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Food & Drink: Readers' Choice Winners for the Best of Denver 2021

Readers love these fries...and the burgers, too.EXPAND
Readers love these fries...and the burgers, too.
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McDonald's French fries.

Every year, when people ask why we don't give more play to the Best of Denver Readers' Poll winners, that's our answer. Because invariably, McDonald's — rather than some independent local restaurant — has turned out to be the readers' choice in the Best French Fries category. Democracy may be a fine political system, but it's not the formula for a very tasty menu.

This year's Best of Denver Readers' Poll was a particularly vigorous exercise in democracy. For the first time, people were allowed to vote early and vote often...up to once a day. While that system allowed energetic fans of some eateries to push their favorites right to the top (we're looking at you, Chile con Quesadilla), it also had one notable result: McDonald's did not win the Best French Fry category!

Keep reading to find out who did, as well as see all the other winners in the Best of Denver 2021 Readers' Poll; we've included the editorial picks in those categories, too. (For the full descriptions of those winners, along with many more editorial awards in categories that were not on the poll, go to westword.com/best-of.) Bon appétit!

Best Breakfast
Eat! Food & Drink
Readers' choice: Snooze: An A.M. Eatery

Best Brunch
The Bindery
Readers' choice: Palenque Cocina Y Agaveria

Best Bottomless Brunch Deal
The Lobby
Readers' choice: The Buffet at Monarch Casino

Best Diner
Pete's Kitchen
Readers' choice: Steuben's

Best Doughnuts
Wake & Bake
Readers' choice: Berkeley Donuts

Best New Coffeehouse
Cabrona Coffee
Readers' choice: Stylus and Crate

Best Bakery
Moxie Bread Co.
Readers' choice: Grateful Bread Company

Best Breakfast Burrito
Tacos Rapidos
Readers' choice: Renegade Burrito

Best Green Chile
El Tejado
Readers' choice: Chile con Quesadilla

Best Tacos
La Calle Taqueria y Carnitas
Readers' choice: Chile con Quesadilla

Best Tamales
Kahlo's
Readers' choice: La Popular

Best Food Truck/Cart
Pho King Rapidos
Readers' choice: Chile con Quesadilla

Best Ice Cream/Gelato Shop
Smith + Canon
Readers' choice: High Point Creamery

Best Sandwich Shop
Dimestore Delibar
Readers' choice: Stack Subs

Best Hamburger
Sullivan Scrap Kitchen
Readers' choice: Snarfburger

Best Chicken Sandwich
Chicken Rebel
Readers' choice: Birdcall

Best Chicken Wings
King of Wings
Readers' choice: Fire on the Mountain

Best Fried Chicken
The Post Chicken & Beer
Readers' choice: Steuben's

Best French Fries
Tacos Tequila Whiskey
Readers' choice: Snarfburger

Best Nachos
Cochino Taco
Readers' Choice: Esters Pub

Best Pizzeria
Blue Pan Pizza
Readers' choice: Hops & Pie

Best Thick-Crust Pizza
Crush Pizza + Tap
Readers' choice: Hops & Pie

Best Thin-Crust Pizza
Cart-Driver
Readers' choice: Esters Pub

Best Barbecue Restaurant
Owlbear Barbecue
Readers' choice: Smokin' Yards BBQ

Best Southern/Soul Restaurant
Welton Street Cafe
Readers' choice: Nola Jane Restaurant & Bar

Best Vegan Restaurant
Somebody People
Readers' choice: City, O' City

Best Vegetarian Green Chile
Santo
Readers' choice: Palenque Cocina Y Agaveria

Best Veggie Burger
Meta Burger
Readers' choice: Snarfburger

Best Chinese Restaurant
Hop Alley
Readers' choice: Meta Asian Kitchen

Best Dumplings
Uncle Zoe's Chinese Kitchen
Readers' choice: Ace Eat Serve

Best Poke
Ohana Island Kitchen
Readers' choice: Poke House

Best Ramen
Ramen Star
Readers' choice: Uncle

Best Thai Restaurant
Taste of Thailand
Readers' choice: Taste of Thailand

Best Korean Restaurant
Dae Gee
Readers' choice: Dae Gee

Best Vietnamese Restaurant
Savory Vietnam
Readers' choice: Golden Bowl

Best Pho
Now Pho
Readers' choice: Pho 95

Best Indian Restaurant
The Madras Cafe
Readers' choice: Spice Room

Best Ethiopian Restaurant
Megenagna
Readers' choice: Konjo Ethiopian Food

Best Central/South American Restaurant (not Mexican)
Cafe Brazil
Readers' choice: Carne — Argentina Street Food

Best German/Eastern European Restaurant
Baba & Pop's Pierogi Kitchen & Bar
Readers' choice: Helga's German

Lobster ravioli at Olivia, Westword's choice for Best New Restaurant.
Lobster ravioli at Olivia, Westword's choice for Best New Restaurant.
The Denver Dish

Best Italian Restaurant
Barolo Grill
Readers' choice: Jovanina's Broken Italian

Best Old-School Italian Restaurant
Lechuga's Italian Restaurant
Readers' choice: Gaetano's

Best French Restaurant
Bistro Vendôme
Readers' choice: Coohills Restaurant and Bar

Best Mediterranean Restaurant
Safta
Readers' choice: Jerusalem Restaurant

Best Japanese Restaurant
Izakaya Den
Readers' choice: Osaka Ramen

Best Sushi
Sushi Den
Readers' choice: Sushi Den

Best New Bar
Dirty Laundry
Readers' choice: Nola Jane Restaurant & Bar

Best Happy Hour
Señor Bear
Readers' choice: Palenque Cocina Y Agaveria

Best House Margarita
Dos Santos
Readers' choice: Palenque Cocina Y Agaveria

Best Dive Bar
Nob Hill Inn
Readers' choice: Wild Corgi Pub

Best Wine Bar
Sunday Vinyl
Readers' choice: Noble Riot

Best Cidery
Haykin Family Cider
Readers' choice: Waldschänke Ciders

Best Colorado Distiller
Laws Whiskey House
Readers' choice: Laura Walters at Ironton Distillery & Crafthouse

Best Distillery Tasting Room
The Family Jones Spirit House
Readers' choice: Ironton Distillery & Crafthouse

Best New Brewery Taproom
Wild Provisions Beer Project
Readers' choice: Barquentine Brewing Company

Best Kids' Menu
Acova
Readers' choice: Ace Eat Serve

Best Restaurant Patio
My Brother' Bar
Readers' choice: Nola Jane Restaurant & Bar

Best Rooftop Patio
Linger
Readers' choice: Nola Jane Restaurant & Bar

Best Patio for Pets
Ratio Beerworks
Readers' choice: Ironton Distillery & Crafthouse

Best Seafood Restaurant
Jax Fish House
Readers' choice: Jax Fish House

Best Oysters
Stoic & Genuine
Readers' choice: Oyster Wulff

Best Steakhouse
Guard and Grace
Readers' choice: Monarch Chophouse

Best Food Hall
Milk Market
Readers' choice: Denver Central Market

Best Hotel Restaurant
Super Mega Bien
Readers' choice: Monarch Chophouse

Best New Restaurant
Olivia
Readers' choice: Nola Jane Restaurant & Bar

That's just a taste of what you'll find in the Best of Denver 2021. Ready for the rest? See it here.

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