If you find yourself in Boulder, Colorado and in need of a meal, fear not, there is a plethora of unique and delicious restaurants. The best part is most of these are located within less than a mile of each other in the area known simply as “The Hill.” With no more to say, I give you in no particular order, the seven best Boulder eateries.
The Sink: The sink has been a Boulder landmark for over 86 years, and if they have been in business that long, you know there has to be something special (Robert Redford is even rumored to have worked there). My recommendation for the first timer would be to order the sinkburger, a classic that has stayed on the menu for well over thirty years.
Bento Zanmai: Bento is, for the uninitiated, a type of Japanese lunch consisting of meat, rice, vegetables, and occasionally sushi all packed neatly into a portable box. For about the price of a meal at a fast food restaurant you can get a handmade, healthy lunch from the folks at Bento.
Cosmo Pizza: The quintessential college pizza place, Cosmos is another Boulder institution that residents (and especially college students) swear by. It is classic, by-the-slice, New York style pizza with slices so big they constitute a meal in themselves. And if you want the full experience, splurge for the spicy ranch dipping sauce.
Hapa Sushi: With two Boulder locations (one on “The Hill” and another on Pearl St.) Hapa is hard to avoid, but that is a good problem. The sushi is unique and top-rate with plates known as the “Mork and Mindy” roll and the “Orgasm” roll. They also have a very well appointed sake menue and bar to help wash down the fish.
Half-Fast: The Half-Fast sub shop is yet another irreplaceable Boulder eatery. With the (claimed) larges sub menu in America and walls painted with murals inspired by The Beatles it is a sure bet that you will not find another institution like this one anywhere else. The only down side is the menu can be intimidating for the first time patron.
Carelli’s: Carelli’s is an upscale Italian dinning experience (as opposed to the majority of the restaurants mentioned) and is one of the few mentioned here not on “The Hill.” This is not the place to eat if you are dining on a budget, but if you can swing the extra money it more than worth the price. During the warm, summer months there is outdoor seating next to a large fireplace. Inside a mesmerizing chandelier is placed over the bar.
University Hill Deli (The Smelly Deli): Technically this is more of a general store than a deli. That point aside, they have, hands down the best chicken Parmesan sandwich I have ever tasted. But a word to the wise, the food is messy and you will be needing a handful of napkins to properly enjoy the sandwich.