We love spots within a community where a wide variety of foods are offered and all walks of life can be found. Denver did not disappoint! We discovered three places that fit that bill! Denver Central Market, The Source and Zeplin Landing. And here are our takes…
Denver Central Market
We know that we’ve been spoiled by some of the places we’ve lived before. We also know that comparing one place to another is not necessarily fair, but it is hard to avoid as we are constantly weighing pros and cons about where we want to live next.
All that is to say that we couldn’t help but compare the Denver Central Market to the Boston Public Market and Pike’s Place Market in Seattle. Sadly, it didn’t quite measure up.
There are 11 vendors including a butcher, ice cream shop, coffee shop, and a produce stand. Boston’s market has 35 vendors and Seattle’s has 70. We appreciate efforts to support local food, independent vendors, and neighborhood shopping. In fact, it may soon be required by climate change to have hyper-local agriculture–let’s invest now. That is not to say that Denver isn’t making progress in other ways to promote local businesses and agriculture–it just isn’t centralized in the same way that it is in Boston and Seattle. You can’t do your week’s worth of shopping at the Denver Central Market.
I want to be sure to give credit where credit is due. This place is great. Really. If we end up living in Denver, we will frequent the Market. This south-side-RiNo (River North) building has been beautifully restored and fits perfectly within the style of the neighborhood. It is filled with high end and specialty foods and a classy bar that serves up bespoke cocktails. It is the kind of place that we love–where people can hang out, have a drink, get something to eat, and mix with their neighbors at the communal tables.
Definitely worth a visit if you are wandering through the neighborhood and need a morning coffee, lunch, afternoon ice cream cone, or a happy hour drink. It is also perfect if you are in a group and can’t come to consensus on what everyone wants to eat! They have it all.
The Source is a new concept for us and maybe for you, too. It is a 100-room hotel that also features 25 artisans including a bakery, taqueria, modern wood-fired restaurant, barber, art gallery, kitchen goods store, apparel shop, florist, brewery, and barbecue. There was also an all-women’s co-working space that was under construction!
We love these multi-purpose spaces as they tend to bring people together and allow for a growing sense of community. The space also seems to be a boon to RiNo, which is still a bit gritty and, at points, rough around the edges. The Source makes RiNo a destination and helps to put RiNo in the running for where we’d want to live in Denver.
Zeppelin Station is a super cool take on a food court. It is around the corner from The Source, making RiNo even cooler. Take our advice and see your eating adventure as eating tapas–sample little plates from several vendors to get a sense of what is out there and to tickle your palate. We got tacos (what else?) and Vietnamese and enjoyed a scoop from Gelato Boy. We love places like this that take you on a world tour all within four walls. RiNo, you are winning us over!