Comfort food garbs your tongue in luxurious velveteen knickerbockers of flavor, as opposed to discomfort food, which clings to the face like an overtight ascot. Avoid the embarrassment of culinary crampers with today's Groupon: for $10, you get $20 worth of Mexican and Italian fare and drinks at Li’l Nick's Pizza & Restaurant in Wheat Ridge.
Inside Li'l Nick's Pizza & Restaurant, the Quintana family has catered to voracious appetites with dishes spanning two continents for more than 30 years. The menu reads like a page from grandma’s cookbook, proffering traditional pasta dinners served with freshly made garlic knots and minestrone ($8.95–$13.95). Handmade calzones ($7.50+) and pizzas ($8+) showcase an array of fresh toppings and slow-cooked italian sauce in shareable form, and sandwiches such as the meatball ($7.95) appease solo eaters.
A mélange of mouth-melting Mexican fare awaits to satisfy south-of-the-border cravings. Guests can follow up chips and salsa ($2.50) with the nicurito, a large beef burrito smothered in veggies, guacamole, and sour cream ($8.95). As tables stage a heated salsa versus marinara debate, savvy sippers can enjoy one of Bobby Q's 16-ounce house margaritas ($5.50) or an ice-cold Peroni ($4).
Li'l Nick's Pizza
As a boy, Bob Quintana’s first bite of pizza came fresh from the kitchen of his Italian neighbors, the Marones. Inspired by the authentic taste, he and his family began baking their own pies with herbs and tomatoes from their garden. Bob’s early encounters with Italian food burgeoned into a career at various local pizzerias, which eventually led him to open Li’l Nick’s Pizza with his wife in 1978.
Named for his then two-year-old son, the eatery was truly a family affair, with Bob's mom Ruby in the kitchen whipping up italian sausage. Today, Bob and now-adult Nick continue to rule the restaurant, where staff members create sauce, dough, and meatballs from scratch. Though their menu still flaunts staple pizzas, pasta, and sandwiches, it has expanded to also encompass Mexican tacos and burritos. The eats fuel conversation in two dining rooms, as well as at a recently installed bar with a 60-inch flatscreen TV filled with 60-inch-tall actors.
Arvada Plaza Area
5016 Kipling St.
Wheat Ridge, Colorado 80033Get Directions