Boulder Restaurants

Foodies rejoice! In addition to having one of the best farmer's markets in the country and a local culinary school, Boulder hosts a vibrant restaurant scene of over 115 establishments. How good are these dining choices? Well, Bon Appétit named Boulder the Foodiest Town of 2010.

Boulder restaurants feature cuisine choices that run the gamut, while emphasizing organic selections, locally-grown produce, and native Colorado beef and bison. Add to that charming outdoor cafes, rooftop dining, and local breweries, and you've got an amazing way to indulge after your day of outdoor fun.

Check out our reviews of Boulder restaurants, and features of local dining and imbibing hot spots. You may burn a lot of calories in Boulder, but you won't go hungry (or thirsty).

Boulder Gets Squashed: The Ingredient of the Season

As we get deeper into the autumn and winter months, one food and flavor continues to invade the baked goods section of the grocery store, the front pages of cooking and baking magazines, the seasonal menu of your favorite coffee shop or café, and practically everything in between. That perpetrator is pumpkin. Personally, I’m a pumpkin supporter. I think that the day Dunkin’ Donuts makes its pumpkin coffee available to the public for the season should be a national holiday in and of itself, and I think pumpkin overload in lattes, cookies, scones, bread, and everything in between is one of the best and most delicious things about autumn and winter.

However, there are plenty of members of pumpkin’s squash family that can be painfully overshadowed at this time of year. Butternut squash, acorn squash, carnival squash, and spaghetti squash, amongst others, are more than just funny-shaped gourds in a bin in the produce section of your local grocery store. Winter squash in its many other varieties is just as much a staple of the fall and winter as pumpkin is, perhaps even more so. Versatile, delicious, and luckily not being ignored by plenty of pro-squash Boulderites, squash is being used in both traditional comfort food recipes as well as in some unique variations all around Boulder.

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Zeal: Food for Food-Conscious People

zeal boulder

Years ago, it was a grocery store. In 2009, it was the Asian restaurant, Bimbamboo. In 2011, it was the home of the Pinyon, and the best fried chicken in Boulder. By 2012, H Burger Co. had moved in. The digs at 1710 Pearl Street have been a revolving door of culinary dreams, cuisines, and menus, but the current tenants are hoping to put an end to years of restaurant turnover at this East End address by giving the people of Boulder what they want: healthy, organic, full-flavored menu items at a reasonable price.

As their one-year anniversary approaches, the folks behind Zeal – Food For Enthusiasts, don’t show any signs of slowing down. Serving up breakfast, lunch, and dinner, seven days a week, this Paleo-friendly establishment offers everything from in-house cold-pressed juices, to build-your-own bowls filled with protein, veggies, and Asian-inspired flavors ($10-$18). Other Zeal offerings include healthy grab-and-go meals, house-made kombucha, and “retox/detox” cocktails. And the cocktails aren’t the lackluster cocktails you would expect to sip on at your typical health-conscious restaurant. You want tequila? You got it. Add in freshly-squeezed juices and other fresh produce, and it’s almost like you didn’t splurge on a margarita at all.

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Chowing Down and Throwing Back in SoBo

4 south boulder restaurants

In my nearly two decades of calling Boulder home, I have lived in just about every neighborhood west of Broadway. They all have their unique character and I’ve loved them all in equal measure. But sweet ginger brown and a giant gluten free cakeSoBo is slowly creeping up to the top of my list.

With its super chill vibe, miles of trails, friendly and welcoming school communities, and within walking distance grocery, yoga, pharmacy, coffee and restaurant spots, SoBo is easy to love.

In case it’s been a while since you’ve ventured South, here’s a quick lowdown on where to chowdown, throw back a few, and meet some new friends along the way.

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Boulder Wine Studios: Fermentation and Collaboration

Boulder Wine StudiosBoulder wine — we love it nearly as much as we love our craft beer. And there’s a new game for wine in town.

For most cities, it’s a dog-eat-dog world. Hostile takeovers, nepotism and hyper-competitive account reps are all too common in the workplace, making it a rather abysmal environment for those of us who would rather have our coworker’s back rather than stab it.

Boulder, on the other hand, is collaboration station when it comes to companies working together to create startup greatness throughout the city. Seasoned professionals and newcomers are all encouraged to get together and help one another in the spirit of entrepreneurialship. It’s one of the things that make Boulder such a great place for startups.

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Cold Coffee On Tap at The Cup

boulder coffee the cup

I take my coffee hot, like the sun. It would scald most tongues.

I also take it decaf.

And if truth be told, my preferred cup is a whole lot of heavy whipping cream with just a splash of coffee.

But when I heard The Cup had Boulder’s first coffee on tap, completely cold brewed and dispensed with tiny little nitrogen bubbles, I had to try it.

It deserves the hype.

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The Boulder Passport: Your Ticket to 2-for-1 Drinks all Summer

boulder passport

Passports represent a lot in a person’s life. They signify world travel (or the hopes of eventually doing so), adventure, and one less document you have to provide for your I-9 form. But there’s a new passport in town and its your gateway to deals at some of the hottest taprooms, bars, and restaurants in Boulder.

Sure, it’s not exactly a legal form of identification and, yes, it’s not really even issued by the government, but it’s the only passport that’s going to score you two-for-one dirnk specials all summer.

I thought that might get your attention.

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Beer or Wine? Two Events, Two Beverages, One Happy Boulder

whatweloveWhile you wouldn’t have guessed it by the way this week started off, spring is coming to Boulder. One of the telltale signs of its arrival is the increase in number of parties at parks, on patios, and in breweries and wineries.

This weekend proves to be a delight of choices for both beer and wine lovers alike. The Upslope Get Down and What We Love Winery are both having shindigs on Saturday. You can go to one or both (or none, but that seems like a silly choice), but these are two tasty Boulder events you probably won’t want to miss.

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Boulder Food Trucks: Tasty Meals on Wheels

verdeFar be it from Boulder to miss their opportunity to throw their chefs hats into the ring when it comes to the tastiest new culinary trends and, happily for me, that includes food trucks. I adore these modern day iterations of food trucks because I can get top quality food without any of the pretense that comes with going out to a fancy restaurant.

It could be created by one of the top chefs in the country, but no one is going to look at me disapprovingly when I’m diving face first into a five star feast served in a paper tray while still wearing yoga pants as long as there’s a food truck nearby. Which is one of the main reasons I love the assortment of delicious Boulder food trucks.

The other reason is because they’ve found this symbiotic relationship with breweries that creates a beautiful pairing of cuisine and craft beer that makes my little old taste buds sing the hallelujah chorus in perfect six-part harmony. So yeah, I like food trucks. Here are some of my favorite sightings of Boulder food trucks and where you can find them.

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Boulder Bloody Marys and Mimosas: Liquid Brunch Options

Bottomless MimosasNo doubt you’re all planning on talking mommy dearest out for a very Boulder brunch this Sunday. I’m not entirely sure how brunch became the official meal of our annual matriarchal holiday, but I’m not going to complain because it’s my favorite meal of the day. However, if the idea of spending a few hours with the rest of your family makes you crave liquid tolerance, then I suggest finding a place with good bloody marys or bottomless mimosas.

For that matter, you don’t really need a holiday to celebrate with friends. Sometimes just being able to get more than four of you around a table at the same time is enough for celebration. A celebration that must be accompanied with mimosas and bloody marys. Hey, I don’t make the brunch rules I just follow them.

Without further ado, here are some of the places you can get your brunch and drink it too.

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