Gorging on Gourmet: A Food Tour of LoHi

July 30 2014, 11:30 AM

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Seasoning

Savory Spice Shop, at 15th and Platte streets, offers a wide variety of herbs and spices, including staples like the Onion & Garlic Tableside Sprinkle as well as more exotic concoctions such as Barrier Reef Caribbean Seasoning (above). 

Pesto parmesan

On the tour, one of the employees let us sniff right from the big jars of spices before shaking some over bowls of popcorn. We were allowed to sample anything in the store by using the smaller taster bottle that sat next to each large jar. One of my favorites: the Parmesan Pesto Sprinkle (above, $3.80 for a 2-ounce bottle).

Slyderman

About two years ago, the Slyderman food cart popped up at Stout Street and the 16th Street Mall to save Denverites from subpar sliders. Since then, creator Brian Alcorn has diversified his locations and now makes regular appearances at the Saturday Highland Farmers' Market (9 a.m. to 1 p.m. through October 11 on the 1500 block of Boulder Street) as well as other markets and bars in the area. 

Sliders

Mix and match any three sliders—from crabcake and eggplant Parmesan with mozzarella cheese (above) to pastrami Reuben and jerk chicken with pineapple jicama slaw—plus a side and a drink for $10, or pay $3-$4 each.

Shangri-La

Though Shangri-La Coffee, located at Boulder and 16th streets, is a tiny space, it produces panini that are large in both size and taste. The mastermind behind the cafe is Italian chef Massimo Ruffinazzi, who uses some of the freshest bread I've ever consumed to construct 30 different sandwiches. Above is the riela, which consists of turkey, Brie cheese, lettuce, and capers sauce.

Kuechos

Julie Conner and her husband have been operating a food truck for two years. As a recent grandparent and member of the Yurok Native American tribe, Julie decided to name her business "Kuechos," which translates to grandmother. Here, parked outside the Denver Beer Co. at Platte and 17th streets, she provides us with jerk pulled pork and four-cheese quesadillas alongside mango pico de gallo with a strong kick of cayenne ($8).

Banana fritter

This is what's left of Kuechos' second course: a banana rolled in peanut butter and dark chocolate that was then fried in an egg roll wrapper and drizzled with chocolate sauce, cinnamon, and powdered sugar ($5). I ate mine so quickly that I forgot to take a picture and had to awkwardly photograph someone else's leftovers.

Little Man

In its six years of existence, the milk can-shaped Little Man Ice Cream has elevated our tastes to a whole new level with wide variety of flavors, including the mouthwatering salted Oreo ($4.35 for a single in a waffle cone). As if that weren't enough, the shop's charitable giving program has also captivated our hearts: The company donates one scoop of rice or beans to underserved communities for every scoop of ice cream it sells. Note: I paid extra for the waffle cone; singles are included on the tour.

Seasoning

Savory Spice Shop, at 15th and Platte streets, offers a wide variety of herbs and spices, including staples like the Onion & Garlic Tableside Sprinkle as well as more exotic concoctions such as Barrier Reef Caribbean Seasoning (above). 

Pesto parmesan

On the tour, one of the employees let us sniff right from the big jars of spices before shaking some over bowls of popcorn. We were allowed to sample anything in the store by using the smaller taster bottle that sat next to each large jar. One of my favorites: the Parmesan Pesto Sprinkle (above, $3.80 for a 2-ounce bottle).

Slyderman

About two years ago, the Slyderman food cart popped up at Stout Street and the 16th Street Mall to save Denverites from subpar sliders. Since then, creator Brian Alcorn has diversified his locations and now makes regular appearances at the Saturday Highland Farmers' Market (9 a.m. to 1 p.m. through October 11 on the 1500 block of Boulder Street) as well as other markets and bars in the area. 

Sliders

Mix and match any three sliders—from crabcake and eggplant Parmesan with mozzarella cheese (above) to pastrami Reuben and jerk chicken with pineapple jicama slaw—plus a side and a drink for $10, or pay $3-$4 each.

Shangri-La

Though Shangri-La Coffee, located at Boulder and 16th streets, is a tiny space, it produces panini that are large in both size and taste. The mastermind behind the cafe is Italian chef Massimo Ruffinazzi, who uses some of the freshest bread I've ever consumed to construct 30 different sandwiches. Above is the riela, which consists of turkey, Brie cheese, lettuce, and capers sauce.

Kuechos

Julie Conner and her husband have been operating a food truck for two years. As a recent grandparent and member of the Yurok Native American tribe, Julie decided to name her business "Kuechos," which translates to grandmother. Here, parked outside the Denver Beer Co. at Platte and 17th streets, she provides us with jerk pulled pork and four-cheese quesadillas alongside mango pico de gallo with a strong kick of cayenne ($8).

Banana fritter

This is what's left of Kuechos' second course: a banana rolled in peanut butter and dark chocolate that was then fried in an egg roll wrapper and drizzled with chocolate sauce, cinnamon, and powdered sugar ($5). I ate mine so quickly that I forgot to take a picture and had to awkwardly photograph someone else's leftovers.

Little Man

In its six years of existence, the milk can-shaped Little Man Ice Cream has elevated our tastes to a whole new level with wide variety of flavors, including the mouthwatering salted Oreo ($4.35 for a single in a waffle cone). As if that weren't enough, the shop's charitable giving program has also captivated our hearts: The company donates one scoop of rice or beans to underserved communities for every scoop of ice cream it sells. Note: I paid extra for the waffle cone; singles are included on the tour.

Five years ago, Chelly Klann's love of food became more than just a hobby. She founded Denver Gourmet Tours, a company that provides roving tastings—complete with information sessions—at stops ranging from food trucks to spice shops. Klann's goal is to show off the artisans who are producing remarkable, yet often unnoticed, food. 

With five signature tours ($39 to $49), three premium ones ($69 to $79), and a current Groupon deal ($25 to $35 for one person, $54 to $67 for two), Denver Gourmet has options to fit all tastes. Neighborhood-specific tours include Highland and LoDo, while others fulfill your craving for margaritas, craft beer, or street food. 

For more specifics, flip through the following slideshow for an inside look at my stroll through the LoHi neighborhood. All prices are standard if you were to buy this food without going on the tour.

Follow editorial assistant Mary Clare Fischer at @mc_fischer on Twitter.