Reader: Sad when the best BBQ has to be flown in from Texas

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Danielle Lirette
CJ Johnson parked his bus to open Kings BBQ.
Denver is a town starved for good barbecue, so when CJ Johnson opened Kings BBQ, Gretchen Kurtz was eager to try it -- especially because since this modest spot in northwest Denver was getting good word of mouth from barbecue fans. And while Kings wasn't the barbecue joint of her dreams, she found a lot to like there.

See also: Kings BBQ is pleased to meat you

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Reader: The best dive bar is the one hipsters don't know about

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Dawn at the Lakeview Lounge.
The closing of the Thunderbird Lounge, one of our favorite dives, inspired us to visit many more of this city's best dives this month -- including the winner of Best Dive in the Best of Denver 2014, Lakeview Lounge. And we're not the only fans of the place.

See also: The ten best dive bars in Denver -- summer 2014 edition

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Reader: Weekday "brunch" sounds downright silly -- it's foodie bullshit

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Danielle Lirette
We stopped by Session Kitchen this week, and learned that the restaurant has axed its weekday lunches, and now opens at 3 p.m. Monday through Thursday, in time for happy hour. Lunch -- or "brunch," as Session called it -- is still available Friday through Sunday. But the neighborhood just didn't provide enough business to keep it going during the week. Or was it that people didn't want to each brunch during the week?

See also: Session Kitchen axes weekday lunch hours

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Reader: Every child deserves to be served a burger by a big drag queen!

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Brandon Marshall
This month's look at the best patios for enjoying craft beer took a quick detour into a discussion of whether people should take their kids to tap rooms and other drink-intensive spots. To offer up some options, we shared our our list of the ten best kid-friendly restaurants in town. And while we tried to avoid the usual suspects, we but didn't think of one suggested by a reader...

See also: Ten best kid-friendly restaurants in Denver

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Reader: Pork belly is a hipster trend that's already obsolete

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We're counting down our 100 Favorite Dishes as we head towards our next Best of Denver, and last week landed at Solera, where Goose Sorensen's pork-belly confit is a marvel, a preparation that involves curing, pressing and slow cooking in duck fat, which Sorensen explains melts the layers of pork fat into the meat while breaking down the connective tissue. A quick sear crisps the exterior for an added dose of char and a hint of sweetness. It's hog heaven....unless you think pork belly is so over.

See also: 100 Favorite dishes -- pork belly confit from Solera

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Reader: Who comes to Colorado and decides their brewery tour of choice is Coors?

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Friends on their way from New York to Grand Lake stopped in Denver last week, and we sent them on our recommended 2014 tourism circuit Thursday morning: what we call the Tumbleweed tour, a quick hit in the 1600 block of Wazee Street where you can see the old West at Rockmount Ranch Wear and the new West of recreational marijuana across the street at LoDo Wellness, then on to Red Rocks for a short hike. From there, they decided to stop at the Coors Brewery -- one of the top ten tourist traps in Denver, according to Yahoo -- where the line for the tour was two hours long. They decided not to wait: a good decision, according to a few readers.

See also:
The ten worst Denver tourist traps, according to Yahoo -- and why they're (mostly) wrong

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Reader: I love Casa Bonita -- always have, always will

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Kate Levy
Casa Bonita is Denver's top tourist trap, according to Yahoo: "If you're looking for a popular place to eat, you may get recommendations to visit Casa Bonita. The restaurant boasts cliff divers, escaping gorillas and an amusement arcade. Beware the bland Mexican food though because it isn't authentic."

True, the food would have to improve considerably in order to qualify as mediocre. But no one is going to Casa Bonita for authentic Mexican food. They're going for the gloriously cheesy spectacle. This is far from Denver's biggest tourist trap -- but it's definitely Denver's most talked-about restaurant. If you consider Casa Bonita a restaurant...

See also: Ten worst Denver tourist traps according to Yahoo -- and why they're (mostly) wrong

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Reader: How many times have we seen Denver chef/restaurateurs spread themselves thin?

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Danielle Lirette
Chef Troy Guard is a very busy man. Today he'll open Bubu, a new concept in the former TAG|Raw Bar space in Larimer Square; he's planning to put another spot in Lowry. Before that, he'll pour his expertise from TAG Burger Bar into Acme Burgers & Brats, opening next week in Union Station. Then there's his flagship, TAG, as well as Sugarmill and Los Chingones, which both opened at the end of last year; he's active at all of them. And in March, he opened Guard and Grace, a modern steakhouse that's his biggest restaurant yet. Even with everything else on his plate, we saw Guard there earlier this week, working with the staff, making sure everything lived up to its name. His name.

See also: Our review of Guard and Grace, which looks lovely but faces some hard realities

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Reader: All this bashing of parents and kids and "hipsters" is depressing and stupid

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After we published our list of ten great patios where you can enjoy all-American craft beer this summer, Station 26 became ground zero for a discussion of just where, exactly, it's appropriate for parents to take their kids -- and how both parents and kids should act once they're there. But the talk soon spilled out of Stapleton and into other parts of town, inspiring our upcoming list of best places for parents to take their kids and enjoy an evening out -- and not ruin the evenings of other customers.

See also: Stapletonians have nearly ruined Station 26

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Reader: If it doesn't smell like puke and piss, it ain't a dive bar

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Thunderbird Lounge: Gone, but not forgotten.

Is the dive bar an endangered species in Denver? The closure of the Thunderbird Lounge, a classic dive in east Denver, inspired us to raise a glass to ten of the dive bars still pouring in town -- and still qualifying as dives. While many of our favorite saloons (Bamboo Hut, Skyline) are gone for good, others (Don's, the Squire) have been renovated to the point that they no longer can really be described as dives.

And what qualifies as a dive? It's definitely not a place where you would not want to take a kid, to echo a hot topic from last week.

See also: The ten best dive bars in Denver -- summer 2014 edition


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