Emmerson

4.3
176 reviews
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$31 to $50
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Contemporary American
Top Tags:
  • Creative Cuisine
  • Fit for Foodies
  • Special Occasion
In building Emmerson, we set out to create an all-day dining destination that could be a central gathering place for the Boulder community. Along the way, we’ve found our tribe. Emmerson is a collective of five passionate food and beverage professionals whose great pleasure it is to bring people together and deliver happiness, with every interaction, every pour, and every plate. As the project took shape, it became evident that this restaurant is an amalgamation of the things we love and the way we like to dine and drink, morning, noon and night. Emmerson is a Café, a Cocktail Bar, and a Neo-Bistro, serving from 7:00 am until midnight (sometimes later).
Dining Style
Casual Dining
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Cuisines
Contemporary American, Café
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Hours of operation
Brunch
Sat, Sun 10:00 am–3:00 pm
Lunch
Mon–Fri 11:00 am–3:00 pm
Dinner
Mon–Thu 5:00 pm–10:00 pm
Fri, Sat 5:00 pm–11:00 pm
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Phone number
(303) 953-9852
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Payment options
AMEX, Discover, MasterCard, Visa
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Dress code
Business Casual
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Neighborhood
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Cross street
16th

Specials

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Sun 5:00PM - 5:30PM
Mon - Fri 12:00PM - 1:00PM 5:00PM - 5:30PM
Sat 5:00PM - 5:30PM

What 176 People Are Saying
Overall ratings and reviews
Reviews can only be made by diners who have eaten at this restaurant
4.3based on recent ratings
4.3
food
4.3
service
4.3
ambience
3.8
value
Noise · Moderate
88% of people would recommend it to a friend
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5.0Dined 19 hours ago

Our server treated us awful, he was condescending and rude.

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5.0Dined 5 days ago

Four of us had dinner on a rainy Monday evening and overall we were more than satisfied. The entrees were a beef, a fish, and two different pastas. The entrees were outstanding. Also we shared a zucchini dish which was also outstanding.

Two had drinks. One was a simple vodka with a twist. The available vodkas was pretty limited. The mixed drink was one of the house specialties and was, according to the drinker, excellent. The server was not as knowledgeable about the bar offerings and had to keep going back to get answers.

We would have like to have oysters but the only selection didn't seem worth the price. However from where we were sitting there was a brisk business in oysters.

Two had dessert and here the server knew the options cold. Both the pavlova and the sake ice were great and very interesting.

Emmerson isn't Frasca in anyway but it is very, very good and considerably less expensive. We highly recommend it.

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5.0Dined 5 days ago

Wonderful lunch! I’m celiac (gluten free) and the menu was easy to accommodate for my needs. The burger is Amazing!!

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4.0Dined 6 days ago

So much fun, drink menu is hilarious and the drinks are delicious, sauces were to die for, presentation and ambiance is so interesting and the apps are terrific! Would love to return and try some more of the menu!

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3.0Dined 7 days ago

Just ok. Pasta was good but lamb chops were very disappointing.

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5.0Dined 7 days ago

Great food and thanks to John for taking great care of us and Nicole for saying hello! We will be back.

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4.0Dined on June 15, 2018

A wonderfully innovative menu!!! Great food we flavor combinations you have rarely tasted together. Excellent service but weak wine list. Two times here both hits.

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5.0Dined on June 11, 2018

Delicious food, excellent service!! Will definitely be back

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4.0Dined on June 10, 2018

Beautiful space and good patio, service was friendly and professional, everything we ordered was outstanding, but note that the portions are itty bitty -- and I mean itty bitty.

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3.0Dined on June 9, 2018

The service was a little sketchy and the the mushrooms with the scallops were over cooked.

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2.0Dined on June 5, 2018

Trying too hard. Food could have been better if simplified. Not worth the price.

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5.0Dined on June 2, 2018

This was possibly the best restaurant I have experienced in the area, from price to friendliness to flavors to uniqueness. From the moment we walked in to the moment we walked out; from the complimentary glass of rose for date night to the perfectly priced check on the table. The cocktail I had was amazing, Leonardo's Smoke (?), mainly because there was not one flavor or ingredient that overpowered the whiskey based drink.
The portion sizes of the chicken liver mousse, brussels, cauliflower, and pasta were all just right to where you were able to enjoy every course.
Our server David was one of the better servers I have in the Denver/Boulder area and really made us feel at home.
I would highly recommend this restaurant and definitely plan on returning numerous times in the future.

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4.0Dined on June 1, 2018

Experience was great but bill was high for food and drinks ordered

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4.0Dined on May 28, 2018

The restaurant payed attention to detail. Our menus said "Happy Birthday" and they offered us complimentary sparkling wine. The waiter was amazing, the parsnips were delish!

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4.0Dined on May 27, 2018

Food was delicious and the recommended bottle of Pinot was very good. However pace of meal was very slow. We ended up waiting awkwardly a long time for our food order to be taken, and then waiting again for long periods between courses. We had assiduous service and attention for the pouring of our water, but it seemed there were too few servers to actually take orders.

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5.0Dined on May 24, 2018

I met a friend there for lunch. It was Absolutely wonderful!! Great Value, Great food, and great location. Can not say enough good things. The menu had some original items as well as some comfort food. The best was the dessert with the salty ice cream in the middle and the meringue baked around it. I don't even know how that is scientifically possible, but they managed to do it! The value was also amazing. Hurry up before it declines.

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3.0Dined on May 20, 2018

We dined here on a Saturday evening. I'll say first that the food is amazing - some of the best in Boulder. However, they had several service issues that evening. The sparkling rose came out room temperature, was corrected, then the second glass was again room temperature. Incorrect appetizer brought to the table, and after asking for the right one the entrees came out first. We had them re-fired so we could eat our courses in order and not feel like we were being rushed out of the restaurant.

The manager came over and was very gracious. She apologized for the mistakes and managed our table personally - even putting a chilled bottle of rose on ice near us to ensure it would be cold. She offered to bring more appetizers while we waited for the entrees (we didn't partake, but the offer was appreciated). Mistakes happen, timing gets off, but the manager stepped up and because of that we'll definitely go back.

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4.0Dined on May 19, 2018

We recently celebrated my birthday with a memorable dinner We were a little apprehensive after reading some negative reviews but enjoyed our entire meal including the scallops and halibut Our daughter loved the kale salad except for the unnecessary freeze dried strawberries on top The first desert on the menu was a great birthday treat Even though expensive we would definitely go here again

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3.0Dined on May 14, 2018

We were disappointed by the food, especially the overcooked halibut. It would make more sense to go for excellent preparation instead of trying to be original or quirky. We came for the cocktails, and they were fine.

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5.0Dined on May 13, 2018

Lovely attentive service with a sense of humor. Delicious eats. Emmerson is one of our favorite places in town.

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3.0Dined on May 10, 2018

Went here last night for my husband's birthday. The decor is intriguing, but the restaurant is fairly loud (owing in part to some large parties here for graduation, though the restaurant still had several empty tables). We got some waters quickly, but after 20 minutes with no server to be found, we flagged down the hostess, Nicole, who quickly brought us champagne while we waited. Nicole checked on us a couple of extra times during the evening as well. The unapologetic waiter finally came and got us set up with some appetizers (the oysters and brussels sprouts were divine). However, our entrees didn't arrive until we'd been there an hour and a half. In the interim, one particularly hungry member of our party asked after some bread, but was informed that none apparently was available. At one point, the waiter assured us the entrees would be out "in two minutes." 10-15 minutes later, when the entrees finally did arrive, they came out at different times (no explanation) so that by the time all four of the entrees were on the table, the first two plates were a little lukewarm. The food was good otherwise (we'd recommend the scallops and the halibut), but, save for the aforementioned friendly and responsive Nicole, I was pretty disappointed about the experience. Emmerson, you've got some work to do, but Nicole might just save you.

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3.0Dined on May 7, 2018

Whoa! What happened? My last visit to Emmerson was wonderful so I came back again. Except that this time the delicious sea scallops were way over salted and bordered on inedible. The $6 for bread still rankles me. The visual presentation of the pasta dishes was awful; looked like someone took a spoon and "globbed" it on the plate. Lastly, in serving a party of 3 adults and 1 small child, serve the child first. Instead the 3 adults were served first and we had to wait a long time for the child's meal. It seemed as if they had perhaps forgotten to prepare it. We were there on a not at all busy Monday.

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5.0Dined on May 6, 2018

This is one of the real gems of Boulder cuisine. The flavors, creativity and artistry of the food preparation and presentation is remarkable, the service is excellent, with the waiters well informed and sophisticated in their knowledge of the offerings and at the same time, low key. The quiet area they chose for us truly was quiet enough we didn't have to shout (a rarity at Boulder restaurants). We had a long, lingering, conversation filled time with our friends, with delicious food well worth savoring.

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1.0Dined on May 5, 2018

There were plenty of empty tables in the front of the restaurant but they sat us in the back. We asked to move to one of the open tables by the front window. It was a beautiful night but they didn’t have their patio lights on. Weird they weren’t seating their patio on such a nice night.

The food was not good. Trying hard to be excellent and innovative, but missed the mark. We ordered 2 pasta dishes, both were bad. The RIGATONI CACIO E PEPE was undercook (not al dente, undercooked) and totally bland. The VEGETABLE TAGLIATELLE was trying to be innovative, but was just not good. I had 3 bites. We ordered the 50 oz steak for “Market Price”. They somehow messed this up too. It was just not good and only came with a little dipping sauce, not side or anything... and the server failed to mention it was $150!!!! Our final bill was really expensive and the food was not good.

Overall, a terrible experience. I spent hundreds of dollars, left hungry and went to another restaurant to order more food.

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4.0Dined on May 5, 2018

Lovely innovative cuisine. Welcome wickedness in the flavors. Chicken liver pate/mousse with white chocolate delicious and, well, surprising. Duck and lamb lasagna dark and wicked. Both men at the table said they could have managed twice the quantities.

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5.0Dined on May 5, 2018

It was our first time at Emmerson and we will be back. The food was unique and executed well. The service was outstanding. The noise level was a little high, but got better as more people filled out the seats. We were seated at a small table along the wall, which was a little crammed next to another table. Next time we will ask to sit by the window. One suggestion - more Vegan options please!

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3.0Dined on April 29, 2018

Sat at the bar. Service was really good. Enjoyed our meal with exception of kale faro salad - mostly kale. Staff took care of it quickly and without fuss. We had a mistake on final check which was also taken care of quickly and without issue. Overall good experience. Appreciated the attention to detail and the service. The chicken liver mousse was outstanding!

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5.0Dined on April 29, 2018

Fabulous from start to finish. Great food and service. Love the decor too.
The only thing we didn’t have was dessert as the choices looked unappealing. Other than that it was perfect!

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5.0Dined on April 28, 2018

I would highly recommend this restaurant. The ambiance is nice, service excellent and the food was fabulous. My wife and I will return with other friends. We ate here before attending an opera at CU.

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2.0Dined on April 27, 2018

I love the look of this restaurant. The drinks (and the drink menu) were outstanding. The food was really hit or miss though. The pavlova was really good. The scallops were really bad-not fresh, and so poorly cooked. The menu comes off as creative, but they really need to work on some basics first.

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5.0Dined on April 22, 2018

First visit to Emmerson and quite enjoyed it. The decor and ambiance are quite modern. Big open space with lots of windows and light. Had Sunday brunch and was not disappointed. The waffle was delicious and the espresso was strong and tasty. Looking forward to a return trip to sample the dinner menu.

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4.0Dined on April 22, 2018

Our food was quite good, but the portions were pretty small. We really enjoyed the scallops.

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3.0Dined on April 21, 2018

It was decent. The concept is grain-based high cuisine. They have an original approach to many of their minimalist preparations. Some of it looked to be in the vein of food you might find in the cookbook Modernist Cuisine. For example, I hear they have some very creative desserts that make use of liquid nitrogen.

However, if you're not health-oriented you might think twice. That's why my review is somewhat lackluster. To be entirely honest, it feels like a group of restaurateurs transplanted something out of NYC or LA without being very in touch with the values of the community into which they were entering. A grain-based restaurant is not super compatible with the thinnest city in America, but there is an audience for it. I just wonder if the audience is large enough to overcome the insane rent of their prestigious location. Carbs are cheap and usually make a good business model for most places. We will see if that will be the case for this location. I am doubtful when I see restaurants like Zeal and Fresh Thymes killing it every day in Boulder.

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5.0Dined on April 20, 2018

Great atmosphere. Felt like I was in NYC. Fantastic, creative food! Small portions and pricey (as I expected), but well worth the experience.

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1.0Dined on April 14, 2018

Food served cold. Servers with mediocre skill levels. Poorly conceived dishes arrived cold at the table. Restaurant was only one third full, at most, on a Friday night. Took a chance eating here for the first time. Disappointing in every regard. Stylish room with not nearly enough substance in terms of a food program or front of the house execution. The glaring contrast between upscale pricing and, generously said, mediocre dining, added insult to an unsatisfying dining experience. I never mind paying premium pricing for a great dining experience. In fact, I seek it as often as not. Nothing about our experience here warranted anything close the pricing structure let alone dining here again.

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2.0Dined on April 14, 2018

Nothing spectacular.

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5.0Dined on April 13, 2018

Food was amazing. Jack was a delightful waitperson. Ambiance was very nice. The Pavlova as beyond amazing. The only negative: $6 for bread. Really?!

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5.0Dined on April 13, 2018

We had a great server. We asked him for his recommendations and ordered them all... wound up with a truly amazing meal. The bread and butter was remarkable as were the Brussels sprouts and halibut crudo. We had somewhat low expectations and came away all smiles.

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3.0Dined on April 10, 2018

The food and service were good, but the restaurant was very loud. It was difficult to talk to and/or be heard when trying to converse with friends.

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5.0Dined on April 5, 2018

My new favorite Boulder restaurant! Outstanding food & service in a fun atmosphere. Absolutely loved it!

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