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Olive & Finch
Olive & Finch
Adam Larkey

Where to Eat With Kids Around Denver

There’s something for everyone at these family-friendly establishments

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Olive & Finch
| Adam Larkey

Denver is a dining town, but once kids are in the picture, meals out of the house can be a chore rather than a pleasure. The shift to family mode need not be a rude awakening. With little ones in tow, one Eater writer traversed the metro area on a mission to find eateries that suit diners of all ages.

Organized from west to east, here are 13 spots where kids are welcome and parents can enjoy a meal without breaking a sweat. Don’t see your favorite? Leave a comment here or drop a line to denver@eater.com to nominate it.

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Finkel & Garf Brewing Co.

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In Gunbarrel, there’s a big kid-friendly playground that also serves award-winning beers. Lego Duplo blocks, board games, a turf patio, and a ball maze that matches the whimsical retro bucket chairs are all part of the package. While mom and dad sip grown-up brews, the kids can enjoy classic junk food such as Corn Nuts, Slim Jims, Twinkies, and Oreos alongside house root beer.

Finkel & Garf / Facebook

Lucky Pie Pizza & Taphouse

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In the heart of old town Louisville is a big backyard housed at the former post office, and it just happens to sell hand-stretched gourmet pizzas and beer from over 60 taps. Afterwards, guests can pop next door and visit the original location of gourmet creamery Sweet Cow.

Lucky Pie / Facebook

Gravity Brewing

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Louisville’s VFW space is a multiplex of projects: The VFW, Gravity Beer, and Gastronauts. On one side, customers get craft beers (think Wicked Nebula IPA and Coal Kreik dubbel), while out of a side window, classic dishes like meatballs, wings, and fries are served. In the middle: Ping Pong, board games, and other things to keep kids occupied.

Gravity Brewing / Facebook

Chuy’s is a shrine to all things Tex-Mex, from queso to margaronas. Not only does it offer tacos, enchiladas, and rellenos, to name a few popular food choices, but it’s also full of bright artwork and fun stuff to look at (read: good I-spy fodder).

Chuy’s / Facebook

Moonlight Diner

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Tower Road is home to one of the metro area’s hidden gems: the Moonlight Diner. Diners will blast back to the 1950s with a visit to this chrome boxcar covered in memorabilia from the era. Just minutes from DIA, it’s a stopping point whether coming or going, featuring a menu of classic grub like burgers and green chili, or breakfast any time — it’s open all day from 6:30 a.m. to 11 p.m.

Moonlight Diner / TripAdvisor

The Cereal Box, Inc.

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Custom blends such as Unicorn Poop and Squirrel Treats are mixed from favorite cereal boxes and served in heaping bowls at this newer Olde Town Arvada shop. Kids can marvel at the collector toys or watch classic cartoons while getting their sugar rush.

Cereal Box/Facebook

Billy's Inn

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A Highlands staple since the 1930s, Billy’s Inn offers classic Colorado fare: diner food with a Mexican twist. Beyond the stucco façade, diners can order Baja-style tacos, green chili plates, nachos, and quesadillas. But there’s also a full menu of all-American burgers, salads, and sandwiches.

Billy’s / Facebook

peteybird, uniquely crafted

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Pete Bredemann left an engineering job in pursuit of the perfect ice cream sandwich, and now what began as a cart has its own brick and mortar location in RiNo. Peteybird goes beyond the standard disappointing vanilla ice cream with a mushy chocolate cookie to offer flavors such as graham cracker with key lime pie and double chocolate with salted caramel.

peteybird / Facebook

Sushi-Rama

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The conveyor belt sushi restaurant is great for kids who need to be entertained during dinner. The artsy and colorful space can spark a conversation as well.

Sushi-Rama
Sushi-Rama
Sushi-Rama [Official Site]

Maria Empanada

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Even for parents of picky eaters, Maria Empanada has something for everyone. Hand-held pastry pockets full of savory fillings range from eggplant parmesan, or beef and onion to ham and cheese, corn, or mushroom. There’s virtually no wait from ordering to mouth, and takeout is always an option. 

Maria Empanada / Official website

Rhein Haus Denver

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LoDo’s German-inspired indoor biergarten features soft pretzels, bratwurst, spätzle, schnitzel, and of course, beer. But they also have an indoor version of one of Europe’s most popular lawn games, bocce ball. Bonus: Neighboring sister restaurant Wally’s serves up Midwestern faves such as cheese curds.

Rhein Haus / Facebook

Ace Eat Serve

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Little ones will likely find lots to like on the kids menu of Asian favorites that have been modified for younger palettes (there’s a bao bun made with peanut butter and jelly and pork belly, a stir fried noodle bowl and wings san sauce). And iof the complimentary shaved ice served with every kid’s meal doesn’t make them happy, they’ll likely still get a kick out of hitting a ping pong ball on one of Ace’s 12 tables. There’s even a daily happy hour from 4 to 6 p.m. when an hour at a table costs just $10 an hour.

Ace Eat Serve Ace Eat Serve/Facebook

Olive & Finch

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What’s not to like about pastries for the kids and a cup of drip coffee for the adults?

Olive & Finch
Olive & Finch
Adam Larkey

Pasquini's Pizzeria

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One of Denver’s original family-owned pizza joints is full of funky artwork with a menu of classic Italian favorites, from salads and subs to pizzas, pastas, and calzones. There aren’t any nuggets on their kids’ menu; instead they offer build-your-own-pizza at the table, plus kids get an extra ball of dough to play with.

Pasquini’s / Facebook

Finkel & Garf Brewing Co.

In Gunbarrel, there’s a big kid-friendly playground that also serves award-winning beers. Lego Duplo blocks, board games, a turf patio, and a ball maze that matches the whimsical retro bucket chairs are all part of the package. While mom and dad sip grown-up brews, the kids can enjoy classic junk food such as Corn Nuts, Slim Jims, Twinkies, and Oreos alongside house root beer.

Finkel & Garf / Facebook

Lucky Pie Pizza & Taphouse

In the heart of old town Louisville is a big backyard housed at the former post office, and it just happens to sell hand-stretched gourmet pizzas and beer from over 60 taps. Afterwards, guests can pop next door and visit the original location of gourmet creamery Sweet Cow.

Lucky Pie / Facebook

Gravity Brewing

Louisville’s VFW space is a multiplex of projects: The VFW, Gravity Beer, and Gastronauts. On one side, customers get craft beers (think Wicked Nebula IPA and Coal Kreik dubbel), while out of a side window, classic dishes like meatballs, wings, and fries are served. In the middle: Ping Pong, board games, and other things to keep kids occupied.

Gravity Brewing / Facebook

Chuy's

Chuy’s is a shrine to all things Tex-Mex, from queso to margaronas. Not only does it offer tacos, enchiladas, and rellenos, to name a few popular food choices, but it’s also full of bright artwork and fun stuff to look at (read: good I-spy fodder).

Chuy’s / Facebook

Moonlight Diner

Tower Road is home to one of the metro area’s hidden gems: the Moonlight Diner. Diners will blast back to the 1950s with a visit to this chrome boxcar covered in memorabilia from the era. Just minutes from DIA, it’s a stopping point whether coming or going, featuring a menu of classic grub like burgers and green chili, or breakfast any time — it’s open all day from 6:30 a.m. to 11 p.m.

Moonlight Diner / TripAdvisor

The Cereal Box, Inc.

Custom blends such as Unicorn Poop and Squirrel Treats are mixed from favorite cereal boxes and served in heaping bowls at this newer Olde Town Arvada shop. Kids can marvel at the collector toys or watch classic cartoons while getting their sugar rush.

Cereal Box/Facebook

Billy's Inn

A Highlands staple since the 1930s, Billy’s Inn offers classic Colorado fare: diner food with a Mexican twist. Beyond the stucco façade, diners can order Baja-style tacos, green chili plates, nachos, and quesadillas. But there’s also a full menu of all-American burgers, salads, and sandwiches.

Billy’s / Facebook

peteybird, uniquely crafted

Pete Bredemann left an engineering job in pursuit of the perfect ice cream sandwich, and now what began as a cart has its own brick and mortar location in RiNo. Peteybird goes beyond the standard disappointing vanilla ice cream with a mushy chocolate cookie to offer flavors such as graham cracker with key lime pie and double chocolate with salted caramel.

peteybird / Facebook

Sushi-Rama

The conveyor belt sushi restaurant is great for kids who need to be entertained during dinner. The artsy and colorful space can spark a conversation as well.

Sushi-Rama
Sushi-Rama
Sushi-Rama [Official Site]

Maria Empanada

Even for parents of picky eaters, Maria Empanada has something for everyone. Hand-held pastry pockets full of savory fillings range from eggplant parmesan, or beef and onion to ham and cheese, corn, or mushroom. There’s virtually no wait from ordering to mouth, and takeout is always an option. 

Maria Empanada / Official website

Rhein Haus Denver

LoDo’s German-inspired indoor biergarten features soft pretzels, bratwurst, spätzle, schnitzel, and of course, beer. But they also have an indoor version of one of Europe’s most popular lawn games, bocce ball. Bonus: Neighboring sister restaurant Wally’s serves up Midwestern faves such as cheese curds.

Rhein Haus / Facebook

Ace Eat Serve

Little ones will likely find lots to like on the kids menu of Asian favorites that have been modified for younger palettes (there’s a bao bun made with peanut butter and jelly and pork belly, a stir fried noodle bowl and wings san sauce). And iof the complimentary shaved ice served with every kid’s meal doesn’t make them happy, they’ll likely still get a kick out of hitting a ping pong ball on one of Ace’s 12 tables. There’s even a daily happy hour from 4 to 6 p.m. when an hour at a table costs just $10 an hour.

Ace Eat Serve Ace Eat Serve/Facebook

Olive & Finch

What’s not to like about pastries for the kids and a cup of drip coffee for the adults?

Olive & Finch
Olive & Finch
Adam Larkey

Pasquini's Pizzeria

One of Denver’s original family-owned pizza joints is full of funky artwork with a menu of classic Italian favorites, from salads and subs to pizzas, pastas, and calzones. There aren’t any nuggets on their kids’ menu; instead they offer build-your-own-pizza at the table, plus kids get an extra ball of dough to play with.

Pasquini’s / Facebook

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