Revised June 3, 2011
I was in Patsy’s last night. I was in a need-to-be-in-Patsy’s mood so I drove to Patsy’s Italian Restaurant on Denver’s North-side. Years ago South-sider’s referred to the Northwest part of Denver as West Denver, but who’s counting. Huhh?
Entering the restaurant is like stepping into a time-machine back to the gay 20s. Uhh, not that one.
The excellent photo – originally from Patsy’s site and snipped – above, is from a site who’s authors weren’t that crazy about the food. At least they agree with me that the restaurant looks like an authentic movie set, it is…authentic. Better then a movie set, it’s the real thing.
The restaurant has been around since 1921 or something like that, and it looks like it. Patronizing Patsy’s is like eating and drinking in an antique – not an antique-store, an antique. And I like that. The bar is boot-leg cozy with an old varnished wooden surface behind a half-round arm-rest, spinner-stools with red-vinyl (?) tops and mirrored back-bar. Don’t know if it’s true, but I heard that the name came about – changed to Patsy’s – after WWll when Italians weren’t exactly on America’s A-list and, well, Patsy’s sounds Irish, so… I also heard that the original owner, Chubby Aiello, referred to Mussolini as “Hitler’s patsy” so the restaurant was therefore named Patsy’s – as a patriotic gesture… Like the Kennedy Assassination, Roswell, Osama and so on and so forth, we’ll never know, so ask someone if you have a need to know.
Patsy’s pipes in appropriate period/style background music. The music savvy tech-guy went to Hollywood High, so says he. He does have excellent and thoughtful play-lists.
About the food, I think “those chicks” are accustomed to a different set of taste sensations. I am completely satisfied when I dine on the big, fat, home-made noodles with Patsy’s garlicky, red-sauce, a couple of balls, bread, salad and a glass of a solid red. Deal me in baby. What – you were expecting a piece on military-artillery. Not going to happen here.
The word cozy comes up again when mentioning the restaurant booths. Easy-in, hard-out. Easing into the booths, your eyes catch a glimpse of the little shaded light on the wall behind the booth. It sooths. It isn’t an expletive high-school classroom with mind-scratching fluorescent lighting.
“Patsy’s was named one of the 10 “Reasons to Return” to Denver by 10Best Inc.
And here she is…
Patsy’s Italian Restaurant
3651 Navajo Street
Denver, CO 80211
Patsy’s is the anchor for about a half-dozen art galleries within a block or so. There’s even a little theater. The area is called The Navajo Street Art District.
First Fridays of each month feature the First Friday Art Walk: The galleries do an open-house with cheese and wine thing from around 5:00 PM until around 9:00 PM. Actually that would be tonight – June 3, 2011. The art ranges from primitive-barely-art art to sophisticated, luxurious oils. There is some avant-guard, edgy stuff. Be sure to check out D-Gallery on 36th and Navajo. It’s a great way to spend a Friday night in Denver. Do cocktails and dinner at Patsy’s then stroll the galleries for a couple of hours, and buy some art. Support your local artist. Even if he/she’s from Brooklyn, New York.