As I was ending a tiring day of shopping, I found myself near Union Station looking for a spot to eat. Nothing in the immediate area look appealing, so I headed to the corner of 17th and Wazee to visit one of my go to places, McCormick’s. To my surprise, they were closed, permanently. Clearly, I’ve been out the loop.

I searched Google Maps for suggestions, and up popped Avelina. This had been on my to-do list for quite some time. As I entered the restaurant, I was ecstatic to see that they were serving Happy Hour in between their lunch and dinner services. The greeting I received was inviting and I quickly made myself comfortable at the main bar. The bar has a wonderful indoor-outdoor feel. Perfect space for dining on a nearly 70-degree day. The windows open out to the patio, where there is also bar and table seating.

The bar staff continued with the good vibes and attentive service. They were able to inform us about the menu offering and daily specials, such as the bruschetta. Though the Happy Hour menu was a bit limited, it highlighted a few intriguing items. The menu boasted Italian, French and Mediterranean influences within their seasonal shared plates.

All items arrived promptly and were plated beautifully. Each item seemed fairly simple in its conception but was executed with clear intention to make a statement. We tasted the artisan flat bread, daily bruschetta, smoked ham & gruyere croquettes with tomato caper sauce, rillette spread with charred bread. I can honestly say that I equally enjoy each item tasted. Nothing was too heavy. Each portion was sized for each person to have their fill. We even had a few pieces of each item to-go.

Avelina is a welcomed restaurant to Denver's lower downtown neighborhood. The current eateries near the location are consistent but none really stand out to me. This is absolutely the type of food offering that will have people coming back for more. It’s definitely worth the hassle of parking and the downtown traffic. Denver Restaurant Week is only days away, and I could not be more excited to dive into this menu even more. Beyond that, I will definitely be paying Avelina a visit for brunch. This is a high recommended restaurant from me!

#Avelina #LoDo #HappyHour #Cocktails

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