Holidays

Ten Festive Dinners and Parties on Christmas Eve and Christmas Day

Il Posto's risotto di mare anchors its Feast of the Seven Fishes.
Il Posto's risotto di mare anchors its Feast of the Seven Fishes. Il Posto

Give yourself the gift of good food, good times and no cleaning up this Christmas. From swanky multi-course meals in elegant surroundings to casual, comfortable bar bashes, there's somewhere for everyone (at every price point) to celebrate Christmas Eve and Christmas Day. While many of our favorite eateries are hosting excellent annual feasts, including Feasts of the Seven Fishes at Coperta and all the Jax Fish Houses, a Duck the Halls dinner at Beast + Bottle and a prix fixe feast at Hearth & Dram, we've rounded up ten new events around town, starting with December 24 dinners.

click to enlarge A booth is waiting for you on Christmas Eve at Arcana. - DANIELLE LIRETTE
A booth is waiting for you on Christmas Eve at Arcana.
Danielle Lirette

Arcana

909 Walnut Street, Boulder
303-444-3885
arcanarestaurant.com

This Boulder establishment is serving up a fairly traditional holiday roast — that is, if you grew up on a farm. The star of the three-course, family-style feast is a lamb shoulder from local ranch Buckner Family Farm, served with buttermilk potatoes, braised leeks, pears poached in red wine and smoked gravy. There's pecan pie to satisfy your sweet tooth, and you can add Arcana's house nog (aged rum, amaro and fennel seed crème Anglaise), wine, cider and beer onto the $65 meal. Find the whole menu on the restaurant's website, then book your table (reservations start at 5 p.m.) online or by phone.

Il Posto

2601 Larimer Street
303-394-0100
ilpostodenver.com

We can't compile a list of Christmas Eve dinners without including at least one Feast of the Seven Fishes, and this year's entry is going to be a beauty. Chef Andrea Frizzi's five-course feast includes seven (if not eight) sea creatures, with mussel, clam and saffron croquettes; a striking black squid-ink spaghetti with calamari and uni butter; seafood risotto; and black cod with white beans and broccolini, all served in the equally impressive space. Dinner will run you $95 without drinks, or $140 with wine pairings. Call the restaurant directly to request a table on the second level with sweeping views of RiNo, or book your seat on Il Posto's website, where you can also take a look at the complete menu.

click to enlarge Liberati's oenobeers make festive Christmas drinks. - DANIELLE LIRETTE
Liberati's oenobeers make festive Christmas drinks.
Danielle Lirette

Liberati

2403 Champa Street
303-862-5652
liberatidenver.com

Liberati's Christmas Eve seafood spread is definitely Italian, but it's no Feast of the Seven Fishes; that's because this craft brewery is Italian-Italian, not Italian-American. So the four-course meal that includes baccala (a salt cod meatball), tuna tartare, lobster fettuccine and scallops with pancetta won't include your Grandma's greatest hits — unless Nonna was from Rome — but it will arrive at your table looking pretty as a present and is guaranteed to be more memorable than the ill-fitting, lumpy, handmade socks you got last year. Buy your tickets ($108.80, including tax and tip) plus optional beer and wine pairings ($38.40 and $51.20) on the brewpub's Facebook page; reservations start at 5 p.m. Already have plans for Christmas Eve? Liberati's also serving a family-style Christmas Day dinner, with stuffed meatloaf, a white lasagna with pesto, and pandoro, an Italian Christmas cake, all for $76.80.


click to enlarge Christmas in Mexico has never tasted so good. - MARK ANTONATION
Christmas in Mexico has never tasted so good.
Mark Antonation

Lola Coastal Mexican

1575 Boulder Street
720-570-8686
loladenver.com

This LoHi Mexican seafood shack underwent a significant remodel and menu overhaul in 2019, and if you haven't seen the new digs, you should take in the brighter, breezier space before the new year — and Christmas Eve, when the kitchen is turning out its mouthwatering Mexican-style paella, is the perfect time to do it. The restaurant is taking reservations from 3 to 8 p.m.; while Lola will be serving its regular menu, you'll want to opt for the three-course dinner at just $40 per head. The celebratory main course is a paella platter piled high with rice that brings the flavors of Baja instead of Barcelona, plus a wealth of chorizo, chicken, shrimp, clams and mussels, with the option to add on a whole lobster tail for $13. Thirsty? Pitchers of sangria, margaritas and bottles of wine are just $30. Reserve your spot on Lola's website.

Oak at Fourteenth

1400 Pearl Street, Boulder
303-444-3622
oakatfourteenth.com

As with everything Oak does, its Christmas Eve menu is approachable but elevated. Familiar and comforting flavors make up the three-course prix fixe meal, but instead of dry, overcooked ham slices stacked on a platter, you'll find Benton's Country Ham and smoked cheddar gnocchi, and in place of creamed spinach you'll find creamed kale seasoned with pecorino served alongside braised lamb cannelloni. Reservations for the $85 dinner ($135 with wine pairings) start at 4:30 p.m.; call the restaurant to make yours.

Keep reading for Christmas Day celebrations.
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Amy Antonation knows that street tacos are infinitely superior to tacos that come covered in squiggles of crema, and she will stab you with her knitting needles if you try to convince her otherwise.
Contact: Amy Antonation