You can't possibly be bored with all the breakfast, lunch and dinner options in Denver. But variety is the spice of life, and soon this city will see a spicy variety of new restaurants offering everything from Southern fare to ice cream to Chinese hot pot. Here are thirteen restaurants expected to open in January or February 2018.
1380 Horizon Avenue, Lafayette
Stem Ciders is building a farmhouse restaurant and cider-making facility that will have its own orchard, a wood-burning oven and a menu from Boulder restaurant luminaries Daniel Asher and Kelly Whitaker. Set on a hilltop with 360-degree views of the Front Range and Rocky Mountains, Acreage is expected to open on February 10. Stem will keep its original RiNo taproom at 2811 Walnut Street open.
2706 Larimer Street
American Bonded is a collaboration between Williams & Graham founder Sean Kenyon and Justin Anthony and Lisa Vedovelli of Matchbox. The bar will emphasize American whiskey, and the team is rounded out by bar manager Kevin Burke. Expect a February opening for American Bonded.
Bang Up to the Elephant
1310 Pearl Street
If you're enchanted by the immersive, whimsical experience of Beatrice & Woodsley on Broadway, you have something to look forward to at this Capitol Hill restaurant and bar. Bang Up to the Elephant is leaving many of the details a mystery for now — which will only add to the surprise and delight when the doors open. The restaurant is now hiring, so opening day should be within a month.
2845 Larimer Street
Beckon|Call is actually two separate restaurants run by one culinary team in neighboring cottages that have been converted into a counter-service cafe and bistro (that's Call, which opened in December) and a chef's-counter eatery that will offer only coursed tasting menus (the Beckon side of the operation). While this type of setup, where only two seatings are available nightly and guests (only seventeen at a time) all eat the same series of dishes, is not uncommon in larger cities, it's a first for Denver. Beckon could open by the end of this month. January 10, 2017 update: Beckon|Call management indicates that Beckon will not be ready to open until fall 2018.
2014 10th Street, Boulder
Zoe Ma Ma has been serving Chinese noodles, dumplings and soups with a mother's touch for the past several years in Boulder and Denver, sharing a wonderful taste of owner Edwin Zoe's childhood with us. With Chimera, Zoe plans to expand his culinary reach with a Pacific Rim menu that will capture more of his influences. "This is about context," the restaurateur told us last May when he took over the former Sushi Tora space. "I try to stay away from the idea of authenticity. My idea of authenticity is from when I was a child in Asia — but that was over forty years ago. What was authentic forty years ago may not be the same today, but we can talk about the roots." Zoe is hoping to open Chimera by the end of February.
We've been anticipating this Chinese hot-pot restaurant since the company (its only other eatery is in Las Vegas) announced its intentions to move into the space that was most recently the Walnut Room nearly a year ago. A goofy name and a futuristic concept — refrigerated conveyor belts deliver hot-pot ingredients to your table — are the main draws. It's no wonder the place is behind schedule, since all that equipment and technology are being crammed into a tight, two-story corner spot, but it's looking like mid- to late-January is a distinct possibility.
The Constellation Ice Cream
10155 East 29th Street
Real estate developer Paul Tamburello has a love of ice cream and a knack for enticing design; Little Man Ice Cream and Sweet Cooie's are both his creations. Adding to his family of frozen-dessert outposts, Tamburello is building the Constellation at Stapleton's Eastbridge development, where it will occupy the plaza between Cattivella and Los Chingones. If you can't quite envision the new shopping center's layout, don't worry about not being able to find the ice cream shop; it will sport a roof that's a replica of a 75-foot wing from a mid-century Lockheed Constellation airliner. Late winter may seem like an odd time to start serving ice cream, but chilly weather doesn't get the better of LoHi fans of Little Man.
1061 South Gaylord Street
Speaking of ice cream, Washington Park residents are about to land their own haven of sweet treats when Frozen Matter opens its second Denver location in the next month or so. This one won't have a hidden speakeasy in the back like the Uptown original (you'll have to make your way to Retrograde for that), but it will have a liquor license and its own surprises. Owners Geraldine Kim and Josh Gertzen were recognized with a StarChefs Rising Star award last summer for their dedication to making their own ice cream base and all of their own tasty add-ins, so the neighborhood will not be disappointed.
Haykin Family Cider
12001 East 33rd Avenue, Aurora
Daniel and Talia Haykin are planting a cider flag squarely in Aurora, a city not known for its fermented apple beverages (but then, what Colorado city is?). Judging by early samples and awards, though, these champagne-esque ciders should make Aurora an instant destination when the tasting room, just off the Peoria light-rail station, opens in January or February. In the meantime, look for 750-milliliter bottles at Pearl Wine Company (1886 South Pearl Street) and the Proper Pour (inside the Source, 3350 Brighton Boulevard),
3254 Larimer Street
Chef Kyle Foster has been biding his time for nearly two years since announcing that he'd open a Southern restaurant at 3254 Larimer Street. After all, he'd picked an address where there wasn't even a building yet, so he had to wait while the three-story mixed-use structure was completed. The chef, formerly of Colt & Gray, kept his cooking chops honed at Rebel, but now he's nearly ready to launch Julep, which is expected to debut in late January.
3421 East Colfax Avenue
"Q" is a Taiwanese expression that means "perfectly cooked," and partners Christopher Lin and Jennifer Mattioni plan to cook up some perfectly delicious modern Chinese cuisine on East Colfax Avenue. The menu will draw from chef Lin's childhood as well as his experience cooking at prestigious Asian restaurants in New York City. In November, the trio targeted a February opening, so we're keeping our fingers crossed for some Q coming very soon.
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3090 Larimer Street
After Hutch & Spoon closed in RiNo last year, it didn't take long for a new tenant to claim the spot. Fourth-generation Coloradan Jerrod Rosen is targeting early this year for the opening of Rye Society, a Jewish-style deli that will bake its own breads (rye among them, of course).
3501 Wazee Street
One of the biggest dining trends of the past couple of years has been conglomerations of local food vendors all selling unique eats under the same roof. Call them market halls, food halls or just food courts, but don't expect Orange Julius or Panda Express. Zeppelin Station, located adjacent to the light-rail foot bridge connecting Wazee to Blake Street, is a new mixed-use building with a market hall on the ground floor sporting several intriguing options, including two bars and Vinh Xuong Bakery (bánh mì sandwiches), Au Feu (Montreal-style barbecue), Namkeen (South Indian street food from the owners of Spuntino), Dandy Lion (coffee), Aloha Poke Co., Fior Gelato and Injoi Korean Kitchen. A final slot had been allocated for Mister Oso (a fast-casual version of Señor Bear), but that's no longer in the works, so a new tenant will soon be announced. Will it make the anticipated January opening date? We sure hope so.