37 Best Restaurants in RiNo, Denver

No matter your budget or the cuisine you’re craving, you’ll find dozens of options in Denver’s River North Art District. Authentic dishes, fusion creations, and hidden gems are around every corner. Our guide to the best restaurants in RiNo includes: 

If you want to sample several of the neighborhood’s best eats, join our highly-rated RiNo Food Tour! It includes five generous tastings and optional drink pairings, plus insights into RiNo’s art and dining scenes.

Ricotta gnocchi from Vero, one of the top restaurants in RiNo

Italian eatery Vero is one of eleven vendors within Denver Central market. Its glossy, green-tiled pizza oven creates wood-fired pies, and the menu features a selection of pasta, too. One noteworthy favorite is its housemade ricotta gnocchi, which is one of five generous tastings on our RiNo Arts District Food Tour. 

Join our guided experience or stop in solo. Weekday afternoons are a prime time to visit, as its neighboring vendor Curio Bar offers one of the best happy hours in Denver.

A box of pizza on the patio at Cart-Driver

Cart-Driver operates its counter service within an intimate, renovated shipping container. Locals gather over platters of wood-fired pizza, oysters, and tins of sardines. Pair your meal with an Aperol spritz or opt for a craft cocktail like its effervescent negroni made with a splash of prosecco.

A group dining on shared plates at Dio Mio

Few quick-service counters can compete with Dio Mio, renowned for its handmade pasta. The ambiance is casual and approachable, and the global wine selection won’t break the bank. Yet, a glass of merlot paired with its fennel sausage rigatoni matches the experience of any Italian fine dining restaurant.

A whole artisanal pizza from The Greenwich

New American restaurant The Greenwich serves an eclectic menu with highlights like its lamb meatballs and lemon-roasted chicken. But more recently, this RiNo eatery has built a reputation around its wood-fired pizzas. 

Its white pizza with housemade hot sauce and roasted mushroom pie with crescenza and gouda cheeses are especially popular. Be sure to order its famed cheesecake for dessert, which features a drizzle of extra virgin olive oil.

Caesar salad, garlic knots, and pepperoni slices from Redeemer Pizza

Redeemer Pizza puts a unique spin on New York-style pies by using a delicious sourdough crust. Don’t skip on the house-made dipping sauces, including dilly ranch and chili honey. An order of garlic knots is a must, too. 

For the VIP experience, join our RiNo Food Tour! It makes a stop at this celebrated pizzeria.

A pizza, salad, and cocktails backdropped by The Back 9's golf simulator

Thin-crust, Chicago-style pizzas are The Walnut Room’s specialty. In authentic fashion, whole pies are square-cut and eighteen signature topping options make up the menu. Gluten-free crust and plant-based cheese are also available, as are individual slices and other pub grub.

Entertainment is a key draw to The Walnut Room. It shows prime-time games on its TVs and allows guests to play rounds on its golf simulator. Book a tee time via The Back 9.

Colorful Mexican fare by Los Chingones, one of Delicious Denver Food Tours' partners

Los Chingones ranks as one of the best rooftop restaurants in Denver. Dine al fresco or pop inside this edgy Mexican eatery. Its graffiti-painted walls are as vibrant as its plates of tacos, quesadillas, and smothered burritos. 

Visit during happy hour (weekdays from 3:00-5:30 pm) to enjoy all menu items for $7 or less. Or, sample this eatery’s street tacos on our RiNo Arts District Food Tour!

Latin American cuisine by Work & Class, one of many incredible RiNo, Denver restaurants

Adjacent to Cart-Driver, you’ll find another shipping container housing Work & Class. It offers an eclectic menu, taking inspiration from Latin American and classic Southern cooking. Try its signature dishes like coriander-roasted Colorado lamb and smoked gouda mac and cheese.

Latin American dishes from Comal Heritage Food Incubator

RiNo residents love Comal Heritage Food Incubator — not only for its Latin American fare but also its philanthropic mission. Behind its casual lunch counter work immigrant and refugee women who aim to develop their culinary and entrepreneurial skills. Visiting is a mutual learning opportunity, as you’ll be exposed to delicious food and vibrant cultures.

Colorful South American dishes by Mister Oso, one of the best restaurants in RiNo

Hands down, Mister Oso is one of the best restaurants in RiNo. The recent Bib Gourmand award winner takes inspiration from the bold flavors of South America. Patrons love its daily happy hour deals and the extensive taco selection. The birria tacos are a popular choice, which pair perfectly with coconut rice and cinnamon-dusted churros.

Latin American dishes on a dim sum-style cart, available at Super Mega Bien

Inside the trendy Ramble Hotel lies Super Mega Bien. Its atmosphere is undeniably cool, and its Latin American fare is top-notch. Order from dim sum-style carts, featuring small plates like ceviche, patatas bravas, and poblano pepper croquetas. Housemade tonics with various gins create must-try cocktails, all of which pair beautifully. 

Two individuals using chopsticks to eat dishes by Osaka Ramen

Past the neon sign and down into the basement level, you’ll find a hidden gem: Osaka Ramen. Authentic in ambiance and Japanese fare, this restaurant is loved for its warm noodle bowls and small plates. Save room for dessert, as the mochi donuts are a crowd favorite. 

Another reason why we love Osaka Ramen? It’s one of several delicious stops on our RiNo Arts District Food Tour!

Nigiri topped with caviar, a specialty available at Temaki Den

Located within The Source Hotel, Temaki Den is known for its industrial aesthetic and upscale Japanese menu. Opt for an omakase tasting to sample some of the restaurant’s best, including salmon oshizushi and bluefin tsukami with Hackleback caviar. A sake flight completes the experience.

A Szechuan noodle dish by Hop Alley, one of the most popular RiNo, Denver restaurants

Savor shared plates of Chinese fare at one of the most celebrated Asian restaurants in RiNo. Though the modern menu is upscale, the vibe is far from pretentious with an upbeat ‘90s hip-hop playlist. Banter with friends between bites of Beijing duck rolls, bone marrow fried rice, and other Szechuan-inspired dishes.

A row of sashimi by Uchi

Despite its landlocked location, Uchi creates masterful Japanese cuisine, including sushi and sashimi. To sample several of the kitchen’s best dishes, many visitors opt for the ten-course omakase menu. Happy hour is another ideal time to book a table. 

Japanese food on Sushi-Rama's conveyor belt

Enjoy quality seafood for less at Sushi-Rama, which cuts costs and engages visitors with its fun conveyor belt serving model. Grab whatever looks delish and pay á la carte. Plate colors indicate pricing, which ranges from $2.29 to $4.29. Heartier fare is available from its kitchen menu, which features items like furikake fries and kara’age chicken.

A pasta and seafood dish from Koko Ni

Upscale eatery Koko Ni blends Japanese and French cooking styles to create its ten-course omakase menu. Take a seat at James Beard award-winning chef Paul Qui’s counter and savor bites like scallops with smoked garlic greens, a sea urchin tostada, and wagyu beef with a squid emulsion. Many ingredients are sourced locally and seasonally, and the selection rotates daily.

Izzio Bakery's kouign amann, drizzled with chocolate

A trip to Denver Central Market is one of the best things to do in Denver. Here, you’ll find several RiNo restaurants including Izzio Bakery. It’s loved for its pastry selection featuring flaky croissants and various flavors of kouign amann. For a more substantial meal, order from a selection of toasts, sandwiches, and hearty bowls.

Chicken fried steak by Butcher Block Cafe

For the classic greasy spoon diner experience, head to Butcher Block Cafe. This affordable, nostalgic eatery serves up sweet and savory breakfast favorites. Cinnamon rolls and French toast appear on the menu alongside chicken fried steak, biscuits and gravy, and more hearty options.

A Venezuelan sticky bun from Reunion Bread

Start your morning with a visit to Reunion, one of several vendors within The Source Hotel. This local favorite crafts artisanal breads and pastries, including sweet and savory croissants, a daily Danish special, and its signature Venezuelan-style sticky buns. Pair these with espresso beverages like its house mocaccino made with dark Belgian chocolate.

Pork belly banh mi from Crema Coffee House

Crema has a location within Denver Central Market, but its original brick-and-mortar offers a far more extensive food and drink menu. Pair coffee and tea beverages with options like its breakfast burrito, daily quiche, beet salad, and banh mi with pork belly or vegan tempeh. Though outlets are unavailable, the shop offers wifi and a hipster vibe, complete with bold murals and an eclectic playlist.

Coffee and a waffle topped with fruit from Stowaway Kitchen

Stowaway Kitchen is one of the best brunch spots in Denver, loved for its ambiance and globally-inspired fare. Favorites on the menu include its sourdough waffle and scram sandwich made with soft scrambled eggs and tomato chutney. Several dishes are available gluten-free and vegan, and visitors love its housemade cashew milk lattes. Craft cocktails and other beverages round out the selection at this bright, cheerful eatery.

A breakfast sandwich with egg and pulled pork from Port Side

Like its neighbors Work & Class and Cart-Driver, Port Side is set within a renovated shipping container. It offers limited indoor seating and an outdoor patio where guests can dine on breakfast sandwiches, burritos, and avocado toast. Complete your meal with made-to-order smoothies, coffee beverages, and brunch cocktails like its mezcal sunrise and housemade bloody Mary.

The El Chilango burger by Park Burger, one of the top restaurants in RiNo

If you’re looking for a casual spot to catch the game, Park Burger is it. This lively sports bar and restaurant specializes in creative burgers. Topping combinations include fig jam and brie, as well as jalapeño cream cheese and diced green chile. Pair your meal with a house-spun milkshake or your choice of craft beer.

A cheeseburger from Split Lip, one of the best RiNo restaurants

Split Lip is a unique restaurant concept inside Number Thirty Eight, a spacious RiNo hangout and live music venue. Order beer from the bar, then head here for tasty pub grub including piled-high burgers. Most options come with “too many pickles” and pair perfectly with cheese curds, tots, and other tasty sides.

Brisket and other smoked meats by Pit Fiend Barbecue

Denver has a surprising number of barbecue restaurants and Pit Fiend ranks highly for its smoked meats and fixin’s. Find classics like beef brisket and pulled pork on the menu, along with mac and cheese, potato salad, and cornbread muffins with hot honey. The eatery serves unique options, too, like vegan jackfruit barbecue available by the quarter, half, and full pound.

Smoked meats and sides from Smok Barbecue

Smōk Barbecue is another vendor at The Source Hotel and is loved for its selection of regional barbecue styles. Savor Carolina-style pulled pork, Nashville hot chicken, and burnt ends that take you right to Kansas City. Fried okra, sweet potato tots, and other flavorful sides appear on the menu, along with housemade banana pudding for dessert.

Burgers and cheese fries from Shake Shack

Unlike most restaurants in RiNo, Shake Shack is a national chain. But its mouthwatering menu makes it a worthy inclusion in this guide. 

Order its signature Angus beef cheeseburger or opt for its ‘shroom burger featuring a deep-fried, cheese-filled portobello patty. Like any good burger joint, Shake Shack also offers crinkle-cut fries and hand-spun milkshakes in classic chocolate, vanilla, and strawberry flavors.

Oysters three ways, available at Fish N Beer

For one of Denver’s best happy hours, head to Fish N Beer. Tuesday through Saturday from 5:00-6:30 pm, this seafood mainstay serves up oysters for $2.50 per, plus other discounted food and drinks. Standard menu staples include smelt fries, crab-stuffed cod, and other decadent plates.

An ice cream flight from High Point Creamery

High Point Creamery is a must-try dessert spot inside Denver Central Market. It features some of the city’s most unique ice cream flavors. Satisfy your sweet tooth with options like brown sugar cinnamon, Earl Grey and shortbread, and its signature flavor: basil with blackberry swirl.

Various bonbon flavors from Temper Chocolates

Another Denver Central Market vendor, Temper Chocolates offers fancy confections and an array of art-decorated bonbons. Indulge in flavors like lavender dark chocolate, Guinness-infused milk chocolate, and hibiscus lemonade in a white chocolate shell. Purchase single pieces or boxes in varying quantities, or peruse its wide selection of local and globally sourced chocolate bars.

A variety of mochi donuts by Dochi

Of course, our RiNo Arts District Food Tour has to include dessert! For this, we take our groups to Dochi, a charming cafe known for its mochi donuts. 

These unique confections are soft and chewy like Japanese mochi, as well as slightly crisp like an American fried donut. Join the tour or visit on your own to try its wide variety of flavors, including ube, matcha pistachio, and many more.

Falafels, hummus, and other Middle Eastern dishes by Safta

Sampling Middle Eastern cuisine at Safta is one of the best things to do in Denver. Set inside the Source Hotel, this modern eatery was founded by Israeli-American celebrity chef Alon Shaya. Menu favorites include muhammara and labneh served with housemade pita bread, along with baba ganoush and lamb ragu.

New American plates by Nocturne

Nocturne may be one of Denver’s most romantic restaurants, but all are welcome at this lively jazz club. Order à la carte or treat yourself to a New American three-course menu. Live music fills its two-level lounge every Wednesday through Sunday night. Note that reservations are highly encouraged. 

A high-end dish by Beckon, one of the most upscale RiNo restaurants

Few of Denver’s best restaurants are as exclusive as Beckon, which was recently awarded a Michelin star. Dining at its chef counter is a pre-paid, ticketed affair. The seasonal menu rotates, featuring beautiful local ingredients and exquisite plating. Wine pairings are available, as well as an upscale cocktail menu.

Elevated small plates and glasses of wine from Major Tom

Intimate eatery Major Tom is a sister concept of Beckon but comparatively, it’s more approachable in its ambiance and menu. Phases of the moon decorate its interior walls and an outdoor mural which backdrops its cozy patio. 

Take a seat near the fire pit and order popular plates like its overnight cabbage, black truffle and parmesan panisse, and Berkshire pork chops served with chanterelle chimichurri. Wine and a wide selection of Champagne add reasons to visit for a special occasion.

Paella and various tapas from Barcelona Wine Bar

Barcelona Wine Bar offers an incredibly extensive list of globally sourced wines, available by the bottle and the glass. To make sense of the 20-page menu, speak with your server about your preferences. 

Additionally, consider asking for pairing recommendations. Many wines match beautifully with its paellas and tapas, which include whipped sheep’s cheese, bacon-wrapped dates, and decadent jamón and manchego croquetas.