No. 76: Maple and speck ice cream from Pizzeria Basta
If the bowls of ice cream at Pizzeria Basta were bigger, we'd all be popping out of our pants, drunk on butterfat, and the tips of our nostrils would have frostbite from the nosedive, none of which would bother us in the slightest, because the ice creams, made in house by pastry chef Julia Lebetkin, are every bit as superb as the wood-fired pizzas churned out at this Boulder restaurant.
Lebetkin always has ice cream on the menu, and while I'd typically bypass the dessert lineup in favor of another slice of pizza, when her ice cream is powered by slugs of savory nuances -- especially from the pig family -- they become an infatuation. To wit: Lebetkin's maple ice cream flecked with speck. It's a tiny, supremely indulgent sphere of sweet and salty, served as the final lap in a vertical tasting of La Quercia cured meats. And it's fantastic. You can order it without committing to the prosciutto tasting (a mistake), but even if you do, ask for a double scoop, and then call for a crane to hoist your butt through the door.
Hungry for more? All the dishes in our countdown are linked below:
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No. 100: Italian wedding soup from the Squeaky Bean No. 99: American Classic Burger (and fries) from Tarbell's No. 98: E's clam linguini from Mangiamo Pronto No. 97: Queso a la plancha taco from the Pinche Tacos wagon No. 96: Prosciutto-wrapped jalapeño poppers from Tony's Market No. 95: Fried chicken from the Pinyon No. 94: Seafood soup from Farro No. 93: Posole from The Porker No. 92: Breakfast Burrito from the Taco Wagon in Lafayette No. 91: Hummus from Shish Kabob Grill No. 90: Albondigas meatballs from Solera No. 89: Lemon-ricotta doughnuts from Olivéa No. 88: Döner kabob from Shondiz No. 87: Roasted cauliflower salad from Euclid Hall No. 86: Beef cheek enchiladas from El Diablo No. 85: Fried Brussels sprouts from Panzano No. 84: Pork osso buco from Osteria Marco No. 83: Cazuela Colombiana from Cafe Brazil No. 82: Chicken potpie from Devil's Food No. 81: Sichuan braised beef noodle soup from Zoe Ma Ma No. 80: Larb nua from Taste of Thailand No. 79: Pork shank from Argyll No. 78: Truffo panino from Shangri-La Cafe No. 77: Pig-snout tacos from Guadalajara Authentic Mexican Buffet
In late 2009, we embarked on a culinary journey that took us through our favorite dishes in the Mile High City -- one hundred, to be exact -- as a precursor to the Best of Denver 2010 issue. Now we're back with round two, counting down (in no particular order) a hundred more of our favorite Denver dishes in a list that, by our imperfect calculations, should be wrapped up by the time the Best of Denver 2011 hits the streets on March 31. In the meantime, if there's a dish you think we need to try, tell us about it in the comments section below, or shoot us an e-mail at email@example.com.