Gaetano's Restaurant

3760 Tejon St.
Denver, CO 80211
Best Of


  • Mon-Thu 11pm-10pm, Fri-Sat 11am-11pm, Sun 10am-9pm
  • $$
  • Kid Friendly, Patio/Sidewalk Dining, Smoking, Takeout, Vegetarian Friendly, Wheelchair accessible
  • Dinner, Lunch
  • Full bar
  • Free Parking, Parking Lot Available
  • Reservations Accepted, Reservations Recommended
Gaetano’s has a very colorful past. The Smaldone family founded the Italian-American restaurant in 1947, serving homemade pasta and meatballs doused in red sauce in the dining room while book-making and other less savory operations went on behind closed doors – which explained the bulletproof glass in the front of the joint. Ultimately, the family discontinued that portion of their operations, then sold Gaetano’s altogether to the Wynkoop Group, which, nearly a decade later and now partnered with Breckenridge Brewery, undertook a major renovation, knocking down walls and revamping the menu. When the changes were unveiled in the summer of 2012, they came as a shock to generations of north Denverites – but the new interior was actually a pleasant surprise, with big windows (not bulletproof) and comfortable booths by the bar. The menu updates were less successful. When in doubt, go with dishes flavored by the old-school Gaetano’s, including meatballs (offered both as an app and a side), lasagna and gnocchi. And for an offer that you – and the kitchen – really can’t refuse? Ask for the on-request-only pasta topped with sausage, green peppers and a very traditional red sauce.

Related Stories (5)

  • Is a meal at the revamped Gaetano's an offer you can't refuse?
    2 years ago by Gretchen Kurtz

    I can only imagine what Chauncey Smaldone, the youngest of the loan-sharking, book-making Smaldone brothers, would've said when Lou's Food Bar hung out its shingle down the street. For decades, Smaldone ran Gaetano's, a cherished It...

  • Gaetano's on Tejon Street serves up great food
    4 years ago by Laura Shunk

    While I nursed a glass of cheap house red at the Gaetano's bar, I watched neighbors cycle in to pick up their to-go orders. First came a couple in running gear, talking with a little too much enthusiasm about how great their workout...

  • Bite Me
    10 years ago by Jason Sheehan

    Following service this past Saturday, Adega suddenly went dark. It came as a helluva shock. I mean, this was Adega. No place in the city had gotten better reviews locally or more love from the national press than this hip outpost at...

  • All in the Family
    10 years ago by Jason Sheehan

    In this cash-and-carry world, nothing is inviolate and everything is for sale. Even memory. Especially memory. There's good money to be made in strip-mining nostalgia, and for those who find a ripe vein -- like the folks at Wynkoop ...

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More Italian Restaurants in Northwest Denver

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More Italian Restaurants in Denver