Big Eats Restaurant Group, owners of the three Marg's World Taco Bistro locations in Denver, have opened another spot — this one in LoHi, in the former home of Churchill's Public House. But this eatery isn't a taco joint (a smart thing, too, since it's opposite Lola). Instead, it's a new concept for the group, a pizza kitchen: Cibo, which opened this week and serves Neapolitan-style pizzas made with organic Caputo flour and baked in a showcase brick oven.
Cibo, Italian for food and pronounced chee-bo, is open for lunch and dinner from 11 a.m. to 11 p.m. daily, with the potential for later hours on Friday and Saturday. The menu features a list of nine specialty pizzas with several housemade meat options — roasted chicken, braised brisket, meatballs and spicy sausage — in addition to standard pizzeria toppings. Out-of-the-ordinary veggie choices include butternut squash, asparagus, baby kale and beets.
Partner Tony Walker says the Rustica, a white pizza with ricotta, roasted garlic and corn, asparagus, prosciutto and fresh mozzarella, already has new customers talking. Pizzas are sized and priced for individual orders, but at eleven inches and with a generous crust, they're more than enough for one person. An appetizer list runs from classic (garlic knots and homemade meatballs) to trendy (roasted brussels sprouts and bacon-wrapped dates) to worldly (mussels in Thai curry sauce and braised short ribs over polenta). A handful of salads and desserts round out the offerings. Gluten-free pizza is also available, Walker notes; the dough is made in-house from Caputo's gluten-free flour blend.
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Cibo's bar features several wines on tap, a range of local and national beers and an assortment of house cocktails. Decor leans toward posh-yet-casual, with a marble bar top, parquet floors, stamped ceiling tiles, and chandeliers that appear ornate but on closer inspection turn out to be made from repurposed bottles and olive jars.
A wraparound patio on the northwest corner of the building provides cool outdoor seating for hot summer days, with views of the bustling LoHi neighborhood and the downtown skyline from a few of the tables. Walker says foot traffic has been good but that Cibo is taking its time introducing itself to the area. And Big Eats is also taking its time with expansion plans, choosing to focus on perfecting its pizza operation and growing the Marg's brand before diving into the ramen market with Slurp.