This weekend will be so cold that you'll be tempted to hide out in your home...but there are a few spots around town that are ready, willing and able to warm you up. If you're brave enough to pull on your boots and head out the door, make sure you're on your way to one of these spots.
Here are five of our favorite places to hole up on cold winter days.
5) Pizzeria Locale 550 Broadway Pizzeria Locale's Denver outpost opened this spring, when we didn't really appreciate the quick-serve, fast-casual's most important component: a giant pizza oven. Yes, the Neapolitan pizzas are delicious; toppings like pork meatballs and sweet corn marry with the simple red sauce to create pies perfect for long, drawn-out lunches. Especially this weekend. Not only does that 1000-degree oven cook a pizza in two minutes, but it also will warm you up just as fast.
4) Carmine's On Penn 92 South Pennsylvania Street Since 1994, Carmine's On Penn has occupied a cozy corner of West Wash Park, where it turns out plates laden with all manner of Italian specialties, served family-style. After you've taken on an enormous platter of cherry- and chicken-stuffed ravioli with a creamy gorgonzola sauce, or the frutti di mare pasta studded with clams, mussels and fresh fish, then washed your meal down with a bottle (or two) of wine, you'll have only one thing left to do: Go home. You'll be so stuffed you won't even notice the cold.
3) Marco's Coal-Fired Pizza 2129 Larimer Street When Marco's Coal-Fired Pizzeria renovated a century-old Victorian warehouse, it put at blazing pizza oven at the edge of the casual, comfortable dining room. The pies turned out by that oven are inspired by the legendary pizzas of Naples; there are also some New York-style pies for those whose hearts are warmed by memories of the Eat Coast. Also not to be missed are the eggplant rollatini and the coal-fired lemoncello chicken wings, crisped up in the same oven. If you still have steam to burn after that meal, look no further than the neighboring Star Bar for warm bodies, live music, and well-chosen craft beers.
2) My Brother's Bar 2376 15th Street Although My Brother's Bar doesn't have a pizza oven or a fireplace, it's so cozy that you won't mind. This building has housed bars since the 1880s, including the legendary Paul's Place, a favorite haunt of Neal Cassady (the inspiration for Dean Moriarity in On the Road); those days are conjured up by the old, manual cash registers, saloon-style rustic tables and time-worn wooden floors. And to warm the hands, heart and stomach, there are grilled-to-order burgers and sandwiches, including like heavenly patty melts and reubens, served up with a condiment caddy. If spirits are what you're looking for, the seasoned bar staff can whip up an impeccable cocktail or pour a top-shelf beer. You won't want to leave the place until the spring thaw.
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1) Z Cuisine/A' Côté 2239-2245 West 30th Avenue Pint-sized Z Cuisine is as cozy and welcoming a spot as you'll find in town; owner Patrick DuPay created a charming Parisian bistro that's as authentic as anything you'll find in this country. On this cold weekend, you can't beat the house boeuf bourguignon, served Thursday through Saturday. And A' Côté, Z's sibling absinthe bar next door, serves up hearty plates of braised Belgium endive (wrapped with local ham) and raclette that are the perfect excuse to grab a table for the night.