The Westword 2014 Food and Drink Bucket List: #25-16
What are the hundred things everyone should do in Colorado before they die? We posed this question to our writers and editors, and this week we'll be rolling out their answers across our blogs, with can't miss events/activities in music, the great outdoors, the arts and, of course, food.
Check back on January 16 for the full list -- and in the meantime, post your own suggestions for our next fifteen food and drink bucket list items in the comments section below.
The lobby of the venerable Brown Palace is one of the most stunning spaces in town -- and the perfect setting for a spot of tea...or maybe a cocktail or two. After that civilized ceremony, retire to Churchill Bar next door for a cigar.
24. Sip free samples on the Golden Brewery tour.
Adolph Coors built his first brewery in Golden in 1873. The company has gone through many changes since then -- it's now known as Miller Coors -- but the tour at the world's largest single-site brewery remains a Colorado tradition. The self-paced, thirty-minute tour takes you through the malting, brewing and packaging processes, on through the "fresh beer room," where visitors can sip a cold sample, and on to the tasting room for more free samples -- and the time to buy fresh-off-the-line beer.
23. Eat a turkey leg at Taste of Colorado.
The Taste of Colorado got its start as the Festival of Mountain and Plain, introduced in 1893 as an economic booster after the Silver Crash. Revived three decades ago as the Taste of Colorado, the festival has become an end-of-summer rite. And although there's a fine-dining area, roasted corn and giant turkey legs remain the crowd favorites.
22. Grab your supply of roasted green chiles on Federal Boulevard.
Some like it hot! You know summer's about to end when the smell of roasted chiles starts wafting through town. Stop by any block on Federal Boulevard and you can find purveyors selling Hatch, fake Hatch and numerous other kinds of chiles, which they'll roast for you so that you can capture the flavor all year long.
21. Order chow from a food truck and eat it in a brewery.
Denver's craft-beer boom was already under way when the gourmet-food-truck trend rolled into town a few years ago. But they proved a perfect pairing. Rather than twisting themselves into a knot trying to serve something other than pretzels, breweries like Denver Beer Co. could concentrate on creating their brews while knowing their patrons would find quality snacks at the food trucks parked outdoors.
20. Harvest your own vegetables at Miller Farms.
For decades, Miller Farms has had a roadside market, but its real growth industry has been ag tourism, or farm tourism, which took off after the first "potato dig" in 1996. Today the farm offers a bounty of fall days when you can harvest many kinds of vegetables, as well as farm tours. Many other facilities now offer pick-your-own possibilities, but Miller planted the seeds.
19. Load up your basket at the Boulder Farmers' Market.
Today there are farmers' markets across the Front Range, in mall parking lots, on church lawns and in and schoolyards, but the daddy of them all is in Boulder. If you can't find something here to tempt you -- fresh flowers, incredible peaches, pickled vegetables, even a political cause -- you might be pickled yourself.
18) Get a cinnamon roll at Johnson's Corner.
This classic truck stop on I-25 did a major renovation just after it turned fifty, which removed a lot of the old roadhouse charm -- but Johnson's Corner wisely made no changes to the old cinnamon roll formula. They remain incredible mounds of
pastry, frosting and sweetness, as impressive in their own way as the mountains you can see across the asphalt to the west.
17) Enjoy a glass of wine and the view from the Flagstaff House patio.
The Flagstaff House got its start in the '30s, when it opened as a restaurant in a former cabin high on Flagstaff Mountain. When Don Monette purchased the place in 1971, he refined it into a world-class, high-end dinner destination; his sons have continued the evolution, adding a world-class wine list. But one thing remains unchanged: the million-dollar view from the patio, just the spot to enjoy a glass of that wine.
16) Get a burger at Bud's Bar
Want a burger? Good. Because that's all Bud's Bar serves -- burgers and cheeseburgers, accompanied by chips. But it's served in an unbeatable atmosphere: Bud's opened as a roadhouse in Sedalia back in 1946, and those years of tradition flavor every meal here.
Come back tomorrow for the next ten in our 2014 Food and Drink Bucket List.
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