Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Foodie Adventures Along the Rockies

In my last post, I noted I'd follow up with some highlights of my dining experiences in Colorado. First up, Morrison Inn in Morrison.
Here I had the chimichanga with "killer queso." It came with a salad cup and Spanish rice on the side. It was absolutely delicious. Even with a kick that made me eagerly gulp water (yes, I'm a wimp).
Next up, Anthony's Pizza & Pasta in Golden.
I had this enormous fresh salad, called the Farmer, with romaine lettuce, cucumbers, black olives, tomatoes, green peppers, mushrooms and bleu cheese dressing. I enjoyed about half of it...then I was full and had only lettuce left.
To go with my giant salad, this huge slice of pepperoni and black olive pizza. It was greasy and messy and oh-so-good. Not to mention very well-priced: pizza sold by the slice for around $3 or $4 (depending on the style and number of toppings).
Then, I made my way back to Morrison and Tony Rigatoni's, a casual little Italian place. I had the lunch special with spaghetti and meatballs, a side salad and garlic toast, all for some ridiculous low price of $6.95 or so. The salad was your standard side salad with bleu cheese dressing (yes, again), croutons, cucumbers and tomatoes.
And the spaghetti was very good - a generous helping with plentiful meatballs.

The only thing I found slightly off about this restaurant was the bickering staff. Maybe it's because I was the only person dining inside (most others were out on the patio) or maybe it's just status quo, but I was surprised to hear two staff members arguing with each other while I was there. My server, however, was friendly and drama-free.
My last stop in the precious town of Morrison was Ozzi's for ice cream, located in this gorgeous building.
Inside was just as cute. I was only slightly disappointed to see that the shop serves Dreyer's vs. homemade ice cream, but really, it's ice cream, so what is there to complain about? :) I had the Take the Cake flavor - yellow cake flavored ice cream with blue frosting swirl and multicolored sprinkles.

Friday, August 27, 2010

Exploring Colorado: A World of Scenic Wonder

A quick visit to Colorado's tourism website unveils the "world of scenic wonder" tag line. Not five minutes after landing at Denver International Airport for a work trip recently, I couldn't have agreed more.
During downtime, I had the opportunity to explore the historic town of Morrison. Located at the base of Red Rocks Park, Morrison is one of the most darling little places I've ever seen.
During my short time in Morrison, I made a point to dine at two restaurants (more to come on those), eat ice cream and explore nearly every shop along Bear Creek Ave.
My favorite stop was El-Mercado Antiques, a nice little house filled in every nook and cranny with interesting little treasures.
And a full front yard as well. The shop owner was the most precious lady who'd owned the shop for more than 40 years.
It took me a while to decide which little treasure I wanted, but eventually I decided on these cute metal stars. Now, I just need to find a home for them in my new apartment. Decorating suggestions? :)

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

A Belated Birthday Dinner Recap: Town Talk Diner

This entry is, admittedly, a little "overcooked," seeing as how I celebrated my birthday last month. Apparently, that's just how I roll these days :) With that...

This year, I wanted to try somewhere a little different for my birthday dinner celebration. I'd heard nothing but fantastic things about Town Talk Diner (which even bills itself as "a finer diner") on Lake Street in Minneapolis, so I figured it was time to check it out. Plus, I'd heard they had killer cocktails from a great mixologist.
I was definitely intrigued by all of the interesting sounding cocktails on the menu: the Bacon Manhattan with bacon bourbon and cherry liqueur and the Green Fairy with zen green tea liqueur, absinthe and egg white, to name two. With a little help from my server, I landed on the Water Tight, which was made with rum, watermelon juice, sparkling wine and basil.

It was unique and summery and unlike anything I'd had before. I found it to be quite refreshing and enjoyable, albeit different.
For dinner, I couldn't quite break myself free of my new found burger addiction, so I ordered the Kitchen Sink burger with the "kitchen sink" sauce on the side (I think it's basically thousand island dressing, which I don't care for). The burger came with bacon, cheddar cheese, lettuce and tomato and garlic parsley fries.

I thought both were very good, but I really enjoyed the fries. Could be my love of both parsley and garlic.
For a special birthday treat, our server (who was fabulous) brought us a little chocolatey, peanut buttery deliciousness to share. Yum.

I really enjoyed my first Town Talk experience. The space was welcoming, the staff friendly and the food good. The highlight of the night was our server's ability to split up the check in the easiest way I've ever seen: they separated the check and divided my portion evenly among the group. It saved us from the whole awkward check-paying experience that so often comes with dining in big groups.

Thanks Town Talk for being so accommodating, and thanks friends for being so generous!