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DiFranco's won Denver's best Italian restaurant of 2013 from Westword. As described in the award- this unassuming, low-key joint is a casual counter service style restaurant with a focus on simple & seasonal Italian cuisine. Mostly everything is made in house & hand crafted from the finest ingredients available. The menu, which changes seasonally, emphasizes using locally sourced & organic ingredients. Fresh pastas, salads, & sandwiches compose the daily menu for lunch & dinner. Ryan DiFranco created the concept in 2012 & is joined by fellow team members Lisa Redlich, Renee Steele, Francesca Barone, Luz Manzo, Peter Dearth, Jamie Garduno, Brooke Bornman, Corey Stewart, & Kelly Schexnaildre. We are here to provide an awesome dining experience for you. We hope to see you soon. Please note DiFranco's is a counter service style restaurant & does not have servers available. Reservations serve as priority seating. Please notify us if running late, as we will give up your seat.
Hours of Operation:
Monday - Thursday: 11:00am - 8:00pm, Friday: 11:00am - 9:00pm, Saturday: 10:00am - 8:00pm
$30 and under
AMEX, Discover, MasterCard, Visa
Beer, Counter Seating, Delivery, Farm to Table, Gluten-free Menu, Happy Hour, Non-Smoking Area, Non-Smoking Restaurant, Patio/Outdoor Dining, Smoking Area, Takeout, Weekend Brunch, Wheelchair Access, Wine
You will crave this
I love stopping in for the daily lunch special or picking up a couple of sandwiches to take home for dinner. I never cared for penne a la vodka until I had it here and it was amazing. I love the great quality and freshness of everything they serve.
Restaurant had a casual style and not th ...
Restaurant had a casual style and not the most comfortable looking chairs but turned out to be just fine. Small and noisey but obviously a neighborhood favorite with a loyal local clientele. Food was excellent and all 4 of us raved about the entire meal. Home made pastas were great. The nutella gelato was absolutely fabulous for dessert. They also have a fun wine list with some of the less expensive bottles of wine a very good value. We would all return for another meal.
GREAT FOOD. So fresh
I wish this place had more separate tables. They only have two tables that are private & then one long communal table on high stools. But if you can be the first one in there & grab a private table. They have $15.00 bottle of wine during happy hour. Good vibe.
The food was really good. The setup kind of threw us off, it was a weird mic of cafeteria vs. regular dining. The food more than made up for it. We will be back!
Don't let the community table fool you
If you are near downtown Denver, stop here for lunch or dinner. It is hands down the best Italian restaurant in the city. Chef Ryan is a whiz in the kitchen and you can tell it by his creations. The menu is seasonal, and changes but you will always find something to eat. It is a small space, but very inviting. Don't let the community table worry you. There is still plenty of space to sit down and enjoy your meal; plus you get to meet new people.
Great food, compromised ambiance
Some of the very best Italian food I've had, but DiFranco's suffers in this location. One of the reasons I don't like community tables is that I'm most often compelled to hear in detail the conversations of all those around. It's like being in college all over again; you just want to finish eating and get back to the library. But it bears saying again: this is some seriously good food at modest prices. I'll be back for carry out.
I love DiFranco's
I so wish more people knew about Difranco's. The Italian food really is spectacular - I've never had a dish there I didn't love. Their noodles are homemade and their desserts are superb. I wonder if the location (located in the Beauvallon building) has something to do with not as many people knowing about it. Definitely go check it out if you are looking for really delicious Italian food.
Relaxed Atmosphere...GREAT Italian!
Wife and I tried DiFranco's, and we were happily surprised. The atmosphere is super casual (almost like an "urban-chic" lunch counter), but the service was attentive and the food was excellent! Clearly, much care was taken to source quality, traceable ingredients. We ordered off of the Denver Restaurant Week menu, but we'll be back to try some of the things we eye-balled on the regular menu.
I never walk into a restaurant expecting to be blown away by the food. I can honestly say my meal was top five best meals I've had in Denver. I had the ravioli with sweet corn and braised beef and it was truly phenomenal.
I went here for the first time for their Wednesday Date Night Special - which included a salad, entree, desert and bottle of wine for two. We made a reservation which helped because they were definitely busy! The menu is relatively small but the food was spectacular! Everything is made fresh there and you can definitely tell! I got the chicken parm sandwich and my BF got their beef and corn ravioli - both were delish. And the wine was good too! The staff was very friendly, overall I would highly recommend it. The place can get loud when busy because it is small but that is what makes it charming. So if you can't share a table with people and deal with a crowd, come on a different night.
Sullen service; mediocre food
The polenta salad featured a sodden lump of cornmeal paste and I had to return pasta because it was half-cooked. Worst was the indifferent female serving at the counter. A place to avoid.
Great little Italian restaurant
Wonderful place located in the heart of downtown Denver. Loved their decor and food! Loved how small and cozy the restaurant was.
Great deal for restaurant week!
Atmosphere is casual but food was excellent when I three friends dined here during restaurant week. A glass of wine was included in the $30 3 course fixed-price menu, which I haven't seen at other places. Food was colorful and quite flavorful with reasonable portion sizes, server pleasant.
Food and service were good.
Food and service were good. Enjoyed the Wednesday Date Night offer of salad, entree (pasta or sandwich), dessert and bottle of wine for $40. Order at the counter and they bring the food to you. My reservation for 4 got me 1 end of the large common table with bar stool type seating. Upscale deli atmosphere; extremely noisy which made conversation difficult.
We enjoyed the food, but were disappointed in the ambience and price. Our bill came to close to $50, and for that higher price, we were expecting to not order at a counter and would have preferred a private table. The space was also very noisy, which made communication with my husband difficult, especially since we were sitting at the large table, surrounded by other diners who were not part of our party. The salad and pasta dishes we ate were tasty, but the experience was lacking.
I made a reservation at DiFranco's
I made a reservation at DiFranco's after reading many positive reviews. When I arrived, as a first time customer, I was surprised by the small size of the restaurant. There is one communal table and two small individual tables. It is not your typical sit down restaurant, and you order your food at the register. Despite the unique atmosphere, which was rather loud the day I went, the food was terrific. The staff was very friendly and did I mention the food was yummy?? If you are okay sitting next to and across from strangers (I enjoyed observing a couple's first date from across the table) and you love delicious Italian food, I would highly recommend DiFranco's!
I had heard about the Wednesday night date special and thought what better way to treat my significant other to a nice dinner. I was very pleased with the entire meal, from start to finish. We were greeted by a super friendly staff person who quickly took our order and answered all the questions we had about the menu. The meal was very pleasing as well; the food tasted fresh, the flavor was wonderful, and the wine was well enough for it being included in the date night special. Overall I would recommend this experience to anyone and everyone!.
great food, not for special occasio
great, GREAT food - good diverse menu. Ambiance is very casual, and any party larger than 4 will be sitting at a communal table. Great for a spontaneous stop, but not the best when trying to celebrate something special or make dinner the occasion of the night. The counter service makes the meal go too quickly
Great find! Everything is homemade and so delicious. Menu is short and sweet, and what little they have is done right. Community dinning makes fun atmosphere, but was very loud with chatter and music. Would love to go back soon for great date night special.
Local, Fresh, Italian
Local fresh Italian for a reasonable price. I enjoyed the prosciutto + soppressata sandwich - prosciutto di parma, hot soppressata, local tomatoes, mozzarella, salsa verde, local peppers, served on nice fresh bread for $9.00. The Italian field salad - field greens, carrots, local tomatoes, shaved fennel, house dressing was simple and fresh, a nice sized serving for $5.00. My partner had a pasta dish that must have been delicious because while I was busy enjoying my dish the pasta disappeared. 2 smallish tables and a long family style table. Wished I had left room for cannoli and ricotta cookies. Will return soon!
Good, but not a fan of the set-up
My husband and I ate dinner here one night. My food was a little under seasoned, his was just right. What bothered me was waiting in line to order and then hoping there would be a seat available. I am not a fan of restaurants having the customers fight for seats. This could be a nice place to go with friends or on a date, but the set-up makes it feel more like a Panera.
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