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The Hottest Restaurants in Denver Right Now, February 2015

What's new, what's hot, where do the crowds flock to? That is what the February Heatmap is all about - this dining and drinking moment in time.

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More often than not, tipsters, readers, friends and family of Eater have one question: Where should I eat right now? Restaurant obsessives want to know what's new, what's hot, which favorite chef just launched a sophomore effort.

And while the Eater 38 is a crucial resource covering old standbys and neighborhood essentials across the city, it is not a chronicle of the 'it' places of the moment. Thus, we offer the Eater Heatmap, which will change on a regular basis to always highlight where the foodie crowds are flocking to at the moment.

IN: Katsu Ramen, Zoe Ma Ma

OUT: D Bar, Denver Cat Company

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Note: Restaurants on this map are listed geographically.

1. Acorn

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3350 Brighton Blvd
Denver, CO 80216
(720) 542-3721
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The wood-fired modern American cooking and the elevated craft cocktail program at Acorn gained the restaurant many accolades. In August, Acorn was named among Bon Appetit's best 50 new restaurants in the country and in October 5280 Magazine ranked the RiNo eatery #2 among the top 25 restaurants in Denver. When you go, don't miss the killer Matsutake Mushrooms.

2. Mercantile Dining & Provision

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1701 Wynkoop Street
Denver, CO 80202
(720) 460-3733
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Casual and laid-back by day and fine dining by night, the new venture from chef Alex Seidel from Fruition has quickly attracted an audience. Come early in the day for breakfast pastry and a cup of Commonwealth Coffee, at lunch for a giant Banh Mi sandwich, or in the evening for the great rabbit pappardelle.

3. Rosenberg's Bagels & Delicatessen

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725 E. 26th Avenue
Denver, CO 80205
(720) 440-9880
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Classic New York-style bagels, house-cured fish, specialty cream cheese spreads, and more is what this new eatery in Five Points brings. Open Tuesday through Saturday starting at 6 a.m., Rosenberg's is a great breakfast or lunch destination.

4. Stoic & Genuine

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1701 Wynkoop Street
Denver, CO 80202
(303) 640-3474
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With a stunning interior and a creative seafood menu, this venture from chef Jennifer Jasinski and partner Beth Gruitch is a winner. Don't miss the lobster roll, the broccoli salad, and the granitas.

5. Work & Class

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2500 Larimer St
Denver, CO 80205
(303) 292-0700
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A square meal, a stiff drink, a fair price is the motto at the RiNo restaurant Work & Class. With an extensive rotisserie-based menu, the restaurant features comfort food, peppered at times with Mexican influences brought by chef/owner Dana Rodriguez. Latest accolades of the busy spot include being ranked 20 among Denver's 25 best restaurants by 5280 Magazine.

6. Cart Driver

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2500 Larimer Street
Denver, CO 80205
(303) 292-3553
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The menu is small and smart, the space intimate and vibrant, and the pizzas may be the best in Denver. Go in with an open mind and enjoy the Cart Driver pie, fresh oysters, and the vanilla soft serve, maybe with a shot of Underberg. Bonus: lunch service is now offered.

7. RiNo Yacht Club

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3350 Brighton Blvd
Denver, CO
This newest addition to the Source brings energy to the common area space with creative cocktails crafted by bartender Mclain Hedges, a curated eclectic wine list, and some seriously geeky beers. Try to snag some bites from the food cart that comes and goes with dishes created by the chefs at Acorn.

8. Sarto's

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2900 W 25th Ave
Denver, CO 80211
(303) 455-1400
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The long anticipated restaurant from chef Brian Laird and partner Taylor Swallow is buzzing with energy every single night it serves dinner. If you get a chance, sit at the cicchetti bar and let the chef create a unique dinner just for you. Bonus: the market portion of Sarto's is now open and serves lunch.

9. Blackbelly Market

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1606 Conestoga Street
Boulder, CO 80301
Chef Hosea Rosenberg, winner of Bravo's Top Chef Season 5, took his time opening his own restaurant but the wait paid off. The space is warm, the cocktails are lovely, and the food is superb. Try the lamb shank and don's miss the green chili.

10. Biju's Little Curry Shop

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1441 26th Street
Denver, CO 80205
(303) 292-3500
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Small, modern, and on point with flavors and textures, the new curry shop located in the hot RiNo neighborhood is the place to be at lunch and for a casual dinner.

11. Katsu Ramen

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1930 South Havana Street
Aurora, CO 80014
(303) 751-2222
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Since the moment it opened last month, Katsu Ramen has been packed. The new Aurora spot offers five kinds of ramen with the shoyu (chicken, pork and soy broth) being its most popular.

12. Zoe ma ma

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1625 Wynkoop Street
Denver, CO 80202
(303) 545-6262
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A family-run operation that started in Boulder, Zoe Ma Ma bring authentic Chinese dishes to the heart of Denver right next door to Union Station.

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1. Acorn

3350 Brighton Blvd, Denver, CO 80216
The wood-fired modern American cooking and the elevated craft cocktail program at Acorn gained the restaurant many accolades. In August, Acorn was named among Bon Appetit's best 50 new restaurants in the country and in October 5280 Magazine ranked the RiNo eatery #2 among the top 25 restaurants in Denver. When you go, don't miss the killer Matsutake Mushrooms.
3350 Brighton Blvd
Denver, CO 80216

2. Mercantile Dining & Provision

1701 Wynkoop Street, Denver, CO 80202
Casual and laid-back by day and fine dining by night, the new venture from chef Alex Seidel from Fruition has quickly attracted an audience. Come early in the day for breakfast pastry and a cup of Commonwealth Coffee, at lunch for a giant Banh Mi sandwich, or in the evening for the great rabbit pappardelle.
1701 Wynkoop Street
Denver, CO 80202

3. Rosenberg's Bagels & Delicatessen

725 E. 26th Avenue, Denver, CO 80205
Classic New York-style bagels, house-cured fish, specialty cream cheese spreads, and more is what this new eatery in Five Points brings. Open Tuesday through Saturday starting at 6 a.m., Rosenberg's is a great breakfast or lunch destination.
725 E. 26th Avenue
Denver, CO 80205

4. Stoic & Genuine

1701 Wynkoop Street, Denver, CO 80202
With a stunning interior and a creative seafood menu, this venture from chef Jennifer Jasinski and partner Beth Gruitch is a winner. Don't miss the lobster roll, the broccoli salad, and the granitas.
1701 Wynkoop Street
Denver, CO 80202

5. Work & Class

2500 Larimer St, Denver, CO 80205
A square meal, a stiff drink, a fair price is the motto at the RiNo restaurant Work & Class. With an extensive rotisserie-based menu, the restaurant features comfort food, peppered at times with Mexican influences brought by chef/owner Dana Rodriguez. Latest accolades of the busy spot include being ranked 20 among Denver's 25 best restaurants by 5280 Magazine.
2500 Larimer St
Denver, CO 80205

6. Cart Driver

2500 Larimer Street, Denver, CO 80205
The menu is small and smart, the space intimate and vibrant, and the pizzas may be the best in Denver. Go in with an open mind and enjoy the Cart Driver pie, fresh oysters, and the vanilla soft serve, maybe with a shot of Underberg. Bonus: lunch service is now offered.
2500 Larimer Street
Denver, CO 80205

7. RiNo Yacht Club

3350 Brighton Blvd, Denver, CO
This newest addition to the Source brings energy to the common area space with creative cocktails crafted by bartender Mclain Hedges, a curated eclectic wine list, and some seriously geeky beers. Try to snag some bites from the food cart that comes and goes with dishes created by the chefs at Acorn.
3350 Brighton Blvd
Denver, CO

8. Sarto's

2900 W 25th Ave, Denver, CO 80211
The long anticipated restaurant from chef Brian Laird and partner Taylor Swallow is buzzing with energy every single night it serves dinner. If you get a chance, sit at the cicchetti bar and let the chef create a unique dinner just for you. Bonus: the market portion of Sarto's is now open and serves lunch.
2900 W 25th Ave
Denver, CO 80211

9. Blackbelly Market

1606 Conestoga Street, Boulder, CO 80301
Chef Hosea Rosenberg, winner of Bravo's Top Chef Season 5, took his time opening his own restaurant but the wait paid off. The space is warm, the cocktails are lovely, and the food is superb. Try the lamb shank and don's miss the green chili.
1606 Conestoga Street
Boulder, CO 80301

10. Biju's Little Curry Shop

1441 26th Street, Denver, CO 80205
Small, modern, and on point with flavors and textures, the new curry shop located in the hot RiNo neighborhood is the place to be at lunch and for a casual dinner.
1441 26th Street
Denver, CO 80205

11. Katsu Ramen

1930 South Havana Street, Aurora, CO 80014
Since the moment it opened last month, Katsu Ramen has been packed. The new Aurora spot offers five kinds of ramen with the shoyu (chicken, pork and soy broth) being its most popular.
1930 South Havana Street
Aurora, CO 80014

12. Zoe ma ma

1625 Wynkoop Street, Denver, CO 80202
A family-run operation that started in Boulder, Zoe Ma Ma bring authentic Chinese dishes to the heart of Denver right next door to Union Station.
1625 Wynkoop Street
Denver, CO 80202

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