September 24, 2022

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Simply The Best Food

Alex Seidel opens Roca’s in the former Frontroom Pizza in Lakewood

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Gone is the wall of local sports plaques; here to stay is the stocked salad bar (with sneeze guards). Roca’s, the latest salvation of a long-standing Lakewood pizza parlor, opened Thursday for its neighborhood fans and other returning customers.

Earlier this year, Denver restaurateur Alex Seidel (Fruition, Mercantile, Chook, Fudmill) and chef Tim Bender (Comal, Osage Cafe) took over the space that had been occupied for more than three decades by Frontroom Pizza. They brought big plans to update the kitchen and dining room and overhaul the food menu.

Now Roca’s is officially open for business, serving thin-crust, tavern-style and thick-crust Sicilian-style pies as well as house-made noodles in classic preparations — strozzapreti alla diavola, spaghetti alla vonghole, for example. The setting is cozy and charming, with paper over checkered tablecloths and enough brass and subway tile to feel modern.

Roca’s Pizza & Pasta is the new neighborhood restaurant in the former home of Frontroom Pizza in Lakewood. The menu includes house-made pastas and pizzas, as well as an original salad bar. (Josie Sexton, The Denver Post)

Go for your favorite comforting pasta dishes, as well as for the reasonably priced bottles of wine, and stay for dessert, particularly thick slices of tiramisu. And go ahead and sidle up to that salad bar, a surprise late-pandemic comeback, and an important spared relic from Frontroom. (Seidel’s wife, Melissa, said it also reminded her of childhood birthday parties at Pizza Hut.)

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