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Photo by Aaron Colussi

The Hot Seat: Tavernetta’s Fireside Lounge

Head to this spot near Union Station for cozy vibes and Italian cuisine.

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The irony of mentioning “Tavernetta” and “fire” in the same sentence—given the restaurant’s seven-week closure following a blaze just eight days after its September opening—isn’t lost on us. But there’s no better place to escape January’s mercurial weather than the sleek fireplace lounge inside the reopened restaurant (from Boulder’s renowned Frasca Food and Wine team) near Union Station. Architect Haily Tweedie of Semple Brown, the architecture and design firm behind Denver classics such as the Ellie Caulkins Opera House and the revitalization of Larimer Square, took inspiration from a modern Italian farmhouse aesthetic, creating “a living room of sorts right next to the fireplace, looking out toward the action on the train platform,” Tweedie says. “We hoped guests would start with drinks and then stay for a meal because they’re so comfortable.” We suggest pulling up a stool at the white-oak community table, ordering a glass of Marisa Cuomo Furore Bianco, and choosing chef Ian Wortham’s juicy rotisserie chicken for two, lobster tagliatelle, or gnocchi with lamb ragu. Toast to fresh beginnings in the new year—for both yourself and this illustrious yet approachable addition to the Mile High City’s dining scene. 1889 16th St., 720-605-1889, tavernettadenver.com

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