As gubernatorial activities go, John Hickenlooper's mission last night was only slightly less hazardous than negotiating an election-year truce with various fracking contingents. Both involved scary liquids, but in this case one far more delicious than the fracking fluid that Hickenlooper once bragg ... More >>
Nancy LevineWhen I was at Urban Outfitters the other day, I spotted a book called Looks Like a Cock, with photos of dfferent items that look like, well, a cock. The sake holder pictured above was not in that book, but it could have been. Can you guess where I was drinking? Special bonus: An ... More >>
Nancy LevineMy mom loves a good Old-Fashioned -- and this was the best I've ever tasted. It was so good I couldn't help but wonder if the altitude helps make this drink so special. Can you guess where I'm drinking? Special bonus: Anyone who gives the first correct answer to the week's Where ... More >>
Nancy LevineTaking flash photos in bars will often piss people off -- and the drunk guy next to me definitely lost his patience as I tried to take the perfect shot of this bar. Which, in fact, made it the perfect shot. Needless to say, when you're drinking here, you're in close quarters. Can ... More >>
Nancy LevineWe're heading toward the shortest day of the year, and the light hitting this Bloody Mary is the sun coming up over Denver just after 7 a.m. -- when the bar that poured it opens. Can you guess where I'm drinking? Special bonus: Anyone who gives the first correct answer to the we ... More >>
Nancy LevineThe Christmas tree of rosemary almost pushed me over the edge -- but after I removed the greenery, I found this cocktail both festive and delicious. Can you guess where I'm drinking? Special bonus: Anyone who gives the first correct answer to the week's Where am I drinking/eatin ... More >>
A Flickr photo.Troy Atherton Guard opened TAG, his space at 1441 Larimer Street, one year ago, and tonight the restaurant will celebrate one year in business with an Anniversary Party. We've thought TAG was special from the start: Nancy Levine profiled its gin and tonic for a Drink of the W ... More >>
Nancy LevineI'm often looking for a place for a nosh, an espresso and possibly a little hair of the dog. The first two are easy, but the dog hair is tough -- not because it's not available at a myriad of places, but because I don't want to be judged. At the place where the above pic was shot, ... More >>
Nancy LevineI can't believe I'm saying this, but as far as chain restaurants go, this one actually doesn't suck. True, the raspberry mojito was sweet enough for my 16-year-old niece, and the martinis were a little on the small side, but, hell, it's still more than I expected from a chain rest ... More >>
Nancy LevineThe photo above comes from a great bar. My friend calls it a dive bar, but to me, it's just a bar-bar. It's not fancy, and it doesn't cater to hipster poseurs. Best of all, the bartender named Kathy was the nicest and best bartender I've ever had in a neighborhood bar. Can you g ... More >>
Nancy LevineYes, I'm drinking a margarita, it's not the weekend and the sun is still out. Why should that be a surprise? But the margarita was surprisingly good, especially since my expectations were so low at this bar within a fast-casual restaurant. And the reason it was so good? They make ... More >>
Nancy LevineI know it's a horrible thing to say, but I can't stand going out with a man who orders a Cosmopolitan. Oh, whatever. You wouldn't fault me if I said I couldn't stand going out with a man who wears three-inch heels. Look, it's just not manly. Order a vodka and cranberry if you don' ... More >>
Nancy LevineA friend wanted to get a drink at a "New York" type of bar, and it took me all of 30 seconds to decide where I wanted to go. Not sure why I think of this place as a New York-ish bar...but it could be the windows. Or maybe it's the fantastic neuvo-retro cocktail menu. Can you g ... More >>
Nancy LevineIf you count on Cafe Colorado, the storefront that opened last year at 287 Columbine Street, for your morning joint of java, you may need to look elsewhere this morning. The sign above is posted on the door; more ominous is a full voicemail box (at 303-377-8902) and another sign ... More >>
Nancy LevineYes, we Westworders love our charcuterie. And this plate, stripped down to the quintessential French style (the proprietor of this establishment would have it no other way), comes courtesy of a charcutier who graduated from Johnson and Wales. Can you guess where I'm eating? Spec ... More >>
Nancy LevineI thought I'd had the worst margarita ever -- until I took a sip of this one. I don't know why bars insist on using crappy sweet and sour mix. Hey, 1965 is calling and wants their shitty mixers back. That said, I do like their televisions for watching football games. Can you gue ... More >>
First, Ryan Layman left Avenue Grill and moved across the street to Steuben's. Now comes word that after seven years at Avenue Grill, Randy Layman -- Ryan's twin brother -- is heading to Jonesy's EatBar to become bar manager there. Randy poured out his 'tending philosophy to Nancy Levine fo ... More >>
Nancy LevineIn the dead of winter, a sip of this delicious pineapple mojito was enough to transport me to sunny South America. Guess where I was drinking, and post your answer below. Special bonus: Anyone who gives the first correct answer to any of the week's Where am I drinking/eating po ... More >>
Nancy LevineVery few mixed drinks include Scotch on their list of ingredients. That's convenient, since I don't really love Scotch -- but I do enjoy a good Blood and Sand, and this one was great. You shouldn't need coaching to answer this: Where was I drinking? Special bonus: Anyone who gi ... More >>
Nancy LevineThe night before Thanksgiving is always a busy night for bars. After all, when your biggest mental challenge the next day will be choosing between pumpkin or apple pie, a hangover doesn't seem like a big deal. So my friend decided shotgunning beers and dancing till closing sounded ... More >>
Nancy LevineHe's a Soul Man! On Friday night, I went to Lincoln's Road House to see Dear Marsha play its last gig (the frontwomen are moving away, and the band will be no more). The club was packed, and a rumor quickly ran through the crowd that Dan Aykroyd, who was in town for a liquor prom ... More >>
Nancy LevineElwood sings the blues.Over the weekend, Dan Aykroyd was in town signing bottles of Crystal Head vodka at Applejack Wine and Spirits. Blues Brothers fans who were undoubtedly thrilled at the prospect of being able to press flesh the one and only Elwood Blues on Saturday afternoon, wou ... More >>
Nancy LevineMMMMMManhattan My love of Manhattans is no secret -- but the happy hour at this downtown establishment is not nearly as well-known as it should be. Four-ounce well Manhattans, vodka/gin martinis, cosmos and lemondrops for just $6 each -- and a great happy hour menu as well. So ... More >>
Nancy Levine The band playing in this space wasn't enough to distract me from a much needed cocktail Friday night. Nor was the art show hanging on the walls, although I ordered the No Ka Oi pomegranate punch, named after one of the pieces in the exhibit. Can you guess where I'm drinking?
Nancy LevineI only have a few rules for bartenders. The number one rule? When people come in the morning after Halloween for Sunday brunch, don't make them wait fifteen minutes while you set up the bar. Serve them their drinks immediately, and then get your station in order. So where was I ... More >>
Nancy Levine This restaurant is the first place I take out-of-town guests who think Denver is fly-over culinary country. And while their shock over our incredibly good dinner was sweet, the bar's new selection of fall cocktails was perhaps too sweet. The one above was made with Leopold Bros. ... More >>
Nancy Levine I love an ice-cold Manhattan almost anywhere, but the drink's particularly delightful at this fine dining establishment in Denver -- where the chef is smokin' hot, and the bartender is adorable. Can you guess where I'm drinking?
Nancy Levine Although some people think that mint juleps should only be imbibed in the summer, I disagree. Wholeheartedly. So when I saw a mint julep on the menu at this establishment that's trying to make a name for itself with an impressive whiskey selection, despite the chilly weather out ... More >>
Nancy Levine I went out last night to try the new fall cocktails at a place I love, but don't get to nearly as often as I'd like. After I'd tasted a number of delicious drinks (including a yummy red sangria with an orange twist, pictured above), the proprietor handed me a glass of red wine. ... More >>
Lori MidsonLobby American Grille opened to big crowds on Friday, September 25. What you might have missed this week on Cafe Society while getting your free jolt of instant java at Starbucks: A second outpost of Toast, the kick-ass pancake palace, took up residence in the former Village Inn ... More >>
Nancy Levine Rocktober is in full swing and if you're looking for a bar before or after -- or during -- the playoff games that isn't full of 22-year-olds, this is the spot for you. If you're lucky, you'll meet cute, fun, drunk guys named Smiddy or Smitty. Or have public TV-watching older me ... More >>
Nancy LevineKen Kody, Mix MasterI took my judging job seriously during the DeKuyper Mix Master Bartender Contest at Saturday's Denver Food & Wine event, tasting eight cocktails. Really tasting eight cocktails, since these were complex concoctions (a DeKuyper product had to be part of the mix) ... More >>
Nancy LevineI HEART Harvest week. If there's one week to go out to eat, it's this one. The harvest menus available at your local independent restaurants are exceptional -- and the cocktails are great, too. In fact, the cocktail in the above shot was so good that I actually forgot to take th ... More >>
Nancy Levine Don't let the camera angle fool you. That's a GIGANTIC margarita, made with well tequila and sweet and sour straight out of a gallon jug. Is it delicious? Nope. Not even close. But this venue has been serving these golden jugs for years. And the crowds can't seem to get enough ... More >>
Photo by Nancy LevineHolly Hartnett.It's about that time. Today in Cafe Society: • Behind the Bar with Holly Hartnett of Venue. • Under Fire: Caramel Groundhog Day. • Guess where I'm eating? • Denver's newest road trip: Interstate Kitchen & Bar. • Oktoberfest is for sale. Will some ... More >>
The Ginn Mill has two contestants in the Mix Master competition.Judge Nancy Levine, at your service. The bartending competition will come to order! Bartending competitions are one of the many things I love about the spirit industry (you don't see busboy competitions, do you?). And I partic ... More >>
Nancy Levine It may be in the mid '80s today, but it will be winter before we know it. So guess which patio I'm sitting on, enjoying the last of summer and a delightful peach, plum and nectarine infused martini?
Nancy Levine Miscreants have been stealing letters from Bastien's sign, prompting this new version that's now showing at the venerable steakhouse.
Nancy Levine Guess where I'm drinking this behemoth margarita? Not the best margarita I've ever had, but definitely one of the largest.
Nancy Levine The space at 231 Milwaukee Street that most recently held Bar Luxe and Euro is empty again -- except for all the ghosts. Over the last thirty years, this address has been home to everything from the Kiva (great green chile recipe) to the Bay Wolf to Vartan's Jazz to the Manhatt ... More >>
Nancy LevineFiguring out where I'm drinking should be easy; there's a hint in the photo. Figuring out what will be harder, since you can't find this drink in any other Denver bar, although it's making a comeback on the East Coast. What is it -- and where?
Nancy LevineWhile some people are enjoying the great outdoors this weekend, others of us are enjoying the greatest of the indoors: dark, dissolute bars. Where am I drinking?
Nancy LevineIt's a jungle out there! Charlie Master in the Sketch booth. The Denver Zoo hosted its twentieth annual Do at the Zoo last night, and Denver's party animals were out in force, sampling tidbits from dozens of restaurants and getting wild! See for yourself on our slideshow.
Nancy LevinePrimebar, the new restaurant in the old home of Palamino at 1515 Arapahoe Street, opened last month -- but it threw its big grand-opening bash, a benefit for Food Bank of the Rockies, last night. The very pretty space was packed with pretty people -- but looking even better than the cl ... More >>
Twins Will and Dave Elger, who were born in Mexico but are very much Denverites, worked in the tequila business for a decade before creating their own five years ago: Muchote Tequila. Nancy Levine first caught up with it last September at Lime XS, where she discovered it made a good mango margarita. ... More >>
Nancy Levine Stopped in at Bill Ward's miniBAR Friday night, for an early look at the start of its grand-opening festivities. It's tucked below the old Village Inn at 2623 East Second Avenue. And although the place is tiny, it's definitely big on style.
Above is the season's greeting that Nancy Levine, our intrepid Drink of the Week columnist, found when she was out last night judging the 2008 Holiday Cocktail Competition. Seventeen restaurants -- all members of the Denver Independent Network of Restaurants -- had signed up to create spec ... More >>
Calling all bar chefs! Finlandia is looking for Denver’s best bartenders to compete in the eleventh annual Finlandia Vodka Cup regionals at Martinia Ranch on October 20. This is a fabulous opportunity to show your creativity, as the contest emphasizes crafting delicious, original cocktails, not ... More >>