From margaritas at raucous Mexican restaurant Mezcal to elegant California cuisine at Melís Bistro, central Denver restaurants feature appealingly diverse menus. Central Denver is home to Assignments restaurant, a teaching restaurant for students of the International Culinary School at the Art Institute of Colorado, as well as the popular Mizuna, where chef Frank Bonannoís signature dishes garner rave reviews from both locals and critics. Fashionable Luca DíItalia features the flavors of Sicily and Italy and boasts of house-cured meats and cheeses while Fruition specializes in French-influenced comfort food. With a variety of domestic and international influences, central Denver restaurants are geared to suit a variety of culinary preferences.
Owned and operated by the International Culinary School at the Art Institute of Colorado, Assignments is a unique Denver establishment referred to as a "teaching restaurant," where aspiring chefs contribute to the offereings. Denver diners and critics alike have found Assignments to be worth the riskóaside from the culinary students a team of professional chefs/instructors rounds out the kitchen crew.
This tiny and elegant French-influenced "comfort food" restaurant on Denver's 6th Street places an emphasis on the culmination of atmosphere and cuisine as created by accomplished chef Alex Seidel and head maitre' d and partner Paul Attardi. Together with their years of experience, this Denver duo has created a critically acclaimed intimate restaurant experience based around fresh seasonal ingredients and top-notch service and ambiance in the heart of Denver.
711 Grant Ave., Denver CO 80203
Proprietor Frank Bonnano brings the flavors of Sicily and the Italian heritage of New York City to Denver with Luca D'Italia, named for his son Luca. The atmosphere at Luca D'Italia features soft lighting and a fine selection of artwork from local Denver artists adorning on the walls. As far as the food goes, Luca D'Italia cures their own meats and cheeses on site, and has racked up an impressive list of accolades including Zagat's "best Italian restaurant" of the western United States.
1120 E. 6th Ave., Denver CO 80218
This Denver restaurant is the brainchild of restaurant and wine business veterans Janie and Mel Master, who, along with noted Denver chef Alan Mali, have created an elegant bistro serving California cuisine paired with an extensive wine list hand chosen by the master Mel Master himself. Mel's Bistro prides itself on using the finest available locally grown seasonal ingredients.
3230 E. Colfax, Denver CO 80206
Things can get a bit loco at Mezcal, a Denver Mexican staple featuring award-winning margaritas and over 100 tequilas and mescals to choose from, not to mention walls adorned with an impressive collection of Lucha Libre wrestling posters. The food is a fairly standard take on traditional Mexican favorites, such as tacos and enchiladas, but Denver restaurant goers are in agreement that it's delicious and consistent.
225 East 7th Ave., Denver CO 80203
Contemporary French, Contemporary American.
Local restaurant magnate/chef Frank Bonanno brings Denver Mizuna, a quaint, subtly decorated restaurant where Bonanno lets his team of chefs call the shots. What results has been called a "food laboratory," where American Contemporary meets French technique and tradition. Whatever the result, Denver critics and restaurant goers alike have great things to say about it.