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“Always fantastic!”

Gold Hill Inn & Blue Bird Lodge
Ranked #113 of 585 Restaurants in Boulder
Price range: $21 - $30
Cuisines: American, Contemporary
Dining options: Reservations
Restaurant details
Dining options: Reservations
Reviewed September 23, 2012

A bunch of us try to get up here regularly during the time they are open, we consider ourselves regulars for the last 5 years we have lived near Boulder. We have never been disappointed. For $25-35 you get a huge meal, everything is tasty and well presented. The bartenders are attentive and make great drinks, so if you can get here a bit earlier than your call time you can enjoy the ambience in the bar. Many evenings there is some sort of entertainment, check the website. They also have a light bar menu so you can get on up here and enjoy the place if you are not in the mood for a belly-buster of a dinner. There are also weekend shindigs out back, barbeque style with bands. They will accommodate dietary restrictions like gluten-free and vegetarian, just let them know when you make the reservation, and you WILL NEED a reservation. It is true that the service can get a bit sketchy when the place is full but you can always get someone's attention if you are just a bit patient. This is a mountain town, it is NOT your 'New York minute' kind of place so just relax and go with the flow. We have taken people of all ages and everyone has been very happy. It does get a bit loud so be mindful of that if you have elderly or hearing-impaired guests, you'll want to seat them appropriately. The owner/host has even brought out a more comfortable chair for one of our very elderly guests.
If you have limited time in the area, I would say that this place is a must. Bring your camera, there are many opportunities for great pictures, inside and outside. If you have very small kidlets, I would probably ask for a table near the wall or corner so they can 'hide' under the table with some toys while the grown-ups linger. Babies might get a bit upset, if your baby can tolerate noise then it should work out. There is a nice big front porch so somebody could take the screamer outside to calm down if necessary.

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Thank go_mommy
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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68 - 72 of 90 reviews

Reviewed September 18, 2012

I've eaten in this place on and off since the early 1980s, but my visit last weekend was my first in 5 years. Like a favorite pair of old shoes found in the back of the closet, the Gold Hill Inn still feels familiar and the same as it did 20 years ago, and this is a good thing.

The menu is presented on a chalkboard as you walk in, and is offered in 3-course ($25) or 6-course ($35) options. Our party of three all opted for the 6-course choice, and left stuffed. Lighter eaters will be fully satisfied by the shorter option. In 6 courses, we got an avocado appetizer (so-so), a choice of two soups (lentil and gazpacho on the night we visited, both good), a salad with homemade dressings (fine, if unexciting), a choice of 6 main courses (excellent duck, good beef tenderloin and ono on the night we visited), several dessert choices (excellent sour cream apple pie) and a cheese and fruit course to finish off the evening. If you order the 3-course meal, you get your choice of entree and any two other courses of your choosing.

The wine list is of modest size, but offers choices for any palate and price range, including several well-chosen Colorado options. The bar stocks good quality booze in the well, and pours generously sized cocktails at fair prices.

As other reviewers have noted, do note that this place is a 30 minute drive up Mapleton Avenue, and is not actually in Boulder but rather in an old mining town northwest of the city of Boulder. Allow plenty of time and drive carefully. But it's definitely worth the visit!

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Thank DenverWineGeek
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed September 9, 2012

Fourty five minutes outside of Boulder, make sure to leave early enough to enjoy the drive and its amazing vistas. The road is dirt for the last half of the way and It amazes me that a very good restaurant sits at the bottom of the hill. It is not easy to get there but well worth the trip. The Prix Fixe dinner comes in 3 and 5 courses. We opted for the 5 courses (and in hindsight I could have easily been satisfied with the 3.) The home baked bread and homemade jam were awesome. The Avocado appetizer was just ok as was the salad. When they delivered the entree and it only covered a third of the plate, I was confused. Then they came around and served your choice of up to 3 veggies/potatoes. All were good but I have to tell you that the lamb dish I ordered was hands down the best lamb I have ever had. It melted in your mouth and the flavor was phenomenal! The serving size of the lamb was also generous. Full enough to bust, we still had 2 courses to go. The deserts were all delicious (we passed them around so all could taste) though those servings were very small. Then came the cheese and fruit course with excellent cheeses and delicious fresh grapes and apples. We left the table sated and happy. The $35 price tag was reasonable considering the amount and quantity of food. The ambiance is also great (make sure you use the restroom while there!) They also have an interesting way of serving....all waitresses serve all the tables so you never had to worry about who was your waitress, ask anyone for anything and it was done. A very pleasant evening with good food and alot of history behind the building. Give it a try; you'll be glad you did.

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Thank BeasleyKRB
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed September 6, 2012

This is funky old "Boulder." Interesting drive to get there. Menu changes and is written on a chalkboard as you enter the restaurant. Mis-matched china in a rustic atmosphere.

Thank EBS33527
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 27, 2012

Gold Hill is a beautiful location to drive too, and the restaurant has great atmosphere, but the food has gone down hill. We have eaten there about five times over the years, but when we went this past Saturday, the food was disappointing. Four of us ate the $35 six course dinner, and two sent theirs back. It is good that I ordered the filet medium, because it came barely medium rare. I ate it any way. But one ordered it as they suggested, medium rare, and it was still kicking. One ordered salmon, and she eats it all the time. She said it was full of bones, and she did not even recognize the taste as salmon. Most other courses were fine. The service was pretty good. There was a large table nearby. We were by the door. The large group had four kids that were wild, running in and out, and dancing around loudly by the door. They just ignored it. When we compalined to the manager, he said what should I do. We said you should speak to the parents. He did not. So, other than it is a beautiful drive, and a great restaurant to go to, it really let us down. This was probably our last visit to it. We wish they could get back to what we first experienced. We don't go often, because it is a real hike from Denver, but we do like to go.

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Thank auroracham
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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