There are so many great places to eat in Denver, Colorado, including a whole list of local and neighborhood places where you can get outstanding and unique food. So of course Guy Fieri had to check it out for himself. The popular Food Network star has taken Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives to Denver on several occasions throughout the history of the show, discovering new delicious spots with each trip. On Fieri's trips to the Mile High City, he has explored a variety of different kinds of restaurants, getting a true taste of the culinary scene of Denver so that the rest of us know where to go for a dependably delectable meal.
In Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives, celebrity chef Guy Fieri road trips around the country checking out the food scene in different areas. His adventures take him to local eateries and hole-the-wall restaurants as he discovers the hidden gems around the country. Although Denver is known for its outdoorsy lifestyle, elevation and many days of sunshine, Guy Fieri has shown over the years that the city has a thriving food scene as well.
As any Food Network fan can attest, Guy Fieri knows his food, so it's safe to assume that any restaurant given the Fieri stamp of approval is worth a visit. The next time you're passing through this Colorado city, add these pizza joints, food trucks, delis and brunch spots on your itinerary. Here are the best places to visit from the Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives Denver stops.
3400 Navajo St., Denver, CO
Neighborhood taverns aren't always known for their bar food, but Highland Tavern stands out in that department. Like Guy, you'll want to try the Bombshell Sammich, made with house pastrami, Swiss cheese and a fried egg, then topped with slaw and brown mustard on rye bread. Get the Tavern Tots on the side and for a starter snack, try the pork rinds, which Guy called the best he has ever had.
Tocabe American Indian Eatery
Two locations: North Denver and Greenwood Village
Tocabe is the American Indian owned and operated restaurant in Metro Denver specializing in Native and Indigenous cuisine. Guy made it a Triple D stop because he'd heard about the hominy salsa. All on the must-try list are the fry bread, bison ribs and Indian tacos.
Sam's No. 3
Three locations: Downtown Denver, Aurora and Glendale
Sam's No. 3 is a local favorite, especially when it comes to their green chili, so Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives had to make it a Denver stop. Their signature Kickin' Green Pork Chili is served on everything, including the Kitchen Sink Burrito (and that burrito is packed with bacon, ham, sausage, mushroom, green peppers and gyro meat). They have a wildly-popular Vegetarian Green Chili, too.
1515 Adams St. Denver, CO
The Atomic Cowboy is home to two restaurants: the Denver Biscuit Company and Fat Sully's Pizza. On the biscuit side of the house, Guy tried the Elmer biscuit sandwich with smoked pork butt and homemade barbecue sauce. At Fat Sully's, the crunchy thin crust pizza is a definite winner.
Blue Pan Pizza
3930 W 32nd Ave., Denver, CO
Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives has visited a lot of pizza places, but this Denver pizza place offers something unique. This pizza joint is owned by Michigan natives who bake their authentic Detroit-style pan pizza in blue steel pans imported directly from Detroit. About the caramelized crust and deep dish goodness, Guy said, "It's dynamite."
504 E Colfax Ave. Denver, CO
You can get a cheeseburger to go with your cocktail, or you can get a slow-cooked, balsamic-braised short rib burger. It earned the Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives seal of approval on Guy's Denver visit and we can definitely see why.
Dae Gee Korean BBQ
827 Colorado Blvd., Denver, CO
The Unlimited Korean Barbecue, which Guy called "outstanding" is the star of the show at Dae Gee Korean BBQ. You'll find a delightful spread of meats like beef bulgogi, chicken bulgogi, kimchee pancakes and fish cakes, plus a whole bunch of tasty sides.
Il Porcellino Salumi
4324 W 41st Ave., Denver, CO
This Denver restaurant makes its salumi - over 45 different kinds - in house. About the Hoggie Sandwich, with ham, soppressata, capicola, pickled peppers, tomatoes, romaine and garlic aioli layered on ciabatta bread, Guy said, "That is the definition of an Italian deli sandwich."
Steuben's Food Service
523 E 17th Ave., Denver, CO
This neighborhood place offers everything from roasted chicken and hand-cut fries to an excellent lobster roll, which Guy loved. Go here for weekend brunch, too, where you'll find Cast Iron French Toast and a Smothered Breakfast Burrito. (Note: The uptown location is open right now, while the Arvada location is closed temporarily.)
1298 S Broadway Ave., Denver, CO
Maria Empanada makes up to 1,500 empanadas per day, filling the dough with beef, chicken, spinach, corn or mushroom, plus a few other tasty flavors. You can also get breakfast empanadas. Guy loved the beef, onion and red pepper empanada. "It's light ... simple; that's what an empanada's supposed to be," he said.
4408 Lowell Blvd., Denver, CO
When Diners, Drives-Ins and Dives came to Denver, Guy called the food at Cafe Brazil "mouthwatering." He loved the bolinhos, which are deep-fried balls of mashed sweet potatoes, shrimp, eggs, two Spanish salumi and three types of cheese.
Areyto Food Truck
Check the truck's website for its current location.
This food truck is a little bit of Puerto Rico in Denver. One of the specialties at Areyto is the Chicken Mofongo. It has chicken marinated in housemade sofrito, cooked in a pressure cooker and then served inside a bowl made from fried plantains. "It's better than dynamite," said Guy. "It's as legit as any Mofongo I've ever had."
The Bagel Delicatessen & Restaurant
6439 E Hampden Ave., Denver, CO
The Bagel Deli is the oldest continuously owned and operated deli in Denver. You'll find everything you would expect from a Jewish deli, including bagels and lox, matzo ball soup and chopped liver. You should also try the brisket knishes with red horseradish. This is deli comfort food at its finest.
Hops & Pie
3920 Tennyson St., Denver, CO
Another Denver, Colorado restaurant visited by Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives is Hops & Pie, and as the name suggests, beer and great pizza are their specialties. But one pizza stood out for Guy. The beer-braised brisket pizza combines brisket, bacon pickled jalapeno and caramelized onion for a ''dynamite" taste.
Just BE Kitchen
2364 15th St., Denver, CO
Everything on the menu here is gluten-free, as well as free of dairy, refined sugar, soy and corn. They're also even Whole30 approved. While you might think it's impossible to make a healthy version of chicken and dumplings, Guy loved it. "This is legit chicken and dumplings," he said. "I'll have it by the quart!"
Cora Faye's Cafe
16251 E Colfax, Denver, CO
This family-run soul food restaurant was on Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives back in 2013. It offers a delightful taste of the South on the menu, including fried chicken and waffles, fried catfish, pork chops and frog legs.
Some Denver favorites featured on the Food Network TV show have since closed, including Axios Estiatorio (where Guy loved the lamb ribs). Biju's Little Curry Shop has a note on its website that it's closed for now.
This post was originally published on November 17, 2020.
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