You’ve probably heard the claim to fame: Denver gets soaked in sunshine 300 days out of the year. Couple that with the gorgeous mountain views and requesting a table outside is a must-do.
A minor gripe, though. Many restaurants in this growing city are crunched for space and just have teeny-tiny patios or, worse, no outdoor seating at all.
In time for summer, we’re rounding up the best places where you can grab a bite to eat and enjoy it in the outdoors. To make it on this list, though, the spots have to have menus just as stellar as their views.
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Out-of-towners, we’ll let you in on a little secret. Linger was once a mortuary (known as Olinger). Now, it’s one of the hottest restaurants in Denver, with an expansive patio that will give you a peak at the Denver skyline. Views of the city from the Highlands (a neighborhood in West Denver) are becoming endangered because of highrises, and Linger is one spot where you can still catch a good view.
We named this as our favorite spot for a progressive dinner because it’s one of our fave foodie blocks in Denver. Start at Lola - a coastal Mexican restaurant - around the corner for some ceviche or guacamole that’s custom-made at your table or barstool. (Lola has an enclosed patio to sit out on). Then, finish your night at Little Man Ice Cream, where the lines on the weekend are long - but totally worth it for a waffle cone full of Salted Oreo.
A must-order: Wagyu Sliders, which are topped with peppery bacon, curried sour cream, cheddar and served with a sweet potato waffle fries.
Address:... 2030 West 30th Avenue, Denver, CO 80211
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Denver weather can be fickle. Thankfully, patios like Tamayo have you covered - literally and figuratively. Whether you’re a local or a tourist, Larimer Street is a draw, with a hammock of lights draped over the block, that’s dotted with restaurants and shops.
Tamayo gets our vote as the best spot for brunch because they’ve got a beautiful patio that gives you views of the mountains and the city. Plus, it’s time to break from the Bloody Mary’s and mimosas. Tamayo does a $39 Bottomless Margarita Brunch on Saturdays and Sundays from 10:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m.
A must-order: The guacamole menu is delish. You can get a traditional order, or go for something more adventurous like a spicy crab guac with wontons, roasted garlic, chile de arbol and cilantro.
Address: 1400 Larimer St, Denver, CO 80202
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Whether you work downtown or you’re a tourist visiting Denver, Civic Center Park is the place to be for lunch during the week.
From May 2, 2017 to Oct. 5, 2017, and from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursday, there will be 20-some trucks in the park, serving up lunch. (In all, about 70 food trucks will take part in the food truck program, but they get alternating dates). You can find the 2017 food truck line-up here. You might want to check it out in advance so you don't spend your entire lunch hour trying to decide which truck to order from.
The weekly food truck festival includes everything from tacos to barbecue to pizza to sushi, as well as sweet treats like ice cream and cupcakes.
A must-order: This is a challenge to pin down given how many food trucks there are. But, you've got to check out the Colorado Pig Rig. They've got Pineapple Char Siu Pulled Pork Sliders that's served with grilled pineapple and an apple coleslaw on Kings Hawaiian Sweet... Rolls.
Address: 144 W Colfax Ave, Denver, CO. 80202
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Along the hustle and bustle of Colfax is an unexpected find: Solera, a charming restaurant with a menu that borrows from Spanish and Mediterranean cuisine. It’s piece de resistance? The patio, which feels like you’ve stumbled upon a secret garden. Well, that and the all-you-can-eat mussels on Tuesday night and famed paella dinners on Sundays. Chef and owner Goose Sorensen relies on techniques like slow roasting and braising to create flavorful dishes. At Solera, which has been around for 15 years, a big tree anchors the outside patio, which is quaint enough to feel like you’re in a back yard, with flower pots, umbrellas and farmhouse trinkets.
Along the hustle and bustle of Colfax is an unexpected find: Solera, a charming restaurant with a menu that borrows from Spanish and Mediterranean cuisine. It’s piece de resistance? The patio, which feels like you’ve stumbled upon a secret garden. Well, that and the all-you-can-eat mussels on Tuesday night and famed paella dinners on Sundays.... Chef and owner Goose Sorensen relies on techniques like slow roasting and braising to create flavorful dishes. At Solera, which has been around for 15 years, a big tree anchors the outside patio, which is quaint enough to feel like you’re in a back yard, with flower pots, umbrellas and farmhouse trinkets.
A must-order: Make #WineWednesday a tradition here. From 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. you can sample five wines from around the world for $20. Then, create your own “Farmer’s board” with fine cheeses, cured meats and accouterments like garbanzo hummus, house-marinated olives and pickled vegetables. A menu staple is the $30 Solera Paella, which comes with fresh fish, mussels, clams, chorizo, shrimp and octopus with saffron rice.
Address: 5410 E Colfax Avenue Denver, CO. 80220
Note: This restaurant is closed on Mondays.