Best Southwestern Restaurant - 2001
Readers' Choice: On the Border
Denver's never been overrun with Southwestern eateries, but we'd gladly surrender to this one. Everything in Julia Blackbird's pays homage to the Southwest, from the bright, colorful art and knickknacks -- the decor duplicates the owners' home -- to the chile-infused food made by chef/part owner Julia Siegfried-Garrison. The menu is basic, there's no liquor license (although we hope that may be coming), and on weekends, it's standing room only. But the place is packed for a reason: Siegfried-Garrison makes food that hits the soul, from complex chiles to Navajo stew, blue corn-coated chiles rellenos to zippy salsas. Creamy queso fresco adds richness to her enchiladas, the hearty posole will cure anything that ails you, and the pine-nut-packed chocolate cake is a perfect finale to any meal. It's the shortest distance between here and Sante Fe as the blackbird flies.