Eat + Drink

4 Keys to Seeing Denver Like a Foodie

No need to catch a train here. Unlock the secrets of Denver’s culinary scene at Union Station. (Photo: Alamy)

Denver, also known as The Mile High City, is a pedestrian-friendly urban playground packed with opportunities for adventure. Denver has it all – from hiking and biking to live music, art, theater, shopping and, of course, stellar food and drink. Soak up the city’s 300 days of sunshine each year, not to mention thrilling Rocky Mountain views. Take in a concert under the stars at the breathtaking Red Rocks Park & Amphitheatre. But along the way, be sure to stop for plenty of fuel, in the form of the memorable food and drink offered at Denver’s many culinary hot spots.

Denver Union Station: Transit & Foodie Hub

Denver Union Station – Denver’s elegant transit hub – is a foodie destination as well. New rail service from Denver International Airport brings visitors directly to the station.

The historic building houses many restaurants and bars, including Mercantile Dining & Provision, a unique restaurant-market combination.

The restaurant features upscale comfort food (don’t miss the house-made pasta), while the European-style market sells artisan-produced charcuterie, canned and preserved goods and many products from Chef Alex Seidel’s Fruition Farm.

Farm-to-Table Tales

Enjoy fresh ingredients at Denver’s farm-to-table restaurants. (Photo: Alamy)

Enjoy your dinner with a side of intrigue? You’ll have a story to tell after visiting Ophelia’s Electric Soapbox in the Lower Downtown Historic District.

The former 19th-century brothel features local, sustainable ingredients in dishes like Carbonara Flatbread and the Brothel Burger.

Ophelia’s sister restaurant, Linger, is housed in a former mortuary and features globally inspired dishes from Africa, Asia and the Americas.

Or, head to Acorn, a culinary marketplace (an 1880s iron foundry) in the River North neighborhood, known as RiNo. Acorn features an oak-fired grill, seasonal menus and mountain views.

Old Meets New in Larimer Square

Denver’s Larimer Square, a bustling hub of shops, restaurants, bars and clubs, was the city’s first block, founded even before Colorado became a territory.

Now, as the city’s farm-to-table epicenter, Larimer Square buzzes with outdoor dining and a twinkling canopy of lights. Rioja, headed by James Beard Award-winning chef Jennifer Jasinski, puts a Mediterranean spin on farm-to-table.

The restaurant’s outdoor dining area is the perfect spot to have a drink and enjoy inventive dishes such as rabbit flatbread, house-made octopus farfalle or grilled Colorado lamb loin.

Denver’s Beer Trail

Denver Beer
Drink a cold one at Denver Beer Company. (Photo: Alamy)

Craft beer lovers will be in heaven in Denver. This self-guided Denver Beer Trail features more than 20 breweries, as well as dozens of brewpubs and tap rooms.

Sip sour beers at the Crooked Stave Artisan Beer Project in The Source, soak up sun on Denver Beer Co.’s giant patio or sip a pint while playing billiards at Wynkoop Brewing Company, Denver’s first microbrewery.

Getting There

Denver is within one flight of all major USA gateway cities on both the east and west coasts.

Non-stop air service to Denver International Airport is available from the following cities: Frankfurt, Munich (Lufthansa), Tokyo (United Airlines), Reykjavik (Icelandair), London (British Airways), and Mexico City (AeroMexico & Volaris).

This article was published as a part of a partnership with Visit the USA, inspiring travelers to explore America’s boundless possibilities.