Looking good! Mayor's Design Awards honor six eating/drinking spots

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Restaurants aren't just changing the way Denver eats; they're changing the way this city looks.

Last night Mayor Michael Hancock announced the winners of the annual Mayor's Design Awards -- twelve projects cited for excellence in architecture, design and place-creating. "Every great city has exciting, pioneering places like these that make its neighborhoods unique," Hancock pronounced. "The 2012 Mayor's Design Award winners are projects that honor the things Denverites hold dear: livability, sustainability, human scale, respect for history and context, and celebration of the public realm."

And half of this year's winners are local eating/drinking establishments. See also: - Photo and menu tour: Ace Eat Serve opens today - Denver Bicycle Cafe; Best New Coffeehouse 2012 - Photos: Mayor Hancock becomes an honorary brewer at Denver Beer Co. - Win two tickets to Linger's Necro Noche fundraiser for GrowHaus

The categories might be a tad cutesy, but there's no question that these restaurants are looking good.

In the Oh, Pioneers! category: Denver Bicycle Café, Billy's Gourmet Hotdogs, 2914 Coffee.

In the Use It or Lose It category: Denver Beer Co.

In the Eye-Catcher category: Ace Eat Serve, 501 East 17th Avenue

And in the City's Gotta Eat category, the GrowHaus at 4751 York Street earned a much-deserved seal of approval.

For a slideshow of this year's winners and lists of previous winners, visit DenverGov.org/MDA.

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