Green chile, celebrity sightings, old-school Mexican eateries...and douchebags. These are the hot-button topics that attracted the most readers in 2019. Here are the top ten food and drink stories on westword.com over the past twelve months.
"The Ten Best Places for Green Chile in Denver"
Denver loves to eat green chile — and loves to fight about it, too. At the height of the green chile harvest season (both in New Mexico and Colorado), we offered up our ten favorite joints for grabbing a bowl of the spicy stuff. The Adobo food truck ladled up an authentic taste of the Southwest with hearty, New Mexico-style green chile, while local favorite Santiago's continued to do what it's done best for more than twenty years.
"Mick Jagger Finds Some Satisfaction at Williams & Graham"
In August, the Rolling Stones rolled through Denver for its No Filter tour, and at his satanic majesty's request, Mick Jagger was whisked to Williams & Graham, where he enjoyed not whiskey, but a New Belgium Voodoo Ranger IPA. The Fort Collins brewery should have renamed the beer Jagger's Little Helper.
"Striking Teamsters Cause Food Distribution Headaches at Denver Restaurants"
Teamsters Local 455 workers employed by Sysco Denver went on strike in November, apparently because of driver safety concerns. The union never returned our multiple requests for more information, but the strike was resolved two weeks later — after causing many local and regional restaurants, especially those in smaller towns unable to find alternate resources, to scramble for kitchen supplies.
"Restaurants Offering Discounts and Free Food to Federal Employees"
Thanks to partisan bickering in Washington, D.C., the federal government shut down last January, leaving many federal employees in Denver without paychecks. But the restaurant community stepped up, offering free and discounted food and beverages until the shutdown ended. We kept track to make sure those in need found their way to the right places.
"Tributary Food Hall Opens Friday in Golden"
The explosion of food halls has been a big story over the past two or three years, and new ones continue to draw attention. Tributary opened in Golden in August, adding several new breakfast, lunch and dinner options to the restaurant-hungry town.
"Edgewater Public Market Aims for Fall Opening"
Joining Tributary was Edgewater Public Market, one of the biggest to open in metro Denver, with 50,000 square feet of retail and restaurant space and fifteen food and drink vendors (with more on the way). We previewed the market in August to give neighbors a sneak peek at what to expect. Edgewater Public Market opened in mid-November, and we returned for a photographic tour of the place.
"Cheba Hut Founder Calls Quiznos "Bandwagon Douchebags"
In June, Quiznos rolled out a rainbow-hued mushroom sandwich to honor the decriminalization of magic mushrooms in Denver, but Cheba Hut founder Scott Jennings wasn't impressed, using the same epithet to describe the sandwich chain's bandwagoneering as he used when Carl's Jr. launched its CBD-infused burgers.
"La Casa Del Rey Closes in Commerce City" and "La Casa Del Rey Is Making a Commerce City Comeback!"
In September, Commerce City residents bemoaned the closing of one of their city's favorite Mexican restaurants, founded more than thirty years ago. Fortunately, the family members of the couple who originally opened the cantina worked out a deal with the building's new owner to bring back La Casa Del Rey in November. Green chile practically flowed in the streets on opening day.
"Colton Underwood Doesn't Know His Way Around a Bedroom or a Denver Dining Room"
This Bachelor's Colorado cred was called into question after a series of date-night blunders and missed opportunities. It was clear from his bar and restaurant choices that he was as inexperienced in the Mile High City as he was in the sack.
"New Owners Will Turn LoDo's Into Dierks Bentley's Whiskey Row"
LoDo's definitely caters to downtown party seekers and has proved its staying power as one of the longest-running bars in LoDo and the Ballpark neighborhood — at least since Coors Field was built. But in November, new owners announced they'd be converting LoDo's to a new outpost of Arizona-based Dierks Bentley's Whiskey Row, complete with servers in tacky outfits more suited to an era before LoDo's ever served its first drink.
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