Filipino cuisine has been gaining traction nationally for a few years, and Denverites in the know go to Aurora’s Filipino-Thai joint ChowSun to get their fix. Housed in a nondescript strip mall, the four-year-old fast-casual eatery serves a full Thai menu, but we go for the bold, pork-centric Filipino fare, which marries Spanish and southeastern Asian influences. Our ideal meal starts with “lumpia” (crispy Filipino-style egg rolls) dipped into sweet chile sauce. Next, a savory-and-sour bowl of pork adobo or indulgent “lechon kawali” (fried cubes of juicy pork belly) served with a Filipino staple: fluffy steamed white rice. For dessert, order the halo halo sundae, a layered shaved-ice treat made with “ube” (purple yam) ice cream, sweetened condensed milk, red coconut jelly, jackfruit, and coconut slivers. 830 S. Buckley Road, Aurora, 720-410-2135
I love ice cream as much as the next person. But there’s a whole world of diverse frozen treats out there that I’m also fond of, from Taiwanese bao-bing (shaved snow) to Japanese kakigori (flavored shaved ice). On a recent trip to my hometown of Cebu, Philippines, I was reminded of why “halo halo” is my hands-down favorite way to beat the summer heat.
Denver Restaurant Week is back! From February 24 to March 5, the 13th annual celebration of the local restaurant scene is offering deals at 256 (and counting) restaurant choices. This year, DRW organizer Visit Denver introduced a price-tiering option, with three-course meals at participating restaurants falling into three price ranges (per person): $25, $35, and $45. Not only does this give restaurant-goers more options for dinner, it also offers restaurateurs a bit more flexibility in creating their menus. Whether you’re looking for a casual bargain or a black-tie splurge, this year’s DRW lineup offers something for every taste and budget.