Cherry Creek North seems to be underrated as a “date-night” spot. There’s plenty of cheap parking, beautiful streets for after-dinner strolls, and it’s often easier to get in and out of than hip hot spots like RiNo, LoHi or SoBo. But it often seems like a ghost town at night. There are some busy spots, but generally empty streets. With numerous high-end chain restaurants, it isn’t necessarily known as the place to get cutting edge local food. Hedge Row aims to change that.
Hedge Row is far from typical. There are actually two of them: one in Indianapolis and the Cherry Creek Denver location. That’s quite an unusual roll out for a new restaurant concept. Brought to us by the minds behind the Kitchen and Next Door, it’s also a change of pace bringing forward-thinking food and drinks to a neighborhood more known for high end steakhouses (and the Cherry Cricket, of course). Hedge Row is a refreshing and modern twist for the neighborhood, which will hopefully get more of Denver’s increasingly fickle dining public out there at night.
We hit Hedge Row for some small plates and drinks on a Saturday during the holidays. The restaurant is gorgeous, with a modern and distinctive design. A hip soundtrack set the perfect vibe for the evening, yet the restaurant was surprisingly quiet for a Saturday night at 7pm (as was Cherry Creek in general). Once more people find out about what’s going on at Hedge Row, I doubt that will be an issue.
Hedge Row gives you a nice variety on the menu, which allows you to go many different ways depending upon your mood and appetite. There is a selection of small plates, an impressive array of vegetable dishes, and some tasty and generally healthy looking entrees. Since my wife and I were hopping around a bit in “the Creek,” we went to Hedge Row for a couple of small plates and a veggie. The Tuna Ceviche was very tasty, with extremely fresh fish and a green apple and coconut flavors. The two Shrimp Hushpuppies were a small fried indulgence, somewhat reminiscent of the conch fritters we used to enjoy in Miami but less filling. Finally, the Collard Greens were excellent, eschewing the heavy pork fat you frequently see down south and substituting sweet potatoes and ginger. We didn’t miss the bacon and neither did our arteries. The combination of these classics with refreshing twists left us satisfied but not weighed down for the rest of our evening. In short, Hedge Row maximizes the flavor and minimizes the guilt.
There’s plenty good to drink at Hedge Row as well. I had a Fall Cardigan, a nice rum concoction. My wife had a well-done classic Aperol Spritz. Wine is also emphasized, with a quality Hedge Row house label if you don’t want to break the bank. In drinks as well as food, Hedge Row gives you many options and it doesn’t seem like you can go wrong.
While not the only reason to head down to Cherry Creek North, Hedge Row may very well be the best. I wouldn’t be surprised if it contributes to some more foot traffic on those lovely Cherry Creek sidewalks at night. We’ll definitely be back to sample more of the menu.
— Review by Mike B., InGoodTastedenver.com