Best Restaurants in Denver to Visit in 2018

Taste your way across the Mile High City with our picks for the best restaurants in Denver to visit in 2018.

The Denver dining scene is flourishing.  Zagat just named Denver the fourth hottest food city in America, and new restaurants are opening downtown every month. 

With so many great options, where do you start?  We've compiled a list of 10 great restaurants in downtown Denver to try in 2018.  

Ultreia

Good for: Small Bites and Gin Tonics

 Tapas at Ultreia in Union Station Denver

The newest endeavor by restaurant powerhouse Chef Jen Jasinski, Ultreia is located in the heart of Denver's Union Station.  With murals scaling the walls and an elegant staircase through the center of the intimate space, Ultreia offers diners a chance to taste some of the best small bites in the city in an upscale atmosphere. 

The menu is built around the Iberian peninsula and features tapas-style treats as well as full portions of Spanish and Portuguese dishes.  The bar is also known for interesting and unique gin and tonics.

The Bindery

Good for: Brunch

 Chocolate waffle and bacon at the Bindery in Denver Colorado

This new spot in the lower Highlands neighborhood offers an intricate and unique menu and is a full-service restaurant, bakery and market all in one. 

The floor-to-ceiling windows and cafeteria-style seating options make the space airy and bright with a modern feel.  We recommend stopping in for brunch to slurp fresh oysters or try dishes like their chocolate waffles.

Mercantile Dining and Provisions

Good for: High-End Dining, Farm-to-Table

 Denver food tour guests at Mercantile Dining and Provisions

Located right inside Denver's Union Station, Mercantile features a delicious menu highlighting ingredients sourced from their farm just outside of the city. 

The restaurant offers a seated area, which feels upscale at night, as well as a market area featuring local products like their sheep's milk cheese, jams, sauces and pickles.  

Butcher's Bistro

Good for: Locally-sourced steaks

 Steak at Butchers Bistro in downtown Denver

This tiny spot on the fringe of Denver's bustling downtown offers some of the best steaks in the city.  They source their meats from local Colorado ranchers and are a nose-to-tail butchery in addition to being a full service restaurant. 

Pop in to buy delicious house-made sausages from the butcher's case, or visit for dinner and try everything from Rocky Mountain oysters (bison balls in their case) to classic steak frites.

Kachina Southwestern Grill

Good for: Southwestern Cuisine

 Desert pear margarita and Navajo taco at Kachina in Denver Colorado

Located inside the Maven Hotel, one of Denver's hippest new hotels, Kachina offers a fusion of Southwestern and Native American cuisine. 

Try their desert pear margarita on their lively patio for happy hour, or come for dinner to sample Navajo fry bread tacos topped with everything from epizote-braised beef to calabacitas and avocado.

Marco's Coal Fired Pizzeria

Good for: Authentic Neopolitan Pizzas

 Pizza at Marco's Coal Fired Pizzeria in Denver Colorado

This friendly pizzeria serves up delicious and authentic Neopolitan-style pies fired in wood-burning ovens. 

Owned by locals Mark and Christy, Marco's imports a lot of their ingredients directly from Italy and is certified by the AVPN, a governing body in Italy that gives its stamp of approval on truly authentic Naples-style pizzas.

Tavernetta

Good for: High-end Northern Italian Cuisine

 Frittatine at Tavernetta by Union Station Denver

Nestled just off Union Station's platform is the recently-opened Tavernetta, an elegant and beautiful space offering a delicious menu of Northern Italian cuisine. 

Enjoy dinner in their warm and inviting dining room or stop by the lounge to sip a cocktail by the fire.  We love their Aperol Spritz, a delicious bittersweet cocktail for a warm day.

Urban Farmer

Good for: Steaks

 Chef Chris Sarkus talking with Denver food tour guests in Urban Farmer Denver

This Portland-based steakhouse offers more than just delicious cuts of meat.  They work directly with local producers and even have their own bee hive on the roof, which produces honey they use on cheese boards and in summer cocktails. 

Stop by this hip and funky spot to sip a delicious cocktail or visit for dinner and try a number of great steak and veggie options.

Rioja

 Wine flight at Rioja Denver

Good for: Tapas

A staple of the Denver dining scene, Rioja is nestled in the city's history Larimer Square.  The menu features tapas and boasts an amazing wine list. 

Stop in for happy hour and take advantage of their Sips and Snacks program.  You'll get a flight of wine with paired bites that change weekly.

Biker Jim's

Good for: Gourmet Hotdogs

 Three gourmet hotdogs from Biker Jims in Denver Colorado

A Denver institution, Biker Jim's started as a lowly hotdog cart and rose to prominence.  Their gourmet dogs feature exotic meats like wild boar, reindeer and rattle snack. 

Biker Jim's has been featured in a number of international publications and has been listed in the top 10 hotdog joints in the country by Forbes Magazine.  We recommend the reindeer dog with classic cream cheese and caramelized onions topping.


Want to visit some of the best restaurants in Denver?  Join us on one of our daily walking food tours through downtown!

We visit six top restaurants in downtown Denver for curated tastings, kitchen tours and chats with the chef.  If you're a foodie looking to experience more of the best restaurants in Denver, these food tours are for you!