Despite food trend watchers' declarations that bacon is dead, Americans are still eating plenty of the porky stuff. When surveyed (by the obviously biased Smithfield pork company), 65% of us said we support bacon as our "national food." While bacon enhances almost everything it touches, there are some dishes that hit the mark more than others. If you're looking for a taste of fatty, smoky goodness to continue your binge of American-ness after a weekend of blowing things up with fireworks, grilling beef and guzzling beer, try these seven deliciously cured, fried, and fatty Denver dishes showcasing pig in all its glory. Because there’s nothing more American than bacon. Nothing.
7) Bacon Fried Rice at Osaka Ramen
2611 Walnut Street
What gives ramen a run for its money at Osaka Ramen? Bacon fried rice at Osaka Ramen. Salty with shoyu and topped with a creamy, slow-cooked egg for the mic drop, each grain of rice is glistening with bacon fat — when they're not actually snuggled up against a bite of bacon. The second this dish hits the table, the aphrodisiacs kick in — but the love it creates is pure bacon passion in stir-fry form.
6) Heritage Breed Bacon Flight at the Berkshire
7352 East 29th Avenue
This entire menu at this Stapleton eatery is one long ode to pork — and the heritage breed bacon flight is pure poetry. This appetizer of bacon served four ways — garlic, curried, balsamic and candied maple — will quench your bacon craving, unless you're the type to follow up with bacon-wrapped bacon — and, yes, that's a real thing on the Berkshire's menu too. But don’t worry, there are apples thrown in, so you'll at least have a shot at more than one food group.
5) Man Candy at Ignite Burgers & Lounge
2124 Larimer Street
Ignite’s all-day menu features the signature sweet and spicy Man Candy, available solo or as a Manhattan garnish in cocktail form. Bacon that’s been coated in molasses and smothered in chili flakes, brown sugar, and salt, it may be called Man Candy, but the ladies love it just as much. If you need a little more sustenance, the sweet slabs of bacon can be found crumbled onto deviled eggs and shoehorned into Ignite's already overstuffed burger creations. And since a second Ignite just opened this week in Arvada, west-siders can now get their fix too.
4) Maple Bacon Donuts at Jelly
1700 East Evans Avenue, 720-596-4108
600 East 13th Avenue, 303-831-6301
Maple bacon donuts. Enough Said. Sure, you can get the same flavor combination from Voodoo Doughnut in longjohn form, but Jelly’s mini-bites are the perfect size to pop in your mouth without feeling the least bit guilty (unless you can't stop the popping). Made-to-order in sets of four or eight (you can mix and match flavors), they’re slight bigger than a Dunkin Donut munchkin and also available gluten-free.
3) Devil’s on Horseback at Linger
2030 West 30th Avenue
Despite Linger’s regularly changing seasonal offerings, the devil’s on horseback are a menu mainstay. Bites of applewood-smoked Tender Belly bacon are offset with sweet medjool dates, herbed goat cheese and a smear of tangy sambal gastrique. Although listed on the European section of the international options, these devilish delights feel plenty American.
2) The Bob at Yazoo Barbecue Company
If you’re not familiar with the Bob, let us introduce you. A signature dish at Yazoo's downtown smokehouse, the Bob features skewered smoked chicken wrapped in bacon and jalapenos. A clear recipe for success, the kitchen often sells out before noon — and only offer the tasty morsels on weekdays. We recommend calling ahead to avoid disappointment.
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1) Chocolate Bacon Milkshake at Sassafras
2637 West 26th Avenue, 303-433-0080
320 East Colfax Avenue, 303-831-6233
While this combo is hardly a thirst quencher, it will cool you down on a hot summer day while satiating your bacon and chocolate cravings at the same time. Chocolate-dipped bacon offers twice the vice and the shake itself is thick enough that you'll want to ditch the straw and switch to a spoon sooner rather than later because the faster you can shovel the bacony goodness into your mouth the better.