Lunch in Denver: Best Places to Grab a Mid-Day Bite

Lunch in Denver might be grab-and-go at The Market at Larimer Square, a power confab at Birdcall or ChoLon Bistro, or simply a reason to sit down and enjoy a simple meal–think Maria Empanada and Olive & Finch. It can be outdoors on a view-sweetened patio, within a cozy and stylish interior exuding European charm, an ethnic eatery serving up unusual fare, or it might be as American as the flakiest biscuits north of the Mason-Dixon line, which is what you get at Denver Biscuit Company, along with southern fried chicken worthy to accompany them. Some restaurants such as Ultreia invite long, slow meals and excellent conversation. Others, including Acorn in the art-centric RiNo district, inspire diners to explore before or after the meal. Best of all, many of Denver's restaurants offer excellent selections of the city's well-known craft brews to complete the dining experience. We've picked our Top 10 lunch spots. Try them all. 




Stop by The Market at Larimer Square for a wide assortment of salads, sandwiches and sweets. The casual cafe draws a diverse crowd of locals and tourists and provides excellent people watching any time of day or evening. There's something for...  Read More



Set inside Denver's flagship Whole Foods store at Union Station, Birdcall is a good fit with its focus on local and seasonal. It's fast but not fast food. Even better, it has wine and multiple taps of craft brews to pair with its sandwiches,...  Read More



On a busy corner of South Broadway, Maria Empanada is an oasis of deliciousness and charm, and you're likely to see every sort of patron, from business types to families. Empanadas come from the ovens morning to night, both sweet and savory. The...  Read More

ChoLon Bistro
Photo courtesy of ChoLon


This self-titled modern Asian bistro takes typical Asian fare and raises it to new levels, and perhaps more important takes presentation to soaring heights. Consider sharing several small bites with your dining companions so you can experience...  Read More



Part wine bar and part Italian cafe, Postino is an ideal spot to linger over lunch, especially on a perfect Denver afternoon. The food menu is targeted with a focus on bruschetta, panini, artisan cheese boards, soups and salads. The dishes are...  Read More



You'll find Denver Biscuit Company in a space shared by two restaurants and a popular bar. Denver Biscuit serves breakfast and biscuit sandwiches for lunch, while Fat Sully's offers pizza for lunch, dinner and late into the evening. Atomic...  Read More

Olive & Finch
Photo courtesy of Olive & Finch


At lunchtime, it's all about creative sandwiches and salads, and even those guests who think they don't love sandwiches will be tempted by such gourmet-inspired creations as the Nanner's (prosciutto, poached figs, brie and arugula on a baguette)...  Read More

RiNo (RiverNorth)


When you hunger for a deliciously creative take on Mexican, head to Troy Guard's Los Chingones in RiNo. Lunch specials are served from 11:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. and there are typically good deals to be had. In warm weather, consider the spacious...  Read More



Looking for the ideal place to meet friends for lunch? Union Station, Denver's transportation hub and energy-infused hotspot for gathering is a fine choice. And Ultreia, the station's eatery devoted to foods of the Iberian Peninsula, offers a...  Read More

Photo courtesy of Christine Loomis


The ambiance is industrial chic with exposed bricks and pipes and graffiti on the walls. The menu is contemporary creative with comfort-food overtones. Acorn is one of the anchoring businesses at The Source, Denver's pioneering multi-vendor...  Read More


Meet Christine Loomis

Christine has written about every aspect of travel, from romance and adventure to family and wellness. She is also lucky to have had three major home states through the years: New York,...  More About Christine