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Q:You said Morton’s of Chicago has great steaks, but not the greatest steaks you’ve tasted. What do you consider Denver’s best steakhouse?

A:Denver’s first Morton’s, which moved from the Tivoli to 1710 Wynkoop Street in 1995, was my favorite steakhouse for many years. Although the staff was often snooty, especially to female customers, the beef was always a delight. (I was much less impressed with the area’s second Morton’s, at 8480 East Belleview Avenue in Englewood, after eating there for my November 2 "Overload" review.)

When Del Frisco’s Double Eagle Steak House came to town in 1997 (it’s at 8100 East Orchard Road in Greenwood Village, 303-796-0100), I switched my steakhouse allegiances. At Del Frisco’s, I’ve never had a piece of meat that wasn’t packed with flavor, and the restaurant has all the other steakhouse requisites down pat: impeccable but unpretentious service, a not-too-manly atmosphere, rich, gooey side dishes, a great wine list and rich, gooey desserts. I’ve also never had any bland beef at my second-favorite steakhouse in town, Sullivan’s Steakhouse (1745 Wazee Street, 303-295-2664) — but then, it’s owned by the same company as Del Frisco’s.

Still, the best steak I’ve cut into recently didn’t come from one of the big boys; it was the porterhouse at the Manhattan Grill (231 Milwaukee Street, 303-333-6444). Cut from the smallest part of the short loin and adorned with only its juices and a sprinkling of salt and pepper, the 22-ounce steak was cooked a perfect medium-rare and possessed the bloody, beefy taste that makes eating meat one of life’s greatest guilty pleasures.

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