PATSY’S Italian Restaurant
3651 Navajo Street
Denver, CO 80211
“With a history that spans more than 80 years, Patsy’s Italian Restaurant is Denver’s oldest Italian restaurant. Founded in 1921 by the Aiello family, Patsy’s has undergone a few changes over the years but the heart and soul of tradition have remained the same.” read more from Patsy’s website…
This has been one of my favorite Denver restaurants for years. “It’s the restaurant stupid!” I mean the restaurant itself, the physical property: the dining room, the kitchen, the bar, the little shaded-lamps on the walls of the booths, the booths, the two-way mirror behind the bar, the back-room behind the two-way mirror, the mural along one wall, and the fact that they haven’t changed a single, solitary-thing – as far as I know – in decades! These are the things that make Patsy’s, Patsy’s. The photos on the walls and bar have been there since the summer of 1921. O.K. I don’t really know that, but…
Imagine a Marty Scorsese film: Brooklin, NY (1959) “A quiet summer evening in a neighborhood restaurant – cut to a Ted Williams’ Louisville Slugger.” Somebody “whacks” somebody. Ba-Da-Bing! Ba-Da-Boom! The End! Fugedaboudit!
Patsy’s has been serving the same Italian food for years, from at least three different owners. And the food is authentic and tasty, if you like Southern-Italian cuisine. I happen to like it.
From Patsy’s menu:
“Pasta! Served with your choice of soup or salad and Patsy’s original spaghetti sauce”
Homemade Spaghetti – Patsy’s Specialty! ($9.50.) Check the menu on Patsy’s website for other pastas.
From the menu:
“House Favorites! Includes bread and your choice of soup or salad”
Baked Lasagna or Eggplant Lasagna – Sausage or lightly breaded baked eggplant, layered with pasta, Patsy’s original spaghetti sauce ricotta, romano and provolone. Topped with mozzarella ($13.00)
Putanesca – A spicy specialty of Trastevere. Tomatoes, capers, calamata olives and red pepper, with white wine and olive oil over fettucine ($11.00)
Topped with grilled chicken breast ($14.00)
Chicken or Eggplant Parmesan – Tender chicken breast rolled in seasoned bread crumbs, or seasoned baked eggplant. Topped with Patsy’s original spaghetti sauce, parmesan and mozzarella, with homemade spaghetti ($14.00) Check the menu on Patsy’s website for more entrees.
Also: Appetizers, Salads, Soups, Desserts, Sandwiches, Lunches, Wines and a Full Bar with a dozen stools
We were told that a relative of the original owner/family (The Aiellos) is the new owner and proprietor of Patsy’s Inn. Patsy’s has a huge parking lot on Navajo – 1/4 block north of the restaurant.
Memo to Martin Scorsese and other Film Industry execs: You used Las Vegas’ Peppermill’s lounge in “Casino”and The Golden Gate’s, Bay City Diner in “Pay It Forward.” Give this place a try. Fugedaboudit!
 The “backing” behind the glass has been removed. The “two-way” mirror is now just clear glass. “I saw you looking at the glass.”
PARISI Pizzeria, Deli and Trattoria
4401 Tennyson St.
Denver, Colorado 80212
I was driving down Tennyson the other day and saw sidewalk tables and thought I saw a big white sign that read “Paris,” and underneath the sign, “Pizzeria.” I chortled and thought to myself: the French have joined in the *Denver Pizza Wars. Of course, the sign read: Parisi – the last i was obscured.
I made a mental note to return. Tonight I did. Parisi is a Tuscan-California-Modern-style, “hip and now” Pizzeria/Restaurant/Deli in an older north-west Denver neighborhood.
“You can make a silk purse out of a sow’s ear.” Not that the old building is a sow’s ear, it’s just that Parisi did a remarkable job redoing the plain-jane building. The restaurant’s interior is fresh, shiny and new. Visual flavors of a Tuscan village are imparted by the architecture, as well as flavors of a modern Califormia restaurant.
Ordering food offers a twist: walk up to a counter, order and pay. One is issued a seat (by number,) one sits – someone brings your order to the table.
Lotsa-Pasta is on the menu: mostly Penne w/this or, Spaghetti w/that, Lasagna, Gnocchi etc. See all available pastas by clicking on Parisi’s website link (below.)
Specialty Pizzas (11″ and 14″) are available (from $8.99 to $15.99,) for example: Prosciutto and Funghi (prosciutto cotto and mushrooms) $10.99 / $14.99. (For you and me, that’s ‘shrooms & ham.)
Also: Calzones ($10.99,) Panini (6″ $5.99 – 10″ $7.49,) Focaccia ($7.99,) Salads, Daily Specials and more. Click Parisi’s link to view the full menu (below.)
There is a wood-oven and pizza prep “stage” with a few seats – watch the pizza assembly with a glass of wine (wine starts at about five bucks.) The Parisi on-site Deli has prepared foods, canned goods, cheeses, dry-pastas, and a small on-the-wall dining table with a few stools.
On our first visit, we ordered the Lasagne ($7.49,) and a dinner salad (1.99.) First blush revealed an unexpected sight: the plate of Lasagne had an orange tint. Whoa, it looked as though the Lasagna was topped with grated, yellow cheese. Whew! We inquired and found out the orange color was from grated carrots. Although not a large portion, and a bit overcooked the Lasagna was good, still a bit different. The nice mixed-greens / spinich, dinner salad was a deal at two bucks. I want to return to try the gnocchi, spaghetti and pizza. Overall the expierience was positive.
“firenza a tavola“ is a formal restaurant “secretely found down the stairwell adjacent to our ordering line.” Part wine-celler, part high-end, basement restaurant, “firenza a tavola“ is very warm and cozy, with a 2nd (small) bar.
On the menu: Zuppe e Insalate ($5-$10,) Antipasti Dalla Cucina ($9-$13,) Prosciutti ($8-$14,) Primi ($17-$20,) Secondi ($21-$32.)
For example: Cacciucco alla Livornese! Traditional seafood stew of Livorno made of slow simmered sea bass, mussels, scallops, shrimp and cuttlefish in an aromatic stew of shellfish stock, garlic, chili flakes, parsley and white wine, served with garlic rubbed ciabatta crostini ($21.)
(*Competition for Denver pizza business between some Greek-Americans and Italian-Americans.”)