Mac Nation Cafe
Mark Antonation

No, Indian Hills isn't on everyone's standard restaurant circuit, but the tiny town makes a perfect, fast getaway from Denver. And beyond the beautiful scenery and bountiful hiking and biking trails, it has one distinct draw that you won't find in any other mountain town: a restaurant dedicated to macaroni and cheese. Mac Nation Cafe starts with a mound of rotini (with more nooks and crannies than elbow mac) enveloped in creamy, gooey, cheesy sauce. Eat it just like that, order it with toasted panko breadcrumbs, or select from a list of more than two dozen toppings, many inspired by regional American food. Anything barbecue, like the East Carolina with pulled pork and barbecue sauce, is a smart choice, since Mac Nation smokes its own meats, or go local with a slathering of pork green chile. Mac Nation is open for curbside pick-up and delivery; visit facebook.com/macnationcreation for a menu and hours.

mac-nation.com
Carne Argentina Street Food
Mark Antonation

You'd think that uncommon Argentinian sandwiches would be enough of a draw for one restaurant. After all, where else in town are you going to get lomitos, choripanes, vacios and milanesas (pork, sausage, steak and breaded cutlet sandwiches, respectively)? Even better, each Carne Argentina Street Food sandwich comes with a pile of crusty, crunchy wedge fries seasoned with a house spice blend that you can dip in tangy chimichurri for a true taste of Buenos Aires. You can get the fries, along with the rest of a great Argentinean meal, by placing your order on Grubhub. Or stop by the little spot on Santa Fe.

Best Place to Dip Your Fries in Ice Cream

Dang

Dang
Mark Antonation

The hungry weirdo who was the first person to dip fries into soft-serve ice cream turned out to be a genius, and the team behind Little Man Ice Cream is a close second, since fries and ice cream are the specialty at Dang. A pint of piping hot fries will cost you $4 — well worth it when you pair the food with one of the rotating soft-serves, which might be banana pudding, salted caramel, berry blast, peanut butter, vegan chocolate or a swirl of two flavors. You can also get specialty cones, tons of fun toppings and the bomb cyclone, Dang's upscale take on the classic blizzard. Grab your cones and fries to go; Dang is also selling pints of Little Man Ice Cream to enjoy at home.

dangsoftserve.com
Cafe Brazil
Summer Powell

Brazilian cuisine is a rarity in Denver outside of the chain churrascarias, so for those who want to explore food beyond skewers of steak from the Western Hemisphere's second-most-populous country, Cafe Brazil has been a treasure trove of feijoada (Brazil's stewy national dish), seafood and caipirinhas for nearly thirty years. Coconut, chiles, black beans, plantains and collard greens are prevalent, spiked with surprising bursts of ginger, curry and dende oil. Cafe Brazil has streamlined service for curbside pick-up, with a roster that includes three styles of feijoada — brisket, pork or vegetarian — to choose from.

cafebrazildenver.com
Platt Park Brewing/Gates Deli
Jonathan Shikes

At a neighborhood spot like Platt Park Brewery, small changes can make a big difference. That was the idea behind Gates Deli & Grog, a tiny, 550-square-foot kitchen that Platt Park owner Colby Rankin and his family opened last summer in a space adjacent to the brewery. Serving up sandwiches, salads and soup, Gates serves its food through two windows — one out to the sidewalk, and one directly into the taproom. Although you can no longer drink there, you can now grab packaged brews at Platt Park to take with your grub.

plattparkbrewing.com
Misfit Snackbar
Courtesy of Misfit Snackbar

Chef Bo Porytko set up shop last fall in the Middleman's compact kitchen, serving a weird but delicious assortment of bar snacks, small plates and sandwiches. Have you ever had a corn dog that tastes exactly like a Reuben sandwich, or a whole broccoli head tempura-fried and served like a bone-in pork chop? Porytko's creations went splendidly with beers and shots at the bar at Middleman. And even though you can't belly up for a night of drinking, Misfit Snackbar has what you need, if mapo tofu sandwiches and pastrami tacos with chicken-liver mousse are your idea of necessities. Visit @misfitsnackbar on Instagram for the latest menus and hours of operation, then call in your order for some curbside craziness.

Just Be Kitchen
Mark Antonation

If perusing a restaurant's menu conjures more anxiety than excitement because you can't eat gluten, relax: Everything on Just Be Kitchen's menu is free of wheat, barley and rye (the primary gluten offenders). When she opened her spot, owner Jennifer Peters set out to satisfy guests on restrictive diets, creating a roster of comfort food that ranges from green chile-smothered burritos to country-style chicken and dumplings, all with your needs in mind. Biscuits, pancakes, brownies and cookies make appearances on the menu, too — a dream come true for those accustomed to going without such items. Peters just launched online ordering for pick-up and delivery; visit Just Be's website for complete service.

justbekitchen.com
Get fresh produce or dishes made with fresh produce at Somebody People.
Chelsea Chorpenning
Get fresh produce or dishes made with fresh produce at Somebody People.

Never has a restaurant channeled Miami Vice better than this plant-based South Broadway eatery; the pink and mint interior and intensely curated Instagram page combine to exude a laid-back, sun-bleached island vibe — but that belies the seriousness with which the kitchen treats the food. Like beautiful people sashaying down South Beach wearing the skimpiest of bathing costumes, the food is lean and sexy. Somebody People, named for a line in a David Bowie song, is offering curbside pick-up and limited delivery of a pared-down slate that includes coffee and juices in jars, along with pancakes, mushies on toast, eggplant sandwiches, granola and soup. Visit @somebodypeopledenver on Instagram for hours and menus.

somebodypeople.com
Now Pho
Courtesy Now Pho

Pho Le was a favorite stop for Vietnamese noodle soups on Federal Boulevard for years, but the compact restaurant, known for its late-night service, recently changed hands. Now Pho didn't miss a beat, though, and its rich, beefy broth is as good as that of its predecessor. But for something extra-special, the kitchen offers a unique style called Pho Two Bowls, in which the broth comes in a piping-hot stone bowl still bubbling from the stovetop, and you add toppings to your own liking. While you can't take the hot stone bowl home with you, Now Pho's menu is otherwise available for pick-up and delivery through ChowNow (or just call the restaurant for pick-up).

nowpho.com
Ohana Island Kitchen
Laura Shunk

There's only one Ohana Island Kitchen, the unique and traditional Hawaiian lunch and dinner joint on the 15th Street hill in LoHi. In the summer of 2016, Louie and Regan Colburn started selling their poke out of a side window across the street; they settled into a full brick-and-mortar eatery six months later. There you can choose from two simple offerings — shoyu poke or spicy poke — both made with sushi-grade ahi tuna. Glistening, ruby-hued cubes of fish are marinated in soy, ginger and sesame for the former, and spicy mayo with masago (salty fish roe) for the latter. You won't find a long list of additional sauces or mix-ins; the Colburns keep their recipes pure so the fish is the star. Accept no substitutes: Ohana is open for takeout, curbside pick-up and delivery through DoorDash and UberEats.

ohanadenver.com

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