your guide to surviving Outdoor Retailer Summer Market 2019 (eat & drink & be social)
a guide to
When you look at your schedule for the Outdoor Retailer Summer Market 2019, how much “you time” do you have you blocked off? None you say? Not even a moment to feed yourself a much needed sandwich or a recovery drink?
We know how hard it is to fit in moments for self care - also known as eating three meals a day - during OR, so we pooled our team’s local knowledge of Denver to assemble a list of eat and drink options to remove one more barrier to your nourishment and fun.
While you’re in Colorado, why not take advantage of the mountains, sun and abundant outdoor culture? No time for sleep or rest. We’ve also picked a couple of choice events to keep you having fun through the evening and into the weekend.
Below - the crew at Verde put together where to eat at the show, where to go after the show, and a cool opportunity to extend your stay and head up to Breckenridge at the new Loge Camps.
Where to Eat At the Show
The Colorado Convention Center offers plenty of options throughout the show floor.
Walk-to quick eats are your best option if you have 20-30 minutes to spare. Pick up food and bring it back to the show or sit and eat on the spot. Make sure you order ahead of time to skip the lines - all locations below are linked to an order page and are within 10 minutes walking of Civic Center for your convenience.
BuBu Bowls -Customizable bowls featuring veggies, grains, housemade dressings & an assortment of toppings.
Jason’s Deli - Deli chain featuring piled-high sandwiches, a salad bar & health-conscious fare.
Mici Handcrafted Italian - Low-key outpost with Italian offerings like thin-crust pizza (available gluten-free) & gelato.
Rialto Cafe - American fare plus people-watching from the clubby dining room & sidewalk seats.
Warrior Bowls- Customizable acai bowls on the show floor. These are a must have when you don’t have enough time to leave the Convention Center for a bite in-between meetings - fingers crossed they will be at the show again. These bowls are packed with nourishing ingredients to get you through your afternoon meetings and ready to charge when happy hour hits!
Pizzeria Locale - Artisanal wood-fired pies are the draw at this counter-serve modern pizzeria with an open kitchen.
Tasty Thai - Traditional Thai cooking such as noodles & curries, offered with bubble teas in a basic storefront.
Salt & Grinder - Classic East Coast–style deli serving grinders & side salads plus cocktails & beer on tap.
Menya Ramen and Poke - Quick bite ramen and poke.
Smiling Moose Rocky Mountain - Colorado deli spot offering specialty & build-your-own sandwiches, plus salads, wraps & breakfast burritos.
*Pro tip from Verde’s Dave Simpson: Visit Whole Foods (or a local grocery) before OR and put your hotel room’s mini-fridge to use. Dave always comes prepared with pre-made salads, mixed nuts, and of course - cookies! It is a great way to eat your leafy greens to counter cocktail hour(s).
*Pro Tip: Schedule your order in advance with GrubHub. From three days to three hours in advance, you can get your food order sorted ahead of the chaos. Just don’t forget to set a reminder on your calendar for when it will arrive.
*Get it Delivered with Uber Eats - This is always clutch...if you can’t leave the show for a bite, have the food come to you! And it gives you an excuse to go outside, albeit for a brief moment to catch some of the Colorado sunshine!
Where to Eat, Drink and Socialize after the Show
It is impossible to please everyone right? OR IS IT?! If you’ve got a big crew of hungry folks, show them the way to one of Denver’s many crowd-pleasing markets. From crispy fried chicken to wild mushroom bao buns and tasty crab cakes - all under the same roof - there’s truly something for everyone. Along with drinks and shopping too. Just a short Lyft ride away, these spots make for a fun, delicious evening activity.
Milk Market - an all-local, all-wonderful mix of take-away and dine-in restaurants and bars run by Colorado chef Frank Bonanno.
Avanti - Bi-level converted warehouse in LoHi with a variety of vendors (pizza, sushi & more), plus a rooftop bar with stadium seating and a great view of the Denver skyline.
Denver Central Market - a variety of local vendors- , including a bakery, coffee shop, fish market, butcher, rotisserie, chocolate shop, ice cream, wood-fired pizza, salad, and sandwiches located in the heart of Denver’s RiNo neighborhood.
The Source - 25 independent food and retail vendors, 2 top breweries and a rooftop pool with panoramic views.
Punch Bowl - Southern American gastropub fare & punch bowls in a bar & amusement complex with lots of arcade games and bowling, located on South Broadway.
Casa Bonita - Let’s just say this is the kind of place you go for the experience rather than the food. Mermaids…but man the experience! The tables surround a 14ft waterfall where you can enjoy gorilla’s, dive shows and so much more.
Beer: If you enjoy a cold beer, you’d be doing yourself a disservice by not visiting one of Denver’s local breweries. Here are our top picks starting with the best!
10 Barrel Brewing - Sprawling brewpub serving several house beers alongside inventive pizzas, burgers & bar snacks in the RiNo neighborhood. (Did we mention they are a Verde client?) And you will find the Verde team here on Monday, June 17th to kick off OR.
Denver Brewing Co. - Brewery-based taproom with an industrial vibe, dog-friendly outdoor beer garden & food trucks, nestled right along the South Platte River, downtown.
Great Divide Brewing - Intimate, lively joint offering tastes of their own brews, growlers to go & food truck options.
Fresh Craft - Comfort food & bar snacks share spotlight with a bevy of beers at this low-key, late-night alehouse.
Oskar Blues Brew and Grill - Craft beer pairs with Southern-influenced American eats in a modern saloon setting with live music.
After Hours Events If you’re looking to get out and about after hours for a show or some music, try these top picks! Not stoked on these options? Browse through all music by date using this nifty event list from the city of Denver.
Night of Stoke Thursday, June 18 6:30-9:00 w/ 5point film festival
Nick Murphy fka Chet Faker - Friday June 21, Ogden Theater
Extend Your Stay - head to Breckenridge
Don’t leave us yet! Stick around for the weekend for the LOGE Camps Grand opening in Breckenridge. They’re throwing a party in the mountains that you won’t want to miss. Plan an epic overnight in likely one of the most unique “hotels” you’ll ever experience (and come hang out with some of our Verde crew as we support + celebrate our client’s 4th location!) . But don’t take it from us, check out their Instagram for a window into what LOGE is about.
LOGE Camps finds forgotten motels near their favorite towns and trails, and bring them back to life with a variety of ways to stay like hotel rooms, hostel bunks, and campsites. From on-site gear rentals to fire pits and free live music, LOGE delivers a welcoming outdoor-adventure focused experience at each of its locations.
Join them on Saturday for activities like camp games, group rides, trail work party as well as live music, food trucks brews and a raffle.
We know the show tends to come and go without any spare time to actually find good spots to eat + explore the beer scene. We hope that these recommendations from our local Verde crew will help you navigate the week and enjoy some of the best spots in Denver along the way!