Nearby points of interest

  1. Distance: 0.32mi
  2. Distance: 0.45mi
  3. Distance: 0.47mi
  4. Distance: 0.49mi
  1. Distance: 0.32mi
  2. Distance: 0.45mi
  3. Distance: 0.47mi
  4. Distance: 0.49mi

Nearby points of interest

  1. Distance: 0.32mi
  2. Distance: 0.45mi
  3. Distance: 0.47mi
  4. Distance: 0.49mi
  1. Distance: 0.32mi
  2. Distance: 0.45mi
  3. Distance: 0.47mi
  4. Distance: 0.49mi

About Shells and Sauce

Serving authentic Italian American food in the heart of Congress Park, Shells and Sauce brings Old Country taste to a cozy neighborhood restaurant. If you’re craving home-made lasagna, meat or fish, Shells and Sauce has a variety of savory appetizers and entrees to chose from. We also boast an extensive wine list to pair with anything you choose, and we offer delicious desserts to top off your evening. Whether you sit on our rooftop or in our main dining room to watch our open kitchen, Shells and Sauce is a great place to entertain friends or family in an inviting setting. Step into our kitchen and let us share our passion for food!

2600 E. 12th Ave
Denver, CO 80206
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Dining Style:
Casual Dining

Cuisines:
Italian

Hours of Operation:
Dinner: Tuesday - Thursday 3:00 PM-9:00 PM, Friday & Saturday: 3:00pm - 10:00pm, Sunday: 3:00pm - 9:00pm
Brunch: Saturday - Sunday: 10:00am - 3:00pm

Cross Street:
12th and Elizabeth

Dress Code:
Casual Dress

Price Range:
$30 and under

Payment Options
AMEX, Discover, MasterCard, Visa

Phone Number:
(303) 377-2091

Website:
http://shellsandsauce.net/

Parking Details:
Easy to find parking on the street, or park in our lot behind the restaurant.

Executive Chef:
Marcus Jimenez

Additional:
Bar Dining, Bar/Lounge, Beer, Full Bar, Gluten-free Menu, Happy Hour, Non-Smoking, Outdoor dining, Weekend Brunch, Wheelchair Access, Wine

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Shells and Sauce Ratings and Reviews

5
4
3
2
1

4.5

Overall Rating

based on recent ratings
food

4.5

service

4.4

ambience

4.1

value

4.3

Noise

Moderate

91% would recommend it to a friend

Neighborhood Gem (77)
Casual (53)
Good for a Date (49)
See All
Fit for Foodies (38)
Comfort Food (37)
Happy Hour (34)
Fun (33)
Good for Birthdays (31)
Special Occasion (30)
Authentic (29)
Great for Brunch (27)
Cozy (27)
Creative Cuisine (25)
Worth the Drive (23)
Good for Groups (23)
Good for Anniversaries (20)
Romantic (17)
Bar Seating (16)
Hot Spot (16)
Sunday Lunch (14)
Pre/post Theatre (13)
Notable Wine List (11)
Kid-friendly (10)
Gluten Free Options (10)
Handcrafted Cocktails (9)
People Watching (8)
Great for Lunch (7)
Great for Outdoor Dining (7)
Good Vegetarian Options (6)
Vibrant Bar Scene (6)
Business Meals (5)
Seasonal (5)
Spicy (5)
Tapas (4)
Late-night Find (3)
Local Ingredients (3)
Disabled Access (2)
Healthy (2)
Live Sports (2)
Quick Bite (2)
Tasting Menu (2)
Afternoon Coffee (1)
Organic (1)
Paleo Friendly (1)
Quiet Conversation (1)
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1545 reviews
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 (Denver)·Dined 2 days ago

Shells and Sauce is my favorite neighborhood restaurant. If it’s Friday or Saturday evening, request the rooftop dining area for quieter dining.

Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Denver)·Dined 2 days ago

Good food with good friends! We all really enjoyed our dinners and our time at Shells and Sauce!

Tags: Casual, Good Vegetarian Options, Creative Cuisine, Good for a Date, Pre/post Theatre, People Watching
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience4
service4
value4

 
 (Denver)·Dined 4 days ago

We arrived behind another couple. The host asked both our parties the name on our reservation. As he walked away to seat the first couple, he said we must be his 4-top, and gestured to the table.
Our server was very nice, and came to the table promptly. After the rest of our party arrived, we placed our orders. When the food arrived, one of the entrees was wrong. The correct order came as the rest of us were finishing our meals. The server was very apologetic, but didn't offer anything for the inconvenience, like a free drink, dessert, or even taking the order off the bill. Many other places would have done that.
The food isn't bad, but I will not go back. And, I will not recommend it to my friends.

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food3
ambience4
service2
value3

 
 (Denver)·Dined on January 14, 2018

The specials are always creative and so good! The regular menu is consistently very good.
The staff is so personable and professional at the same time.
After many years, I still recommend Shells and Sauce.

Tags: Special Occasion, Happy Hour, Good for a Date, Neighborhood Gem, Cozy, Creative Cuisine, Good for Birthdays
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food4
ambience4
service4
value5

 
 (Denver)·Dined on January 10, 2018

Always have a great experience at Shells and Sauce!

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food5
ambience5
service5

vip
 (Denver)·Dined on January 7, 2018

Still one of the beat brunch menus in town! Great value for money.

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food5
ambience3
service4
value5

vip
 (Denver)·Dined on January 7, 2018

I am giving Shells and Sauce a 3 Star because I enjoyed my meal but they messed up my husband’s. My husband’s order was wrong and they took so long to remake it that everyone else was done. The waiter was not knowledgeable about the menu since he was pretty new and we had been there many times before. I enjoyed my meal and so did the people we were with though. I’ve always enjoyed it here.

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food3
ambience3
service2
value3

 
 (Denver)·Dined on January 7, 2018

I was a little upset Saturday evening I had booked reservations for 8 PM. I got there early did not get seated until later than 8 PM. As I said down I order my mail and it wasn’t until 9:30 PM that I have not received my dinner. I was a little upset and had to walk out. I understand this place gets very busy but an hour and a half or your food is a little overboard

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food1
ambience1
service1
value1

vip
 (Denver)·Dined on January 7, 2018

I have eaten here a couple of times now. It's in what used to be a middle class neighborhood but is now more upscale. The actual restaurant is in an old garage.

We arrived for your 7:15 p.m. reservation but had to wait 10 minutes to be seated. They put way too many tables in this restaurant, so there was very little room to wait, and the bar was full. Waiters kept telling us we were in the way but there was not place else to stand.

I had the baked rigatoni, which was very good, but don't eat here if you're claustrophobic

Tags: Neighborhood Gem, Hot Spot
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food4
ambience1
service3
value2

 
·Dined on January 7, 2018

Overall the food was good. However, we arrived at 708 for a 715pm reservation and did not get seated until 7:47om. Really don’t know what the point is in making a reservation if you still have to wait over 30 minutes.

Tags: Creative Cuisine
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food4
ambience3
service3
value3

 
 (New Orleans)·Dined on January 6, 2018

Ladies brunch with a large group. The food was great with intersting specials. Really hit the spot. A solid brunch. Service was just right- not absent and not overly attentive. The restaurant was busy and lively but not too loud. Will be back! The only weird thing was the mimosas. The orange juice was kind of flat and bitter, but we drank em anyway. Thanks for an easy and tasty, no fuss brunch experience!

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food5
ambience5
service4

 
 (Seattle)·Dined on January 6, 2018

Great neighborhood feel. Great food. Service was excellent

Tags: Good for a Date, Neighborhood Gem, Tapas, Casual
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Denver)·Dined on January 4, 2018

We showed up with an already altered reservation that originally was for 6, I changed to 5 only to have it change back to 6 upon arriving and the manager handled it with amazing professionalism. This is by far my favorite Italian restaurant and in my opinion the best Italian in Colorado! Thank you staff for being nothing short than amazing.

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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
·Dined on January 1, 2018

My husband and I have been having New Years Eve dinner at Shells and Sauce the last three years. I think it has become part of our celebrations. Nothing like a great meal to begin the long night. Great food, come hungry!

Tags: Creative Cuisine, Good for a Date, Special Occasion, Neighborhood Gem, Good for Anniversaries, Authentic
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience4
service5
value5

 
 (Denver)·Dined on December 31, 2017

I just love,love,love this place. The food is always amaze and the service this time was impeccable. Our server was friendly and anticipated our needs.

Tags: Fit for Foodies, Great for Brunch
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Denver)·Dined on December 31, 2017

We loved the delicious, authentic Italian cuisine. Staff was very friendly, knowledagble and the food was served hot and in a timely manner. We loved Shells and Sauce and will definitely be back!

Tags: Happy Hour
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Denver)·Dined on December 30, 2017

Mimosas are killer! A must get!

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food5
ambience5
service1
value5

 
 (Denver)·Dined on December 30, 2017

Went for a Saturday brunch with my parents and the food was fantastic. All of the food tasted fantastic and the service was good. We will be back!

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food5
ambience5
service4
value5

 
·Dined on December 30, 2017

Busy on a Friday night but absolutely loved it!! We did not feel pressured to hurry up and eat. Timing of food delivery was perfect. Parking is a bear in that area but so worth it to eat at this restaurant.

Tags: Comfort Food, Hot Spot
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food4
ambience4
service4
value4

vip
 (New York Area)·Dined on December 30, 2017

Loved it. It gets very crowded though and tables are close together. So, if you like a lot of room/privacy this is not the place for you. Noise level was high because of the crowd but not annoying, still able to talk easily. Everything from service to food was great! Unique specials and a great vibe.

Tags: Authentic, Comfort Food, Casual, Pre/post Theatre, Good for Birthdays, Good for a Date, Neighborhood Gem, Kid-friendly, Bar Seating
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food5
ambience4
service5
value5

 
 (Washington DC)·Dined on December 30, 2017

Friday night before our trip to the Denver Botanic Gardens to see 'Blossoms of Light" we made reservations at this restaurant. Busy, lively place with good food and attentive staff. I would recommend it whole heartedly.

Tags: Neighborhood Gem, Casual, Authentic, Good for a Date
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food3
ambience3
service4
value3

 
·Dined on December 30, 2017

Busy but Robert really did a good job. It’s a fun restraunt I would go to again. Maybe for brunch. It was that busy

Tags: Fit for Foodies
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
·Dined on December 30, 2017

Bread and chicken parm were overly salty, Matthen K.(server very good), kitchen--very slow--30 minutes for dinner to be served, spaghetti very good, very noisy, Happy Hour food and drink menu great w/ value, otherwise, pricey

"Map It" has S and S @ 12th and Race, it is not of course, needs correction

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food2
ambience3
service3
value3

 
·Dined on December 29, 2017

Very noisy and crowded. We had to yell at each other at the table just to hear each other talk. The seating was very restrictive and confined. We were literally bumping into the patrons sitting next to us while we were trying to eat.
Our waitress did not seem to be very happy trying to serve us and any of her other tables. I don't think she wanted to be working.

Tags: Authentic, Casual
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food4
ambience2
service2
value3

 
 (Philadelphia)·Dined on December 29, 2017

Fabulous food and great happy hour deals. Cute location.

Tags: Good for a Date, Fun, Good for Birthdays
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Denver)·Dined on December 28, 2017

Yummy food!

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food4
ambience3
service4
value3

vip
 (Denver)·Dined on December 28, 2017

Service, food, and drinks were incredible!

Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

vip
 (Denver)·Dined on December 28, 2017

Always the best Italian in Denver. Always. Food never misses and service is consistently great. (Try the gnocchi!) Wine list is small but effective. Make a reservation if you’re showing up after 5:30 pm - place isn’t that big, which adds to the ambiance but makes it fill up quickly.

Tags: Special Occasion, Cozy, Late-night Find, Good for Birthdays, Authentic, Romantic, Fit for Foodies, Business Meals, Casual, Neighborhood Gem, Comfort Food
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
·Dined on December 27, 2017

Thank you for taking such great care of our group of 8 teenagers and 4 adults! Everything was tasty with nice happy hour selections and portions! The birthday tiramisu you brought my daughter was outstanding and a nice touch! We will definitely be back soon! A great find!

Tags: Great for Lunch, Afternoon Coffee, Quick Bite, Authentic, Happy Hour, Tapas, Good for Birthdays, Fit for Foodies, Casual, Handcrafted Cocktails, Late-night Find, Creative Cuisine, Good for a Date, Pre/post Theatre, Sunday Lunch, Cozy, Romantic, Special Occasion, Neighborhood Gem, Kid-friendly, Worth the Drive, Good for Groups, Comfort Food
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience4
service5
value5

 
 (New York Area)·Dined on December 27, 2017

All delicious! Can't wait to go back. Chicken parm, chicken piccata, chicken carbonara, lasagna, frutti did mare, Caesar salad....and cannolis.

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food5
ambience3
service5
value5

 
·Dined on December 25, 2017

Wonderful find for a Christmas Eve dinner. We had a party of ten. The service was awesome and the food was great. We will definitely go back to this lovely spot!

Tags: Neighborhood Gem
1 person found this review helpful.
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience4
service5
value5

 
 (Denver)·Dined on December 25, 2017

We went as a large group for Christmas Eve. They were able to accommodate our seating needs, and the staff was very attentive. The food was abundant and there were options for our vegan and gluten free individuals.

Tags: Comfort Food, Handcrafted Cocktails, Neighborhood Gem, Fun, Cozy, Healthy, Gluten Free Options, Good for a Date
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience4
service5
value5

 
 (South Dakota)·Dined on December 24, 2017

All 12 people in our party enjoyed their food.

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food4
ambience4
service3

 
·Dined on December 23, 2017

The food and the service is wonderful. But it was too loud too noisy couldn’t hardly have a conversation. That’s why we got a reservation earlier at 3:30, however it’s still got real loud and noisy quickly. And our table was right next to the bar and people are actually sitting at the bar eating

Tags: Sunday Lunch
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food5
ambience1
service5
value3

 
 (Denver)·Dined on December 21, 2017

It was wonderful! Waitress was very knowledgeable about the menu, able to give great recommendations. We were seated upstairs which was nice because it was a little more quiet. Huge portions for the price, we all had leftovers. Will definitely be returning!

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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
·Dined on December 21, 2017

Excellent service and food. The specials are always interesting and tasty. Commendations to the chef as the restaurant was really busy yet the food was served in a timely manner and was nice and hot. Love this restaurant.

Tags: Worth the Drive, Good for Groups, Pre/post Theatre, Neighborhood Gem
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Denver)·Dined on December 20, 2017

Our first visit to Shells and Sauce and it was great! Noisy, fun with good service and excellent food. I had the rigatoni--a huge portion-- and my son had the shells, which were so good and cheesy. So glad we made reservations because the place was packed!

Tags: Casual, Great for Lunch, Good for a Date, Happy Hour, Fun, Vibrant Bar Scene, Bar Seating
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Denver)·Dined on December 20, 2017

It's a popular place and service was a little slow but really a great job in light of how busy they were.

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food4
ambience3
service4
value3

 
 (Denver)·Dined on December 20, 2017

Minuses
- Took a few minutes (5 or so) to get a host to recognize we were waiting.
- Too noisy for a date.
- Pork dish came out undercooked (as if it was steak and I had ordered it medium-rare).
- Prices are just a tad high. Not offensive, but not a deal.

Plusses
+ Waiter was awesome and while he did attempt to explain that they try not to overcook their pork dishes, didn't take offense when I sent it back and asked them to cook the red out.
+ Pork dish came back cooked perfectly.
+ Mixed drink specialties were amazing.
+ Pasta was phenomenal.

Tags: Neighborhood Gem, Fit for Foodies, Kid-friendly, Hot Spot
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food3
ambience3
service5
value3

 
 (Denver)·Dined on December 20, 2017

Is there anything better than good local food at a neighborhood restaurant? What a great way to start an eveming with family in Denver.

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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

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