Thousands of readers sent in their answers to our Best of Denver 2007 Readers' Poll -- via the web, through the U.S. Postal Service and on scrawled napkin notes shoved under the door of the Westword office. No matter what delivery system they used, though, readers displayed an incredible affection for this town -- if not strong geography or spelling skills.
According to our readers, Jake Cutler is the third-best Bronco, behind Champ Bailey and Joe Sakic (or is it Sackic?). George Carl coaches the Nuggets, whose mascot is Allen Iverson and whose best player is anyone not in jail. The Rapids, the Rockies, the Mammoth and the Crush should be consolidated into one team and renamed the Colorado Nobody Cares About Us But We Have Great Asses.
The best free entertainment in Denver is "Tara drunk," according to Becky, or "Becky drunk," according to Tara. The best skatepark is that one by Coors Field, and the best pool hall is Washing Park. The best ski deal is the 5 Nut Puss Baby! I think you can get it at Colorado Ski and Sport, or Colorado Golf and Ski, or whatever that place is called.
That exhibit at that one place, you know, Body something or other, Bodyworks maybe, or Bodyworld. Yeah, that left a real impression on people.
Andrew Romanoff could be Colorado's only legislator, veteran or not, and the best local newscaster is anyone except The Hair at 9News. Readers can never remember newscasters' last names, but that's not really important -- they're on a first-name basis. Alan. Heidi. Kathy. And Molly, oh, that Molly. She's a crazy one, and she's got fabulous hair, but certainly not the best hair on a local TV personality. No, that award belongs to Denver's own Angelina Jolie, as do most of our hearts.
If Kathy Sabine ran for the U.S. Senate, she'd win in a walk. Republicans should be dialing her at 9News right now. And if she held her campaign kickoff at the incredibly reader-friendly Steuben's? She could be president.
Besides Steuben's, readers think the four best steakhouses in town are Del Frisco, Del Fresco, Del Frescos, and Del Friscos. And the best ingredient in everyone's two favorite foods -- barbecue and pizza -- is alliteration. Just ask Big Hoss Grill, Breckenridge Brewery, Brothers BBQ, Brown Sugar Burgers and Bones, Parisi, Pasquini's, Pasta's, Pizza Hut, Proto's and Pudge Brothers.
Qudoba makes a great burrito, but not great enough to truly rank among the best local chains like Chili's, Red Lobster, Quizno's and the Cheesecake Factory. Those chain operations have Denver written all over their incredibly localized dishes.
And for the 24th year running, McDonald's is the readers' pick for Best French Fries. Readers, we love you -- but democracy makes for a dull Best of Denver.
Ballot-stuffing does not, however. And without the owners and fans of health spas, doggie daycares, custom guitar shops, Indian restaurants, Italian restaurants, auto-body repair shops, coffee shops and nail salons across this fine city, tallying the Best of Denver 2007 Readers' Poll would have been a very dull process that might have knocked me out of a job.
But I guess I could take some snaps for the Broncos now that Jay Plummer is retiring.
-- Rick White, Best of Denver Election Commissioner