Unsure where Denver's in-the-know crowd is eating and drinking? It's easy to spot lines out the door, but some underlying trends are harder to see.
We took a data-driven look at the question, using Yelp to discover which eateries have been in the limelight this month.
To find out who made the list, we looked at Denver businesses on Yelp by category and counted how many reviews each received. Rather than compare them based on number of reviews alone, we calculated a percentage increase in reviews over the past month and tracked businesses that consistently increased their volume of reviews to identify statistically significant outliers, compared to past performance.
Read on to see which outposts are sizzling hot this autumn.
This seafood outlet is trending, compared to other businesses categorized as "Seafood" on Yelp.
Citywide, seafood restaurants saw a median 1.6% increase in new reviews over the past month, but Maine Shack saw a noteworthy 203.8% increase, maintaining a solid four-star rating throughout.
It's not the only trending outlier in the seafood category: Fish N Beer has seen a 5.9% increase in reviews.
Located at 1535 Central St. in the Highlands, Maine Shack specializes in New England-style seafood items like lobster macaroni and cheese, clam chowder, fried scallops, whole belly clams and lobster rolls.
Maine Shack is open from 11 a.m.–9 p.m. daily.
Whether or not you've been hearing buzz about West Washington Park's Uncle, the cocktail bar, which is known for ramen and libations, is a hot topic according to Yelp review data.
While businesses categorized as "Cocktail Bars" on Yelp saw a median 2.8% increase in new reviews over the past month, Uncle bagged a considerable 200% increase in new reviews within that time frame, maintaining a healthy four-star rating.
There's more that's trending on Denver's cocktail bar scene: Welton Room has seen a 62.5% increase in reviews.
Open at 95 S. Pennsylvania St., Uncle features a diverse menu of Asian-inspired plates, including chilled tofu with ginger, crispy Chinese eggplant buns, heirloom California rice with lobster jungle curry, cold sesame noodles and a list of ramen soup options.
Uncle is open from 5–10 p.m. on Monday-Saturday. (It's closed on Sunday.)
West Washington Park's American Grind is also making waves. Open at 81 S. Pennsylvania St., the joint to score burgers and salads has seen a 71.4% bump in new reviews over the last month, compared to a median review increase of 2.8% for all businesses tagged "Burgers" on Yelp. Moreover, on a month-to-month basis, American Grind's review count increased by more than 1,000%.
American Grind offers a variety of hamburgers, salads and sandwiches on its menu, all made from locally sourced ingredients. Over the past month, it's seen its Yelp rating improve from three stars to four stars.
American Grind is open from 11 a.m.–10 p.m. daily.
Smith and Canon Ice Cream
East Colfax's Smith and Canon Ice Cream is the city's buzziest coffee and tea destination by the numbers.
The popular cafe that serves ice cream, frozen yogurt, coffee and tea, which is open at 2260 E. Colfax Ave., increased its new review count by 41% over the past month, an outlier when compared to the median new review count of 2.9% for the Yelp category "Coffee & Tea." It outperformed the previous month by gaining 1.6 times more reviews than expected, based on past performance.
It's not the only trending outlier in the coffee and tea category: QuinceEssential Coffee House has seen a 0.7% increase in reviews.
Smith and Canon Ice Cream serves a unique selection of ice cream flavors, as well as nitro cold brew coffee.
Smith and Canon Ice Cream is open from 6 a.m.–9 p.m. on Monday-Thursday, 6 a.m.–10 p.m. on Friday, 10 a.m.–10 p.m. on Saturday and from 10 a.m.–7 p.m. on Sunday.
Regal Bakery & Cafe
East Colfax's well-established Regal Bakery & Cafe is currently on the upswing in the breakfast and brunch category on Yelp.
While businesses categorized as "Breakfast & Brunch" on Yelp saw a median 1.9% increase in new reviews over the past month, this breakfast and brunch bakery increased its new reviews by 10.6% — and kept its rating consistent at 4.5 stars. Review counts increased by more than 500% on a month-to-month basis.
Open for business at 1141 Syracuse St. since 2015, Regal Bakery & Cafe is known for its fresh-baked goods, in addition to its menu of breakfast, brunch and lunch dishes. Try the breakfast burrito, egg and cheese breakfast sandwich, grilled chicken wrap or the Regal omelette, which comes stuffed with mushrooms, peppers, onions and a choice of meat.
Regal Bakery & Cafe is open from 7 a.m.–2 p.m. on weekdays and 8 a.m.–2 p.m. on weekends.