Last week, after Esquire magazine pimped 15 Bars Every Man Should Drink In Before He Dies, we supplemented its list with our own list of ten Denver watering holes where a man should drown himself in liquor before he stumbles through the gates of Hell.
This week, we're hustling ten of our favorite bars where every woman should drink in before she joins the dude who just died next to her.
Z Cuisine A Cote, 2239 West 30th AvenueÀ Côté was designed to be a staging ground for the original Z Cuisine, a wine bar where you could wait for a table. But it's become a destination all its own, with all the quirky, dream-of-Paris charms of Z Cuisine, as well as all the beautiful crowds. Still, it's worth waiting for just a taste of owner Patrick Dupays' blissfully good and authentic French greenmarket cuisine, for his small plates and some of the best charcuterie this side of Paris, and for his accent, which every woman should swoon over at least once.
Root Down, 1600 West 33rd AvenueJustin Cucci's Root Down opened in an old garage space in December 2008 and immediately attracted a crowd of hipsters drawn by the aesthetic (Grandma Pack Rat meets Andy Warhol), the local food focus, and the well-stocked bar. During happy hour, groups post up in the round booths and at high tables, sipping a rotating list of cocktails and munching on such snacks as veggie-burger sliders and edamame hummus with wonton chips. Our favorite order: the 42 Below Rosemary-Lavender Lemonade and sweet-potato fries dipped in lime curry. Bonus points for a lovely deck with a stunning view of downtown.
Mo's, 1037 BroadwayThe drinks are lethally strong, the shots ample and forthcoming, and let's face it: There's nowhere better than a gay bar if you want to feel loved and pampered, which is exactly what the very hot boys at Mo's are incredibly adept at doing. Had a bad day? Snatch a stool at the bar, order a shot and spill your woes to the tender, who won't let you leave without telling you how utterly fabulous you look. A hundred times over. Kiss, kiss.
Lala's Wine Bar, 410 East Seventh AvenueLala's has a small menu, elegantly spare. There are salads and snacks, and nibbles and bites for model types and, for the rest of us, pizzas and salumi plates whose offerings vary daily (Spanish lomo, Provençal salame, three-milk blended soft cheese and handmade burrata), and flatbreads with an assortment of spreads. Every day, the kitchen also runs up a few specials: pastas, risottos, a nice duck ravioli. There is no pretension here, just good, dependable food in a setting conducive to staying for just one more taste, two more glasses of wine.
Jonesy's EatBar, 400 East 20th AvenueWhat's the quickest way to win diners over? Serve them a gigantic bowl of perfectly cooked French fries drenched in a macaroni-and-cheese-based béchamel and detailed with chives and chunks of bacon, a dish that will instantly shoot straight to the top of anyone's guilty-favorites list, including every drunk woman in Denver. From there, Jonesy's menu goes off in some unusual directions, but the food is generally strong, the room very neighborhood-y and the vibe far cooler than any self-proclaimed "gastropub" has a right to display. It's also incredibly loud, which means that a gaggle of girlfriends can commune in the bar and shriek and giggle, as we often do, without offending those who worship at the shrine of silence.