I spent 12 years living in California (both NorCal and SoCal) — so I’ve had my share of good Mexican food. What’s funny is that it took moving to Colorado to find my favorite Mexican restaurant. Six years into living here, and it’s still my favorite.
There are very few places in Colorado I feel as strongly about as I do about D’Corazon. I like to try new places and switch up where I eat — but I still find myself at D’Corazon (1530 Blake Street) at least once a week, as do a lot of the people I know who work downtown. I can’t say that about any other restaurant in Denver. It just has the most flavorful Mexican food , exceptionally quick service, friendly management, a lively atmosphere, and cheap margaritas. What more can you ask for?
THE ATMOSPHERE & SERVICE
It’s always packed at D’Corazon — but in that lively, upbeat way — not in the “I’m getting claustrophobic” way. It’s not rare to see a line out the door, but don’t let that scare you away. The service isn’t just friendly — it’s also lightning fast. So the wait should be 10 minutes at most. And what’s to follow is so worth it.
Now for the good part! There are really great lunch combo specials here for under $10, but for a couple dollars more, I highly recommend the Carnitas or the Carne Adobada — which are definitely the 2 best things here. If you want tender, not-too-spicy chunks of meat that melt in your mouth, go for the Carnitas. And if you want a slab of pork that’s been marinated in a sauce that will punch you in the face with flavor, go for the Carne Adobada. They’re both amazing, but the latter is definitely my favorite. I’ve ordered it at every Mexican restaurant I’ve been to in Colorado, and I’ve yet to find a better one.
Carne Adobada (I got distracted and started eating it before I remembered to take a photo — which is so like me — sorry!):
MARGARITAS: The house margaritas are $5 at lunch (and $3.57 after 4pm if you buy food)! I think the skinny is only another dollar more. If you go across the street to the Rio, they’re $7, and if you go to Machete a few blocks away (the overly hip new place that I really don’t understand people’s obsession with), they’re $10.
TEQUILA: And if you’re a tequila aficionado, the manager here has turned me onto what is absolutely the best tequila I’ve ever had (and I’ve tried a surprising amount of tequilas in my few years on this earth). It’s made by Jose Cuervo (and yes, I was skeptical at first, too) — but it’s not the Jose that you remember guzzling during your freshman year of college. It’s the Jose Cuervo Reserva de la Familia, which is the “world’s first extra-añejo tequila,” aged in French and American oak barrels for a minimum of 3 years (and it’ll run you about $100 a bottle at retail stores).