Food News

Social Sightings: The Return of Chocolate Lab and More Openings to Get Excited About

Chocolate Lab is coming to the Hilltop Neighborhood.
Chocolate Lab is coming to the Hilltop Neighborhood. Chocolate Lab/Instagram
Monday mornings are tough, but this series isn't. Social Sightings is a quick taste of recent food tidbits that goes down as easy as your first cup of coffee, and should whet your appetite for the week ahead.

Circumstances beyond his control led to last February's closure of the Chocolate Lab location on East Colfax Avenue, said owner Phil Simonson, who hoped to find a new home for his chocolate-centric restaurant, bar and shop. And now he has: Chocolate Lab is moving into 5575 East Third Avenue in the Hilltop neighborhood, once the home of the Cheese Company (the last location was also a former cheese shop). After completing some construction in the space, Simonson hopes to open this Chocolate Lab in December.
Instagram: @chocolatelabdenver
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Molly Martin
Brothers Luis and Heriberto Gutierrez are originally from Durango, Mexico, and here in Denver have worked their way up from dishwashers to soon-to-be restaurant owners. Along with their sisters, Aracely and Maria Gutierrez, they'll open Cucina Bella at 9660 East Alameda Avenue later this month. The eatery will offer traditional Italian comfort-food fare at dinner and happy hour, as well as a weekend brunch with items influenced by the siblings' Mexican roots.
Instagram: @cucinabelladenver
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Bo Porytko will open Molotov Kitschen in 2023.
Molly Martin
We recently caught up with chef Bo Porytko to get the the scoop on Molotov Kitschen, which he's opening in the former To the Wind space on East Colfax. Porytko makes some of the most creative (and delicious) dishes in Denver at his Misfit Snack Bar, which is located inside Middleman, just a block from his new venture. At Molotov Kitschen, which should open in early 2023, the focus will be on Eastern European fare, with a special emphasis on Ukrainian cuisine, a nod to his family's heritage.
Instagram: @molotovdenver
Room for Friends/Instagram
Located in Denver's Art District on Santa Fe, Room for Friends is a wine bar that has already opened for a couple of test runs. Now, though, it's finishing up some construction as it gets ready to make a proper debut as a casual, comfortable space for gatherings. Once it opens officially, it's sure to be a popular spot for sipping on First Fridays and beyond.
Instagram: @roomforfriendswine
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Culinary Creative Group
Detroit pizza continues to trend; now the Culinary Creative group is getting in on the action. The team behind Bar Dough, Señor Bear and more are bringing Red Top Rendezvous to 2917 West 25th Avenue in Jefferson Park. Red Top hosted a pop-up last month and previewed some dishes; keep an eye on social media for future opportunities to try the goods before the eatery debuts.
Instagram: @redtopsdenver
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Molly Martin is the Westword Food & Drink editor. She’s been writing about the dining scene in Denver since 2013, and was eating her way around the city long before that. She enjoys long walks to the nearest burrito joint and nights spent sipping cocktails on Colfax.
Contact: Molly Martin

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