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Nearby points of interest

  1. Distance: 0.02mi
  2. Distance: 0.07mi
  3. Distance: 0.07mi
  4. Distance: 0.16mi
  1. Distance: 0.02mi
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About 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.

1431 Larimer Street
Denver, CO 80202
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Dining Style:
Casual Elegant

Cuisines:
Mediterranean, Fusion / Eclectic

Hours of Operation:
Lunch:

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


Brunch:

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


Dinner:

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

Friday - Saturday: 5:00pm - 11:00pm

Dress Code:
Casual Dress

Price Range:
$30 and under

Payment Options
AMEX, Carte Blanche, Diners Club, Discover, MasterCard, Visa

Phone Number:
(303) 820-2282

Website:
http://www.riojadenver.com/

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.

Executive Chef:
Jennifer Jasinski

Additional:
Bar Dining, Bar/Lounge, Beer, Chef's Table, Counter Seating, Full Bar, Happy Hour, Non-Smoking, Outdoor dining, Takeout, Weekend Brunch, Wine

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Private Dining

The culinary prowess of James Beard award winner Jennifer Jasinski is highlighted at every meal served by the talented Rioja staff. A Mediterranean menu with local, seasonal influences is served in semi-private or restaurant-wide events from 20 to 150 handled with Rioja’s award-winning expertise.

Rioja Ratings and Reviews

5
4
3
2
1

4.7

Overall Rating

based on recent ratings
food

4.7

service

4.7

ambience

4.6

value

4.2

Noise

Moderate

91% would recommend it to a friend

Fit for Foodies (93)
Special Occasion (92)
Good for a Date (84)
See All
Creative Cuisine (78)
Romantic (69)
Good for Anniversaries (69)
Notable Wine List (53)
Pre/post Theatre (48)
Good for Birthdays (39)
Neighborhood Gem (38)
Handcrafted Cocktails (37)
Worth the Drive (33)
Local Ingredients (30)
Tasting Menu (30)
Authentic (28)
Cozy (28)
Hot Spot (28)
Business Meals (26)
Quiet Conversation (24)
Bar Seating (22)
Seasonal (22)
Good Vegetarian Options (22)
Great for Brunch (19)
Fun (19)
Great for Lunch (16)
Sunday Lunch (15)
People Watching (14)
Healthy (14)
Good for Groups (13)
Casual (12)
Tapas (12)
Happy Hour (10)
Gluten Free Options (7)
Late-night Find (7)
Great for Outdoor Dining (7)
Comfort Food (6)
Vibrant Bar Scene (6)
Organic (5)
Paleo Friendly (5)
Afternoon Coffee (4)
Great Beer (3)
Quick Bite (3)
Spicy (3)
Vegan (3)
Disabled Access (2)
Scenic View (2)
Kid-friendly (1)
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6916 reviews
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·Dined 2 days ago

The restaurant is in a great location. The food was good minis the raw potatoes on 2 dishes and the raw beans on one dish. The appetizer was soaked in truffle oil which is no good. In the bathroom the return air vent was covered in so much dust that someone wrote clean me on it see picture.

Tags: Vibrant Bar Scene
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food3
ambience4
service5
value4

vip
 (New York Area)·Dined 3 days ago

We had a Valentine dinner date before seeing a show at the Denver Performing Arts, and everything turned out perfect. We were seated and immediately asked by our waiter about timing, etc., and the courses came out in time to meet our schedule. The signature Artichoke Ravioli's were outstanding, and we also very much enjoyed the seared tuna special and lamb loin main courses. Deserts are a treat here and we had several. As a wine person, I especially appreciated the large selection of wines from Spain and Portugal. Definitely coming back! Thanks Chef!

Tags: Special Occasion, Good for a Date
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Detroit)·Dined 3 days ago

Thoughtful server; excellent food. All as expected

Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience4
service5
value5

 
 (New Orleans)·Dined 3 days ago

Good food, as always.

Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food4
ambience4
service5
value4

 
 (Los Angeles)·Dined 4 days ago

Our visit overall was great. The food stands up to reputation and the wine pairings with the tasting menu were on point. The offering of four different types of bread is a nice touch, although I would recommend to hold back on the quantity you select, because we were definitely full by the end of the tasting menu and having enjoyed some of the bread. The descriptors that came with the food were excellent and descriptions of the wines were well enough. The only component that I wouldn't give five stars was service and is because the hostess seemed distracted and unapproachable and our server took about fifteen minutes to get our first drink order in. From there, the service improved and corrected for the poor start.

Tags: Seasonal, Fit for Foodies
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service4
value4

 
 (Denver)·Dined 4 days ago

Excellent as always. Food is delicious and the service is consistently good.

Tags: Great for Outdoor Dining, Tasting Menu
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value4

vip
 (Salt Lake City)·Dined 5 days ago

This was a truly great experience, from the service to the food. Not a step was missed on service, and the food was amazing. I had the salmon and it was amazing. Cooked mid rare and tasted amazing. The beet salad was great, and my wife’s pasta was a perfectLy cooked. The dessert really shined. There is a reason Rioja is a Denver classic.

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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

vip
 (E. Tennessee)·Dined 5 days ago

Excellent all around: food, service, gorgeous snowfall!
The foie gras was spectacular, and the artichoke tortellini
was too! Both unlike anything I’ve had anyplace else...

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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Denver)·Dined 6 days ago

Good food, however the service was really bad. The same waitress was serving about 8 couples tables. We waited 15 minutes just to get an order of drinks and appetizers in.... not good staffing for Valentine's Day/night at all!

Tags: Romantic
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food4
ambience3
service1
value4

 
 (Denver)·Dined 6 days ago

My favorite Denver Restaurant. Impeccable cuisine! Amazing wine list. And, incredible service!!!! Cheers to Rioja!!!

Tags: Special Occasion
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

vip
 (Denver)·Dined 6 days ago

Rioja never fails. Even after having eaten there 15-20 times, we are still amazed how the food just always impresses and is as good as ever (can't say better than ever because it is always that good). To change things up, we recently went for the prix fixe offering which had some of the most incredible combinations of flavors and unique methods of preparation we could have imagined - so creative and so good. Dinner at Rioja is just a can't miss evening.

Tags: Notable Wine List, Good for Birthdays, Fit for Foodies, Good for a Date, Healthy
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience4
service5
value5

 
 (Denver)·Dined 6 days ago

Best restaurant in denver. By far my favorite. Jen is the best

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food5
ambience5
service5

 
 (Denver)·Dined 6 days ago

A very solid option for a bit of European flair....mainly from Spain. Would highly recommend to couples or small groups going to a nearby show. The Valet parking is a big plus as parking can be difficult.

The only suggestion is the bread was cold and would have better warm.

Tags: Romantic, Good for Anniversaries, Good for Birthdays
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food4
ambience4
service5
value5

 
 (Denver)·Dined on February 13, 2018

My wife and I were in Denver overnight and picked Rioja for a special night out. It was fantastic in every way. The cheapest bottle of red wine (at $42.00) was really very satisfactory, and the creativity and taste of our entrees was exceptional.

Tags: Romantic, Creative Cuisine
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value4

vip
 (Denver)·Dined on February 12, 2018

Never disappointed. Amazing food and service every time. One of our favorite restaurants in the state.

Tags: Neighborhood Gem, Creative Cuisine, Great for Outdoor Dining, Good for Anniversaries, Hot Spot, Fit for Foodies, Good for Birthdays, Good for a Date, Special Occasion
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Orlando)·Dined on February 12, 2018

good food. crowded and noisy, but quite fun. will go again.

Tags: Notable Wine List
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food4
ambience4
service4
value4

 
 (Western NC)·Dined on February 12, 2018

Feasting like royalty at Rioja! We had our special Valentine's day dinner here and it was a phenomenal treat for the foodies we are and the best gift. We came from out of town and this was an exceptional foodie adventure!

I adored the picnic appetizer--fantastic charcuterie meats, flatbread crackers, and goat cheese toasted and olives. They also included spicy chorizo, so it was too hot for me but my husband liked it. There was a green salad and a orange marmalade palates cleanser. We shared the small plates of the Pork belly bacon with cardamom sauce. Imagine a delicious pork meat they roast for a day with an Indian curry-like sauce. I loved the flavors and it was unique because pork belly is typically fried when you eat it. This was more like brisket and the sauce reminded me of Indian style recipes. We also ordered the small portion of home made spaetzle pasta with beef cheeks, and an anise seasoning. Normally I wouldn't know if that combo works but I loved the unique flavors. We also shared the entree Octopus wrapped with serano ham. It was divine, salty, tender and delicious. We chose a wonderful Tempranillo wine, recommendation from the waiter. Oh and the bread basket had wonderful goat cheese biscuits that were amazing with the salted butter!! I loved our meal and I wish we lived nearby. We walked from a downtown hotel so parking was not an issue. I truly loved my dinner and the artistic presentation of the food!

Tags: Good for a Date, Romantic
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience4
service5
value5

 
 (San Francisco)·Dined on February 11, 2018

Great food and impeccable service.

Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value4

vip
 (Atlantic City)·Dined on February 11, 2018

Amazing menu. And mixologists make the best cocktails.
The artichoke arrichiette and the broth, delicious.

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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Chicago)·Dined on February 11, 2018

Delicious meal. Very nice about splitting portions and playing separately in beautiful manner. Lamb was delicious- a real treat.

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food4
ambience4
service5
value3

 
 (Denver)·Dined on February 11, 2018

Excellent service and food made the dining experience at Rioja a pleasure. Great place.

Tags: Good for a Date, Handcrafted Cocktails, Romantic, People Watching, Good for Birthdays, Hot Spot
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food4
ambience5
service5
value3

 
 (Denver)·Dined on February 11, 2018

Male Waiter never addressed me and couldn’t take his eyes off my female date. Made her very uncomfortable. I left a bigger tip then deserved!!!! Will not be recommending this restaurant because of waiter!!!

Tags: Quiet Conversation
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food4
ambience4
service4
value3

vip
 (Denver)·Dined on February 11, 2018

Delicious as always. Can’t ever go wrong still remains a favorite for the past 12 years I’ve been coming. Love Love Love.

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food5
ambience4
service4
value5

 
 (Denver)·Dined on February 11, 2018

Love Rioja! This past time I went, wasn’t impressed with their winter salad. Although, great place to go for drinks, dinner or brunch!

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food4
ambience5
service4
value3

 
 (Kansas City)·Dined on February 10, 2018

The food was amazing, the service was outstanding. We did the tasting menu with wine parings and they were perfectly paired. The courses just got better and better and our waiter (Philip) was extremely attentive. Would go here again for sure!

Tags: Good for a Date, Fit for Foodies, Romantic, Special Occasion
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience4
service5
value4

vip
 (Washington DC)·Dined on February 10, 2018

We returned to Rioja one year later, our dinner with the same friends last time was very good. We were all very satisfied this time, everything we tried was really good, from interesting appetizers to deserts. Highly recommended restaurant, much better food than the prices would have you expect.

Tags: Fit for Foodies, Casual, Local Ingredients
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food4
ambience4
service4
value5

 
 (Portland)·Dined on February 10, 2018

Staff were wonderful and the right amount of attentive throughout our meal. The food is delicious and fresh. We had a wonderful meal at Rioja.

Tags: Quiet Conversation, Local Ingredients, Creative Cuisine
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value4

 
 (Denver)·Dined on February 9, 2018

The good: service was great and the restaurant was nicely decorated. There was valet, so that's a plus in Larimer Square. They have a great wine menu and an interesting cocktail menu.
The bad: restaurant was very loud at 8pm, we had to shout a lot in conversation so that was annoying after awhile. I was aware of the prices heading in, but I expected the food to be stellar at $30-$40 per entree. It's not that the food was bad, it was very good. However there are several restaurants in Denver where the food is of equal quality but $5-$10 less per entree, so relatively speaking, it felt like a bit of a rip-off.
Overall: not bad but I wouldn't go out of my way to dine here again

Tags: Tasting Menu, Handcrafted Cocktails, Good Vegetarian Options, Special Occasion
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience3
service5
value3

vip
 (Denver)·Dined on February 9, 2018

Rioja is a favorite. Stellar menu, beautifully executed and presented. The wait staff is welcoming, professional and knowledgeable. Always a delicious treat.

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food5
ambience5
service5

 
 (Denver)·Dined on February 8, 2018

Purely subjective on my part: everything was fresh, well-executed, and well-presented. I just didn't care for the food.

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food2
ambience3
service3
value1

 
 (New York Area)·Dined on February 8, 2018

I love food. I love good food and I love feeling like I got my money’s worth. Everything was fine. But I didn’t leave wowed. We sat at the bar. Had cocktails and a quick dinner before a show. I had two cocktails, the basilica and the pomegranate martini. They were made well but I have no idea what drove the $14 cost for each one. For dinner, I had the artichoke tortelloni. They tasted great. Seasoned well, delicious broth. The serving was 4 or 5 of them. I know they are laborious to make but not sure what drove the $20 price on this dish either. I’ll probably try Rioja one more time to see if I missed something. First trip = not worth the price.

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food3
ambience3
service3
value2

 
 (New York Area)·Dined on February 8, 2018

Second time to Rioja. The braised beef cheeks were...incredible.

Tags: Good for Birthdays, Good for Groups, Creative Cuisine, Hot Spot
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value4

 
 (Cincinnati)·Dined on February 6, 2018

Amazing food service and atmosphere! Delicious! Highly recommend.

Tags: Romantic, Creative Cuisine, Cozy, Local Ingredients, Fit for Foodies, Good for Anniversaries, Good Vegetarian Options, Good for Birthdays
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Denver)·Dined on February 4, 2018

My family and I had a late lunch on Super Bowl Sunday. Rioja was a great diversion, as we are not big sports fans! Your staff actually had to change our reservation to an earlier time and, as a result, we received appetizers and desert at no charge. We a really appreciate that! The drinks and food were exceptional. Your servers were courteous and knowledgeable. Overall, it was s great experience and we will come back and refer you as well!

Tags: Late-night Find, Creative Cuisine, Cozy, Sunday Lunch, Worth the Drive, Handcrafted Cocktails, Good for a Date
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service3
value5

 
 (New Mexico)·Dined on February 3, 2018

The food and service were outstanding. The tables are a bit close together but it was not an issue for our group. Highly recommend.

Tags: Good for Anniversaries, Business Meals, Fit for Foodies, Worth the Drive, Good Vegetarian Options, Notable Wine List, Pre/post Theatre, Special Occasion, Good for Birthdays
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience4
service5
value4

 
 (Seattle)·Dined on February 3, 2018

Our new favorite restaurant, it was a great experience from the service to the drinks & the food was delicious!

Tags: Neighborhood Gem, Pre/post Theatre, Sunday Lunch, Good for a Date, Fun
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Denver)·Dined on February 2, 2018

Came here with my husband for a date night. The food was amazing. Staff very friendly and food came out quickly. Atmosphere was fun and lively but not too loud. Fire alarms did go off at the end of dinner, but no one panicked. We left before it ended but things seemed in control. Would definitely come here again.

Tags: Creative Cuisine, Good for a Date, Fun
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food5
ambience5
service5
value4

 
 (Denver)·Dined on February 2, 2018

I have been hearing about Rioja from my friend for a while. This is her favorite restaurant. We took her here for her 50th birthday. For the price, the portion was very small, like 2 bite size. The Gabe's Chronic Chicken Sandwich was one of my favorite because it was a regular size sandwich. You will not walk away feeling full at this place. Had to fill up on bread. The atmosphere was nice.

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food3
ambience5
service5
value1

 
 (Austin)·Dined on January 30, 2018

Excellent food, wine, cocktails and service! Were very accommodating to the dietary modifications necessary for one in our group.

Tags: Tasting Menu, Good Vegetarian Options, Good for Groups, Tapas, Quiet Conversation, Bar Seating, Business Meals, Handcrafted Cocktails, Notable Wine List, Creative Cuisine, Special Occasion
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience4
service5
value3

 
 (Denver)·Dined on January 28, 2018

Our first time at Rioja was fabulous! We had excellent food, service and all a short walk from the DCPA. We will certainly be back!

Tags: Good for Anniversaries, Special Occasion
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

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