We've got five ways to help you keep cool this week, including a nice cold Zima — yez, it'z back! You'll also be able to indulge in summer ice cream flavors, grab a Vietnamese banh mi with a chilly beverage, indulge in cool coastal Mexican bites and hang out on a breezy new rooftop patio in Littleton. Once you've chilled out, check out our complete list of restaurant and bar openings and closings for the week of June 12 to 18, 2017.
3495 South Downing
Leave it to the taqueria that was one of the first restaurants in town to carry Montucky Cold Snacks to also jump on the Zima train as soon as it pulled back into Denver. For those too young to remember the Coors product during its heyday in the 1990s, Zima is basically club soda spiked with about as much alcohol as a light beer. MillerCoors re-released the (barely) malt beverage again this year after a nine-year absence from the market (seriously, who was still drinking Zima in 2008?), so you can now get a taste at Cochino, either straight up, on the rocks or perhaps as a Zimarita? Have a zwell zummer!
High Point Creamery
215 South Holly Street, 720-420-9137
2669 Larimer Street, 303-993-4581
High Point just rolled out its new roster of summer seasonal flavors, so expect bursts of fresh fruit in popular offerings like spumoni (only with real ingredients and no scary green food coloring) and more adventurous treats like cantaloupe and Sichuan peppercorn. There's also a surprisingly refreshing mixture with cured egg yolk and nougatine that gets its summery tang from lemon and buttermilk. High Point is spreading the creamy word to a new neighborhood later this year with a new shop at 3955 Tennyson Street. Although it won't be open until late fall, that should be just in time for the creamery's autumn flavors to come out.
3301 Tejon Street
Slow-cooked meats are part of the menu at the brand-new Señor Bear, but when the heat is on, we crave bright, tropical flavors and chilled seafood — so we can daydream of coastal resorts in Mexico or Peru. The Bear has that too, in several dishes boasting raw, marinated fish and shellfish, like a glistening mound of thin-sliced scallops bathed in a chile-and-cucumber aguachile — a standard on Mexico's Pacific coast. Tart, spicy and refreshing, this is a perfect bite in between tequila cocktails.
Viet's Bobas and Smoothies
333 South Federal Boulevard
Viet's took over the corner space next to its original restaurant last year, rebranding the old space Viet's Express. Since then, the Express has been doing all the heavy lifting while the cavernous corner spot was promptly closed for a remodel. Now the full restaurant has reopened and Viet's Express has gotten an even newer moniker and job duties. No longer serving rice and noodle bowls, it's now a counter-service mini-market for all manner of Vietnamese snacks and lunch items, and even fresh tropical fruits. Stop in for a hefty banh mi and a cold smoothie or other beverage. We're particular fans of fresh-pressed sugar-cane juice to go with the banh mi dac biet (means means the house special sandwich), which piles four kinds of meat, including a generous smear of pâté, alongside cilantro, cucumber and jalapeño. There's no better summertime picnic lunch to enjoy in the park before heading back to work.
2680 West Main Street, Littleton
If you like the food and views at the aptly named ViewHouse hangouts downtown and in Centennial but you're a little overwhelmed by the sheer size and big crowds that roll in for sports and corporate events, the new Littleton ViewHouse is now open and feels just a little more like a neighborhood bar — a neighborhood bar with a wraparound rooftop patio, that is. At 10,000 square feet, this one's only half the size of the Ballpark original and only a third as big as the monstrous Centennial outpost. But expect the same food — plus a few new options — down in Littleton from executive chef Jose Guerrero, who has been with the company since day one. One thing you won't find at the other two ViewHouses: breakfast, which will be served Saturdays and Sundays beginning at 7 a.m. Or come for lunch or dinner and try Guerrero's blue-crab enchiladas or Stranahan's-soaked brisket, washed down with the house Sons of 1858 ales, brewed for ViewHouse by Renegade Brewing. Along with the Tavern Littleton and Merle's, this block of Main Street now boasts one of the metro area's best bar crawls for lovers of rooftop drinking.
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Now here's our list of bar and restaurant openings and closings for the week:
Bars/Restaurants Opening This Week:*
Aki Asian Hot Pot, 12201 E Mississippi Avenue, Aurora
Bad Daddy's Burger Bar, 7450 B West 52nd Avenue, Arvada
Bigsby's Folly, 3563 Wazee Street
Caprese Trattoria, 1067 S. Hover Road, Longmont
La Chiva Colombian Restaurant, 1417 South Broadway
PokeCity, 1128 South Colorado Boulevard
ProsperOats, 8001 Arista Place in Broomfield
SoDo Village Market (Saturday), 2395 South Downing Street
ViewHouse Littleton, 2680 West Main Street, Littleton
Urban Egg, 6991 East Belleview Avenue, Englewood
Bars/Restaurants Closing This Week:*
Bistro at Stapleton (Saturday), 2955 Ulster Street
*Or earlier, and not mentioned in a previous Watch List.