features numerous locally-sourced dishes created exclusively for Denver by local Executive Chef William Tuggle and his team. Guests can expect dishes such as the Colorado Rack of Lamb and Boulder Natural Chicken, as well as STK’s world-renowned collection of signature items.
From my recent hosted dining experience at STK Denver, I can tell you that the USDA beef from Meats By Linz was so tender we cut the loin strip steak with a fork and liberally dipped into the Bearnaise sauce. Tuna tartar with a honey soy emulsion – oh my! Berkshire pork — yummy. Brussel sprouts. Sweet corn pudding (my favorite!). And the dessert! Its bar menu reflects Denver’s thriving craft brew scene, serving up a wide selection of locally brewed beers, in addition to specialty cocktails and an extensive wine selection.
2. Oskar Blues
With a couple of different locations around metro Denver, but Oskar Blues ‘ newest destination is at 1624 Market Street in the LoDo/Northwest area. The beer list is extremely impressive whether you’re looking for craft brews or simple drafts. If that’s not your thing, you won‘t be disappointed by their creative cocktails! The comfort food options like the gumbo and fried chicken seem to be popular crowd pleasers. Live local musicians play downstairs during the weekends.
This self-proclaimed contemporary cocktail bar centers their recipes around herbs, roots, and spices. The interior of Tatarian (4024 Tennyson Street) has a modern, trendy atmosphere that is great for hosting smaller groups. It’s worthy to note that they don’t sell any food here, the menu is basically comprised of their cocktail concoctions in the $10 to $15 range. Some of the most popular cocktails include the Black Jack, a whiskey-based drink with a sweet herbal kick.
4. Bang Up to the Elephant
This Caribbean themed bar and music venue (1310 Pearl Street) is the source of a lot of fun in the Capitol Hill neighborhood! Bang Up to the Elephant offers a ton of space inside for dancing and socialization. In addition to the large bar there’s a separate coffee bar open throughout the day and night. The authentic Caribbean dishes like the jerk chicken and mofongo have a lot of people talking, so don’t miss out when you’re here.
5. Bertha’s Baja Bistro
Located at 900 Jersey Street in the Mayfield neighborhood in east Denver, Bertha’s Baja Bistro is quickly becoming a staple in the area! With charismatic customer service and a menu full of winners, it’s hard not to love this spot. You’ll find classic dishes like authentic tacos, pizza, and macaroni and cheese made from scratch here. The happy hour prices are super affordable.
Whether you’re planning a bar hop with friends or simply looking to enjoy some new dishes, be sure to consider a company like Denver Party Buses. It can be surprising how much transportation can impact the quality of your time in the city. When you’re not worrying about traffic, parking, and finding directions, you’re better able to focus on the experience at hand. Plus, it’s the responsible thing to do if you plan on drinking.
Disclaimer: Thanks to our partner Denver Party Buses for sponsoring this post, and STK Denver for hosting our restaurant tasting. Opinions express are my own.