Viva La Fresh Revolution at Bubu

Mexican Bubu bowl, with brown rice and fresh tofu.EXPAND
Mexican Bubu bowl, with brown rice and fresh tofu.
Chelsea Keeney

Larimer Square's Bubu is the love child of restaurateur Troy Guard and fast casual dining — and it's just what the downtown strip needed: quick, delicious and healthy meals in a multitude of mix-and-match options for almost any palate. Bubu's menu  — from Mexican to Thai to Californian — is not limited to just one style of cuisine, and all of those styles can be made vegetarian. Self-proclaimed as “The Fresh Revolution,” with seasonal and locally sourced ingredients, the establishment is definitely a game changer when it comes to the downtown business lunch rush. Gone are the days of a mediocre 3,000-calorie burrito or a sad salad from a chain down the street.

Bubu's cubbyhole location below street level looks a little cramped, but tables turn over quickly. It’s a great place to stop in for a quick solo bite or to grab lunch with a colleague. With dishes so nice, I had to try it twice. First time in was the paleo salad bowl; the next time, the Mexican bowl with tofu lured me in.

Black beans, cherry tomatoes, charred corn, jicama and pumpkin seeds are generously scattered atop a choice of base: rice, noodles or salad. Brown rice seemed fitting this time. Then cilantro and a side of house-made Mexican dressing top a selected protein — tofu, for me. The tofu is sprinkled with Guard's signature Bubu spice: a mixture of togarashi chili powder, sugar, salt and pepper. Between that and the dressing, it's  a clear-your-sinuses spicy dish, but the cool jicama helps temper the fire while adding a nice crunch. The warm brown rice juxtaposes the cool yet spicy tofu nicely. And the corn lends a tiny surprise of sweetness amidst the whirlwind of spice. Every bite is filled with sustenance and flavor. If you’re intimidated by spice, just request a light touch on the Bubu spice and ask for avocado.

Inside the former Tag Raw Bar, Bubu is quickly gaining popularity.EXPAND
Inside the former Tag Raw Bar, Bubu is quickly gaining popularity.
Chelsea Keeney

In a fast-casual realm of weekday lunches that have become synonymous with a sub-par dining experience that’s merely a quick nosh to get you through the rest of the day, Bubu does indeed stand out as revolutionary. And on my visits, the service was as fresh as the ingredients — a friendly server remembered me after only two visits. With a plethora of flavor combinations that will suit even the pickiest eaters and and an attitude as nourishing as the food, Bubu is true to its tagline. And I agree: Viva la Fresh Revolution! 

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Bubu

1423 Larimer St.
Denver, CO 80202

303-996-2685

www.bubu-denver.com


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