This past weekend the man and I had a Denver Day. We went to the Museum of Nature and Science then headed over to The Highlands for some shopping (let’s be honest, I shopped) and then a date night at Venue Bistro.
Name: Venue Bistro
Location: 3609 W. 32nd Ave. Denver, CO
Cuisine: American (with French/Italian twist)
Nestled on an adorable street, with quirky, colorful characteristics with other bars, restaurants and boutiques, Venue is a farm-to-table bistro that focuses on seasonal and fresh cuisine. Their menu changes frequently to reflect the freshest food.
“…Venue serves American comfort food. Its serves American comfort food prepared with french technique, with a little Italian influence, with a green market sensibilty.”-Westword
Upon stepping into Venue, the restaurant is small and intimate – there are no more than 10 tables. The interior is casual, with a little funk. We sat against a white 3D montage artwork of kitchenware and utensils, arranged against a large canvas on the wall (see middle picture below).
We sat near the kitchen for our early dinner reservation and as one of my Christmas gift’s to the man was a special deal they had via TravelZoo for two appetizers, two entrees, two desserts and two glasses of wine. We started with a Malbec as they served their flaky bread with a soft, tarragon butter to get us enticed.
I ordered the frisee and radicchi salad with dried apricots, pumpkin seeds, parmesan and a honey ginger vinaigrette. The man’s salad was baby beets, arugula, house made farm style cheese, curried cashews and a citrus vinaigrette.
My salad was delicious and the honey-ginger vinaigrette had an Asian twist to it, while the pumpkin seeds and dried apricots paired nicely with their textures.
For my entree I ordered the ricotta gnocchi with glazed fennel, winter squash, root vegetables and sage. The man ordered beef short rib, parsnip puree, veal sweetbreads (thalamus gland, eek!), apples and braising jus.
My gnocchi was cooked to perfection. Browned on one side, succulent and melt-in-your-mouth I only wish I had more on my plate (I had about 7 gnocchi total). The portions are small, but each bite is worth it. We licked both our plates, clean.
For dessert I had a tip to order the milk and cookies while the man ordered pumpkin bread pudding with walnuts and vanilla bean ice cream.
My milk and cookies were adorable. I had a creamy, rich truffle ball with graham crunch rolled on the outside, a gingersnap, oatmeal and a hazelnut cookie.
On the menu I found a sampling of vegetarian items (see all I ordered here) which was always inviting and the menu is small and frequently changes. The menu was small but I appreciated the creativity within vegetarian items and still felt well taken care of with my dishes.
I liked how Venue was intimate yet casual. The space is small and the dishes were innovative and clearly, fresh. As we left our early dinner, the place was bustling and packed. Reservations are a good suggestion on a weekend.
Dishes are small and dainty, carefully procured and thoughtfully made. I appreciated the humility and kindness of the waitstaff and felt comfortable.
Venue isn’t over the top by any means, and I like it just that way.
Website and Phone Number: 303-477-0477