Denver, CO 80205
- New American
- Tue-Fri: 5pm-10pm Sat: Brunch 10am-2pm Dinner 5pm-10pm Sun: 10am-2pm
- All Major Credit Cards, cash
- Kid Friendly, Patio/Sidewalk Dining, Vegetarian Friendly
- Brunch, Dinner, Lunch
- Full bar
The Populist may be named for the common man, but the food is anything but common. Set on a dark stretch of Larimer Street that looks deserted even though it isn’t, the Populist has been nudging diners to venture further into RiNo since it opened in November 2012. Operated by chef Jonathan Power and Noah Price, the team behind the popular Crema coffeehouse a few blocks closer to downtown, the restaurant exudes a similar hipster vibe, albeit one a notch fancier. Although the bright-red dining room has a view of the partially open kitchen, the front area, with its big windows and packed copper bar, is definitely where you want to be, munching on surprisingly sophisticated bar mix while listening to the conversation next to you at the communal table. But soon you’ll want to devote all your attention to your meal, because you never know quite what Power – a philosophy major in college – will add as a flourish to each dish. Free of labels, the menu allows you to choose what you want, without constraints of first course, second course, sides. Plates are meant to be shared, so you can order two courses or seven, traveling from France to Mexico to India and back. Populist’s uncommon-food-for-commoners shtick is all the passport to adventure that you need.
Tips from foursquare
Set on a dark stretch that looks deserted even though it isn't, the Populist has been nudging diners to venture farther up Larimer Street since it opened in November.
The Chef's Menu paired with wine is a great value and a super fun way to experience a lot of the dishes.
Tasting menu is maybe the best food secret in the state for the price. Standouts: the carrots, and the bacon & egg. Wines pairings well worth it too. Quirky lists can be risky, they do it well.
Our favorite of the evening was the butternut squash agnolotti. Definitely among my favorite things I've eaten in a LONG time. We'll be back!
The RiNo restaurant from Noah Price and chef Jonathan Power is nearly a year old and going strong. Try the cauliflower and pear soup and the curried chickpeas and don't overlook the wine list.
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