1. Champagne Alley
By Carol W. Maybach
(out of 4 stars)
1433 Larimer St. 303-893-0044 www.corridor44.com
LoDo’s only champagne bar, a glamorous dining room with food that’s a LoDo bargain.
Bottle service for spirits is exorbitant, but wines are moderately priced.
Oysters on the half-shell with frozen yuzu mignonette, steak tartare, braised beef short ribs, fried capers (served with the seared tuna).
Pomme frites with caper aïoli, cheese plate with cipollini onions and roasted pear.
2. Back for more... at Thai Basil
Thai Basil Asian Fusion
(out of 4 stars)
540 E. Alameda Ave., 303-715-1188 1422 E. 18th Ave., 303-861-1226 8345 Park Meadows Center Drive, Littleton, 303-799-8788
New Must-Try Dishes
Golden tofu, chicken-coconut soup
Thai spring roll, saté chicken, panang curry
Four years ago, 5280 sent critic Lori Midson to review Thai Basil Asian Fusion, where she sampled dishes such as Asian guacamole, Thai curry chicken pizza, Thai spring roll, and saté chicken. She preferred the more traditional dishes, determining that the fusion choices were too confused and overwrought. Midson gave Thai Basil 2.5 stars—a ranking that would be particularly generous according to our reevaluated star system. Now, two stars is a good restaurant, and three stars is a very good restaurant. Under that new system and after a second round of visits (to the original and two additional locations), we again award Thai Basil 2.5 stars—that means improvement—for its pared-down menu and friendly service.
“I want it that way,” coo the Backstreet Boys. My ears perk up. Here I am halfway through a summer-fresh spring roll, sitting in one of Uptown Thai Basil’s thronelike chairs, trying to decipher what drives the success of this eclectic, growing restaurant concept, and the Backstreet Boys, never before known for their profundity, have hit the nail on the head. “I want it that way….” And that way—the way you want it—is just how the crowd-pleasing Thai Basil dishes it up.