Reader: Best new restaurant list doesn't show well for Denver

Categories: Cafe Society

Mark Manger
Pinche Taqueria, Denver's best new restaurant.
Close to 300 restaurants opened in the metro area last year, which made choosing the best for the Best of Denver 2012 was a daunting task. But in the end, Pinche Taqueria was the clear choice for Best New Restaurant.

But many other worthy spots opened in 2011, and Laura Shunk served up nine more in her updated list of "Denver's ten best new restaurants," which included not just some of the much-hyped hip new eateries, but also some unsung ethnic joints.

And that inspired this from IG:

Some of this list is justified but much of it is comprised of restaurants that share the distinction of being cheap, heavy on braising (which hides protein quality and imperfections) and slightly obscure. Please consider as you read this that I agree that they are all 'good' and at least one is great.

Shunk is making her own good name (besides her fiasco of an original review of Barolo) but this list looks too similar to her predecessor's efforts, Sheehan. Jason at times disappeared down a rabbit hole of Aurora hole in the wall joints for weeks on end. His efforts were magnanimous as they tried to help out the little guy; but many of us found it boring and outside the role of the writer. Here is to hoping that Shunk sticks to her knitting and only dabbles in the obscure, braised, hole in the wall restaurants. It's not politically correct to say, but approximately half this list is irrelevant and doesn't help the Denver eater. It's fun to find the diamonds in the rough, but vanity seems more on display here than a comprehensive list of Denver's best new restaurants. I hope this list doesn't make it outside our geographic boundaries. It doesn't show well for Denver - even with a few solid restaurants included.

Anyone want to guess which restaurant IG considers "great"? Post it in the comments section below, where you can also offer your own list of the town's best new restaurants. For a crib sheet, see our Restaurant roll call for 2011.

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Lotus - CLOSED

1701 Wynkoop St., Denver, CO

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Maybe in a few years the list will be heavy on surf 'n' turf joints,but I think Laura's list pretty accurately reflects the nature of our economy right now. Seems a little dismissive of our immigrant population to assume that they are not capable of making some of the best food in town or that Denver should be ashamed to admit it nationally. by the way, I'm pretty sure the list is going to make it out of this geographical region because it's on the Internet.


I couldn't disagree more with the post. The author comes off as a disgruntled chef or restauranteur.

The readers of this blog and Westword want to know about the good ethnic joints and frankly there are not enough good examples of what the author is looking for to fill the pages of this weekly.

Keep it up the good work Laura.  

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