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Vesta Dipping Grill (Denver)-Loud??

s
sfdoc Jun 2, 2007 06:39 PM

I will be in Denver for a conference in June and have arranged a dinner for 8 here at 7:15 pm on a weeknight. A couple of the attendees are older and all of us would like to be able to talk to one another. Is this restaurant loud, or more of a usual volume? No insult intended, but here in San Francisco many of the otherwise lovely restaurants are deafeningly loud. Some combination of "trendy" decor (i.e. lots of steel and glass) and energetic/happy hour types (which can be fun also, but not for this group!)

Any experiences appreciated.

  1. m
    marite2 Aug 7, 2008 09:44 PM

    We had no problem having a nice conversation at Vesta, and four of the six of us liked our meal. My tiny, somewhat wilted salad was so salty I sent it back, and the second salad was gritty and still wilted. The pear sauce was way too sweet, and the scallops were over-salted. My friend's duck was underdone. The kim chee was not hot at all, and tasted basically like wilted lettuce with cilantro. The chef apparently likes salt, a lot, and doesn't much like vegetables. The flavors of the food were drowned out by the salt and sugar content. But four of us liked their food, and four out of six isn't bad, I guess.

    I didn't get the "sexually charged" atmosphere, but maybe I'm too old to smell the pheromones. I did notice some sexually dressed and heavily made up girls at a front table, but this wasn't a problem for me. It might be for somebody very conservative, I don't know. Off 16th might be less aggressively sexy, if that's an issue. But I see from your dateline that this advice comes a bit late.

    1. Veggo Jun 3, 2007 10:11 AM

      This will be promptly deleted, I expect, but forgive me for speaking the truth. LOUD. BUSY. Sexually charged. Every gold-digger from Cherry Creek camps out there. But food's ok.

      16 Replies
      1. re: Veggo
        s
        sfdoc Jun 3, 2007 10:34 AM

        Thanks for the feedback. This would NOT be the right atmosphere for a group of 50-70 year old foodies in town for a professional meeting after a long day of meetings. Can anyone suggest a place downtown (walking distance to the Marriot a plus but not absolutely necessary) that would be relatively quiet with good food? We will try Oceaniere...any other thoughts?

        1. re: sfdoc
          Veggo Jun 3, 2007 10:51 AM

          Mortons of course has a civilized level of background noise. You will get good C'hound rec's, I'm sure. You may want to check whether there is a Rockies game that afternoon or evening; downtown gets a little crazy. Your hope is that they are away.

          1. re: Veggo
            c
            ClaireWalter Jun 3, 2007 03:22 PM

            Morton's is a chain -- as are Ruth's Chris, The Palm and the Capital Grill, all LoDo/Larimer Square area steakeries. None of these are distinctly Denver (in fact, The Palm is faux Manhattan.

            Other options are three very good hotel restaurants, all close to the Marriott. The Palace Arms in the Brown Palace and Restaurant Kevin Taylor in the Hotel Teatro are both a tad formal but have excellent food, fine service and a refined noise level. Panzano in the Hotel Monaco is a tad more casual. The Brown Palace operates the Palace Arms, but the other two are independent operations that happen to be in hotels.

        2. re: Veggo
          IslayMan Jun 3, 2007 12:45 PM

          Hmmm. You are basically from Florida but are an expert on Vesta in Denver? Sexually charged? Gold diggers from Cherry Creek? I commend you for an active imagination! I've been to Vesta many times over the years and love the place, last visit about a month ago. Oh yeah, I'm in my mid-50s. I've never noticed the noise level being anything louder than a typical restaurant that is usually busy, which Vesta is most of the time. One of the things I like is that the menu does not remain static. Sauces have changed as well as the main plates. Service is always decent with friendly servers. My personal opinion is that anyone who likes food, regardless of age, will enjoy Vesta.

          1. re: IslayMan
            c
            ColoradoFun Jun 3, 2007 01:05 PM

            I agree with IslayMan. Cherry Creek gold diggers? Was that line written in the 70's? Not to mention Vesta is not in Cherry Creek. I have gone to Vesta a couple of times with my parents so I really don't want to think about the "sexually charged" sugestion. On a weekday I would describe Vesta as average when it comes to volume.

            If you really want quiet I would try to find a private room somewhere- one of the downtown steakhouses might be a good idea. Or maybe Venice Italian (on Wynkoop) - it seemed relatively quiet when I dined their recently with excellent food and a good wine list. No insult on the loudness of restaurants, it does get frustrating at times.

            http://www.veniceristorante.com/

            1. re: ColoradoFun
              Megiac Jun 4, 2007 01:59 PM

              Everybody knows the Cherry Creek gold diggers hang out at Elway's.

              I do think Vesta may be a little ranbunctious on a Friday night for your crowd. It may be better if you can get a round booth. Any of the spots previously mentioned would be good (Palace Arms, Panzano, Venice, and Restaurant Kevin Taylor). I'd also add Rioja to that list.

              I'd also add that if you want truly, eerily quiet, try Kevin Taylor at the Opera House after the pre-theater rush has left.

          2. re: Veggo
            m
            mwp Jun 3, 2007 07:40 PM

            Vesta is great!! Not too loud, great food and that's nonsense about Cherry Creek gold-diggers.

            1. re: Veggo
              gastronaughty Jun 3, 2007 07:52 PM

              Busy? Yes -- and deservedly so. Matt Selby, the chef at Vesta, is brilliant. Loud? At prime time on weekend evenings, there is definitely an energetic buzz, but on a weekday evening, especially on the early side, the decibel level is no more aggressive than other popular restaurant. As for Cherry Creek gold-diggers camping out here, I suggest you brush up on both your inept geography skills and misguided labels.

              1. re: gastronaughty
                s
                sfdoc Jun 3, 2007 09:24 PM

                Thanks for the counterbalancing feedback. We would actually be going on a Friday night, but on the early side. I will keep checking out options, but may just call Vesta and talk to them and see if there is a place they could put us so we might hear each other!

                1. re: sfdoc
                  a
                  aka_zoe Jun 3, 2007 10:31 PM

                  My opinion would be... on a weeknight make sure to ask for a booth, they are huge! We fit almost 8 people in one once. The food is really outstanding! The portions are not astronomical and neither are the prices. Vesta is consistently on the "best of" lists and I don't think you will be disappointed. Forgive the poster above, really, just go and enjoy don't let his (or her) prejudices dampen a great meal.

                  The bar can get crowded but many LoDo (Lower Downtown) bars do on the weekends, and that is probably what has formed the opinion above. You will be dining way before that crush hits!

                  1. re: sfdoc
                    c
                    ClaireWalter Jun 3, 2007 10:32 PM

                    If you are going on Friday "on the early side" -- given what's been posted here -- you might want to rethink your choice, unless they can find you a fairly quiet corner. I don't remember the layout well enough to speculate if there is one.

                    1. re: ClaireWalter
                      a
                      aka_zoe Jun 3, 2007 10:40 PM

                      Claire, you are very right in the Friday night aspect, but SFDoc said they are going on a weeknight at 7:15. I think they will be just fine. I would hate for them to miss out on a really great meal. Also, just for your reference, as you walk in the bar is on the left with a partition, tables and booths on the right side. Kitchen up and to the back also on the right. A galley basically.

                      It was a great suggestion to request a booth as well!

                      1. re: aka_zoe
                        c
                        ClaireWalter Jun 4, 2007 06:52 AM

                        Not trying to start a debate here, aka_zoe, but while sfodoc initially wrote they were going on a weeknight, in a later post he added, "We would actually be going on a Friday night, but on the early side." Thanks for reminding me of the layout. The couple of times we've gone to Vesta DG, we have been promptly seated in a circular or semi-circular booth with limited visibility, especially for me when I fold my lofty five-foot self into a seat. No wonder what I remember most is the very high ceiling! And the food, of course.

                        1. re: ClaireWalter
                          ciaogal Jun 4, 2007 07:43 AM

                          Does Vesta still have thre trio of 'Bacon' for dipping as an appetizer....
                          I remember it from my trip to Denver last year....
                          It was decadent!

                          1. re: ClaireWalter
                            a
                            aka_zoe Jun 4, 2007 08:27 AM

                            Oh gosh Claire, no worries! I didn't see that, thank you for correcting me about the time the group's reservation is for. I can take the correction!

                        2. re: ClaireWalter
                          s
                          sfdoc Jun 4, 2007 07:09 PM

                          Thanks to all for all the helpful thoughts. I am going to call the restaurant and talk to them and will post a reply with what we do and how it turns out!

                  2. c
                    ClaireWalter Jun 3, 2007 10:03 AM

                    It's been a while since we went to VDG, but I seem to remember lots of booths, including head-high partitions around (some of) the larger tables to provide a bit of privacy and perhaps sound containment. I remember a loft-look high celing, but I can't tell you whether it's sound-damping or -enhancing. Perhaps someone who has been there more reently can confirm or correct my memory and add anything else that would be useful for sfdoc.

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