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Feb 13, 2010 09:57 AM

Need Great Restaurant Downtown Denver on a Tight Budget

any ideas? We need to take our two hosts to a nice dinner but we are on a very tight budget. Any ideas would be welcome. We are downtown near the stadium. Thanks!

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  1. Could you give us an idea what your budget is like and what your definition of "nice" is? Is atmosphere as important as how the food tastes? Any particular type of cuisine you enjoy more than others? Steak? Italian? French?

    1 Reply
    1. re: rlm

      Also, when are you planning to take them out? Denver Restaurant Week is coming up and might give you a chance to go to a nicer place within your budget.

    2. Nice is something other than formica countertops, bad lighting, and mini-malls. We are eclectic eaters. Thanks!

      2 Replies
      1. re: Jodie

        If I were near the stadium (by which I assume you mean Coors Field, since that's the only stadium downtown) and on a "very tight" budget, I'd consider:

        Fado Irish Pub
        Bayou Bob's
        The Mercury Cafe

        If "very tight" means less than $15 a person, then you're pretty much stuck with hot dog carts and Arby's, I'm afraid.

        1. re: ToddBradley

          I would not think of any of these places as "nice," particularly not the Mercury Cafe (unless your idea of nice consists of vegan desserts, surly servers, and open-mic night featuring every bad, tortured acoustic guitarist in the metro area). Granted, we still have no idea what the OP's budget constraints are like so I'm not sure what to recommend. If concerned about money but still wanting to experience some "nice" spots versus Arby's, I would eat early and hit up happy hour specials at some of the spots like Panzano or Vesta Dipping Grill. You could always hit up Le Central, which still bills itself as the "affordable" French restaurant. Osteria Marco on Larimer has cheaper prices than the chef's Luca D'Italia.

      2. I would suggest Wynkoop Brewing Company, which has an old, wood-paneled atmosphere. Marco's Coal-Fired Pizza also has a good atmosphere and is not too expensive. Also Osteria Marco, you'll have to check out the menu to see if it is more dough than you want to spend.

        1. It's hard to know what a "tight budget" without knowing what that budget is. $10/pp? $15/pp? More?

          If I'm downtown and looking for cheap and good, I might go to the Wazee Supper Club or the Wynkoop, for ex., but they're hardly gourmet in any sense. And if "tight budget" to you means entrees in the $15-20 range, well then there are lots of better options. How about the Corner Office? It's hip, good, pretty nice, and won't break the bank.

          2 Replies
          1. re: LurkerDan

            The Corner Office and Osteria Marco IMO are both good suggestions. The former isn't great, but it's decent and a lot of fun. The latter is sometimes great, always very good.

            The problem, I agree with others, is that we're getting stuck on the words "very tight."

            1. re: tatamagouche

              I would agree about Osteria Marco - it's very good and very reasonable IMO.

          2. I won't pretend that Dixon's Downtown Grill is a GREAT restaurant, but it is pretty good -- especially for the price (top entree price is about $15; same menu at lunch or dinner). If you are actually seeing something at the stadium (or elsewhere in downtown Denver), show your ticket or stub before or after the game/performance and get 20% off that day's meal.