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  • Rioja

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Rioja Details

  • Dining Style: Casual Elegant
  • Website: http://www.riojadenver.com
  • Phone: (303) 820-2282
  • Hours of Operation: Lunch:

    Wednesday - Friday: 11:30am - 2:30pm


    Saturday - Sunday: 10:00am - 2:30pm


    Sunday - Thursday: 5:00pm - 10:00pm,

    Friday - Saturday: 5:00pm - 11:00pm
  • Payment Options: AMEX, Carte Blanche, Diners Club, Discover, MasterCard, Visa
  • Cuisine: Mediterranean, Fusion / Eclectic
  • Executive Chef: Jennifer Jasinski
  • Dress Code: Casual Dress
  • Accepts Walk-Ins: Yes
  • Additional Details: Bar Dining, Bar/Lounge, Beer, Chef's Table, Counter Seating, Full Bar, Happy Hour, Non-Smoking Restaurant, Patio/Outdoor Dining, Takeout, Weekend Brunch, Wine

Getting there

  • Parking: Valet
  • Parking Details: Valet available on Larimer Square Tuesday - Saturday. A parking garage is located directly behind the restaurant on Market Street. Street parking is available throughout Larimer Square.
A word from Rioja
Chef Jennifer Jasinski's creatively inspired Mediterranean food is influenced by local seasonal products. Rioja is simple, pure food that emphasizes bright flavors & textures. The wines are a collection of fun interesting varietals that compliment the cuisine.
Foodspotting photos
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Awards voted by OpenTable diners
  • Diners' Choice WinnerMost Booked
Diner Reviews
  • "This is an energetic, happening restaurant. We were there on a Tuesday night and the place was full. Food and service were excellent. Was a bit noisy where we were seated, so if that is a concern I would ask for a quieter section. Has nice outdoor seating which we could not take advantage of because of the weather."
    Dined on 7/29/2014
  • "my Denver friends consider this to be one of, if not the, best restaurant in Denver. We certainly had a delicious dinner - highly recommend the "picnic" appetizer - various cured meets, cheese, olives, etc. All entrees were raved over and shared - "you've got to taste this!" Dessert was tasty but not up to the high standards of the rest of the meal. And everyone at our table loved the Chillino, or some such name - tequila, chili liqueur, grapefruit juice, lime."
    Dined on 7/28/2014
  • "While I found the wait staff quite friendly, the atmosphere pleasant, and the presentation of food good, I was rather disappointed with the food itself. It was good, but not at all worth the price. I truly had sticker shock for the medium quality. I would not return for that reason. Thank you for being professional to receive a negative review."
    Dined on 7/28/2014
  • "MmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmMmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm! ☺️"
    Dined on 7/27/2014
  • "Food was great. I was with a party of three and we split three appetizers and each had an entrée and everything we tried was tried. Wait staff service and hostess service is not up to par with the service you would expect from an upscale restaurant. Staff just didn't really seem to care about customers and providing good service. Management should do a much better job training and monitoring staff as far as service goes. I am a foodie and dine at a lot of nice restaurants so I guess I am use to a different level of service."
    Dined on 7/26/2014
  • "Service was outstanding, the food was stellar. I can't believe they've been there for 10 years and we haven't been there."
    Dined on 7/26/2014
  • "My wife and I ame here for her birthday and had a great experience. The servers were very friendly, the food was delicious, the food arrived right on time, and the prices were comperable to a regular brunch place. We will definitely be back next time we're in Denver."
    Dined on 7/26/2014
  • "I never thought of Rioja as a lunch place, but it was great. The lamb burger was unbelieveably good, as was the pork belly appetizer. Everyone in our group was very happy -- we split three appetizers and had four different entrees. We'll definitely go back."
    Dined on 7/25/2014
  • "Great food and dessert. Nice atmosphere. Great for groups or for a special night out."
    Dined on 7/24/2014
  • "The old joke about the food was bad and the portions were small solid here. On top of it we ordered 2 bottles of wine. They were an '09 but the waitress brought '10s. I called her on it and told her that the '10s should cost much less as it was an inferior year. She said she would check and get back to me. She never did. I dropped $500 and would have been better off at the Cheesecake Factory across the street. A total ripoff. They clearly don't care."
    Dined on 7/23/2014
  • "Maybe some of the best prepared food I have had in the last several years. Roasted halibut with creamy corn grits and tomatillo gazpacho was nothing short of extraordinary, while the pancetti pasta made with saffron and filled with rapine mousse was a delightful combination of ingredients including heirloom tomatoes, sausage and buratta. Inspired recipes perfectly executed and artfully presented. Service was another matter -- simple, basic service mistakes not worthy of such an impressive kitchen. The overall wait staff seemed overburdened and somewhat rushed, although table side presence was professional. Tables are quite crowed together with a very high noise level, making it difficult to have a romantic dinner. Yet, food trumps all!"
    Dined on 7/22/2014
  • "we dined here the other night and loved the halibut and tortellini entrees. The halibut especially was a delightful marriage of textures, color and flavor and was a perfect dish for a summer night. We also shared the key lime dessert which was beautifully presented. The service was a little slow but the waiter did get bombed with 4 new tables at once when we were there so could see that he was doing the best he could. Other waitstaff also helped out. We were on our way to a concert so our time was limited but we will be back."
    Dined on 7/22/2014
  • "This was one of the best dining experiences I have ever had. I sat at the bar and received the best service ever from Jessie, and he made great suggestions on dishes. Every bite was amazing, and I can't wait to visit Denver again so I can try the rest of the dishes at Rioja!"
    Dined on 7/20/2014
  • "We love Rioja. We think this is one of Denver's best dinning experience."
    Dined on 7/20/2014
  • "We have been going to Rioja since they opened and it remains great..food, service, atmosphere, etc."
    Dined on 7/20/2014
  • "Let me start by saying I love Rioja, it's one of my favorite restaurants in LoDo. I went to Dining Al Fresco on July 19th and was SHOCKED at check in to find it was a pris fixe menu at $85.00 per person! That coupled with "community" seating was not the night I had envisioned at all. Our first set of table guests were great, the second couple couldn't have been more negative and unfriendly. I was really disappointed. I called to make the reservation a month ago, no one mentioned the menu or community seating then, or when I called to confirm the reservation last Friday. I was embarrassed, frankly, as my boss and his wife were also attending the event to celebrate their anniversary and had to sit at a table with CHILDREN...disappointed"
    Dined on 7/19/2014
  • "Our recent trip to Denver started off perfectly with a birthday dinner at Rioja. A friend recommended Neal as our server and he definitely added to a wonderful experience - absolutely fabulous food (beautifully presented), very insightful service, and a fun atmosphere. The artichoke tortelloni ranks as one of the best pasta dishes this Italian girl has ever had! We'll be back on our next trip to Denver."
    Dined on 7/18/2014
  • "We had such a delicious meal at Rioja! We were celebrating my mother's birthday and the food, service and overall experience was amazing. We were 5 people and were seated at a perfect round table. The restaurant is loud but energetic. Definitely returning to Rioja again!"
    Dined on 7/17/2014
  • "The menu was fantastic; perhaps the beet salad was the best we ever had. Our entrees were both top notch, the lamb and the scallops. Service was friendly and efficient. The options to pair and try two half glasses of different varietals was a nice way to experience choices."
    Dined on 7/16/2014
  • "My wife and I have enjoyed Rioja's food many times. This time we were joined by Two friends making their first visit. The food is superb, the service as well. I wish the restaurant would install some noise-dampening equipment. It's too loud when people have to shout across the table to be heard. Then everyone else begins speaking louder as well. Despite the noise Rioja's food consistently ranks at the top of Denver's choices."
    Dined on 7/14/2014
  • "I love creative preparations, Mediterranean cuisine, and a high-energy atmosphere. Rioja hits the bull's-eye on all three. But that means Rioja's not for everyone; i.e., if you're more attached to traditional dishes, another region's cuisine, or relative quiet. Even then, Rioja is worth a try; its excellence emerges even in a neighborhood with more than a dozen outstanding eateries."
    Dined on 7/13/2014
  • "We had Sunday Brunch at Rioja. Great food and service at a reasonable price. Have never been disappointed with this restaurant."
    Dined on 7/13/2014
  • "Just the way the dishes are plated and the mix of interesting ingredients are enough to keep me coming back. Outstanding all around. Will sit at the exhibition counter next time. Sat outside this time and it was wonderful."
    Dined on 7/12/2014
  • "I have been here for brunch before, and it was amazing. I took my parents here while we were in Denver and we all were amazed at the food. Everything was so delish. I cannot wait to go back!"
    Dined on 7/11/2014
  • "One of my most memorable meals was at a small restaurant tucked behind the castle in Ceske Krumlov, Czech Republic. It was a simple meal and the entree was the most incredible pork chop, grilled over an open fire. Generally not a pork eater (usually cooked too dry), I couldn't believe how moist, tender and flavorful it was. Ever since then I have ordered numbers pork shops in restaurants, hoping to get that taste and tenderness again, only to be disappointed. But I found it last night at Rioja! Unbelievable! The server was excellent and easily understood my need for a gluten free meal and the wine was a perfect match. I hope to return soon."
    Dined on 7/11/2014
  • "Simply loved the whole experience. I recommend the Pomeginger Martini with Gin versus Vodka...the perfect cocktail."
    Dined on 7/11/2014
  • "It was delicious. The service was friendly and helpful"
    Dined on 7/10/2014
  • "The food was uniquely prepared and beautifully presented - as expected. My favorite part was the knowledgeable and friendly wait staff whose personalities made our dining experience seem like a party."
    Dined on 7/10/2014
  • "I was recommended to dine at this restaurant last year and have eaten here several times since. The food and service are both excellent - definitely a place I would recommend."
    Dined on 7/10/2014
  • "Food was outstanding!!!!! Highly recommend! Our waiter was great! A little pricey but well worth it!"
    Dined on 7/9/2014
  • "Great food - not run of the mill. Creatively cooked and presented. The pace was nice - we were never rushed and good showed up at appropriate intervals. I don't have a single complaint-it was a great evening!"
    Dined on 7/8/2014
  • "I love Ecluid Hall so I was excited to try this restaurant. However, it was such a disappointment. The beet salad tasted as if liquid smoke was added to the cheese and the pasta was starchy and had no flavor. The wine list is weak especially for Spanish wines. Plus, it took over an hour for our pasta to arrive."
    Dined on 7/7/2014
  • "Rioja was a great find. The staff all worked incredibly well together. The food runners were very polite and knowledgeable about what they were placing in front of us. Our party of three decided to order a number of appetizers and one entree and split everything. The sizes were great for the three of us; but - I wouldn't suggest coming SUPER hungry. The flavors were robust and adventurous. I particularly liked the bread service. This gentleman was very pleasant and helpful. The group serving environment worked like a charm; each person with his own job coming together like a dance. Plates were served and removed quietly and fresh silverware, water, and napkins were always at hand. I'd suggest trying lots of items from the menu!"
    Dined on 7/7/2014
  • "Noisy and energetic but great food. Not too complex or overprepared, some dishes more successful than others, but all in all, an excellent dining experience. Special kudos for the wait staff. Although very informal, friendly, knowledgable about the food, very efficient and good at anticipating our needs. Ask about the tasting menu. A bargain as is the wine parings, which were excellent if nameless. If you don't mind the noise, it is a great evening out."
    Dined on 7/6/2014
  • "I was in Denver for eight days on business. Rioja was the best restaurant I dined at by a long shot. The food was devine, the menu creative, the service outstanding and the neighborhood delightful. It is my favorite Denver eatery"
    Dined on 7/6/2014
  • "Spending a full week in Denver, we had many opportunities to eat out. This restaurant was on the top of the list. Delicious, eclectic, great service, nice ambiance, good bar - it covered all the bases. Our server had her pulse on the menu, catering to my husband's very specific palate. I would strongly recommend the artichoke tortelloni, which was amazingly delectable - the broth, the filler, the homemade pasta....oh my!!! And, the Alaskan Halibut was perfectly seared on one side, yet moist and flaky underneath - heavenly. If I lived near Denver, this would be our go-to place."
    Dined on 7/6/2014
  • "Lamb 3 ways was great. White bean soup with bacon was to die for. Salads are always fun, and each one is made a different way each time we come. Service is friendly and super-competent."
    Dined on 7/6/2014
  • "Our quiet table for four was waiting for us upon arrival. The server was intelligent, helpful, pleasant and professional. The food was suburb, although the king salmon portion was a bit merger for the cost. Cheese appetizer excellent, and desserts outstanding. Nice touch to,offer complimentary sparking water choice. We will be back, after all Rioja is one of our favorites."
    Dined on 7/6/2014
  • "My husband and I visited Rioja for our first time to celebrate our first wedding anniversary. We were running late and I called to let them know. We waited no more than fifteen minutes for a table even though we missed our reservation by at least ten minutes. They were very accommodating and kind. We had excellent drinks at the bar. Our server was exceptionally attentive. We had the 7-course tasting menu and it was truly superb. Every course was surprising and delicious. Our server brought us a very nice grapefruit and cava palate cleanser as a treat in honor of our anniversary. She also gave us a card signed by the staff congratulating us. It was all very sweet. The food was amazing. The only issue was that it was a bit hot in there."
    Dined on 7/5/2014
  • "I've been meaning to try this restaurant for a long time and finally made it with a new girlfriend. It was so very good. The food quality and taste exceeded my expectations and the service was exemplary. Pretty decent wine list too. You need to pay attention to where you are seated though. Some areas are better than others."
    Dined on 7/4/2014