Law is what we do and a part of who we are, but our lives are fully immersed in the people, places and perspectives that create Denver’s identity. Deeply entwined with our legal practice is our love of place. This is our opportunity to share our personal insights.
An impressive number of Denver’s best restaurants are located in the Highlands area, attracting diners from across the Denver metropolitan area and beyond. Although there is always a new restaurant to try, there are others that lure you back, time and time again. Here are five of my favorite Highlands restaurants (in no particular order)
- El Chingon
El Chingon is a trendy, yet intimate restaurant located in a converted house on Tennyson Street, serving modern Mexican dishes with bold flavors and fresh ingredients. There is always a fresh ceviche on offer as a starter, along with crowd-pleasing dishes like the enchiladas verdes and chiles rellenos. Not to be confused with Troy Guard’s Los Chingones, El Chingon is run by executive chef David Lopez and his grandmother, Gloria Nuñez, and is owned by Lopez’ uncle Lorenzo Nuñez, making it a full family affair in the culturally rich Berkeley neighborhood.
- Wolf’s Tailor
Located on Tejon Street, perhaps the quietest commercial strip in north Denver, Wolf’s Tailor brings an unexpected energy to the Sunnyside neighborhood. The main entrance is around the back, through the welcoming outdoor patio, and you walk past the fiery open kitchen in order to enter into a striking, minimalist dining room. Chef Kelly Whitaker weaves together Italian and Japanese cooking techniques in innovative ways (without treading into the “fusion” category), establishing Wolf’s Tailor as both a neighborhood spot and a foodie destination. The menu is ever-changing and optimal for sharing, creating an amalgamation of delicate crudos, binchotan-grilled skewers, house-made pastas, and family-style protein dishes. Best suited for open-minded diners, Wolf’s Tailor offers an adventurous dining experience that is filled with culinary surprises.
- Sushi Ronin
For a landlocked city, Denver has a surprising number of great sushi restaurants. Sushi Ronin further differentiates itself with melt-in-your-mouth fish and a curated list of sushi rolls, mingled with a standard soundtrack of old-school hip hop and laidback atmosphere. One of the servers attributes the high-quality sushi to Chef Corey Baker’s innate ability to select the freshest fish. Sushi Ronin always offers a cool and delicious night out in LoHi. For my money, Sushi Ronin is the best sushi that the Mile High has to offer.
- El Five
A sultry penthouse with panoramic views of downtown Denver and Instagram-worthy interiors, El Five could thrive simply on its looks. However, the Mediterranean-style cuisine and delightful cocktails soar at similar heights. Come with a group to indulge in shareable cocktail pitchers, paella, and a dozen or more tapas. As the sister restaurant to Highlands favorites Linger and Root Down, El Five will certainly be a mainstay of the Highlands restaurant scene as well.
Spuntino’s modest façade near the corner of 32nd and Clay could lead you to assume it is just another standard Italian eatery in a historically Italian neighborhood. However, the unassuming little restaurant consistently exceeds expectations. The creative Italian dishes, using seasonal, locally sourced ingredients, are executed to perfection. The friendly staff, extensive wine list, irresistible desserts, and inviting atmosphere provide for a perfect date night in West Highland.