Best Small Plates - 2005
Tapas and other small plates are becoming almost de rigueur, now that the Denver dining scene is catching on to the fact that less is sometimes more. And no one does the small-plate thing quite as well as Sean Kelly's Somethin' Else. Last year, Kelly dumped the fine-dining approach of Clair de Lune in favor of casual small plates, and since the amuses and appetizers were always the best courses at Clair, it's no wonder that Somethin Else's small plates are something special. Kelly and chef de cuisine Seth Black have put a decidedly Mediterranean spin on the original Spanish concept of wine-bar snacking, offering dishes like fried baby artichoke hearts in a thin, cold citric aioli; spicy patatas bravas with a double shot of hot and sweet paprika; and a spread of seafood plates presented so nakedly that every flavor has its chance to shine. These tapas are the tops.