19. Bistro Barbès

Last year 13

Bistro Barbès has been open for nearly a year and a half, but it still feels like one of the Mile High City’s best-kept secrets. Much of this has to do with the eatery’s tucked-away location in North Park Hill. The tiny dining room is largely white and fairly nondescript, which leaves all the drama for the vibrant food. Chef-owner Jon Robbins’ cuisine has a French backbone that embraces Northern African and occasional Spanish influences; the effect is intoxicating, especially if you choose a dish redolent with one of Robbins’ exotic handmade spice blends. Dining here is like getting a stamp on your passport without ever leaving home. 5021 E. 28th Ave., 720-398-8085, bistrobarbes.com

Order this: Moroccan carrots with ginger-yogurt panna cotta, dried currants, and mâche

(Read 5280’s review of Bistro Barbès from the March 2015 issue.)