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A photo from above of several Mexican dishes on plates at Que Bueno Suerte
Contemporary Mexican cuisine is served at Que Bueno Suerte on Old South Pearl Street
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Where to Eat on Old South Pearl Street

This walkable strip is the heartbeat of the Platt Park neighborhood

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Contemporary Mexican cuisine is served at Que Bueno Suerte on Old South Pearl Street
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A retail corridor tucked between a number of residential neighborhoods, the charm of Old South Pearl Street is plain to see. This mixed-use strip traces its existence back to Denver’s streetcar era and today serves as a home base for a collection of the finest eateries the city has to offer.

Still, when one looks at today’s Pearl Street, it’s almost hard to imagine the “sleepy” neighborhood shopping area that brothers Yasu and Toshi Kizaki found in 1984 when they opened Sushi Den.

In the decades since the opening of that Denver icon, Old South Pearl Street has become one of south Denver’s dining hotspots with restaurants like Kaos Pizzeria and the now-departed Pearl Street Grill serving loyal custom bases. Now, a new generation is making waves at places like Tokyo Premium Bakery, which is situated in one of the street’s newest structures.

That bakery and chef Alex Seidel’s Chook Charcoal Chicken are the two new additions to the October 2019 update of this map (which covers the Pearl Street retail corridor just south of I-25 as well as the classic blocks of Old South Pearl).

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Note: Restaurants on this map are listed geographically.

1. Lincoln's Roadhouse

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1201 S Pearl St
Denver, CO 80210
(303) 777-3700
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This casual haunt is no-frills but lots of fun with its hearty Cajun meals and live blues music. Specialties range from a grilled Louisiana hot sausage with remoulade to catfish, a variety of po’ boys, and crawfish étouffée.

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2. Duffeyroll Cafe Bakery

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1290 S Pearl St
Denver, CO 80210
(303) 953-6890
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Launched from a pushcart on 16th Street Mall, since 1986, The Duffeyroll Cafe has long been both a landmark and a social center in the Mile High City. This place was made famous by a monstrously large gourmet cinnamon roll.

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3. Kaos Pizzeria

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1439 S Pearl St
Denver, CO 80210
(303) 733-5267
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Open since 2009, this laid-back cottage pizza parlor with a garden patio serves handmade Naples-style pies as well as craft beers and wine. Pizza options range from standards like a margherita and four-cheese to the more colorful jalapeno business, which is topped with pesto, jalapenos, cream cheese, and diced tomatoes. A second location shares a space with Uno Mas Taqueria y Cantina (see below) on Tennyson Street in the Berkeley neighborhood.

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4. Palizo Italiano

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1472 S Pearl St
Denver, CO 80210
(720) 379-8595
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Featuring cuisine from northern Italy, menu highlights here include antipasti, seafood, truffle risotto, pappardelle bolognese, and a 48-ounce ribeye. The eatery also hosts a monthly chef’s table for 12, with five courses plus paired wines.

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5. Sushi Den

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1487 S Pearl St
Denver, CO 80210
(303) 777-0826
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With a line around the block many nights, this iconic institution lives up to its hype by serving up fish flown in for preparation fresh from Japan. Diners should snag a seat at the sushi bar to observe the meticulous action and take inventory of the “catch of the day” menu as well as more dishes and rolls. Next door, pretty sister spot Izakaya Den, which pairs sushi with a selection of other dishes, including Kobe beef sliders and Maine lobster gnocchi, is also worth a visit.

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6. OTOTO

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1501 S Pearl St
Denver, CO 80210
(303) 733-2503
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Run by the same owners of Sushi and Izakaya Dens, Ototo made a comeback in 2015, serving Japanese tapas that spotlight grilled meats and fish robata-style while offering a raw-bar and ramen and rice bowls. It’s all set in an intimate dining room.

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7. Que Bueno Suerte

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1518 S Pearl St
Denver, CO 80210
(720) 642-7322
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The menu at this modern Mexican kitchen includes options ranging from spicy crudo and cocktail de camarón (shrimp) to multiple kinds of tacos and tamales. Those specialties can be washed down with an extensive tequila and mezcal list as well as a variety of seasonal cocktails.

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8. Bird Restaurant

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1529 S Pearl St
Denver, CO 80210
(303) 777-0500
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At the end of 2016, Gaia Bistro closed its doors, and made room for Yard Bird (now just Bird), which serves creative comfort food. The menu provides three square meals including pot pies, meatloaf and garlic mashers, and fried chicken, as well as Benedicts and waffles.

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9. Sexy Pizza

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1579 S Pearl St
Denver, CO 80210
(303) 777-5878
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One of two Pearl Street pizzerias, cheeky Sexy Pizza tosses New York style deck-oven pies with fresh ingredients and veggies. There are also calzones, strombolis, and meatball sandwiches.

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10. Uno Mas Taqueria Y Cantina

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1585 S Pearl St
Denver, CO 80210
(303) 777-2866
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This cantina packs a punch with a bar that stocks more than 70 tequilas and mezcals and turns up the heat with its street tacos and classic Mexican dishes. The kitchen team also smokes whole animals, including locally raised pigs, goats, and sheep.

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11. Sweet Cow

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1882 S Pearl St
Denver, CO 80210
(720) 479-8838
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The sixth location of this Louisville concept inspired by a 1950s soda shop, the Pearl Street Sweet Cow serves up scoops, shakes, sundaes, and floats. Flavors rotate, but possibilities include Dutch chocolate and rocky road, as well as seasonal favorites like pumpkin pie and sweet corn.

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12. Park Burger

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1890 S Pearl St
Denver, CO 80210
(720) 242-9951
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The original outpost of this American concept frequently ranks high on lists of the city’s best burgers. It’s a family-friendly spot that serves beef, buffalo, turkey, and veggie burgers, crispy fries, frothy milkshakes, a selection of local beers, and wine. Specialties include the Sweet Jackson, filled with Swiss cheese, Dijon honey mustard, and sweet potato chips piled high on a warm pretzel bun. 

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13. Chook

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1300 S Pearl St
Denver, CO 80210
(303) 282-8399
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When diners enter a neighborhood rotisserie chicken spot, they don’t usually expect a recent James Beard-winning chef to be behind it. But there’s one in charge of Chook: Fruition Restaurant and Mercantile Dining and Provisions chef Alex Seidel, who won the James Beard Award for Best Chef Southwest just last year. That’s also when he opened this counter-service restaurant, which serves high-quality rotisserie poultry with charred side vegetables along with bottled cocktails and wines by the half glass.

A close-up photo of two line of rotisserie chickens cooking on skewers Jonathan Phillips/Eater

14. Tokyo Premium Bakery

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1540 S Pearl St
Denver, CO 80210
(720) 531-3784
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This minimalistic modern cafe serves authentic Japanese pastries such as Matcha-dusted doughnut twists, custard-filled cornets, and karepan, a fried bread filled with curry at this and modern cafe and bakery. The fluffy, soft and slightly sweet milk bread has quickly become a favorite, as have the flaky tarts topped with fruit.

A glass case filled with pastries from Tokyo Premium Bakery
A selection of sweet and savory pastries from Tokyo Premium Bakery on Old South Pearl Street
Josie Sexton/Eater

1. Lincoln's Roadhouse

1201 S Pearl St, Denver, CO 80210
Facebook

This casual haunt is no-frills but lots of fun with its hearty Cajun meals and live blues music. Specialties range from a grilled Louisiana hot sausage with remoulade to catfish, a variety of po’ boys, and crawfish étouffée.

1201 S Pearl St
Denver, CO 80210

2. Duffeyroll Cafe Bakery

1290 S Pearl St, Denver, CO 80210
Facebook

Launched from a pushcart on 16th Street Mall, since 1986, The Duffeyroll Cafe has long been both a landmark and a social center in the Mile High City. This place was made famous by a monstrously large gourmet cinnamon roll.

1290 S Pearl St
Denver, CO 80210

3. Kaos Pizzeria

1439 S Pearl St, Denver, CO 80210
Facebook

Open since 2009, this laid-back cottage pizza parlor with a garden patio serves handmade Naples-style pies as well as craft beers and wine. Pizza options range from standards like a margherita and four-cheese to the more colorful jalapeno business, which is topped with pesto, jalapenos, cream cheese, and diced tomatoes. A second location shares a space with Uno Mas Taqueria y Cantina (see below) on Tennyson Street in the Berkeley neighborhood.

1439 S Pearl St
Denver, CO 80210

4. Palizo Italiano

1472 S Pearl St, Denver, CO 80210
Facebook

Featuring cuisine from northern Italy, menu highlights here include antipasti, seafood, truffle risotto, pappardelle bolognese, and a 48-ounce ribeye. The eatery also hosts a monthly chef’s table for 12, with five courses plus paired wines.

1472 S Pearl St
Denver, CO 80210

5. Sushi Den

1487 S Pearl St, Denver, CO 80210
Facebook

With a line around the block many nights, this iconic institution lives up to its hype by serving up fish flown in for preparation fresh from Japan. Diners should snag a seat at the sushi bar to observe the meticulous action and take inventory of the “catch of the day” menu as well as more dishes and rolls. Next door, pretty sister spot Izakaya Den, which pairs sushi with a selection of other dishes, including Kobe beef sliders and Maine lobster gnocchi, is also worth a visit.

1487 S Pearl St
Denver, CO 80210

6. OTOTO

1501 S Pearl St, Denver, CO 80210
Facebook

Run by the same owners of Sushi and Izakaya Dens, Ototo made a comeback in 2015, serving Japanese tapas that spotlight grilled meats and fish robata-style while offering a raw-bar and ramen and rice bowls. It’s all set in an intimate dining room.

1501 S Pearl St
Denver, CO 80210

7. Que Bueno Suerte

1518 S Pearl St, Denver, CO 80210
Facebook

The menu at this modern Mexican kitchen includes options ranging from spicy crudo and cocktail de camarón (shrimp) to multiple kinds of tacos and tamales. Those specialties can be washed down with an extensive tequila and mezcal list as well as a variety of seasonal cocktails.

1518 S Pearl St
Denver, CO 80210

8. Bird Restaurant

1529 S Pearl St, Denver, CO 80210
Facebook

At the end of 2016, Gaia Bistro closed its doors, and made room for Yard Bird (now just Bird), which serves creative comfort food. The menu provides three square meals including pot pies, meatloaf and garlic mashers, and fried chicken, as well as Benedicts and waffles.

1529 S Pearl St
Denver, CO 80210

9. Sexy Pizza

1579 S Pearl St, Denver, CO 80210
Facebook

One of two Pearl Street pizzerias, cheeky Sexy Pizza tosses New York style deck-oven pies with fresh ingredients and veggies. There are also calzones, strombolis, and meatball sandwiches.

1579 S Pearl St
Denver, CO 80210

10. Uno Mas Taqueria Y Cantina

1585 S Pearl St, Denver, CO 80210
Facebook

This cantina packs a punch with a bar that stocks more than 70 tequilas and mezcals and turns up the heat with its street tacos and classic Mexican dishes. The kitchen team also smokes whole animals, including locally raised pigs, goats, and sheep.

1585 S Pearl St
Denver, CO 80210

11. Sweet Cow

1882 S Pearl St, Denver, CO 80210
Facebook

The sixth location of this Louisville concept inspired by a 1950s soda shop, the Pearl Street Sweet Cow serves up scoops, shakes, sundaes, and floats. Flavors rotate, but possibilities include Dutch chocolate and rocky road, as well as seasonal favorites like pumpkin pie and sweet corn.

1882 S Pearl St
Denver, CO 80210

12. Park Burger

1890 S Pearl St, Denver, CO 80210
Facebook

The original outpost of this American concept frequently ranks high on lists of the city’s best burgers. It’s a family-friendly spot that serves beef, buffalo, turkey, and veggie burgers, crispy fries, frothy milkshakes, a selection of local beers, and wine. Specialties include the Sweet Jackson, filled with Swiss cheese, Dijon honey mustard, and sweet potato chips piled high on a warm pretzel bun. 

1890 S Pearl St
Denver, CO 80210

13. Chook

1300 S Pearl St, Denver, CO 80210
A close-up photo of two line of rotisserie chickens cooking on skewers Jonathan Phillips/Eater

When diners enter a neighborhood rotisserie chicken spot, they don’t usually expect a recent James Beard-winning chef to be behind it. But there’s one in charge of Chook: Fruition Restaurant and Mercantile Dining and Provisions chef Alex Seidel, who won the James Beard Award for Best Chef Southwest just last year. That’s also when he opened this counter-service restaurant, which serves high-quality rotisserie poultry with charred side vegetables along with bottled cocktails and wines by the half glass.

1300 S Pearl St
Denver, CO 80210

14. Tokyo Premium Bakery

1540 S Pearl St, Denver, CO 80210
A glass case filled with pastries from Tokyo Premium Bakery
A selection of sweet and savory pastries from Tokyo Premium Bakery on Old South Pearl Street
Josie Sexton/Eater

This minimalistic modern cafe serves authentic Japanese pastries such as Matcha-dusted doughnut twists, custard-filled cornets, and karepan, a fried bread filled with curry at this and modern cafe and bakery. The fluffy, soft and slightly sweet milk bread has quickly become a favorite, as have the flaky tarts topped with fruit.

1540 S Pearl St
Denver, CO 80210

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