Best Restaurants Denver – A Foodie’s Guide to the Best Places

Rugged Rocky Mountain landscapes, summers of wildflowers and sunset hikes, plus a thriving brewery scene. The Mile High City has long attracted intrepid visitors looking for a laid-back alpine escape.

However, in recent years, Denver has elevated its culinary scene and gone on to garner the attention of the committee that determines Michelin Star restaurants. Ready to feast in Denver? Follow along to discover the 16 best restaurants in Denver.

Way more than just brews and burgers, today Denver overflows with everything from fine dining establishments to seasonal farm-to-table eats.

Whisk your honey away for a romantic dinner of wood-fired pizza and wine, or sample tender short ribs.

From white table-clothed dining rooms to expertly mixed craft cocktails with city skyline views, this bustling Colorado metropolis does it all.

No matter if you are searching for ‘French restaurant Denver’ or need to heed your weekly Al Pastor taco craving, the Mile High City is bursting with diverse epicurean adventures.

Best Restaurants Denver


Nestled in a periwinkle blue brick building lies an oasis of refined farm-to-table cuisine from executive chef Alex Seidel. Open seven nights a week, Fruition seeks to make any dining experience a special occasion.

Expect a changing menu that relies heavily on the bounty of local farmers. Raise a glass with a unique craft cocktail like their Orange Flower Margarita or explore their ample cider offerings.

Nibble away on a delectable appetizer of Buttermilk Fried Maitake Mushroom before sampling a hearty main like the Baja Striped Bass served with garlicky sofrito braised Romano beans and Castelvetrano olive tapenade.

Red sign that says "Fruition" in front of a restaurant
Photo Credit: Fruition Restaurant via Facebook


Marry French cooking techniques with a passion for culinary mastery and you’ll have Mizuna. This award-winning restaurant is consistently rated as one of the best dining experiences in the country. Drawing inspiration from the land and sea, Mizuna serves as a beacon of chef-driven creativity and experimentation.

Here the culinary team is given a wide berth to expand palates and minds. Reserve a table in the soft yellow dining room and peruse their wine list. Opt for a three-course, Chef’s Tasting Menu, or Coastal Tasting Menu.

Electrify your tastebuds with sesame beef tartare served with Gochujang Aioli, Togarashi Egg, and Kimchi cucumber. Or load up on comforting carbs with their famous Butter Poached Maine Lobster & Mascarpone Mac and Cheese.

Comal Heritage Food Incubator

On the hunt for downtown Denver restaurants with heart? Gobble up a Latin American-inspired lunch or breakfast when you pay a visit to the Comal Heritage Food Incubator. More than just a local watering hole boasting mouth-watering tacos and papusas, Comal trains immigrants and refugees to become restaurateurs.

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Fueled by an ‘earn while you learn’ model, Comal is a heritage food incubator that allows workers to gain valuable kitchen skills and test their own inherited recipes. As a result, dishes on their constantly changing menu reflect the origins of each entrepreneur.

Sample everything from buttery ham and cheese-filled cachitos for breakfast to picadillo-filled chiles relleno for lunch.

Close up photo of street tacos with lots of white onion
photo credit: Xavier crook via Facebook


Famous French onion soup dumplings, pillowy pork belly bao, and tender Wagyu beef skewers. Is your mouth watering yet? Spoil yourself with a plethora of dim sum-inspired plates and flavorful interpretations of Far East cuisine at ChoLon.

ChoLon means ‘big market’ in Vietnamese, and also happens to be the first name of lauded executive Chef and owner Lon Symensma. Mentored under the legendary Jean-Georges Vongerichten, Lon opened NYC’s infamous Spice Market and would go on to become the Executive Chef of the iconic Buddakan.

ChoLon’s menu of stir-fried Malaysian noodles and toasted coconut curries is all crave-worthy, but stop by the lounge and patio Monday through Sunday from 2:00 to 5:30 p.m. to partake in their happy hour plates and prices.

Sushi Den

Sushi flown in fresh daily from Japan? Yes, please! As a landlocked state, many may not associate Denver with fresh fish. Nevertheless, for over 38 years Sushi Den has been regarded as one of the premier sushi restaurants in the nation.

In fact, Sushi Den was one of the very first sushi bars in the U.S. to purchase directly from the fish markets in Japan. Sushi Den’s youngest brother carefully selects every delightful piece of fatty tuna or mackerel from the Nagahama Fish Market.

Tuck into a signature Crispy Bincho Roll, or enjoy your piping hot sake with a spicy plate of Siracha Garlic jumbo tiger shrimp, grilled to perfection.

White pieces of fish on a whie plate with tomatoes, limes, and micro greens
Photo Credit: Sushi Den via Facebook


After a snowy afternoon of back-country hiking or hitting the slopes, nothing sounds better than a piping-hot bowl of ramen. Crush your craving for a soul-warming bowl of savory broth, when you settle in for lunch or supper at Uncle.

This low-key noodle spot boasts two Denver locations in both Highlands and West Washington Park. Uncle may be best known for their Spicy Chicken Ramen, which delivers optimum spice and texture through its sesame broth and loads of crunchy bean sprouts, scallions, and seared confit chicken.

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Even so, we recommend ordering up a slew of side dishes and small plates to share. Intrigue your tastebuds with the equally refreshing and tongue-tingling plate of spicy cucumber salad dusted in chili crisp dressing and cilantro. Or, munch away on soft shell crab buns drizzled in addictive coconut mayo with spicy cilantro nam prik, and crunchy cabbage slaw.


Awe-inspiring aesthetics plus a scratch-to-table concept come together at Annette. Choose to enjoy your meal by James Beard Foundation award winner Caroline Glover in the rustic, yet elegant dining room, or dine in the covered patio or yurt for a winter wonderland-inspired experience.

Named one of the best new restaurants in the country by Bon Appetit in 2017, and consistently listed as one of Denver’s best restaurants each year since it opened, Annette’s eclectic yet traditional menu defies expectations.

Sip away on a Santa Barbara Spa Water made with mezcal, bitter yuzu, and sparkling water before diving into a plate of chicken liver pate served with cherry mostarda or whole roasted fish doused in salsa verde. Save a sliver of room for dessert, as you won’t want to miss Annette’s heavenly bourbon-tinged pecan pie.

Muscles and olives in a white bowl next to another white bowl full of french fries
Photo Credit: Annette via Facebook


Who said train travel isn’t glamorous? Make a pilgrimage to Denver’s Historic Union Station for an exquisite meal of shared plate pintxos and tapas. Oozing sophisticated wine bar vibes, Ultreia’s moody interior features classic artwork and a resplendent staircase.

Sneak into this establishment for a vino-fueled lunch of croquetas de jamon and bacon-wrapped dates. Alternate bites of Jamón Ibérico de Bellota with their outstanding patatas bravas drizzled in spicy tomato sauce, toasted sunflower seeds, sunflower shoots, aioli, and herbs.

Italian Restaurants Denver


Delight in the taste of la dolce vita when you break bread at Tavernetta. A concept from the James Beard Award-winning team of Frasca Hospitality Group, this Italian restaurant harnesses the home-spun hospitality of the old country with fresh hand-made pasta and a world-class wine list.

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Let the flavors of a Tuscana Chianti bloom on your tongue, as you dig into a heavenly burrata dusted by pesto, basil, and focaccia bread crumbs. Order a fritto misto to share with the table, and then splurge away your daily carb allotment on their heavenly Tagliatelle served with Maine Lobster, Calabrian Chile, and preserved tomato.

Spaghetti and meatballsCoperta

Fresh baked focaccia studded with garlic and herbs, a steaming bowl of braised beef and lamb ragu, plus house-made cannolis. Every plate at Coperta is an exercise in comfort.

Coperta means blanket it Italian, so it’s no wonder this Denver standby excels at warm ambiance and crave-worthy Southern Italian cuisine. Aiming to provide simple cuisine of sustenance, Coperta takes pleasure in elevating the ordinary.

Moan over your plate of roasted garlic and fava bean ravioli before snagging a bite of your friend’s egg yolk fettuccine served with arugula pesto and burrata.

Rooftop Restaurants Denver

Avanti F&B: A Collective Eatery

Spicy Mango margaritas, Frose, and wood-fired pizza oh my! Enjoy sweeping views under fairy string lights when you explore the multitude of food and dining options at Avanti.

This collective eatery is located in a bi-level shipping container and boasts plenty of craft beer, classic cocktail, and wine options. Order up a Unicorn Juice or Genie in the Bottle to enjoy at the upstairs bar or communal table before diving into the eats of 22 Provisions or Gorlami’s Naples-style pizza.

More in the mood for some South of the Border nibbles? Meander over to Ama Modern Mexican for chips and green chile queso or seared garlic shrimp tacos.

Alcoholic DrinksMexican Restaurants Denver

Machete Tequila + Tacos

Extra strong margaritas and Al Pastor tacos dripping in Guajillo? Say less! Thankfully when the need for a taco hits you’re never too far from a Machete Tequila + Tacos location.

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For over a decade, this establishment has served the Denver community the most delectable Tinga quesadillas and Barbacoa tacos everywhere from Cherry Creek to Colfax.

Built upon a foundation of flavors from the heart of Mexico City, accompany your buffet of tacos with a Spicy Rico Marg or muddled Mezcal Blackberry Smash.

Tequila glasses with limes, oranges, salt, and cinnamonLa Diabla Pozole y Mezcal

Take a break from burritos and nachos and satisfy your palate with some authentic Mexican fare. La Diabla Pozole y Mezcal focuses on the traditional dish of Pozole. This Mesoamerican staple is typically made from hominy and dates back to the 16th century.

Beloved throughout Mexico and often saved for celebratory events, Diabla Chef Avila seeks to translate the concept to the consumer year-round. With a focus on sustainability and quality Masienda corn, every bowl of Pozole at Diabla is crafted from scratch.

Let your insides be warmed by the Rojo Pozole topped with radish, cabbage, onions, and chicharron. Or, sample their diverse offerings of tacos and guisados.

Vegan Restaurants Denver

Watercourse Foods

Plant-based eaters need not fret, as the Mile High City loves to roll out the red carpet for Vegans. For a casual lunch, breakfast, or dinner you can do no better than Denver’s original vegan restaurant. Watercourse Foods specializes in inventive vegan comfort food.

Start your day off right with a seasonal root vegetable hash or ‘chicken’ and biscuit sandwich washed down with a cup of coffee. Perhaps admire the Watership Down-inspired murals while you devour your blackened tofu and kale Cesar wrap. Be sure to stay hydrated by sampling their tangy cherry limeade or rotating array of kombucha flavors.

Three different sandwiches made with hamburger buns on a white plate
Photo Credit: Watercourse Foods via Facebook

Somebody People

Feeling the pains of too much-fried food while exploring the charming streets of Denver? Vegans and meat eaters alike will appreciate the healthy conscious offerings of Somebody People.

Bright and cheerful, featuring a blue mosaic bar, this casual eatery injects vegetable-forward cuisine with fun and flavor. Raise a glass with a zero-proof cocktail of watermelon, basil, lemon, and cinnamon.

Next, appreciate the produce of local farmers as you sample carrots topped with salsa verde, toasted pine nut crumble, and black garlic or polenta topped with chargrilled eggplant and caponata.

Those with a sweet tooth must stick around for a slice of pineapple cake served with caramel, cashew, and vanilla whip accompanied by a scoop of homemade banana brownie ice cream.

Denver Hotels

Already dreaming about consuming Denver’s epicurean delicacies? Before you secure that OpenTable reservation, take some time to enjoy the other arresting sights and attractions of the Mile High City.

From heart-pounding hikes to admiring the historic architecture of Union Station, there are so many ways to appreciate Denver. Make the most of your time out west when you reserve any of our premier Denver Hotels.

From elegant boutique lodgings downtown to modern suites just minutes from the Convention Center, we have accommodations for all types of travelers. As always, book stress-free knowing you are always guaranteed our lowest rates online.

aerial view of Colorado with mountains in distance in Colorado, USA
photo credit: Denver’s Best via Facebook

Jaw-dropping Rocky Mountain views, soaring elevations, and a wealth of winter sports have made Denver a go-to for outdoor enthusiasts.

In addition, this city which sits pretty at 5,280 feet is also a hotbed of multicultural culinary activity.

From fish flown in straight from the markets of Japan, to stick to your-ribs bowls of carbonara and Cacio e pepe. It’s all too easy to eat your way around the world without ever leaving the confines of Cherry Creek or downtown.

Figure out if you prefer mezcal or tequila as you down tacos at Machete, or make friends when you swing by Avanti for some rooftop scenery and communal table camaraderie.

Can’t Wait to Munch Your Way Through This Rocky Mountain Capital?

Tell us, what Denver restaurant will you try first?

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Written by Isis Maya Nissman

A New York native, Isis-Maya spent most of her professional life working in TV production until a vacation whisked her away to Central...

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