Daily Archives: February 6, 2014

Lower48 – Go, It’s Great.

{Please note: This post was already written and in the queue when William Porter’s review was published. I thought about saving it for a later date, but decided I want it to be timely with my visit. The more immediate the praise for Lower48, the merrier!}

It’s a true pleasure to receive an invitation to a place you’ve been wanting to go.
Especially so when the invite is to celebrate a friend.
I recently attended a surprise 40th at Lower48, in their private room.
Situated just past the bar, in the back of the space, it’s replete with old rails on the wall [from railroad track that used to carry trains on the East Coast and from which our host had cleverly tied party banners], concrete floors and an overall cool environment.
The main dining room is elegant, while unassuming.
A service table lined with a row of alternating black and white Le Creuset water pitchers showed good taste, while not being obnoxious about it.
The color scheme is grey, black, white and tan, which is a subtle, stunning combination, and not overly masculine or harsh.
Their drink menu is organized cleanly by classic cocktails, house cocktails, domestic and international beers, and wine.
On the classics list, you’ll find ones like Sazerac and Negroni.
On the house list, the gin-based Ulysses, the rye-based Bent Rail, and others.
I ordered a Bent Rail because it sounded like nothing I’d had before.
Bulleit rye, both Peychaud’s and Angostura bitters, Carpano Antica [an Italian vermouth], lemon and orange peels, and a green chartreuse floater.
This is a serious adult cocktail.
This is a delicious cocktail.
This is a cocktail you should order when at Lower48.
As for the domestic beers, it used to be this would include a sad list of yellow beers that taste only slightly more interesting than water.
Now, especially in Denver, Boulder and Ft. Collins, we boast some of the country’s most exciting beers, making a domestic list read like an international one used to.
Here, they have 9 domestics, from intoxicating [yes, pun intended] local breweries like Great Divide, Odell and Paradox, as well as Deschutes [Oregon] and Ommegang [New York].
The Ommegang and Paradox are both large format bottles, which is always fun to see on a list.
There are only 3 international beers, and furthers the point that we no longer need to look primarily to the international beer community to bring us great beer.
There’s a solid wine list that covers all the bases for white, red, sparkling and dessert.
We got to try a handful of their already well-talked-about small bites, including the smoked salmon croquette and the most fun [and adorable; adorable is not a technical term] one of the evening – the mini corn dog on a stick.
They have an exciting dinner menu – which I’ve only heard raves about – that includes Savory Pancakes, Braised Monterey Squid and Pici Pasta, among others.
If that mini corn dog doesn’t put you in the appropriate party spirit [along with some Bulleit rye], I don’t know what will.
It was a wonderful evening, and a place I will return to again and again, for the low-key, while powerhouse way they are approaching food and drink in this town.

2020 Lawrence*

*Don’t let the building fool you. It takes up most of the block as you turn on Lawrence from 20th, as I did. The address is on the building, in the middle of the street, but you need to walk to the north corner to get to the restaurant.