Welcome 2018! A new year is always exciting. There are so many possibilities and new opportunities. It’s a fresh start to tackle new goals and discover new places to travel! I’ve been creating a list of possibilities to visit in 2018 from small town USA to ancient European cities. I’ve enjoyed all the destinations I’ve been lucky enough to visit last year and in 2016, even 2015 but I’m embracing change and commitment in 2018, something I’ll discuss more in tomorrow’s post. So with that said, I want to visit new destinations this year. I’d love to hear any of your personal recommendations and why you recommend them. While I think about 2018, I’m still reflecting on past trips including an adventurous week in Denver! Today, I’m sharing eight spots to grab a bite. I will warn you, this post is not meant for reading on an empty stomach.
Located in Union Station, ACME is the ultimate grab and go spot for breakfast, lunch or dinner. Offering bagels, egg sandwiches, soup, salad and a variety of hearty, delicious sandwiches, there’s something for everyone and it’s quick. Grab it on the way back to the hotel, grab it on the way to the train. I ordered the Italian Bistro sandwich while visiting which was spectacular. It’s hard to go wrong with an Italian sub and the truffle aioli took it to the next level.
Cheba Hut Toasted Subs
Located a few blocks away from Hotel Monaco Denver, Cheba Hut is a sandwich chain I was happy to discover. They have a long list of sandwiches to choose from which can be a bit overwhelming at first. While I only tried one, I’m sure they’re all tasty. It was my first night back from the mountains, I was starving and tired. The last thing I wanted to do was go out for food so instead, I decided on a short walk to grab a sandwich. Boy, was I glad I did. I ordered the “Dank” which is the pizza sub with homemade marinara, salami, pepperoni and provolone. It might seem like there’s a pattern to my sandwich decisions at this moment but I promise I order more than Italian subs. I took the sandwich back to the hotel and enjoyed the pretty spectacular tasting sub. Denver knows how to make a sandwich, I’ll give them that.
Hearth & Dram
Located in the Hotel Indigo and right across the street from Union Station, Hearth & Dram is a “rustic American restaurant and modern saloon featuring wood-fire cooking and more than 300 whiskies from around the world.” I didn’t have the opportunity to dine at Hearth & Dram for dinner but I did wander down for breakfast on my first morning in Denver. The restaurant has a very sleek, rustic look to it and the service is friendly and welcoming. I’m uncertain if their breakfast is open to other than hotel guests of Indigo but I did peek in on lunch and dinner and everything looks hearty and comforting. It’s an ideal place for large groups but also offers an intimate setting for a table of two.
A few days into my trip, three of my friends joined me in Denver. After all, I planned the Denver getaway around a girls’ trip to the mountains! We were all together in the city for only one night and dead set on going out for a nice dinner. We headed to Linger, in the Highland neighborhood thanks to a local’s recommendation. It did not disappoint. Before I get into the details, I recommend making a reservation. Linger is one of the obvious hot spots in Denver and it’s no surprise considering the casual, sophisticated vibe, impeccable service and phenomenal food. Linger is a tapas/small plates-focused restaurant with cuisines from around the world. You’ll find New American, Moroccan, Italian, Asian and more. The menu lacks a focused concept except that the flavors are out of this world and the dishes are shareable - but I believe that’s what makes it such a sought after destination. Their cocktail menu is admirable and their wine and spirits menu is just as great. I have a full restaurant review coming later this month so I’m going to stop myself here. All I have to say is that if Linger isn’t on your restaurant list for Denver yet, add it now.
A few months back I shared a recipe inspired by a burger I had at Next Door. It was the first place that I ate at in Denver and it was the first place that I had eaten at in over 12 hours. The day I arrived in Denver, I headed over to my hotel and immediately went on my computer to catch up on emails and work since I wasn’t able to get internet on the flight. A few hours later, the sun had set and since it was my first time in Denver, I wasn’t feeling adventurous. I was tired and I was hungry, two combinations that make me quite cranky. I headed across the street to Union Station and wandered into Next Door with a half hour left in happy hour. My waitress was very friendly and shared several recommendations both on the menu and for Denver. Needless to say, it was a pleasant dining experience and one that I needed at the moment. The food was so good, I still think about it today. This was the first restaurant that inspired me to write a copycat recipe. I’ll be talking more about Next Door in my Union Station feature coming next week. So stick around to read more about the restaurant that left a lasting impact on this foodie.
Sam’s No. 3
I don’t think my Food Network obsession is much of a secret. I watch more of the Food Network than any other channel combined. One of my favorite shows is Diners, Drive-Ins & Dives. I’m sure you’ve heard of it one time or another :-). Anyway, I always like to do a little research before my trips to see if I’ll be near any spots Guy visits on Triple-D. Lucky for me, Sam’s No. 3 was on the list and a few blocks away from Monaco Denver! A classic, old-school diner, Sam’s is a local favorite and I can see why. The service is friendly but efficient. The menu has just about everything you can think of on it. The food is top-notch quality diner food and best of all, it’s affordable. I ordered a simple breakfast combo of eggs and a waffle but do not let the simplicity fool you. It was exactly what I needed on an otherwise rough personal day and it was comforting. If you have hard-to-please eaters, take them to Sam’s. No one will be disappointed in this joint.
Sassafras American Eatery is a southern-style restaurant with a Cajun vibe. What I loved most about Sassafras was their impressive espresso menu. I hadn’t had coffee yet when my friends and I headed over for brunch and I could have really used a heavy dose of caffeine. My friends had cocktails in mind. Bloody Mary’s seemed to be their specialty so would it be a surprise if I told you we ordered several? Don’t judge just yet. Sassafras has this option of “Many Mini Mary’s” where you get to choose four miniature versions of any of their Bloody Mary’s (which is a lot). It takes out the trouble of making a decision and you’re not on the floor by the time brunch is over. The food was exactly as advertised, southern-style which meant hearty and comforting, my favorite! It was a fun spot with lots of personality. The service was top notch and our waiter had actually moved to Denver from Chicago so that was a nice touch to have in common. I’ll also have a full review of Sassafras coming soon.
Snooze an AM Eatery
I met my dear friend, Tiffany from The Dwelling Tree and Mamahood Essentials for breakfast at Snooze an AM Eatery in Union Station on my second morning in Denver. We’ve already established that Union Station was my favorite spot to frequent in Denver so it shouldn’t come as a surprise that I tried most of the restaurants. Snooze is another local favorite though I didn't know this at the time. There is a high probability that you’ll wait in line during peak hours to get a seat. The food is incredible. Their menu boasts both breakfast favorites, unique twists and lunch options. I ordered something I almost never order, Eggs Benedict, but not just any version - the Bella! Bella! Benny with thin slices of prosciutto, Taleggio cheese and a balsamic glaze on toasted Ciabatta. My mouth waters thinking about it. I’m not a Hollandaise girl or an Egg’s Benedict girl but this dish changed me for life. More important, it was so great being able to meet up with a blogger friend. Being a blogger, you make these close friends that know so much about you but it’s rare to meet them face to face without a screen between you. Being able to see Tiffany made eating at Snooze an even more memorable experience.