Apr 21, 2024 - Things to Do

Denver neighborhood guide: River North Art District

Murals in RiNo with downtown in the distance. Photo: Hyoung Chang/The Denver Post

Murals in RiNo with downtown in the distance. Photo: Hyoung Chang/The Denver Post

From the colorful alley murals to the cranes rebuilding the far end, the trendy River North Art District is the epicenter of Denver's food and nightlife scene.

State of play: RiNo is the city's brewery district, its creative core and a hub for outdoor retailers, stretching two miles along the Larimer Street corridor and split by train tracks.

Yes, but: Don't call it a neighborhood. It's a business and arts district that pulls together a number of historic neighborhoods, all being reinvented in real time with high-rent businesses and homes.

If you go: Restaurants and bars stretch for blocks, with too many good ones to list. But here are some of our favorites:

Where to eat

Food halls: Three food halls — Denver Central Market on Larimer and the Source Hotel and Zeppelin Station on the West side off Brighton Boulevard — offer options for every taste.

Work and Class and SuperMegaBien: Across the street from each other, these two restaurants from celebrated chef Dana Rodriguez are the go-to spots for a dinner with friends.

  • Pro tip: Both get full fast, so grab pizza and oysters next door at Cart Driver if you can't get a table.

Hop Alley: Grab a big group and order as much on the menu as possible from this upscale and inventive Chinese restaurant.

Beckon: An experience as much as a restaurant, Beckon is a Michelin-star restaurant with an intimate 18-seat chef's counter and amazing wine list.

Safta: On the West side, located in the Source Market, is New Orleans chef Alon Shaya's Mediterranean and Israeli restaurant.

Brewery tour

More than a dozen breweries are located in RiNo and four are so close to each other you can take a brewery tour by foot and capture a great sense of the city's beer scene.

  • Our Mutual Friend (known by fans as OMF) on the south end of Larimer specializes in sour beer but also makes juicy hazy IPAs and crisp lagers.
  • Just a couple blocks north, Ratio Beerworks is the centerpiece of RiNo with its two outdoor patios and vast taproom. Order the King of Carrot Flowers saison.
  • Fort Collins-based Odell Brewing, one of the largest and best in the state, put an outpost on Larimer and makes its own small batches on site.
  • Bierstadt Lagerhaus only makes German lagers, and they do better than most any other brewery in the nation. Order a Slow Pour Pils and enjoy the 5 minutes it takes to pour properly.

Where to get a drink

Finn's Manor: Grab a drink from the best-in-the-city beer list and plentiful spirits menu and head outside to the expansive covered patio.

Death and Co.: The New York bar offers one of the nation's best cocktail menus in a classy setting, and it brings that vibe to the Denver location.

Crema Coffee House: A superior pour and tasty pastries make this the spot for a work meeting or casual Sunday read.

Don't miss these spots

Mission Ballroom: Denver's newest concert venue is drawing all the top acts.

Improper City: The hip spot to work remotely, with a climbing gym next door, an expansive yard to soak in the sun and a bar for a drink.

Denver Walls: The annual street art festival paints the neighborhood in color and characters.

Novo Coffee: The coffee roaster on Larimer offers classes, tours and tastings.

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