Denver’s Culinary Guide to Keeping Your New Year’s Resolutions

BY Steph Wilson

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January 19th marks the day when most New Year’s resolutions, especially those about healthier eating, start to wobble like a poorly stacked sandwich. Fear not, Denver! We’re here to help you navigate back to the path of nutritional righteousness without skimping on flavor. Say goodbye to the days of limp lettuce and hello to vibrant, delicious dishes that make you wonder why you ever strayed. From the bohemian charm of Bang Up to the Elephant, with its tropical vibes and vegan beach shack menu, to the soul-nourishing Mediterranean fare at Somebody People, Denver’s dining scene has never made it easier to eat well while eating out. 

Corner Beet

No lie: this place is my go-to when I’ve gone too far in the opposite direction from “Dry January.” Pro tip: the spot offers rewards if you order enough on Uber Eats. Cold press juices, light and nutritious food, fresh pastries: it’s a vegan and veggie menu you can feel good about because eating the food on it makes you feel good. The House Toast with beet butter and toasted pistachios drizzled in honey: so good. Add a little goat cheese and boom! It’s gourmet. 

Somebody People

It’s not just the general aesthetic of this place that I love—although there’s that, too. “California happy” is the vibe, teal and peachy tones are the palate, and vegetables rule the Mediterranean-influenced menu. This is best experienced at the weekly Sunday Dinners, where you’ll get a six-course meal made from the week’s leftover ingredients presented in delightful dishes for just $38. I brought my vegan sister there when she was visiting last summer and it was almost enough to convince her to leave the palm trees in her wake and join me out here a mile high. The spot is so charming and the food is so good. Also: love their Insta. 

Bang Up to the Elephant

If I could turn any restaurant in Denver into my home, I think this would be the one. It’s got more tropical vibes than anywhere I’ve seen outside of South Beach and as a former resident of said beach, it speaks to my soul. And the food brings me right back to the balmy tropics as well. The vegan beach shack concept melds the flavors of the Caribbean, Africa, China, India, and Southern America into starters, sandwiches, plates, and bowls like the Cassareep—crispy tofu with onions, sweet peppers, tomatoes, and pineapple over coconut rice. And nowhere else I’ve found in Denver makes sweet plantains that taste like they come from a place with a view of shimmering turquoise waters. Also, the place is all about fresh air. The windows are almost always open, ushering a happy little breeze into the light-flooded interior, where soaring ceilings, a calming aquamarine color scheme, a bubbling fountain, and pops of Caribbean colors make you feel right at home. True story: the first time I went here, I had just gotten off the plane from Miami, where the sound of balmy breezes ruffling the palm tree fronds is a siren song to my ears. I didn’t want to leave. It was February, Denver was so cold, the skies were so gray, I was so sad. So I got off the plane and took an Uber straight here. It’s the perfect place to spend a few hours re-acclimating. And I go back whenever I need a comforting dose of home. 

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Steph Wilson

Steph Wilson is a writer, editor, and creative maximalist in Denver. She makes magazines for a living and throws color around the world like confetti for fun.

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