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  5. Highlands

The Way Back

4.6
4.6
299 Reviews
$30 and under
American
The Way Back is a restaurant in the Denver Highlands Neighborhood. We work toward achieving a sustainable and hyper-local cuisine that will champion a post-industrial food supply with no compromise to ethics, aesthetics, nor taste. The scope of our vision, however, is not only limited to Colorado. Instead, we aim to affect the manner in which Americans appreciate food and, more importantly, where our food originates. We eagerly look forward to serving you.

We encourage family-style dining for most groups. Please inform your server of any allergies or dietary restrictions.
Due to limited space, please account for any children in your party and let us know if you need a highchair or booster seat.

Not available on OpenTable

Unfortunately, this restaurant is not on the OpenTable reservation network.

If you like, we'll notify you by email if this restaurant joins.


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Additional information

  • Dining style

    Casual Dining

  • Cuisines

    American, Cocktail Bar, Farm-to-table

  • Hours of operation

    Tue–Sat 5:00 pm–9:00 pm

  • Phone number

    (970) 682-6888 ext. 1

  • Payment options

    AMEX, Discover, MasterCard, Visa

  • Dress code

    Casual Dress

  • Executive chef

    Dylan Rigolini

  • Private party facilities

    We offer Full Restaurant Buyouts for up to 110 seated and 150 standing. We also offer Semi Private Dining for up to 50 guests. Please email info@thewaybackdenver.com for more details.

  • Private party contact

    Chad Michael George: (970) 682-6888

  • Neighborhood

    Highlands

  • Parking details

    Parking, when not available on Tennyson, is usually abundant on the adjacent streets, both to the east and west of Tennyson. There are no neighborhood parking restrictions on these streets.

  • Additional

    Bar/Lounge, Beer, Cocktails, Full Bar, Non-Smoking, Takeout, Wine

What 299 people are saying

Overall ratings and reviews

4.6
4.6 based on all time ratings
  • 4.6Food
  • 4.6Service
  • 4.6Ambience
  • 4.2Value

NoiseModerate

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  1. MH

    MaxH

    1 review

    5.0

    1 review

    Dined on March 15, 2020

    overall5food5service5ambience5
    Really fantastic and creative meal. Especially enjoyed the Carrot "Sushi" and all of the skewers. Tasty cocktails. Perfect!
  2. AC

    AndreaC

    New York Area

    7 reviews

    vip
    5.0

    7 reviews

    Dined on March 7, 2020

    overall5food5service5ambience5
    Loved everything about this restaurant. Worth the trip.
  3. SA

    ScottA

    Denver

    6 reviews

    vip
    5.0

    6 reviews

    Dined on February 29, 2020

    overall5food5service5ambience5
    We've always been treated like family at the Wayback! The food, service, and ambiance are all outstanding. This is the best restaurant on Tennyson, hands down.
  4. D

    Delaney

    1 review

    5.0

    1 review

    Dined on February 27, 2020

    overall5food5service5ambience5
    Loved the ambience and the flower arrangements here! The food was delicious and the panna cotta dessert was one of the best I’ve had. Drinks were creative and tasty. Will definitely be back!
  5. OT

    OpenTable Diner

    1 review

    5.0

    1 review

    Dined on February 26, 2020

    overall5food5service5ambience5
    Fantastic experience at the way back this week! Started with the house pickled veggies and a latke plate, unbelievable! The entrees we chose were fried chicken which was best I’ve had in Denver yet ! And the papprdelle was an awesome hand rolled pasta dish we tried, cooked al dente and tasted so fresh ! Overall , I would definitely recommend to anyone looking for something unique in Denver .
  6. TL

    TaylorL

    Miami

    3 reviews

    vip
    2.0

    3 reviews

    Dined on February 23, 2020

    overall2food3service1ambience2
    Can’t believe we wasted nearly $200 for my husband and I to have dinner here. Will never return.
  7. RG

    RachelleG

    1 review

    3.0

    1 review

    Dined on February 23, 2020

    overall3food3service3ambience5
    Both the food and the service were just ok. Nothing I would ever crave or go back for more for. Definitely not bad but left me feeling indifferent.
  8. OT

    OpenTable Diner

    Kansas City

    1 review

    2.0

    1 review

    Dined on February 23, 2020

    overall2food3service2ambience3
    The overall experience was fine. We waited a long time for our food and our server wasn’t great about handling that. The food was decent but overpriced for what we got.
  9. OT

    OpenTable Diner

    Denver

    1 review

    3.0

    1 review

    Dined on February 22, 2020

    overall3food3service3ambience5
    The food in my honest opinion was mediocre, not entirely sure what the hype is about. The ambiance is cool but $10 extra for a meatball? I’ll go elsewhere next time.
  10. OT

    OpenTable Diner

    Denver

    7 reviews

    vip
    5.0

    7 reviews

    Dined on February 15, 2020

    overall5food5service5ambience5
    This restaurant is not only one of the best in Denver, but the level of service is above and beyond! I have celiac and cannot eat gluten. I’m used to just picking and choosing from the menu and avoiding pris fixe menus. The staff and chef met ahead of my reservation and made a gluten free pris fixe menu so I could enjoy the Valentine’s Day menu. It was so nice to feel included and taken care of. My boyfriend and I could not get over how delicious the dinner was. Highly recommend!
  11. DP

    DaneP

    Denver

    6 reviews

    vip
    4.0

    6 reviews

    Dined on February 15, 2020

    overall4food3service5ambience5
    Food was good, not great. However everything else was outstanding. I will definitely be back. What a cool vibe. Very vegi friendly. Great date spot
  12. T

    Talulah

    Denver

    35 reviews

    vip
    4.0

    35 reviews

    Dined on February 14, 2020

    overall4food4service3ambience3
    We went the night before Valentine's Day and it was very busy. It took a while to get service, and we never ever met our waitress. The manager came to check on us and got us an appetizer and our drinks. He also took our entree order! The bartender came from behind the bar to ask if we needed more drinks. So, all in all, everyone banded together to take care of the tables. Food was definitely tasty, but nothing really stood out to me.
  13. B

    Brunch

    Mobile

    19 reviews

    vip
    5.0

    19 reviews

    Dined on February 9, 2020

    overall5food5service5ambience5
    Always an amazing experience at The Wayback. The food was great, with some new additions to the menu. Michelle took great care of us and Dylan and his team continue to kill it. Thank you for another wonderful experience.
  14. AW

    AdamW

    Denver

    8 reviews

    vip
    5.0

    8 reviews

    Dined on February 9, 2020

    overall5food5service4ambience5
    Great night out at The Way Back! The food was excellent and perfect for sharing. The staff was great and the vibe in the restaurant was really nice. They could have pumped the brakes on the food as it came out a little faster than we would have liked. Overall we would come back in a heart beat!
  15. A

    Astor

    Denver

    11 reviews

    vip
    5.0

    11 reviews

    Dined on February 9, 2020

    overall5food5service5ambience5
    Great food! Portions aren't so overwhelming but generous. Food is fresh and the combinations of spices and sauces are perfect. We'll return!
  16. AS

    ArianaS

    Denver

    10 reviews

    5.0

    10 reviews

    Dined on February 6, 2020

    overall5food4service5ambience5
    Service was wonderful! Food selection differs than website menu since it’s seasonal. Expensive for serving sizes.

    The Way BackResponded on February 7, 2020Hi Ariana Thank you so much for coming in and your kind review. We're glad you enjoyed dining with us and look forward to seeing you again soon! Cheers Eli Kerlin GM Wayback Denver

  17. B

    Bumpskier

    Denver

    24 reviews

    vip
    5.0

    24 reviews

    Dined on February 2, 2020

    overall5food5service5ambience5
    My husband and I were honestly surprised at every single aspect of our dining experience. From the moment we walked in and noticed the attention to detail in the decor to the time that we left, we were completely impressed! The food was outstanding. We enjoyed every single thing that we ate! We did manage to get in during happy hour so the prices were a bit lower on some of the food that we ordered. That definitely made a difference. Our waiter, Cal, was attentive, knowledgeable and friendly. We loved that every staff member jumped in to help each other to make sure all the tables were being taken care of! Very impressive!! We will add the Wayback I to our regular restaurant rotation!!

    The Way BackResponded on February 7, 2020Hello Thank you so much for dining with us and leaving such a nice review! We're so glad you enjoyed having Cal as your server, he's a great part of our team for sure. We look forward to seeing you again and are honored to be part of your restaurant rotation. I would love to say thank you in person next time you're in so please don't hesitate to ask for me. Cheers Eli Kerlin GM Wayback Denver

  18. SF

    SantaFe7

    Denver

    97 reviews

    vip
    3.0

    97 reviews

    Dined on January 29, 2020

    overall3food2service5ambience3
    It was just OK. Place rather empty, ambiance...marginal, servers very good, food just OK. Neither loved or disliked Wayback, but wouldn't 'Go-back'.
  19. OT

    OpenTable Diner

    1 review

    3.0

    1 review

    Dined on January 25, 2020

    overall3food4service3ambience4
    Food took almost an hour from kitchen. Staff was apologetic and offered small discount for the inconvenience. All in all a positive experience.
  20. OT

    OpenTable Diner

    Denver

    2 reviews

    5.0

    2 reviews

    Dined on January 19, 2020

    overall5food5service5ambience5
    Great food and cocktails. Everything is unique and you can tell they put a lot of thought and time into creating their dishes.
  21. C

    Caitlin

    New York Area

    6 reviews

    5.0

    6 reviews

    Dined on January 18, 2020

    overall5food5service5ambience5
    This was my second time dining at The Way Back and the food and service was just as amazing as the first time! We ordered the beets, Okonomiyaki, shush into peppers and a pasta dish to share between two people and each dish was flavorful and beautifully presented. The panna cotta with citrus and vanilla bean was out of this world. The booth seating is so comfortable and cozy. Would be a great spot for an intimate gathering, a birthday dinner, a date, etc. I can’t wait to go back!
  22. OT

    OpenTable Diner

    1 review

    5.0

    1 review

    Dined on January 7, 2020

    overall5food5service5ambience5
    Great meal with creative presentation. Super cute interior and very trendy!
  23. MB

    MarkB

    Denver

    3 reviews

    5.0

    3 reviews

    Dined on January 3, 2020

    overall5food5service5ambience4
    Food was a little skimpy for the price. The food was very tasty. Service was excellent!
  24. E

    Eric

    Denver

    7 reviews

    5.0

    7 reviews

    Dined on December 31, 2019

    overall5food5service5ambience5
    The Way Back is consistently one of my favorite restaurants in Denver. The always-changing menu holds a fun mix of hearty comfort foods, savory small plates, and strange and delicious bites. It's definitely the kind of place where you want to order everything and share it all around. The cocktails are eclectic, the wine list is impressive, and the desserts are always delicious. Overall, the restaurant is cozy and warmly lit. I love settling in at the bar and drinking and eating my way through an evening, but the big table in the dining room is perfect for a night of revelry with your favorite people. The Way Back is the perfect place for a date, a boisterous night out with friends, a quiet family dinner, or a solo treat. Count on stellar service, high value, and a lovingly curated dining experience.
  25. OT

    OpenTable Diner

    Chicago

    6 reviews

    2.0

    6 reviews

    Dined on December 27, 2019

    overall2food4service1ambience4
    We were so excited to finally make it here and ended up being really disappointed. Food was great-service not so much. Waited over 10 mins to be greeted and another 10-15 mins for our drinks. It was not that busy either. Finished a whole bottle of water before the glasses of wine arrived. They told us how they were going to course us out and how the pasta dish was going to be a separate course but that didn’t happen. Felt rushed at the end even though our reservation was at 7:30. Ordered the dessert and he said they were out and we thought he was kidding since he didn’t mention it when he dropped the menu. He was not. They only had 2 desserts to begin with. Just seemed like he wanted us to pay and go so we did. It was supposed to be our special Christmas meal and didn’t feel special at all.
  26. KG

    KellyG

    Denver

    5 reviews

    vip
    5.0

    5 reviews

    Dined on December 19, 2019

    overall5food5service5ambience5
    Celebrating a birthday and it was perfect!
  27. GD

    GabyD

    Denver

    12 reviews

    5.0

    12 reviews

    Dined on December 15, 2019

    overall5food5service5ambience5
    We had a GREAT experience; just absolutely amazing food, ambiance overall just great!
  28. RR

    RobynR

    Denver

    12 reviews

    5.0

    12 reviews

    Dined on December 14, 2019

    overall5food4service5ambience5
    The service first and foremost was amazing! Our server was knowledgeable, bubbly and beyond pleasant! We decided to order several things and share. I will tell you that the potato latkes were sooooo good. How does someone make a potato pancake taste so decadent? And then of course the pappardelle-I will dream about this dish!!! Lastly, the chicken breast was truly the best chicken I’ve ever had. It melted in your mouth but some had a crispness to it too? Magic maybe? The only thing that fell flat was dessert but by that point I was so happy from the rest of the meal, it didn’t really matter!! Will for sure being go back. Thanks for the wonderful experience 💕
  29. OT

    OpenTable Diner

    San Francisco

    5 reviews

    5.0

    5 reviews

    Dined on December 14, 2019

    overall5food5service5ambience4
    Grabbed some dinner with my husband before my holiday party. The food was great and service was wonderful!!
  30. C

    Chs722

    Denver

    10 reviews

    4.0

    10 reviews

    Dined on December 13, 2019

    overall4food3service4ambience5
    Friend Christmas party

    The Way BackResponded on December 14, 2019Hello, thank you for visiting and your review. We hope to see you again and please let me know if I can ever be of service. Cheers! Eli Kerlin GM The Wayback Denver 970.682.6888

  31. M

    Mousse

    San Francisco

    1 review

    5.0

    1 review

    Dined on December 11, 2019

    overall5food5service5ambience5
    Denver trips always include The Way Back, and it never disappoints. Nice to enjoy some new menu items, especially the strozzapreti. As ever the space feels so right. Warm people and good value.
  32. AS

    AbbeyS

    Denver

    11 reviews

    vip
    4.0

    11 reviews

    Dined on December 1, 2019

    overall4food4service5ambience4
    I’m not really getting the Italian Asian fusion. The individual components are good but together it’s a little weird. Great wine and cocktail selection! I think the ambiance is good but it’s a little cold in the front. I’d add one of those winter doorway things to prevent drafts and warm up the interior with some more fabric on the booths and chairs. Overall good but could be better. Also, bring back the tasting menu!
  33. CC

    CatherineC

    Denver

    5 reviews

    5.0

    5 reviews

    Dined on December 1, 2019

    overall5food5service5ambience5
    We love the Way Back. It's a great neighborhood gem. One appetizer missed the mark but overall the food was amazing. We also really love the awesome cocktail selection. We had a great meal and evening on a cold, snowy night.
  34. OT

    OpenTable Diner

    Denver

    5 reviews

    5.0

    5 reviews

    Dined on December 1, 2019

    overall5food5service5ambience5
    We had brunch here and it was amazing. It reminded me of my favorite brunch place in Paris! I definitely recommend this place.
  35. JB

    JulieB

    Denver

    21 reviews

    5.0

    21 reviews

    Dined on November 24, 2019

    overall5food5service5ambience5
    This place never disappoints - it is my go-to favorite for all occasions!
  36. DP

    DocP

    Montana

    5 reviews

    vip
    5.0

    5 reviews

    Dined on November 20, 2019

    overall5food5service5ambience3
    The food is absolutely exceptional! I had the steak served with a potato puree and kimchi. It combined both familiar and new flavors for a really exciting take on a basic dish. The cocktails were exceptional, and the service was grand. The restaurant is a bit loud, so so just be conscious of that if you're going for a quiet date, but the food is worth it.
  37. OT

    OpenTable Diner

    Denver

    1 review

    3.0

    1 review

    Dined on November 17, 2019

    overall3food4service4ambience4
    Food was tasty but the pasta entree was tiny, would have been a great appetizer.
  38. A

    Appa

    Denver

    9 reviews

    vip
    5.0

    9 reviews

    Dined on November 10, 2019

    overall5food5service5ambience5
    Love! We enjoy everything from the caliber of the staff to caliber of the cocktails and food! Don’t miss the pickles and dirty rice!
  39. DP

    DaneP

    Denver

    6 reviews

    vip
    3.0

    6 reviews

    Dined on November 10, 2019

    overall3food3service5ambience5
    Very nice atmosphere. However, potions we’re jokingly small. I went to Taco Bell after our dinner, because I was still hungry.
  40. SF

    gabbySF

    Denver

    8 reviews

    5.0

    8 reviews

    Dined on November 5, 2019

    overall5food5service5ambience5
    I love The Way Back. It is consistently great and we go there often. If you have never been, order the fried chicken.

Safety precautions

  • Cleaning & sanitizing

    • Surfaces sanitized between seatings
    • Digital, disposable or sanitized menu provided
    • Common areas deep-cleaned daily
    • Sanitizer or wipes provided for customers
  • Physical distancing

    • Limited number of seated diners
    • Distancing maintained in common areas
    • Extra space between tables
  • Protective equipment

    • Waitstaff wear masks
    • Diners must wear masks unless eating or drinking
  • Screening

    • Sick staff prohibited in the workplace

FAQs

You can order delivery directly from The Way Back using the Order Online button. The Way Back also offers takeout which you can order by calling the restaurant at (970) 682-6888 ext. 1.

The Way Back is rated 4.6 stars by 299 OpenTable diners.

Not available on OpenTable

Unfortunately, this restaurant is not on the OpenTable reservation network.

If you like, we'll notify you by email if this restaurant joins.


Is this your restaurant?
Claim this listing

Additional information

  • Neighborhood

    Highlands

  • Hours of operation

    Tue–Sat 5:00 pm–9:00 pm

  • Cuisines

    American, Cocktail Bar, Farm-to-table

  • Dining style

    Casual Dining

  • Dress code

    Casual Dress

  • Parking details

    Parking, when not available on Tennyson, is usually abundant on the adjacent streets, both to the east and west of Tennyson. There are no neighborhood parking restrictions on these streets.

  • Payment options

    AMEX, Discover, MasterCard, Visa

  • Executive chef

    Dylan Rigolini

  • Additional

    Bar/Lounge, Beer, Cocktails, Full Bar, Non-Smoking, Takeout, Wine

  • Phone number

    (970) 682-6888 ext. 1

  • Private party facilities

    We offer Full Restaurant Buyouts for up to 110 seated and 150 standing. We also offer Semi Private Dining for up to 50 guests. Please email info@thewaybackdenver.com for more details.

  • Private party contact

    Chad Michael George: (970) 682-6888

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