Reader: If You've Got It, Flaunt It -- and Yes, Everything From New York City Is the Best

Danielle Lirette
Josh Pollack making bagels at Rosenberg's Bagels & Delicatessen.
The New York Times served up a "36 Hours in Denver" feature last week, filled with suggestions for what to see and eat in Denver -- including New York-style bagels at Rosenberg's Bagels & Delicatessen, the incredibly popular new spot on Welton Street. Some readers liked the Times's suggestions, others served up their own eating itinerary -- but any discussion of New York-style bagels quickly turned to a discussion of New York in general.

See also: That's What New York Thinks the Denver Dining Scene Is? Shame!

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Reader: That's What the NY Times Thinks the Denver Food Scene Is About? What a Shame!

Bagels at Rosenberg's -- you can't find these in New York?
The New York Times just served up "36 Hours in Denver," a feature on what a visitor should see and eat during a short trip to the Mile High City. The piece included standard must-go spots (Denver Art Museum, Biker Jim's) and some surprises (sending New Yorkers to Rosenberg's Bagels & Delicatessen for New York-style bagels?). More surprising were a few of the places that didn't make the list at all, including Larimer Square, Denver's block with the heaviest concentration of chef-driven restaurants; any restaurant in Union Station (although the Crawford Hotel was recommended as the place to stay); and any actual pot shops. And finally, not a single mention of Rocky Mountain oysters?

See also: Where the New York Times Would Eat During 36 Hours in Denver

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Reader: Give Azucar a Big Hand...and Some Dough

Azucar Bakery
Peruvian-born Marjorie Silva opened Azucar Bakery in 2006 to fill a hole in a town more accustomed to cupcakes and pie than flan and Suspiro de LimeƱa. But while she's giving Denver diners a good taste of South American delicacies from her shiny, pink-frosted space on South Broadway, she's also getting her own lesson in American culture.

Last year Lakewood's Masterpiece Cakeshop got slapped by the Colorado Civil Rights Division when it refused to make a gay wedding cake. And when Azucar recently refused to frost a cake with anti-gay sentiments, it, too, became the subject of a complaint filed with the Department of Regulatory Agencies, which houses the division.

See also: Hatred Is Not on the List of Ingredients at Azucar Bakery

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The Mexican on Lola's Tribute to Buffalo Bill and the First Mexican Restaurant in the U.S.

Buffalo Bill, the father of the Mexican restaurant in this country.
When Gustavo Arellano, author of Ask a Mexican, was researching his 2012 book
Taco USA: How Mexican Food Conquered America, he discovered that in 1886 Buffalo Bill had opened what might have been the first Mexican restaurant in the country, a pop-up place outside of Madison Square Garden in New York City, where his Wild West Show was in residence. Thirty-one years later, William F. Cody was buried on Lookout Mountain overlooking Denver -- after his body had been held in a mortuary for five months, waiting for the ground to thaw. That mortuary is now home to Lola, where Arellano landed last week for what chef Kevin Grossi billed as Buffalo Bill's Dinner.

See also:
Does Buffalo Bill Haunt Lola?

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Reader: Paris on the Platte Closing Proves It's True -- All Good Things End

Paris on the Platte on Saturday, the day it closed.
Even before Paris on the Platte, a Denver institution for almost three decades, poured its last cup of coffee on Saturday, the memories were pouring out. This is where artists would hang after last call at My Brother's Bar in the late '80, where teens from the suburbs would smoke cigarettes and drink coffee in the '90s, where an entirely new crowd would hang out on Platte Street as this stretch gentrified over the past decade.

See also: Paris on the Platte Will Close Today

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Reader: We Can Have Cafes With Cats Inside But Not Dogs Outside

Marisa Shevins
The Bark Bar went silent late last week.
Happy Martin Luther King Day! After the Marade, which kicks off this morning in City Park, you should have plenty of time to enjoy the good weather, maybe sit on a patio in the January sunshine and have a brew or two. Some of those patios will even encourage you to bring your pooch. But if you're thinking of heading to the Bark Bar, think again: The year-old spot closed last week, dogged by Denver zoning issues.

See also: The Bark Bar Closing After a Year of Doggie Drama.

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Paris on the Platte Will Close Today

The sun is shining on Paris on the Platte's last day.
Denver will lose another institution today, when Paris on the Platte closes this afternoon. The wine bar poured its last glass of vino last night, and customers have been lining up all morning at the Paris coffeehouse, which opened almost thirty years ago, back when this stretch of Platte Street was a wasteland.

See also: Best Slacker Oasis 2002 -- Paris on the Platte

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Nuts! Did the Cowboy Bar Give Us a Bum Steer?

Entrance to the Cowboy Bar.
On Wednesday we made our annual pilgrimage to the National Western Stock Show, which always includes a visit to the Cowboy Bar, the temporary watering hole that sets up in the basement of the Hall of Education, right by the stalls where the steers are getting all spiffed up for the competition.

A few years ago the Cowboy Bar doubled its size, a break with tradition that we could applaud. But this year we found another change that was harder to stomach: no free peanuts.

Since we were paying $7.75 for a beer (25 cents more than you pay for a beer upstairs or in the Coliseum), the peanuts wouldn't have been exactly free. But we found the bar's explanation for lack of snack even harder to swallow than the beer prices: The city wouldn't let the bar stock them, the bartender told us (and by us, we mean the uniformed Denver police officer who asked about the missing peanuts).

See also: National Western Stock Show's Past Should Be Part of the Discussion of Its Future

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Reader: Indy Eateries Have Made Do for Decades With These Flavor-of-the-Month Setups

Danielle Lirette
The Bistro at Stapleton has big ideas and a small kitchen.
Last week Gretchen Kurtz reviewed Amass, the bistro that took over the Corner House space in Jefferson Park. For this week's review, she went across town to northeast Denver, home of The Bistro at Stapleton. The two neighborhoods are very different, but the two restaurants have one thing in common: very limited kitchens, which she found can cramp the style of chefs with ambitious menus.

See also: Tiny Kitchen? No Problem for Some Chefs

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Reader: It's a Shame People Can't Get Drunk With Their Pets in Public

Marisa Shevins
Turns out there were a few more rules for the Bark Bar...
"The dog park has always been my favorite place to hang," says Christine Peters. "It's that zen feeling, all your problems go away and you're just hanging out watching dogs play. They have no ego, no issues, no agendas." Unlike people. Since Peters opened the Bark Bar in West Highland, she's had plenty of issues -- with neighbors, and then with the city's zoning department, which ultimately determined that she would have to close her place.

So today the Bark Bar will pour its last drink at a goodbye party with 50 percent off all booze and merchandise until the taps run dry; Peters is hoping to reopen in a new a new town."I want a fresh clean start in a place where we truly are seen as an asset in the community," she says. "To me, when God closes a door he opens an airplane hangar."

See also: The Bark Bar Closing After a Year of Doggie Drama

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