In addition to the Downtown Food Tour, I ate even more great food at some other notable places in the Denver area. Here’s what I thought about some of the spots I tried:
I spotted this cute little restaurant while on the food tour and made a mental note to come back for dinner before I left Denver.
It’s tucked back in a quiet courtyard, surrounded by lots of brick, detailed ironwork gates, and flower boxes. I was happy the weather was nice enough to sit outside, and the place wasn’t that busy when I stopped by for dinner in the early evening.
I ordered a Pino Grigio to start, and the waitress also brought out an amuse bouche of carrot soup with sumac, along with a fresh baguette. The soup itself was delightful — it was a cold soup (cold soups are underrated so I love when I can finally have one) and was lightly seasoned, but not so much that it took away from the natural sweetness of the carrots. I honestly could have eaten a large bowl of that soup and the bread for my meal and been happy.
But since the soup wasn’t offered in a large size, I opted to step out of my comfort zone and finally try Beef Tartare and ordered a chicken crepe that looked good as well.
The Beef Tartare was served with a quail egg on top and toasted bread on the side. Even after nearly finishing an entire baguette by myself, I was excited about more bread! I’m not a fan of capers, so the chef accommodated my request by replacing the capers with cornichons, which added an excellent flavor to the beef tartare blend.
The crepe was filled with a flavorful seasoned shredded chicken and vegetable blend and topped with an over-easy egg. Both dishes were delicious, though, had I known I would get an entire loaf of bread with my meal, I would have ordered only one dish! I only finished about ⅔ of the meal to save room for dessert.
The dessert was a special for the night — a flourless chocolate cake with peanut butter and chocolate ganache, peanut butter ice cream & candied peanuts. It was the best flourless cake I’ve ever tasted! I’d come back here again just to order this dessert and sit out on the lovely patio to enjoy it.
Columbine Cafe (Breckenridge, CO)
This cafe was a quick stop during a full-day Mountain Tour and happened to be one of the few spots open for lunch! I was craving breakfast, so I ordered the malted waffle with strawberries, grits, ham, and a cinnamon roll latte.
Everything except the grits (which were blah and tasted like quick-cooking grits from a box) was good. I wouldn’t say the meal was fantastic, but I think it was as good of a choice as any, considering the fact this was a smaller town.
Mountain Top Cookie Shop (Breckenridge, CO)
I only tried the Vanilla Peak cookie, but it was so amazing, I’ve got to give that thing a shout out here. It’s two chocolate chip cookies with vanilla buttercream filling, and it was phenomenal! Had I known how good those things were before I was already on my way to leave town, I’d definitely had stocked up on more to bring home.
If you’re in Breckenridge, do yourself a favor and get some goodies from this place!
Back in Denver, Earls was a random “I’m starving and this looks good enough” stop that turned out to be a great pick! I had one of the best kale salads I’ve had in a long time. A lot of the goodness came from whatever they marinated the onions in plus the salad dressing. The rest of the salad consisted of kale, brussels sprouts, parmesan cheese and grilled chicken and was served warm… though I ate the cold leftovers a few hours later and it was just as delicious.
Earl’s appeared to be a fairly upscale place, though there was a pretty even mix of people dressed up and dressed fairly casual as I was. They also had a great patio area that looked ideal for people-watching in nice weather.
On a cold, rainy morning the last day of my trip, I changed my plan of walking to Sams No. 3 to something closer to my hotel, so I landed at Corinne. The plan was to save money by eating the free hotel breakfast every day, but after a couple of days of that, I needed some “real” breakfast.
I came in craving pancakes but saw that they had house-made biscuits on the menu, and decided to build a meal around that instead. I ordered a biscuit with raspberry jam, eggs, bacon and lots of coffee. It was a solidly good breakfast! The restaurant was fairly quiet on a weekday morning and I enjoyed attentive service.
Timberline Steaks & Grille
Timberline is located in the Denver airport and my expectations were low coming in here – the only reason I came in is that my Priority Pass gave me a $28 credit towards a meal here and I didn’t have much time to eat before my flight.
When I arrived, the place was packed — not even a free seat at the bar! Luckily there was a free spot along outside of the restaurant and I was able to get seated in only a few minutes. It took about five minutes for my waiter appeared, but that gave me time to figure out what I wanted and order asap.
The Western Slope Chicken Sandwich ($12) I ordered was surprisingly good! It consisted of grilled chicken, spiced apples, Brie, lettuce & strawberry Dijon preserves on a rustic bread. And the sweet potato fries I ordered along with it were absolutely amazing. Seriously, probably the best sweet potato fries I’ve ever eaten in my life. Who’d have expected that from a random airport restaurant?
Service was quick, and my waiter was obviously accustomed to dealing with people in a hurry. I was able to get in and out in about half an hour. Even without the Priority Pass discount, I’d recommend this airport food stop for anyone looking for a decent meal in a hurry.