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Denver Dives Worth the Descent: Fat Bros

Updated on March 27, 2013

Using the word "dive" to mean a place of ill-repute dates back to the 18th century. At that time, such places were usually located in a basement or cellar-type structure. Thus, patrons literally had to "dive" to get into a place that also indicated a dive in their morals. Located amidst factories and around the corner from a collision center, Fat Bros offers an excellent Happy Hour stop.

The front patio is surrounded by a wrought iron fence.
The front patio is surrounded by a wrought iron fence. | Source
French fries and some of the chicken wings.
French fries and some of the chicken wings. | Source

The Happy Hour

I noticed Fat Bros for the first time driving home from work when their double-stack sign for 50-cent chicken wings caught my eye. As a new partaker of wings, I suffer the passion of a convert. Fat Bros did not disappoint.

The 50-cent chicken wings come at a minimum order of ten. There are two options: hot or barbecue. I opted for the former. The harried waitress, lone server at the start of Happy Hour, serves the chicken wings in a modest basket with the patron's chosen sauce and a clutch of vegetables (the obligatory carrots and celery sticks). They are dripping in hot sauce, and I do mean hot. I was glad for the carrots and side of French fries I ordered. The chicken wings are crispy, though, and the French fries seasoned with a secret powder. For a hearty dinner, some of which I took home, I spent $8 on chicken wings and French fries. Indulge in a couple of the $1 PBR beers, and you have a filling meal for $10.

Fat Bros offers excellent Happy Hour specials on Monday and Tuesday, too. First of all, they offer free appetizers from 4-7 PM. Crispy tacos and bean burritos are only $1.50 – that beats Gomez Burrito prices, though the chicharron are worth the "splurge." If you want to stay in a Mexican vacation mode, Tecate and Corona run just $2 and Micheladas $5 – the latter is an all-day price.

The atmosphere is friendly in a dive sort of way. A few clean-cut sorts make their way in, but there are tattoos and beards all around, sometimes even on the men! For warmer days there's a front patio – surrounded by a wrought iron fence, but likely cool on summer nights.

The Locale

Though surrounded by industry, Fat Bros technically falls into Denver's River North (RiNo) Art District. In the manner of art districts in New York, RiNo is a bastion of art in the midst of industrial businesses. In former factories patrons can find art galleries, art studios, and a plethora of artists. (I once attended an art opening for graphic artists in a vast, two-storey converted factory; parts from a movie set were dwarfed in one studio.) Bordered by highways – I-25 and I-70 – RiNo's main street is Brighton Boulevard.

Fat Bros is located on the corner of 38th and Wynkoop, just one block south of RiNo's artery, Brighton Blvd.

Their double-stack approach to advertising caught my eye.
Their double-stack approach to advertising caught my eye. | Source

Hot Wings

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Dining in Denver

Denver Dives Worth the Descent: Gomez Burritos: Located in Commerce City, Gomez Burritos is a hidey-hole worth finding.

Denver Dives Worth the Descent: Emilio's: Located on Colfax Avenue in Denver, Emilio's offers the best deal in margaritas.

Mile Hi Life -- Places Worth the Splurge: The 9th Door. Mile Hi-Life looks at Denver-area restaurants that are a little higher-priced, but worth the splurge. At The 9th Door a meal with wine will cost around $40-$60.

Mile Hi Life -- Places Worth the Splurge: Le Central. Mile Hi-Life looks at Denver-area restaurants that are a little higher-priced, but worth the splurge. At The 9th Door a meal with wine will cost around $40-$60.

Denver Restaurant Week. Every year Visit Denver presents an event to celebrate the culinary offerings of the Mile Hi City.

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    • MarieAlana1 profile image

      Marie Alana 4 years ago from Ohio

      Chicken Wings are pretty good, but it all depends on how hot they are. This seems like such an great place. I'm glad you had fun.