Denver’s pizza scene has changed — a ton — throughout the course of recent years. While the city’s outdated pizza shops remain reserves, they generally offer fast style New York pies and cuts. However, presently you can find joints serving Neapolitan, Detroit, Sicilian, New Haven and Chicago (slim, bar style and thicker style) pies, as well, alongside spots stacking fixings onto sourdough hull.
In the first place, however, we set some guidelines that restricted the field. We chose to zero in on places that work in pizza regardless of anything else. Cafés like the Greenwich, Bar Dough and Osteria Marco offer damn great pies, however don’t actually qualify as pizzerias. Also, we needed to ensure that the pies are promptly accessible. While there’s been a multiplication of pandemic pop-ups and forward thinking organizations serving genuinely craveable pizza, those desires can’t be fulfilled 100% of the time. Get Sauced and Limbo Pizza, for instance, are locally established and offer week by week pick-ups that you can pre-request through direct message on Instagram. Others, similar to the Funky Flame (at the Radiator in Sunnyside) and Good Bread (at 1515 Madison), have settled in actual areas, however just sling pizza on specific days of the week.
Indeed, even with those rules set up, the pizza banter stays hot. Frequently the best pizza might be the one nearest to you, since when the requirement for a quite hot cut hits, it should be fulfilled ASAP. Of course, individuals will generally foster a nostalgic love for the pizza that has been there for them at significant times, whether it’s a cut from the window at the Marquis after a show or a monster pie from Anthony’s that shows up rapidly close to home when a blizzard hits and you can’t force yourself to take off from the house.
Audrey Jane’s Pizza Garage
Audrey Sherman has been throwing monstrous cuts (genuinely, they’re gigantic) and entire pies from a little spot concealed on the posterior of a mall. Those in the loop wouldn’t even for a second consider making a trip across Boulder without a refueling break at the Garage, where cuts come out hot and quick, and entire pies are presented in a threesome of choices: New York style, Sicilian and Patty style (a sesame-crusted grandmother pie motivated by the ones that Sherman’s mother made for her when she was a youngster). It was that sesame pie that ignited Sherman’s long-lasting adoration for pizza, which prompted a mentorship under thirteen-time World Pizza Champion Tony Gemignani before she opened her own place.
Enormous Bill’s New York Pizza
Fugeddaboutit! Enormous Bill’s is the sort of spot that flashes moment sentimentality, whether you’ve been going there for quite a long time or you’re making your most memorable visit. “Enormous” Bill Ficke experienced childhood in New York yet moved to Denver during the ’70s. He once did a spell as an associate mentor for the Nuggets, and furthermore claimed a Fleet Feet shoe store for a considerable length of time prior to opening up his south rural pizza place — its inside embellished with sports memorabilia and tributes to NYC — in 1995. From that point forward, Big Bill’s has become known for its New York-style pies, yet in addition its proclivity for offering in return, through the two its yearly 9/11 Day of Giving pledge drive and the JoAnn B. Ficke Cancer Foundation, which was laid out after Ficke’s significant other died in 2009. Begin your feast with a super cold container of Yoo-hoo, antipasti for two (a tremendous plate of mixed greens stacked with thick cuts of provolone and salami) and a crate of garlic hitches with zippy marinara for plunging prior to directing your concentration toward the pizza. It’s accessible entire or by the cut, with anything garnishes make you excited (the all-hamburger meatballs are a fan #1). Genius tip: Get sides of the super-thick blue cheddar and farm dressings, which are made in-house.
Blue Pan Pizza
Detroit-style pies, known for their rectangular shape and caramelized cheddar edges, have become so famous as of late that even Pizza Hut has cut into the pattern. Cook Jeff “Smoke” Smokevitch and accomplice Giles Flanagin acquainted the city with the better marks of this provincial style when they opened the primary Blue Pan in West Highland in 2015. That area has since extended its lounge area, and Blue Pan opened a second station in Congress Park, as well, making it more straightforward to get your hands on these pies based on a breezy, crackly outside with Wisconsin block cheddar, a thick, tart sauce and premium fixings. Blue Pan likewise offers a sans gluten pizza, a New York style and a wafer flimsy Chicago style.
Truck Driver in RiNo introduced a flood of Neapolitan pizza in Denver. These impeccably singed wood-terminated pies sparkle whether you pick a straightforward margherita (called the Daisy here) or an occasional creation, stacked with fixings like mollusks and pancetta or delicata squash and pecorino. A feast in the small, unique steel trailer area is a private yet exuberant experience, while the fresher station in LoHi is somewhat more open and relaxed. At one or the other area, Cart-Driver’s choice of shellfish and tinned fish are quite an effective method for beginning any pizza party.
Smash Pizza + Tap
Jason McGovern opened what was then called Denver Deep Dish toward the rear of Bar Car in 2012. Throughout the last ten years, a ton has changed in Denver — including McGovern’s business, which moved into its own space in Sunnyside in 2015 and was renamed Crush Pizza and Tap in 2018 to mirror the way that it does much more than thicker style now. Notwithstanding its previous namesake pie, you can get your pizza sans gluten, hand-threw or Sicilian style, with a super-light and breezy hull that is much the same as focaccia with a profoundly caramelized edge. McGovern likewise opened Crush Wings + Tap on East Colfax Avenue last year, yet while that area has pizza on the menu, its broiler space is restricted, so it just offers 10-inch hand-threw or 12-inch without gluten choices. For a genuine taste of what’s made Crush a champion for the last 10 years, hit up the first, and don’t be terrified to attempt a portion of the less customary garnishes, for example, lemon ricotta with newly shaved garlic or the burger roused Royale with Cheese.
Well known Original J’s
Josh Pollack, a New Jersey local, has been determined to bring a sample of the East Coast to Denver since opening his most memorable Rosenberg’s Bagels area in 2014. With Famous Original J’s at the 715 Club, he’s given the city a cut window of the greatest quality. Indeed, you can get entire pies here (both customary and sans gluten), yet nothing beats remaining under the neon sparkle of the red “pizza” sign with a mixed drink in one hand and a paper plate in the other as you scarf down a hot cut finished off with large, completely oily cuts of pepperoni — or whatever your go-to garnish might be, since there are a lot of choices. The sauce inclines sweet, the hull has a pleasant mash under, and the entire experience will leave you feeling thankful for the straightforward things throughout everyday life.
Co-proprietors Julia Duncan Roitman and Andy Templar set off on a mission to open a mixed drink bar that ended up having pizza, yet Joy Hill made its presentation only days before the pandemic shut down all indoor eating in March 2020. Subsequently, it rested on its pizza to remain in business — and that paid off. Made with so much fixings as treasure wheat from Dry Storage, privately obtained buffalo and occasional produce, and hand-extended mozzarella made in-house, these pies genuinely step it up in the quality division. Be that as it may, the kicker is the singe specked, light and vaporous sourdough outside layer, which is wood-terminated and best delighted in with a sprinkle of honey or a dunk in green chile farm. Match it with a glass of wine (the Lambrusco is an optimal pick) or a mixed drink, a large number of which are made with Colorado spirits. Extra focuses for the most charming pizza enclose plan town, decorated with an unusual drawing of a young lady sitting among blossoms, taking care of a cut to a deer.
Steven Redzikowski, co-proprietor of Oak at Fourteenth, Bellota and Brider, has gone through years forming the high end food scene in Boulder and Denver — yet his most memorable occupation was at a pizza place in New York. Presently he’s carried his enthusiasm for pies to Avanti’s Boulder area, where New Yorkese appeared in late 2020. It’s on the high level, a stroll up slow down close to the bar, where you can snatch a pie — accessible entire, in one size just — and partake in the roof sees. The style is a hybrid of New York and Neapolitan, with a batter that is sealed for 72 hours and produced using a mix of newly processed natural spelt, rye and bread flours; the outcome is a chewy inside with a crunchy edge. Go fundamental with pepperoni or cheddar, or settle on one of the additional fascinating combos, as mortadella with pistachio pesto, or the Steverino, with fiery hotdog, kale, olives, new mozzarella and Wisconsin mozzarella.
Pizza shop Lui
Since Zach Parini opened the relaxed, straightforward Pizzeria Lui in 2017, it’s acquired a ton of faithful fans. While attempting to stay aware of the expanded interest for takeout during the pandemic, Parini pursued the difficult decision to trade out his wood-terminated broiler — in which he could make four pies all at once — for an electric rendition that expanded the ability to fifteen all at once. The outcome is a pie that holds up better during movement yet doesn’t lose any of its singed, Neapolitan-style request assuming you choose to eat in. Something else that hasn’t changed: Parini’s obligation to utilizing the greatest fixings, similar to Palisade peaches (when they’re in season) for a super well known summer occasional pie, and his father’s natively constructed hotdog, which he’s been assisting with making since youth.
At the point when Spencer White and Alex Figura, the proprietors of quick easygoing pasta hit Dio Mio, began playing with setting huge deck broilers up to grow their baking capacities, the idea transformed into a pizza spot and Redeemer was conceived, appearing last July in RiNo. A section through the back rear entryway set apart by a neon cut sign prompts the cut window, where you can get one of that day’s specials: New York-style and thick, Sicilian choices are both accessible. In the front lounge area, you can arrange entire pies alongside tidbits, wine, mixed drinks and that’s just the beginning. The pizza is all made on sourdough outside layer, however Redeemer blends its craftsman way to deal with batter with exemplary, craveable parts like ooey, gooey, low-dampness mozzarella. Remember to arrange sides of both the hot honey and dilly farm.
Since we began Westword, it has been characterized as the free, autonomous voice of Denver, and we’d prefer to keep it as such. With nearby media under attack, it’s a higher priority than any time in recent memory for us to revitalize support behind financing our neighborhood news-casting. You can help by partaking in our “I Support” program, permitting us to continue to offer perusers admittance to our sharp inclusion of neighborhood news, food and culture with no paywalls.
MOLLY MARTIN is the Westword Food and Drink supervisor. She’s been expounding on the feasting scene in Denver starting around 2013, and was eating her strategy for getting around the city well before that. She appreciates long strolls to the closest burrito joint and evenings spent tasting mixed drinks on Colfax.
Little Bodega Will Bring (More) East Coast Vibes to Five Points
Alongside the New York-propelled Rosenberg’s, Famous Original J’s and Lou’s Italian Specialties from restaurateur Joshua Pollack and the as of late opened Duke’s Good Sandwiches, Five Points occupants will have one more taste of the East Coast readily available with the forthcoming opening of Little Bodega, a little basic food item and shop at 613 22nd Street.
Totally unrelated to the sandwich shop Bodega, opening soon in Sunnyside, or Fresh Thymes’ branch-off called Bodega, which appeared in Boulder recently, this bodega emphasis is enlivened straight by the little food merchants proprietor Natasha Butler belittled while living in New York. “It seemed like a cut of home or local area in an enormous city, when you can frequently go unnoticed,” she says.
Initially from Missouri, Butler became hopelessly enamored with her nearby bodega, where the proprietor realized her by face and request; when she strolled in, she seldom needed to stand by. On the off chance that there was a long queue, the proprietor told whomever was working behind the counter to make her sandwich first. She didn’t have a clue about his genuine name, however referred to him as “Frogman” as a result of his voice.
At the point when she moved to Denver a long time back, Butler missed that prompt feeling of local area. She was shocked to observe that occupants in such a major city were reliant upon enormous supermarkets a distance away. In the wake of losing her regular employment as a task director and doing some spirit looking, she began plans for her own Little Bodega.
The market will convey staples like bites, dry products, family things, frozen suppers and cold beverages. It will likewise sell lottery tickets, yet while Butler wanted to sell tobacco items, her vicinity to a school keeps her from having the option to.
There will be a specially made sandwich counter and shop, too, with dribble espresso served by the cup. After the underlying opening, Butler intends to carry out a morning meal menu at the shop.
Since beginning the venture, she’s handled inquiries from companions posing to why she’s initial something like a 7-Eleven, yet a local bodega is far beyond that, she takes note of; it’s where everybody knows your name — or on the other hand on the off chance that not your name, your face and request, similar to her Frogman. “I need to construct something as near a New York bodega as could really be expected,” Butler says.
Picking Five Points as the area for Little Bodega was purposeful for Butler, who is half Black, taking note of that she needs to “encourage greater variety back into the [Five Points] people group.” She adds, “I was not anticipating that it should be so white. Denver is definitely not a little city.”
To get to realize the local better, she’s been working next store to the future Little Bodega at TeaLee’s Tea House and Bookstore. “I call it my temporary job,” Butler says, giggling.
Expect high contrast checkerboard plans and loads of orange at Little Bodega. Kristin Pazulski
Neighbors accumulate in TeaLee’s for news, tattle, discussion and company. For Butler, it’s an incredible method for getting to know her future clients, and she sees proprietor Risë Jones as her guide. “She is who I need to encapsulate in business and overall,” Butler says.
The present moment, Little Bodega’s retail facade is showing bits of its future: the sign is up, and the entryway is painted in Butler’s #1 variety, orange. She intends to make an energetic store vibe, enriched in orange with highly contrasting checkerboard designs. She maintains that the look should be sharp yet not excessively charming — “a ‘shoppe’ with a ‘ppe,'” as she portrays it.
Inside, materials for racking sit on the floor encompassing an impromptu work area where Butler right now works while looking out for licenses to get done with working out the space. When those are set up, she expects the buildout to require a few months. “I was expecting to wrap up this month,” she concedes, yet presently she’s planning to open in the fall.
Little Bodega will be situated at 613 22nd Street. For more data, visit littlebodegadenver.com or follow the store on Instagram and Facebook.
Since we began Westword, it has been characterized as the free, autonomous voice of Denver, and we’d prefer to keep it as such. With nearby media under attack, it’s a higher priority than at any other time for us to revitalize support behind subsidizing our neighborhood news-casting. You can help by partaking in our “I Support” program, permitting us to continue to offer perusers admittance to our sharp inclusion of neighborhood news, food and culture with no paywalls.
KRISTIN PAZULSKI has been a renaissance faire vixen, a journalist, a coffee gave slinger, a proofreader of a paper for the destitute and an award essayist. She’s presently an independent essayist covering Denver’s café scene.
Last year, Old Santa Fe Mexican Express figured out that its structure at 5501 South Broadway in Littleton had been offered to vehicle retailer AutoNation, which wanted to obliterate the area to clear a path for a parking garage.
After over twenty years in business, the family-run activity had to close down, declaring the news in a Facebook post on July 20, 2022, stating, “We truly do anticipate moving areas, but we request some persistence as we track down an ideal fit for us.”
After a month, the café was all the while searching for another home. “Our family keeps on being crushed as practically 20+ long stretches of difficult work has authoritatively been annihilated,” it wrote in another Facebook update. “We keep on expressing gratitude toward you for your understanding as we search for another area tragically the circumstance has gotten more confounded and we haven’t found an area ideal for us in the event that you all have any suggestions for the Littleton region kindly let us know. Our clients keep on remaining in our souls and we desire to serve you all soon. We value all messages and remarks and much obliged.”
It required an additional eight months for an update to come to hungry fanatics of the Mexican diner, however on April 15, it reported that it was at last returning as Old Santa Fe Mexican Grill in another area at 1500 West Littleton Boulevard in the Woodlawn Shopping Center, only four minutes not too far off from the first. Once more the progress required simply under a year, however its whole broad menu, from the famous chile Colorado to molcajetes and mole, was accessible.
Presently the new Old Santa Fe is praising with a lengthy party time through the remainder of the late spring, with limits on draft and packaged lagers, house and seasoned margaritas, and food things like the recently added hand crafted hot wings from early afternoon to 6 p.m. everyday.
In a year that is brought the conclusion of a developing number of long-term staples in the neighborhood feasting scene, this rebound is unquestionably motivation to celebrate.
Old Santa Fe Mexican Grill is situated at 1500 West Littleton Boulevard and is open from 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. Sunday through Tuesday and 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. Wednesday through Saturday. For more data, visit oldsantafemexicanlittleton.com.
Since we began Westword, it has been characterized as the free, autonomous voice of Denver, and we’d prefer to keep it as such. With neighborhood media under attack, it’s a higher priority than at any other time for us to mobilize support behind financing our nearby news coverage. You can help by taking part in our “I Support” program, permitting us to continue to offer perusers admittance to our sharp inclusion of nearby news, food and culture with no paywalls.