Make every day a Taco Tuesday with great happy hour deals, a delicious margarita, and a plate of sizzling tacos laden with al pastor, fried fish, or griddled cotija cheese. Denver has plenty of options, from tequila drinks spiked with prickly pear to tacos laced with savory mushrooms to a pile of carnitas paired with a tangy margarita. One really can’t go wrong when it comes to Mexican food, and here are eight of the best places to really get your tacos and tequila on the next time you have a craving.Read More
The Best Spots in Denver for Taco Tuesday
1. El Camino Community Tavern
On Taco Tuesday guests can stuff themselves silly with $1 tacos all day long. Choices include al pastor, carne asada, carnitas, shredded chicken, chicken chicharron, bean and cheese, and chile tempeh, which is vegan. Of course, you can indulge in these goodies any day at full price, as well as a selection of excellent tequila cocktails. Choose from a coin-style margarita with Cazadores Silver, fresh-squeezed lime juice, and agave nectar for $9, or the Deer & Beer special at happy hour that features an Imperial and shot of Cazadores for $6. In the warmer months it’s nice to take these specials and enjoy them next to the breezy open windows in the front of the restaurant.
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2. Lola Coastal Mexican
The staff at this festive LoHi joint know tequila and can easily steer guests toward an obscure tipple or personal favorite. After all, the bar boasts over 200 varieties of the hard stuff. During happy hour, margaritas start at $5, or go for the beer and tequila shot deal if that’s more your speed. Even better, try a totally unique drink like the El Natural, made with Cazadores Reposado, orange liqueur, Aperol, honey-thyme syrup, and fresh lemon juice, and finished with a honey-salt rim. You’ll also find some taco specials, like a chile-braised chicken and beer-battered shrimp option that comes with kimchi. Order the tacos a la carte for under $4 each, or get the F’n deal, which comes with two chicken tacos and a Tecate for $6.25.
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3. Machete Tequila + Tacos
The name isn’t the only strong aspect of this casual joint downtown — the bartenders here make a mighty margarita. Try the blood orange version, go for the simple coin style, or skip the mixed drink and get a hefty two-ounce pour of Cazadores with a chilled bottle of Pacifico. On the food side, the menu here garners inspiration from Mexico City and it’s both refined and deep in flavor. Nothing showcases this better than the list of street tacos, including grilled shrimp with poblano pesto, oven-roasted cauliflower with almond salsa macha, crispy beef tripe with salsa roja, and braised Colorado lamb shank with avocado and panela cheese. Machete’s three locations boast 14 tacos total and even more tequila options.
4. Marg's Taco Bistro
Not all of the tacos at this three-location, world-inspired spot sound like the usual lineup: Think jerk chicken, Korean pork, and Philly cheesesteak. But just because the ingredients bend tradition, that doesn’t mean you should miss out, especially when you get one of the equally global, tequila-centered cocktails off the menu. Each hefty margarita comes in a pint glass, no matter if you get the jalapeño-kiwi, watermelon-mint, or strawberry-habanero. Once you decide what flavor profile to go with, order your tacos, which come on hand-pressed, organic flour tortillas, two or three to a platter that includes rice and beans. And if it happens to be Taco Tuesday, chicken and pork street tacos run $2 each.
5. Rio Grande Mexican Restaurant
Expect to stuff your face with a pile of tasty bites and margaritas at this downtown hot spot. Start by ordering a plate of street-style tacos (one for $4, three for $11, six for $20, or $3 each during the weekday happy hour) such as the addictive Baja fried fish with crema, grilled steak with smoky tomatillo salsa, or the beer-braised carnitas with pickled onion. Next, make sure to try the $8 classic Rio margarita, frozen or on the rocks, and get strawberry, mango, or both added to it. Want a little more heat? The fresh jalapeño margarita comes with Cazadores Reposado, orange liqueur, and muddled jalapeño and lime and is worth every bit of the $9.50 it costs.
6. Otra Vez Cantina
Before deciding on food at this upscale Mexican joint in downtown Denver, request one of the giant margaritas, which can be ordered bottomless for $15 if you visit the restaurant during happy hour. When you are ready to chow down, Otra Vez offers more than 10 options of street-style tacos. Don’t miss the chicken tinga with radish slaw and chicharron, the ancho-honey glazed pork with grilled pineapple pico de gallo, and the blackened sea bass with chipotle aioli. All get served on warm corn tortillas with a side of pickled jalapeños. As you dine, ponder the beautiful tequila wall next to the bar and choose your next cocktail adventure. On Taco Tuesday all tacos are $1 off and margaritas run $5 a glass, so you really can’t go wrong.
7. 7 Leguas Mexican Grille
This old-school Denver restaurant has a bit of a Tex-Mex feel to it and the portions certainly exude American’s penchant for large dishes. Luckily, this comes across in the taco platters as well, where you can get a platter of four tacos including breaded fish tacos, al carbon, beef tripe, marinated beef, lengua, and more. Try the spicy margarita with Cazadores and a whole handful of sliced fresh jalapeños muddled right into the glass. It’s a no-nonsense kind of place, so expect your tacos pure and your drinks simple — but all superb.
8. Que Bueno Suerte
Unique taco combinations make up the menu at this cantina, including a vegetarian one with grilled cactus, roasted mushrooms, corn, and queso fresco. Or try the citrus-marinated catfish with avocado aioli and cabbage salad; a pollo adobado with grilled chicken adobo, three-pepper pico de gallo, and fresh cilantro; and a taco piled high with house-made chorizo, black beans ,and chile de arbol salsa at $4 a pop. Pair the dish with a margarita Suerte! that can get rimmed with classic salt, cayenne sugar, or a spicy chile salt. Each runs $8 and you have the option to add in pureed prickly pear, jalapeño, basil, cucumber, and more.