Author: - February 13, 2012 - Updated: February 13, 2012

“The trouble with eating Italian food is that five or six days later you’re hungry again.” — George Miller

Buckhorn Exchange
1000 Osage St., Denver • 303-534-9505

Denver’s original steakhouse is located just a few blocks from downtown, but accessible by light rail — the train stops right in front of the entrance. Here you’ll also find Denver Liquor License #1. Been there a long time. Same dude is on the grill. 119 years.

This is one of Denver’s few steakhouses that serves lunch, albeit lighter fare. They still offer (since 1893) Gramma Fanny’s pot roast sangie served on real pumpernickel bread. Or try one of the mighty fine buggers and some house-made soup. New on the expansive lunch menu is a Dutch Lunch as well as an Executive Lunch.

Alligator tail anyone? Howsabout some rattlesnake? You can get most any game imaginable: elk, buffalo, pheasant, Rocky Mountain oysters (real swingin’ meat), grilled duck breast and more, all served in a great room loaded with lotsa trophies for your viewing pleasure. This place beats the heck outta any other eatery for game grub.

Recently they added yak & ostrich to their “specials” menu. I had ostrich in Las Vegas a while back and it was mighty fine eating. You need to call the restaurant if you’re interested in one of their unusual dishes cuz they ain’t always available. I get lotsa yak at home, particularly on Sunday, when 16 are present for family dinner. That was a joke. Not funny?

Make sure you save room for their hot Dutch apple pie with cinnamon rum sauce. Reservs are always a good idea. Lunch is served Monday–Friday 11 am to 2 pm and dinner is served every nite.

Las Delicias I
439 E. 19 Ave. • 303-839-5675

It musta been about ought four when Roberto Torres and wife Norma opened the first Las Delicias in metro Denver. Over the years, they’ve added four additional stores, but this location seems to be the most popular. Nothing fancy, just good fresh Mexican fare with good service by people who care.

Every item on the large menu is prepared fresh daily from the original recipes. You’ll find all the traditional favorites: burritos, enchiladas, flautas, and even sangies and burgers. Their grilled chicken sangie is very popular. They also offer specialties, which include mole, fajitas, carnitas, carne adobada, chuletas, and a variety of other dishes including steaks. As with most Mexican restaurants, they offer a large selection of a la carte items. Ever try menudo? Menudo is tripe. Tripe is disgusting. Even when the cook kills the taste with ugh stuff, it’s still disgusting. But some folks like it, and tell me that the menudo here is delish. You’ll find a large selection of cold brewskies, wine and margaritas here to slurp with your meal. This is a Pepsi house so you can’t go wrong.

I gotta tellya about mole. Even tho its chocolate-tinged sauce, the chocolate is unsweetened, as in ugh, blech, bad stuff. why would you eat an unsweetened sweet? Cuz chocolate is supposed to be sweet, right? So ugh to mole. Now I’m trying to decide which is worse, menudo or mole. I shouldn’t be so critical. I like gefilte fish, but members of my family express their dislike by calling them Buff Puffs. Each to his own.

The Palm Restaurant
The Westin Hotel
1672 Lawrence St. • 303-825-7256

The Westin Hotel at the Tabor Center houses the world-famous Palm Restaurant, known for huge prime steaks and monstrous lobsters, serving both lunch and dinner.

The lunch menu offers a variety of steaks and (most of the time) a darn good bugger. You can order off the dinner menu at any time (dinner prices, of course). Service is always good. If you’re saving money, don’t order dessert. Eat the very good free bread instead. And free sour pickles. Altho I’m told their cheesecake now comes from Sweet Street of Reading, PA, which is the best dessert house in America, bar none.

The Palm offers a three-course business lunch for $20.95. You have choice of salad or soup, choice of entrée, one of which is a 10 oz. Steak Au Poivre, and choice of dessert. Y’all know that I’m The Burgerdict. Want it plain and medium rare. Here you get a 12 oz. USDA prime beef patty.

Comes with yummy fries and the usual foo foo.

The rest of the lunch menu is well-executed and diverse. There are soups and munchies to start with. There are salads and sangies, muh fav of the latter being the sliced NY Steak sangie, but not cheap at almost $20. There’s also a variety of steaks and chops as well as pasta dishes and some maavelous Ahi tuna. Don’t forget what they are famous for: the always available giant lobster.


Jay Fox is the longtime dining critic for The Colorado Statesman. Send him your culinary nuggets at jay@jayfoxcpa.com.

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