Business Class

Trinity Grille still has the feel -- and the food -- of a men's club.

Bonus points, too, for a waitstaff that was quick and surprisingly well-timed even when the place was jammed shoulder-to-shoulder in the worst depths of a busy lunch seating. Trinity Grille has achieved that rare style of service that's efficient without feeling hurried, and unremarkable only because the servers appear exactly when needed and don't intrude unless called.

At both lunch and dinner, Trinity offers a good, New England-style fish and chips featuring a workhorse beer batter that's not too sweet and just light enough that it doesn't burn before the haddock inside cooks. The Germantown schnitzel, which I enjoyed as a quick dinner on another visit, was also simple and straightforward. Medallions of veal had been pounded thin, lightly breaded, then fried and served in a heavy, unbreakable lemon, butter and caper sauce, with steamed broccoli and Trinity potatoes -- fat chunks of boiled, baby red potatoes in an addictive green-onion-and-cheese sauce gooey enough to make any dieter cry. It was a good, solid meal, and while it's not going to be one of those meals I remember forever, as I walked out of the place that night, I had absolutely no doubt that I'd been well fed.

A generous fourteen-ounce New York strip made for another good, solid meal. Ordering the steak medium rare actually resulted in it being brought to the table that way, grill-marked and sizzling, with sticky mashed potatoes and another side of steamed vegetables that were easy to ignore (which is the proper way to treat your vegetables when you're in a steak-and-potatoes kind of mood). This was steak, pure and simple -- well-aged on the rack, not the grill, and delivered with a noteworthy lack of fuss. While few restaurants seem able to let an entree go without first covering it or stuffing it with something else, Trinity's kitchen knows when to leave well enough alone.

Male call: Eating is a serious business at Trinity Grille.
Mark A. Manger
Male call: Eating is a serious business at Trinity Grille.

Location Info


Trinity Grille

1801 Broadway St.
Denver, CO 80202

Category: Restaurant > American

Region: Downtown Denver


1801 Broadway
Hours: 11 a.m.-4:30 p.m. Monday-Friday
5:30-10 p.m. Monday-Saturday
Closed Sunday

Crabcakes: $12 single/$14double
Crab and corn chowder: $3/$6
Fish and chips: $11/$10 lunch
Germantown schnitzel: $16
Aged New York strip: $28
Nanaís slaw: $3

Except when it comes to seafood, perhaps. That's where Trinity leaves the "everywhere else" of simpler times and becomes part of the contemporary dining scene -- the one where you can get steak béarnaise and herbed Boursin at Dave & Buster's or find a Wolfgang Puck franchise in an airport concourse. The seafood side of the menu features such trend-chasing combinations as grilled Atlantic salmon with pineapple-chipotle salsa, sesame-coated mahi-mahi with udon noodles, and the ubiquitous ahi tuna -- served black-and-blue in this case, very rare, with soy and wasabe. At Trinity Grille, though, I found myself wanting steak, a hearty soup, even wiener schnitzel (which may seem an odd thing to find at a place like this but makes sense as soon as you taste it and feel the weight of it settle on you). That's the sort of food that matches the decor, the dim lighting and the overwhelmingly solid feel of the restaurant.

The mere thought of pineapple-chipotle salsa didn't seem right here. Ditto for the udon noodles and ahi. Those are summer tastes -- light, sharp, stinging and bright -- and Trinity is not a place that inspires thoughts of summer. Tadich Grill is one of the world's best cold-weather restaurants, because it's the sort of place where you want to curl up around a bowl of soup to warm your insides. I'm feeling the same way about Trinity: I can't wait to go back and try that chowder again when the first snow hits, have some fried lobster when the leaves start to fall, settle into one of those deep green booths for a nice dinner with my wife while the wind howls outside.

On my own internal calendar, the seasons have already changed.

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