Best Mexican food in Boulder and Denver

huevos rancheros casa alegre

Huevos rancheros at Casa Alegre in Louisville

 

Metro Denver seems to have a bit of a rough rep when it comes to great Mexican food, but there *are* some very good options around town…

 

Metro Boulder/Denver

Lafayette

Lunada Eatery & Cantina – Try the spicy chicken tacos and local craft beer on tap from Front Range Brewing.

Taqueria La Esperanza – Quick, authentic, and inexpensive – no frills.

Taco Wagon – Lafayette’s staple for breakfast burritos.

Efrain’s Mexican Restaurant & Cantina – Quote from a local: “If I was allowed just one more meal, it would be Efrain’s Chili Verde.” (additional locations in Boulder and Longmont; Note: Per one of our readers – “Efrain’s locations in Boulder and Longmont are owned and operated by Efrain himself. The Lafayette location is owned/operated by another family member.”)

Santiago’s (25+ Colorado locations)

Louisville

Casa Alegre Mexican Restaurant – Huevos Rancheros are fantastic.

La Revolución Taqueria y Cantina (La Rev) – Locals love the mole sauce and house margarita.

Old Santa Fe Mexican Grille – New address @ 592 McCaslin Blvd.

Loco Hermanos – Regulars dig the huge burritos and green chile (aka chili).

Pica’s Mexican Taqueria (expected Spring, 2016 – see Boulder notes below)

Longmont

Antonio’s of Longmont – Excellent gluten-free and vegan options.

Las Palmeras Mexican Cuisine – Order the tasty refritos!

Comida Cantina – Exceptional street food, formerly available from a pink truck – now served from a brick/mortar cantina in Prospect.

photo of salsa verde, carrot habanero and pineapple habanero salsas

Three salsas at Comida in Longmont (see also The Source, Denver)

Erie

Azteca Family Mexican Restaurant – Sister restaurant to Casa Alegre in Louisville.

Broomfield

Ana’s Mexican Grill – Try the infused Tequila.

El Tapatio Mexican Restaurant – Looking for huge portions? You’ll find them at Tapatio.

La Casa Del Burrito – Traditional Mexican fare with a great burrito selection.

Tres (3) Margaritas (multiple Colorado locations)

Westminster

Tacos Y Salsas – Try the Machaca burrito.

Hacienda Colorado (four Denver locations)

Los Arcos Mexican Restaurant (three Denver locations)

 

Boulder

Agave Mexican Bistro & Tequila House – Upscale Mexican with a huge, awesome lounge upstairs.

Pica’s Mexican Taqueria – Try the pozole, tacos, burritos, or tortas paired with a lemon-lime-orange-juice margarita. New Louisville location to open in 2016.

La Choza Mexican Restaurant – One of Boulder’s most authentic Mexican spots (NoBo).

Sancho’s Authentic Mexican Restaurant – Formerly 100% Mexicano – thank goodness they’re back!

Tahona Tequila Bistro – The slow-cooked duck tacos are incredible.

Rio Grande Mexican Restaurant (multiple Colorado locations)

 

Denver

Chili Verde Mexican Cuisine

D’Corazon Mexican Comfort Food – Visit the “D” for potent margaritas and the traditional style mole poblano.

El Chapultepec – Stop in for jazz and green chile (aka chili).

El Taco de Mexico

Los Chingones Mexican

Las Delicias

La Loma Mexican

Lola Mexican Fish House

Patzcuaro’s Mexican Restaurant

Rosa Linda’s Mexican Cafe

Tacos, Tequila & Whiskey (aka Pinche Tacos, Pinche Taqueria, Pinch) – Worth the trip just for the queso with salty/limey chips. Definitely try the Queso a la Plancha tacos.

Tamayo Modern Mexican Kitchen & Tequileria

 

Advertisements

Best restaurants in Boulder, Colorado

This concept worked well for nearby Louisville, so here are our top choices for Boulder, CO eateries and breweries


Sanitas Brewing - beer samples

Craft beer and Boulder… almost as popular as weed and Boulder… Almost.

Argentine Fare

Rincon Argentino

Bar + Socializing

Absinthe House (rhymes with “neat market”)
T-Zero Lounge
The Rio Grande Restaurant (go for the margs, stay for the chips)
The Attic Bar + Bistro
Walrus Saloon

Bistro Cuisine

Chautauqua Dining Hall

Breakfast Bagels

Moe’s Bagels

Brunch

Brasserie Ten Ten (try the crepes, and order a cheese plate)
Lucile’s Creole Cafe (perfect brunch after a soccer game or hike; bring your appetite for the biscuits)
Snooze AM Eatery
Tangerine

Lunch @ Larkburger

Seriously good burgers – turkey, beef, tuna, truffle, portobello – at Larkburger

Burgers

The Sink (Obama was here)
Rueben’s Burger Bistro
(try the sweet potato fries)
West End Tavern (Boulder’s hidden gem for craft beer and distinctive bourbon)
Larkburger

 

Casual/Hip Dining

The Kitchen Next Door (the kale chips are the best in town)
The Kitchen Upstairs (great place to take out-of-towners, particularly if your company is picking up the tab)

 

Chinese Noodles

Zoe Ma Ma

 

Comfort Food

Murphy’s Neighborhood Restaurant

 

Craft Beer – Brewery

Bru Handbuilt Ales and Eats (can’t say enough great things about Bru; try the unfiltered ales and sourdough pizza)
Fate Brewing (coffee IPA? Yes – and it’s excellent.)
Shine
Southern Sun
Upslope Brewing
Sanitas Brewing
Boulder Beer (Order the barley veggie burger with blue cheese and real bacon. Trust me.)

Bru's 5-beer sampler

Bru’s 5-beer sampler is whatever you want it to be. You pick, they serve, everyone wins.

 

Craft Beer – Tap House

Backcountry Pizza + Tap House (cheap dinner – slice of pizza + Russian River Blind Pig IPA – always on tap)
Old Chicago Pizza + Taproom
Rueben’s Burger Bistro
West End Tavern

 

Craft Cocktails

The Bitter Bar
Salt the Bistro (check out the downstairs bar during happy hour)
Blackbelly Restaurant, Bar & Butcher
Oak at Fourteenth

Blackbelly cheese plate, olives, and happy hour blush

Blackbelly’s happy hour is hard to beat

 

Date Night

Oak at Fourteenth (order small plates and share with your better half)
Salt the Bistro
The Kitchen

 

Date Night (money no object)

Flagstaff House Restaurant (enjoy Boulder’s best view)
Black Cat Farm~Table~Bistro
Frasca Food and Wine (hard to find a better wine list – anywhere)
L’Atelier
Jill’s Restaurant

 

Farm to Table

Blackbelly Restaurant, Bar & Butcher
Bramble and Hare

 

Parisienne Macarons at Brasserie Ten Ten in Boulder

Don’t miss dessert at Brasserie Ten Ten – Parisienne Macarons paired with Taylor-Fladgate 20-year Port

French Fare

Brasserie Ten Ten
Mateo Restaurant Provençal (another top choice in Boulder cheese plates)

 

German Fare + Beer

Bohemian Biergarten (Boulder’s largest beer glasses and longest tables)

 

Gluten-free Menu

Shine (hip eatery + brewery)

 

Grain-free Menu

Blooming Beets (gluten-free, grain-free, sugar-free)

Chorizo hash with poached eggs

Chorizo + sweet potato hash with poached eggs and dairy-free hollandaise @ Blooming Beets in Boulder — paired with local Firestone-Colorado-brewed, spiced-apple Wild Cider

 

Indian Fare

Tiffin’s India Cafe

 

Irish Fare

Conor O’Neills (watch futbol [soccer] here)

 

Italian Fare

Il Pastaio
Arugula Bar e Ristorante (grab a spot at this unique bar)

 

Latin Fare

Centro Latin Kitchen
Aji Latin American Restaurant (all-day happy hour on Sundays)

 

Mexican Fare

100% Mexicano (Boulder’s best Mexican food, in my opinion; UPDATE: sad to report 100% Mexicano has closed.)

 

Mexican Fare (higher end)

Tahona Tequila Bistro (try the duck!)
Agave Mexico Bistro + Tequila House

 

Monday Teahouse

Boulder Dushanbe Teahouse

 

Nepalese, Indian + Tibetan Fare

Sherpa’s Adventurers Restaurant + Bar

Pizzeria Locale

Delectable pizza dough stretched and tossed before your eyes at Locale

 

Pizza

Pizzeria Locale (Artisan Italian + gluten-free crust)
Basta (foodie)
Backcountry Pizza + Tap House (pub slices + gluten-free crust)
Bru Handbuilt Ales and Eats (sourdough + gluten-free crust)
The Sink (pub pie + gluten-free crust)

 

Pub Fare

Dark Horse Bar + Grill (dive-y in a good way)

 

Sandwiches

Snarf’s Sandwiches
Salvaggio’s Deli (sandwiches served with attitude… for whatever reason)

 

Seafood

Jax Fish House

 

Southwest Fare

Zolo Grill

 

Sports Bar

Harpo’s Sports Grill

 

Steak House

Boulder Chop House

Boulder sushi

It’s OK to eat raw fish in a landlocked state… honest.

 

Sushi

Kasa Japanese Bar + Grill (say hi to Mimi)
Izakaya Amu

 

Tapas + Small Plates

The Med (one of Boulder’s best patios)
Riffs Urban Fare (yet another great tap/bottle list)

 

Turkey Burger

Larkburger
Rueben’s Burger Bistro
The Sink

 

Vegan/Vegetarian

Leaf Vegetarian Restaurant (sit-down dinner)
Julia’s Kitchen (earthy casual/to-go)

 

Vietnamese Noodles

Black Pepper Pho

 

Best restaurants in Louisville, Colorado

*Latest update: 1/1/2016

Lucky Pie Louisville beer sampler

Lucky Pie’s craft beer samplers… Why order one when you can order three?

Louisville, CO - Old Town Evening

Louisville, CO – Old Town Evening

 

“He’s proud of his town… that’s a damn rare thing these days.” – John Candy as Del Griffith in Planes, Trains & Automobiles.

I’m a Michigan transplant, but I love dining in my surrogate cityOld Town Louisville, CO boasts unchained, local-fare, foodie gems. Here are a few of my favorites….


 

Kids’ play area + adult booze area

Lulu’s BBQ – Say yes to sweet potato cheese tots.
Sweet Cow Ice Cream
 – There’s always a line out the door for a good reason.
Lucky Pie Pizza & Taphouse – Wild mushroom pizza is excellent.

*Lucky Pie and Sweet Cow designed a large play yard/garden for kids next to the deck that doubles as a drinking yard for adults. Lulu’s is smaller, but it features cornhole and other “hard to hurt one’s self while drinking” games.

 

Coffee, Tea… or Me? 

Paul’s Coffee & Tea
Vic’s Espresso Louisville
The Huckleberry – Mixed Berry Mascarpone crepes are fantastic.
Bittersweet Café & Confections
Precision Pours – A Coffee House Now open at South Boulder Road/Main Street, across from the Louisville ‘Bear’ !
Bean and Berry (temporarily closed, but will reopen soon at a new location… stay tuned)
Eclectic Café & Gallery – Update: Eclectic Café has announced it’s moving to a new location. More info on exactly where as it’s available…

 

Dive bar w/billiards + darts

Henry’s Bar & Grill

 

Pinball Arcade

Tilt! Pinball – Enjoy beer, wine, or soft drinks while playing pinball and classic video games.

 

Rooftop drinks and eats

Madera Grill – Start your meal with the roasted garlic and warm goat cheese appetizers.

 

Colorado meets Cajun

Bourbon Street Seafood & Chophouse – Classic Creole & Cajun cuisine, extensive bourbon selection and LIVE JAZZ Thursdays. Read more from Chef Leeland in the comments below!

 

Comfort food/lounge

The Empire Lounge – The coal-miner’s mac & cheese and Brussels sprout salad are tasty choices…
Murphy’s Tap House Louisville – Now open on McCaslin with 40 beers on tap!

The Empire Lounge

The Empire Lounge – Try the mac’n’cheese.

 

Historic Saloon

740 Front – An American Dining Saloon – Craft happy hour beers start around $3, so I’m sold!

Bison Banger meal with fries and Ballast Point Sculpin IPA

740 Bison Banger with Ballast Point Sculpin IPA

 

Sports bar/pub

Mudrock’s Tap & Tavern – Great place to watch sports and drink beer. If you’re hungry, have a cup of the pub green chili, and pour it over your fries.

 

Pizza

Twelve Degree Brewing – Start with a cheese plate, end with a chocolate plate. Wash it all down with Belgian beer…
Lucky Pie Pizza & Taphouse
Pizza King Louisville – New York style pizza

Popeye spinach and fontina pizza with Lagunitas Wheat Wine at Lucky Pie Louisville

Popeye pizza and Lagunitas Wheat Wine at Lucky Pie Louisville

 

Mexican cuisine

La Revolución – Locals love the House, La Rev, El Q, and Paloma margs… 
Casa Alegre
 – Try the huevos rancheros with corn tortillas.
Loco Hermanos – Huge Burritos!

Casa Alegre - Louisville, CO

Casa Alegre – Louisville, CO

 

Breweries

Twelve Degree Brewing – Pink Panther Saison is the perfect summer beer.
Gravity Brewing – Try the whiskey-barrel aged DIPA.
Crystal Springs Brewing  – Their classy tap room makes you forget you’re in an office park.

12 Degree Brewing - tasters

12 Degree Brewing – low-IBU tasters

 

Crystal Springs beer sampler

Crystal Springs brewed a high-IBU, hoppy winner in the “13” IPA (far right)

 

Breakfast

The Huckleberry

The Huckleberry - Louisville, CO

The Huckleberry – Louisville, CO – Try the crepes!

 

East Asian/Tibetan cuisine

Tibet’s Restaurant and Bar – Share a kebab with someone you love.

Chicken kebab at Tibet's in Louisville, CO

Chicken kebab at Tibet’s

 

Indian cuisine

Taj Mahal III

 

Neighborhood pub

Waterloo Restaurant – Treat yourself to the potato-infused burger.

The Waterloo Mule

The Waterloo Mule

 

Chinese cuisine

Spice China – Be sure to check out the special Shanghai menu.

 

Live music

Por Wine House
Waterloo Restaurant
The Louisville Street Faire – Friday nights in summertime…

 

Italian cuisine

Zucca Italian Restaurant
Via Toscana – Their chicken parm is a local favorite.

 

Thai cuisine

Busaba Authentic Thai Cuisine – Locals love the Pad See Ew.
Thai Monkey Club Louisville – Sad to report that Thai Monkey Club in Louisville has permanently closed.

 

Barbecue

Lulu’s BBQ

 

Movie Night

Cinebarre (pub fare and full bar available while you watch the latest Hollywood hit,
although we recommend eating elsewhere before/after the movie)

 

Deli/sandwiches/lunch

Moxie Bread Co – Louisville, CO (replaced The Porch – see below)
Bittersweet Café & Confections
B.O.B.S. Diner
The Porch Deli & Market (sadly, The Porch has closed… it’s been replaced by Moxie Bread Co – Louisville, CO)

BOB's Diner, 12 Degree Brewing, and The Empire Lounge

BOB’s Diner, 12 Degree Brewing, and The Empire Lounge on Old Town Main Street

 

Dessert

Sweet Cow Ice Cream

 

Wine bar

Por Wine House

 

Salad bar/patio

Alfalfa’s Louisville – Outdoor grilling + live music 4-6 pm Sundays. (weather permitting)

 

Relatively recent openings…

Murphy’s Tap House (opened August 1, 2015)
Bourbon Street Seafood & Chophouse (billed as “Colorado meets Cajun” – opened July 29, 2015)

 

Denver A List Food Blog Battle

Peeps- I owe some anonymous soul a thank-you for nominating me for this contest. I hadn’t heard of it until a friend told me she voted for me a few weeks ago – that was back in Round One. Now, somehow, the Unchained Eatery is in the finals.

If you’re interested in voting, please do! The link is here. Our final opponent is The Sizzling Cupcake, a fellow Denver foodie blogger. Thanks for voting, and good luck, Cupcake!

Denver Food Blog Battle

The Sizzling Cupcake vs. The Unchained Eatery in the Denver A List Food Blog Battle