Top 10 Places to Bring Your Dog in Downtown Boulder

by Grace Boyle on July 27, 2011

It’s hard to find places that are doggy friendly downtown, especially while you jaunt around town and want to grab a bite or a drink.

I’m excited to be collaborating with Downtown Boulder (http://boulderdowntown.com/) who helped with a large portion of the research on this post. You can find a full, complete list of dog friendly patios in downtown Boulder here (map included – great resource). I picked my favorite ten in downtown Boulder. The criteria/my opinion: delicious food and enough patio space.

Please note: Having a dog on the Pearl Street walking mall is not allowed. These locations are downtown off the walking mall.

Arabesque | 1634 Walnut Street

Arabesque’s outside red-brick patio sits under shady trees, covered with umbrellas. The authentic, made-with-love food from Manal Jarrar is Middle Eastern and honestly, one of my favorite spots for lunch. It sits on the corner of Walnut and 17th. Order the chicken shawarma plate with fresh greens and homemade hummus and order a side of Tabbouleh out on their sunny patio.

Boulder Creek Market | 1801 13th Street

Boulder Creek Market has gourmet sandwiches boasting ostrich, buffalo and even many vegetarian varieties including the veggie: avocado, cucumber, sprouts, provolone and roasted red pepper cream cheese. You can order a half or whole sandwich. Sitting in a courtyard next to a small bar and spa, there is plenty of space for your pup to lounge in the sun on the warm bricks.

The Boulder Dushanbe Teahouse | 1770 13th Street

I recently wrote about Dushanbe and their annual tea festival they hold every year in July. Rooted in deep history and cultural significance, it sits along the Boulder Creek (and path) also along the Boulder Farmers Market (every Wednesday and Saturday ). There are two side patios, covered with hanging vines and the sound of the bubbling creek. Their food is International. Try one of their hundreds of loose-leaf teas (hand-picked) and try the Indian Masala Dosa: cumin, fennel crepe with curried potatoes, cauliflower, onions, tomatoes, peas and dahl with raisin chutney, cucumber yogurt and an onion fritter.

Brasserie TenTen | 1011 Walnut Street

Brasserie has one of the best happy hours in Boulder. Small plates from $2-5 with the likes of olive tapenade, salman tartare with minced peppers, sesame oil, kennebec chips and truffle citrus tossed arugula and frites with truffle aioli. You can sample wines and beers for under $4 from 3-6:30 PM everyday. Their side patio is small (about 5 tables) but if you snag a spot for brunch, happy hour, lunch or dinner your dog is welcome. Also, great spot for people watching.

Foolish Craig’s | 1611 Pearl Street

Featured on Diner, Drive-ins and Dives, Foolish Craig’s is one of those places that has something for everyone. It’s unpretentious and lining outside the restaurant, is a similarly long patio to Brasserie TenTen’s with 5 or so tables that welcome dogs. I personally love Foolish Craig’s lengthy breakfast menu peppered with crepes and diesel omelettes. Try the Boulder omelette with broccoli, green peppers, onions, mushrooms, tomatoes, cheddar and your choice of pesto or salsa. A killer crepe is their Fahgeddaboudit (Think Brooklyn) with breaded eggplant, spinach, mushrooms, onions, mozzarella and crushed walnuts topped with marinara and parmesan.

The Kitchen / The Kitchen [NEXT DOOR] | 1039 Pearl Street

I included these two together, as two separate restaurants (same ownership) they’re right next to each other and each offer a small patio for dogs. The Kitchen (fine dining) has two spots out front where dogs can comfortably hang and people watch on the Western end of Pearl Street. The Kitchen [NEXT DOOR] has a larger patio with about 3-5 tables for dogs. Their food is farm fresh, organic and a top five place to eat (period) for me in Boulder. At The Kitchen [NEXT DOOR], try their garlic smashers (roasted potatoes) and beet burger. I covered them here when they recently opened in June 2011.

Walnut Brewery |1123 Walnut Street

Just South of the Pearl Street walking mall, The Walnut Brewery sits between Broadway and 11th Street. For pub food and beers brewed in house, it’s a casual establishment with an outside patio where I always see dogs. They have pizza, nachos, steaks, tacos and spaghetti. Try their handcrafted beer as you sit in the sun. The St. James Irish Red Ale was a 2006 Bronze Medal and 2003 Silver Medal Winner at Great American Beer Festival.

The West End Tavern | 926 Pearl Street

The patio is small (2-3 tables) but those tables often have dogs lounging. I love their West End Coin Margarita with a splash of cranberry – if you order at happy hour (3-6 PM Mon-Fri) it’s $5. Try their housemade yam chips with fresh guacamole and buffalo wings. It’s a hopping place, where anyone can find something to enjoy.

Pizzeria Locale | 1730 Pearl Street

From Frasca, Pizzeria Locale is one of the area’s best Italian pizza restaurant (if not the country, it’s constantly on best-of lists). They have an outside bar area that sits about 10 people. Albeit small, dogs can be tied out front on the street or outside the patio while you dine and enjoy your vino rosso. I’ve walked by and even seen a bowl of water out front occasionally for the pups.

Trident Coffee Shop | 940 Pearl Street

Whenever I pass by Trident, it’s not unlikely to see a dog or two tethered to one of their few outside tables on the West End of Pearl Street. Enjoy a scone, tea or coffee on the sidewalk with your pooch and you can even have them hang near you, on nearby bike racks. Be aware of foot traffic, however. It’s right next to Farfel’s (honorable mention below) so you can always pop in for a doggy treat!

Honorable noteworthy mentions: Farfel’s Farm a pet store on Pearl Street that always leaves a bowl of water out front and has dogs milling around inside and Alfalfa’s Market, a natural grocery store (blocks from my house) that has ‘dog parking’ out front where you can tie up your dog with fresh water bowls.

Please check out Downtown Boulder’s complete dog-friendly list (all spots have been confirmed to be dog-friendly) and has 27 spots! There are many spots that are great whether it’s a coffee shop, restaurant, bar or shop.

These were my picks, what would yours be?

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  • http://www.boulderlocavore.com Boulder Locavore

    Great post Grace! I was curious about the Farmer’s Market mention. I always see dogs there but noted on their website they ask dogs NOT come to the market. Maybe it’s just not enforced? Hope summer is going well for you!

    • http://gracefullplate.com grace

      Hi Toni! Great point to bring up. I was told that there has been talk about dogs not potentially coming to the Boulder’s Farmers Market but as you can see, every other person probably has a dog at the market. It’s an open area and a park, so I’m not sure they will be able to enforce (and it isn’t enforced yet). Downtown Boulder called to leave a message to confirm, so I will be sure to get back to you about this.

  • Zach

    Halffast subs may be more of a college place but if you go for happy hour or lunch its a really low key place to people watch with the pup. Plus the Strong Island Pitchers will put you in a good mood. LOL

    • http://gracefullplate.com grace

      Hey Zach, thanks for stopping by! Half Fast Subs is great. I love their Strong Islands :) Can’t go wrong. However, this post was focused on downtown Boulder :) Otherwise, there are many other great spots throughout Boulder. Thanks for the tip.

    • http://apieceofconversation.com/ Natalie

      I was about to mention Half Fast too! Such a fun hangout from the college days :)

  • http://www.highlandsranchfoodie.wordpress.com Lea Ann

    Great post Grace. I’m such a dog person and consider them close to human … this is good information.

    • http://gracefullplate.com grace

      Hi Lea Ann – Thank you! I appreciate it. It’s a great feeling where a restaurant welcomes you and your dog (within reason of course) :)

  • European Visitor with Dog

    Nice List if you like to have dinner between 3pm and 6pm. Dog owners are still customer second class !

    • http://www.smallhandsbigideas.com Grace Boyle

      Yeah it is pretty tough with their health regulations, I don’t blame restaurants there is strict red tape. But a lot of these places you can have dogs past 6 PM, I’ve seen it and have done it myself. There isn’t a time stipulation. Not to mention, after having lived in Europe myself, Americans eat WAY earlier anyway :)

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