The Buckhorn Exchange is a sure-enough tourist attraction. Holder of Colorado liquor license #1 and the oldest restaurant in Denver, it is outfitted with antique firearms and furniture (including tables with little nooks underneath to park your belly gun), and hung with a dazzling menagerie of some five hundred game animal trophies shot by former owner Shorty Zietz and his family.
While many customers do come to gape, there are plenty of regulars for whom the Buckhorn Exchange is simply a good place for a half-pound hamburger at lunchtime. Much of the dinner menu is devoted to such ostentatiously Old-West cuisine as Rocky Mountain oysters (deep fried sliced testicles), bison, elk, and rattlesnake, but the steak selection is impressive. You will pay top dollar for a T-bone that the menu bills as prime, and indeed it is extra-thick and super-juicy. New York strip loins are available in sizes that feed from two to six people. The biggest one — a full four pounds, and billed as enough for five guests — goes for more than $200. That includes a crock of sauteed mushrooms, salad, and a side dish.
The good dessert is a big serving of hot crumb-topped apple pie a la mode topped with cinnamon rum sauce.