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Tag Restaurant experience - Sunday Jan 24 2010 / Larimer Square

Completely and utterly disappointed by TAG tonite. We had gone in after seeing a show at the Comedy Works and walked in without a reservation. The hostess acted insulted that we walked in at 8:45 and promptly told us that "our kitchen closes at 9:00 so you better order fast". Then asked me for my name, which I gave her my first name, then asked me my last name. I asked why she needed it, we didn't have a reservation or anything, so it was curious to me.

She told me that if I had a favorite dish, they would track it. So at least she was honest, they build a database on their customers. Many places do that certainly and I understand it but certainly I found it completely rude that mere moments after telling me and my boyfriend that we basically were going to be rushed through our dining experience they will track us, I wanted to cut bait and run right then and there.

But we sat at our table. I didn't want to make a scene in front of the hostess who clearly wasn't interested in making our first experience walking in the door welcoming.

Our waitress came by and offered us water and then went through the cocktail menu and said she would give us a minute. Fair enough and pleasant. When she came back and I still hadn't made a choice she also told us the kitchen was closing in 10 minutes so we "should think about making our choices oh and we are out of the lamb."

We sat another minute or so and left. Walked out the front door.

Now...I understand kitchen hours and I understand wanting to keep back of the house happy but the way we were treated was rude and hardly befitting any restaurant that has 30 dollar entrees (which I happily would have paid for had we been treated like a valued customer).

We walked out the door and will probably not return any time in the near future or maybe we will sometime when clearly the back of house and front of house are willing to serve us with respect.

We eat out four times a week and I have never been treated with so much dismissal as I have this evening.

For the record we walked over to Osterio Marco (which actually was our first choice) and had an amazing dinner. Katie our server was a doll and remembered us from our last dinner for my birthday in July, and they didn't have us on some database system. We had a great meal of a charcuterie plate, spinach salad (the dressing was bacon and balsamic vinegar that was unbelievable, I wanted to lick the plate) and a pizza. It was perfect and my frown was turned upside down. The service there was friendly, efficient and most of all welcoming.

I wish Tag Restaurant all the successes the food writers in Denver feel it deserves, they just will never see me in their establishment again.

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Tag Restaurant
1441 Larimer Street, Denver, CO 80202

Jan 24, 2010
aka_zoe in Mountain States

Have we talked Denver Restaurant Week yet?

We have a reservation at O's, are waiting to hear if the rumors are true about extending this year a week more... anyone hear anything?

Feb 01, 2009
aka_zoe in Southwest

Marco's Coal Fired Pizzeria Denver Colorado

pecorino with honey? wowza that could be my next favorite combination I think... something to try this weekend! Thanks for the heads up on the delicious idea!

Jul 16, 2008
aka_zoe in Mountain States

Marco's Coal Fired Pizzeria Denver Colorado

Went to Marcos last night. It was terrific. From the moment we were greeted at the front door by a genuinely nice hostess, to our service we had a great experience. The moment you walk in you know that there has been great care put into the joint. The finish is top notch, not an expense appears to be spared. From the beverage station with the lemon-aid jars in view looking delicious, to the clean lines of the tables with in laid tiles and the wrought iron decorative curls found through out the place. The ovens sit near the back of the room and you can't help missing them or the action around them.

Now a moment of honesty here, I really thought the owner was someone that I knew from high school... but go figure, it wasn't, there are two guys in the culinary field with the same name. It lended for a very funny and amusing moment for everyone I hope, and we caught up even if we only met for the first time that evening. He kindly explained the quality ingredients he brings in from Italy. He brought over a plate of the cheeses with an impressive balsamic reduction for us to try. I could have eaten the peccorino for dinner alone. Mark explained the nuances of the cheeses and that is always a specialty to know what to look for when tasting.

He explained his process for his chicken wings, which are becoming very popular he said. So of course we had to try them. Oh my, so delicious. They are listed as the house special on the menu and really are. Lemon and rosemary marinade then oven finished with limoncello and vidallia onions? Who would have thought that it would work but I could have eaten the entire plate myself.

We had the Abruzzo pizza which was really good. Light and perfect for a warm evening. The only thing I would have asked for more of would be more basil, the single sprig in the center of the pizza had us fighting for it. Oh and more buffalo mozz but that is just because I love it. The crust was slightly salty which was pleasant surprise and completely unexpected.

Our service wasn't rushed or there was no pressure to order cocktails or wine, although the wine list was extensive and the by the glass offerings were varied. I did order the Proseco which was light and refreshing. We were just left to our own devices and it was a pleasure. Now keep in mind, the restaurant is a block and a half away from the baseball stadium so on a game night (last night was not) it might be a completely different story. There was absolutely no upsell on the desert which was divine. I am always dismayed when the server proceeds to try and sell me desert when I haven't finished my meal yet.

I have to admit I enjoyed Marco's pizza better than Protos and expect a little backlash but this was wonderful. And I do look forward to going back.

Jul 13, 2008
aka_zoe in Mountain States

Sprouts in Colorado announcement

Just saw this in one of my news feeds:

http://www.bizjournals.com/denver/sto...

The gist is that there will be two Sprouts opening in October one in Parker and one in Westminster.

Thought it might be of some interest....

zoe

May 13, 2008
aka_zoe in Southwest

Denver Restaurant Week...need help

I do look forward to meeting up and dining with you Claire! Too bad we can't tomorrow! Next meet up for sure!

Feb 23, 2008
aka_zoe in Southwest

Denver Restaurant Week...need help

We have a reservation at O's Seafood at the Westin this Sunday February 24 at 6 pm for four, but sadly we are down to a duo, if there are any 'Hounds who would like to join us please let me know so we don't have to call tomorrow and change our reservation.

It is Booger and I and we would love to have two join us for the cost of dinner and wine and cocktails you may inbibe.

I am hoping to not have to call but if I do I will have to by noon on Saturday (tomorrow), just to be fair to the front of house.

Email me at zoester [[at]] gmail dot com, if you are interested.

Feb 22, 2008
aka_zoe in Southwest

Restaurants near Brown Palace hotel-Denver

Bill - Are you thinking of the Trinity Grille? Sounds like you are, it is still open. When I worked downtown we would go there for lunch often, and their burger is boss.

Here is a url: http://www.trinitygrille.com/

Dec 26, 2007
aka_zoe in Southwest

Good Liquor Store in Cherry Creek area of Denver

I have just returned from the store on Colorado Boulevard in Glendale (look for the King Soopers grocery store on your right if you are traveling South on Colorado Blvd) and they stock the Colorado Whisky. The store is called the Colorado Liquor Mart.

Booger, this whiskey comes HIGHLY recommended, I had it at Sushi Sasa and it was delicious. Reduced with a little dash of sugar and butter over ice cream? HEAVEN.

There is also a blackberry brandy (I think) infused with whiskey that I have to get somewhere, I tried it there too. I think the bar tender said Primo Vino is where they stock it. Its distilled here in Colorado and out-freaking-standing but I can't remember who makes it.

Dec 24, 2007
aka_zoe in Southwest

best (classic) cocktails in Denver

Don's Mixed Drinks on 6th Avenue might be a good option for you. They have been open for 60+ years. I have never had a foo foo cocktail there unless I insisted.

There are some great bars on Broadway that might work as well. Check out Westword would be my suggestion they have several writers that write about the bars (not the bar scene bars but bar bars) that might be able to satiate your classic cocktail needs. They might not be as classy as the Cruise Room or the Brown but certainly they might be able to "quench your thirst".

Dec 18, 2007
aka_zoe in Southwest

Cherry Creek North Denver

John: I didn't include Cherry Creek Grill! Oops...my bad... and didn't include Tazu because I honestly don't know if they are open for lunch, I have only been for dinner and it is good, I will agree. Hapa is right around the corner though so, convenience won out on mentioning it. And when I go I never am disappointed. But Sushi is like wine.. everyone favors something different! Good call on Cherry Creek Grill. Everyone always wants to go there if it is mentioned as an option. Glad you mentioned it.

Dec 16, 2007
aka_zoe in Southwest

Cherry Creek North Denver

Unfortunately I do believe that the in house restaurant Mirepoix is closed for renovations. I have heard that they were closing the FOH but the room service menu might be available and seriously worth looking at.

North is decent and in the evenings very popular. Pasta and Pizza. Prime 121 is also a steak house and very good. I had lunch there about a month and a half ago and was impressed enough to book two work parties there.

There are plenty of varied dining experiences around the area.

In the mall there is the Kona Grill - pizza and fish (it sounds like a weird combination but they do it well). There is also the Italian based bistro fare at the Nordstrom Cafe.

Also within walking distance for lunch is:
Hapa Sushi for Japanese and Sushi

Cherry Cricket - bar food and great greasy burgers

Zaidy's Deli - good deli food (depending on the weather a nice walk but it is about 6 blocks from the JW)

Extreme Pizza recently opened and is supposed to be very good. It is also about 6 blocks away from the hotel.

For make your own designed salads Mad Greens (and I think there is a pizza place next to it) is under the Village Inn on the corner of Columbine.

Rodneys is on 2nd and about a block and a half away, they have a varied menu including burgers, pastas, salads and fish. We have eaten there many times and enjoyed. It is not chow worthy, but great for middle of the road good food.

Little Ollies is very popular for high end chinese fare. They are located on the corner of Third and Josephine. They are popular and have a great reputation. I have eatn there a couple of times and enjoyed.

Tula is open for lunch and serves Mexican. I haven't eaten there myself but perhaps someone else on the board can report back.

If you want a list of the dining in the area I link you to: http://www.cherrycreeknorth.com/merch...

This is the list of the current restaurants open in the area. There are many chains and many restaurants and bars listed there as well.

Your family will have many options and surely will find something amazing.

My favorites are: Hapa Sushi, Sushi Tazu, Crepes and Crepes, Tambien (but in all honesty I have only had drinks there), Prime 121, Cherry Cricket, Brix (but I don't know if they are open for lunch) and Cucina Calore.

Dec 16, 2007
aka_zoe in Southwest

Where to find Vosges Chocolate in the Valley?

Well that is really great! I hope that you both really do enjoy!

Dec 13, 2007
aka_zoe in Southwest

Where to find Vosges Chocolate in the Valley?

The offer still stands.

Dec 13, 2007
aka_zoe in Southwest

Where to find Vosges Chocolate in the Valley?

Hey Ziggylu... email me off list (you can find my email in my profile... once you email me I will take it out) with your snail mail address and now that the tempurature has gone down I can safely mail you a bar (or two). You really shouldn't have to wait until Spring, that is silly. Since Booger was so generous I need to carry on that tradition!

Nov 13, 2007
aka_zoe in Southwest

World Series in Denver

The Chop House on the corner of 19th and Wynkoop (walking distance from the West Entrance) next to Fado Irish Pub, has great options and caddy corner is The Keg, which has really great steaks and cocktails. Post game would be a great option for either of them.

Make your reservations at Vesta NOW ...now now... because weekends are busy and this weekend will be insane in LoDo.

Oct 26, 2007
aka_zoe in Southwest

best burger in denver?

Veggo: It is in the eruv but certainly not Kosher. But then again so is Gunther Toodies.

If you are looking for a kosher burger we do actually enjoy the burgers at the East Side Kosher Deli. They aren't gourmet but if you order them medium they aren't bad. We don't keep kosher but family members do so that is what we will order if we go there.

GastroNaughty: we heard Cheeburger Cheeburger was really dirty and not worth going to so I appreciate the word of confidence, we mean to go there and don't. Also thanks for the good vote of confidence on Smashburger as well!

Oct 12, 2007
aka_zoe in Mountain States

best burger in denver?

I had a lunch appointment today in Cherry Creek. I was at Prime 121 on Clayton Lane. and ordered the burger. I could only eat half because honestly it was so big but delicious and seriously wanted to save half of it for tomorrow for lunch.

I also would recommend the burger at the Chop House it was one of my favorites for many years, substitute the french fries for their house made mashed potatoes.

There is also a new burger place called Smashburger on Kentucky and Colorado Boulevard that recently opened but that I haven't been to. I would love to hear any feedback from anyone that might have tried it.

Oct 11, 2007
aka_zoe in Mountain States

Downtown Denver: What's good?

Oh Robin: There is no similarity between the two actually and they are not owned or affiliated with one another. I have been to both and enjoyed them differently.

In fact the bar at Mandalay Bay was the first place I had Espresso infused vodka for the first time and its one of my favorites now, if you do make it there order shots and try different things (with in reason of course!). I do think that they serve food but we never ordered it. Hard to imagine eating after walking up and down the strip and ending up there at 3 a.m.

Red Square in Mandalay Bay is more bar/nightclub and Red Square Bistro in Denver is definitely more restaurant.

Oct 07, 2007
aka_zoe in Southwest

Downtown Denver: What's good?

Oh Robin: I ordered off menu actually. I have to be honest. I don't like sour cream and ordered the strogonoff which they actually made a non-sour cream version of which was delicious. And that is impressive that they would cow tow to my weird food issues.

I would love to hear what your experience is when you go because it has been so long since I have actually had a full meal there. If you go please let me know!

But really what always has impressed me is their vodka list and the opportunity to have a couple shots of something outside of the norm and they do infuse their own... try the dill vodka, it is really delicious.

I also have to be honest, this was a visit we made probably two years ago. I haven't eaten there since, for no other reason that we start at the bar with appetizers and never actually sit and get a table for a full meal, it just never happens, for what reason I can't say. We have a couple of shots and snacks and we are done.

I listed it originally as an option for Larimer Square/Writer's Square area to a Downtown Denver visitor a couple months ago just as an option, and to clarify to Megiac, never said it was anything other than an option for someplace to go. It isn't my favorite Downtown dining, that would be Gumbos probably.

Oct 05, 2007
aka_zoe in Southwest

Dins in Denver

The first thing that came to mind would be The Red Room which is west on Colfax from the theater. (here is the link to the late night menu: http://www.redroombar.com/menus/Late%20Night%20rev4.10.07.pdf). They have a late night menu.

Further up Colfax is Cafe Star, and now is the time to go since the head chef is moving up to New York in the next few weeks they do close at 10 but it might be worth driving down early and getting a table before your show.

Steubens on 17th : (http://www.steubens.com/), I have eaten there many times and it really is terrific.

These are just the few ideas that came to mind. These are the first that came to mind that are in the area of the theater.

A little further away but in a few mile radius would be:

A few places that are off of 6th Avenue: Montecito (Mel Master's new place), Angelo's Pizza (its an old family favorite and honestly just a great little redsauce joint), Lime XS (although I don't know how late they are open there and there has been alot of chatter about the service being really slow) and then there are the places in the Governor's Park area:

Sparrow has gotten a nice reputation for continental fare (their menu: http://www.sparrowdenver.com/menu.html) but there are no hours on their site, sorry.

There is Mizuna (http:mizuna.com) ((which shares a kitchen with Luca D'Italia (http://www.lucadenver.com/)) that I went to a few years back that was delicious. My brother took me as a thank you dinner and I remember the salad still. They might not be open on Monday though, its hard to tell from their sites.

I hope this helps!

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Steuben's Food Service
523 E 17th Ave, Denver, CO 80203

Red Room Restaurant & Bar
320 E Colfax Ave, Denver, CO 80203

Cafe Star
3201 E Colfax Ave, Denver, CO 80206

Montecito Restaurant
1120 E 6th Ave, Denver, CO 80218

Lime An American Catina
1416 Larimer St Ste C, Denver, CO 80202

Angelo's Pizza Parlor
620 E 6th Ave, Denver, CO 80203

Lala's Wine Bar + Pizzeria
410 E 7th Ave, Denver, CO 80203

Mizuna
225 East Seventh Avenue, Denver, CO 80203

Sep 09, 2007
aka_zoe in Southwest

Mexican in Denver

rlm - I completely forgot about La Popular! We used to go there once a week when I worked downtown... how the memory fades when not in use. I used to walk in the door and they would pack me up a pack of 10 without even asking and go and get the hot enchilada sauce for me. All the while catching up on the family's week. They do such an outstanding job. Thanks for reminding me!

Sep 01, 2007
aka_zoe in Southwest

Frasca Hype (Boulder)

I have to add my two cents to this conversation. I have been to Frasca only once so far and I truely look forward to going back. I have tried twice this summer to go and haven't been able.

I come from a wait service background where I know what good service is and from the moment we walked in the door to the moment we left I think we were treated to terrific wine stewardship, outstanding dining choices and perhaps one of the better meals I have experienced. And while you are gluten free, there is a "special" the 21 Orders menu item is usually a highlight. And to agree with many of the other comments, they do focus on what is available at the markets that day so technically their entire menu is the daily special.

But the 21 orders the night I was there was very special. In addition to my order, I sampled all the other entrees those at the table had and everything was outstanding. Fresh, clean, layered, finished. You won't get that at many of the restaurants in the area. Denver or Boulder and that is what the hype is about. Everything works.

Our wine was perfectly paired with all our foods. My brother likes the Rieslings and the bottle brought to our table was exactly as described. Apple with a hint of slate. I won't soon forget it. And if I remember correctly the wine was extremely reasonable, under 30 for the bottle, we didn't finish it, they recorked it and my brother was able to enjoy a glass the following day.

I ate with abandon. I do not eat white foods (mayonnaises, aioli, sour cream, you get the picture), but I crave... yes crave... the horseradish creme fraiche. I talk about it to anyone that will listen. Green olives? Ew not my favorite, but the order they brought to the table, divine, buttery and not overly briney.

This is a restaurant worth "the hype". If you have an opportunity to go back, you should and don't be afraid to send something back, if it isn't correct. I bet they would have put your meal in the fire right away so you wouldn't have to wait. They are extremely generous and would not want you to be unhappy. Their waitstaff are very knowledgable and they work hard to make the experience a good one. I am sure it would have been taken care of for you, at least that is how we were treated. I didn't quite get the taste of blood orange in our gelato and they brought out another service for us just to make sure I wasn't sent out the wrong flavor and it was my taste buds that were wrong. Nary a complaint for anyone service wise. They just wanted me happy.

And Bhutani who might not really understand the trip to Italy, I am disappointed that you don't understand that with great travels comes great knowledge of the food that they serve. To honor their staff, who are incredibly hard working with 10 days paid education and travel isn't anything except generous. And Frasca isn't the only place in Colorado that does it but I guarantee they get the most out of it.

Sep 01, 2007
aka_zoe in Southwest

Mexican in Denver

You might want to try Little Anita's on Colorado Blvd and Florida. Its located in a very non-descript strip mall on the east side of the street. It's inbetween a Subway and a Tae Kwon Do studio. But they say they are "authentic New Mexican". I think it's terrific and it is my go to place for sopapillas and a good red chile over a cheese enchilada.

I am also very partial to La Cueva in Aurora on Colfax near the Fox Theater. Its authentic and very delicious. The owners are friends so I am very partial, I have to admit it with all honesty but they do a great job and you will leave a friend as well.

For upscale you can try Tamayo on Larimer Square downtown, they do a great tableside gaucamole. And on the same block there is a great place, that I like alot called Lime (you will need to go downstairs to get into the restaurant) and they have a location on 6th Avenue and Corona I think. Zengo gets raves and I have never been there, but its Mexican and Asian fusion and supposedly really works well.

Senior Pepe's on 14th and Poplar was a go to place for my family when we were growing up, its an institution and I remember it being pretty good. Tacos Jalisco on 38th and Federal is another institution.

El Taco De Mexico on 7th and Sante Fe is another very authentic and delicious option for traditional Mexican. Perhaps the best Horchata I have ever had. And it holds a very special place in my heart because its the first place I ever had sesos.

Great Mexican can be found!

Aug 31, 2007
aka_zoe in Southwest

ISO bakery west/southwest of denver

I am going to add the following regarding Das Meyer and cinnamon rolls:

I just came back from a co-workers desk who happened to bring in cinnamon rolls from Das Meyer this morning. It was a sweet yeast dough layered with cinnamon and sugar with a crust above and below of the same sugar. The rolls themselves are about 2 inches in diameter. She had them in a bag, which is the way they are packaged, so if you go and look for them that is how they are sold, not in a case or boxed. There is no icing. I was told to warm the roll up but I really don't like to heat yeast rolls up in the microwave because I find that they just get hot and chewy and that isn't what I was looking for. The dough in the roll was wonderful, just sweet enough but the amount of cinnamon sugar that they pack in and on and around these things was a touch on the over bearing side, there wasn't a strong sense of cinnamon either, just sweet. Nothing that can't be brushed off.

Also if you are looking for a good cinnamon roll and I can't believe that I just remembered this and didn't earlier, forgive me.... there is a place in Southeast Denver, off of Hampden and Happy Canyon Road in a Safeway Parking lot called Duffys.

Here is a link: http://www.duffyrolls.com/index.cfm.

They are a layered almost croissantlike rolls with sweet flavored frostings or sugars. They have two sizes and I can vouche that the mini rolls are enough for about two bites and perfect to try a couple of different flavors. Any more and you may go into sweet overload.

They have indoor seating and they are quite busy in the mornings on the weekends. They do deliver in the metro area and ship frozen.

Aug 27, 2007
aka_zoe in Southwest

ISO bakery west/southwest of denver

You can always call Das Meyer Pastry Chalet (http://denver.citysearch.com/profile/1784501/arvada_co/das_meyer_fine_pastry_chalet.html) and see what they can do for you. They are located in Arvada which might be close to your area. I have had their cakes at many weddings and they are always very very good. And I know for a fact that they make an OUTSTANDING coffee cake (we get it every year in the fall and sometimes when we go to Zaidy's), I would imagine their cinnamon rolls would be delicious if they make them.

Child's Pastry (http://childspastryshop.com/) but they are located in South East Denver off of Yale and Monaco and definately not in the area you have asked about, but worth a try!

I am near both of the bakeries listed below and sadly haven't been to any of them but might stop at Katherine's on my way into work tomorrow since it is very very close to my office.

Aug 26, 2007
aka_zoe in Southwest

Best restaurants in Boulder and Denver

If you do go to Borolo... please make sure to call before you go though. They take a trip to Italy every summer. Sometimes they go in July, sometimes they go in August.

Aug 08, 2007
aka_zoe in Southwest

Henderson Nevada Steakhouses - any rec's?

PerSally - Thanks so much for the information, I would rather have my guests have room to breathe and if Todd's is too small, I don't want to have an error in judgment because of the online menu looking good! My Dad would travel to Vegas alot and always said that the Palace Station buffet was terrific back in the day, so I will definately look into Sunset Station, and if they are still hungry they can always head over to Hooters!

Thanks for the pointers!

Aug 02, 2007
aka_zoe in Southwest

Henderson Nevada Steakhouses - any rec's?

I pulled down the menu for Steak yesterday when I started my search. The website makes it seem youthfull enough which is a plus, I can't have something super stogey and club house feeling, like I have found Morton's to be. I think the idea of getting wine from the store next door is a really fun idea! I will add that to my list. Thank you so much!

Aug 02, 2007
aka_zoe in Southwest

Denver Breakfast Stops [moved from General Chowhounding Topics]

Dozens... Drive by it twice a day... still there. I haven't ever actually been though!

Aug 02, 2007
aka_zoe in Southwest