Patio of the day: Steuben's

Steuben's has become a go-to Denver staple, thanks to its streamlined approach to classic American diner food and spot-on bar program -- and the two (very different) patios don't hurt, either. Whether you plan on doing some prime people-watching on the front patio along East 17th Avenue, or would rather enjoy more privacy on the side patio, you can be sure that both spots will be packed with eaters and drinkers looking to soak up the sun (and plenty of libations) this summer.

To learn more about the many reasons you'll want to join them, keep reading.

See also: - Photos: Steuben's lightens up with revamped spring menu - Ten food trucks you need to try this spring - Spotted over the weekend: Madeleine Albright at Steuben's

In addition to being able to order off the complete menu of Steuben's goodness, patio-dwellers can also take advantage of the full bar menu as well as the happy hour that runs from 2 p.m. to 6 p.m. on weekdays, and features such deals as two-buck pours of PBR, Olympia, Dos Equis and Coors. And then there are those shareable punches: Steuben's Ruby Punch, a potent concoction of Hendrick's Gin, St. Germain, Sandeman Ruby Port, grapefruit juice, apple juice and Bella Donna Italian Brut; or the classic Scorpion Bowl, with Gosling's Black Seal Rum, Sailor Jerry Spiced Navy Rum, Leopold Bros. Peach Liqueur, orgeat, orange juice, pineapple juice and cranberry juice served in a volcano bowl, and topped with flaming Gosling's 151 rum.

During the day, guests can relax under the shade of umbrellas in front or the breeze of ceiling fans on the side. At night, strands of lights create a lovely glow in that space, beckoning diners to stay for just one more drink.

Steuben's does picnics, too; its first Picnic on the Patio of the season featured a Southwest Tex-Mex theme with fresh pork tamales, grilled steak fajitas and plenty of Lone Star. The family-style dining series will continue through the summer; there's a different theme each time, but the picnic is always five courses, with drink pairings. Another constant: Steuben's chefs, bartenders and regulars hanging out at the community tables for a boisterous night of camaraderie and culinary delights. Find out about the next picnic (and its theme!) on the Steuben's events page on Facebook; tickets are $60 a pop.

Samantha Alviani
The scene at last night's Picnic on the Patio.

Denverites love their patios, and we'll be featuring many of them in Patio of the Day. Have a favorite outdoor eating/drinking area? Post your suggestions below, or e-mail cafe@westword.com.

For more, visit out Patio of the Day archive.

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