No. 90: Albóndigas meatballs from Solera
Solera chef Goose Sorensen, who's been turning out beautifully composed plates around Denver for years, can pretty much nail any dish, plunging mussels into a sea of fragrant green curry, slicking his calamari with a Thai red chile glaze, using truffle oil judiciously (which means that it doesn't smell like an arm pit) and taking first-rate, seasonal ingredients to new heights -- his buttery autumn stew abob with root vegetables, for example.
But Sorensen's albóndigas meatballs, loosely packed orbs of wild boar and bacon swathed in a stew of tomatoes fired with cascabel chiles and lightly sweetened with orange juice, are superlative. He sinks them into mini cast-iron cocottes covered with heavy lids, that once removed perfume the air with an enduring rusticated intoxication that nearly knocks you on your ass. Sorensen serves the dish with butter-glossed bread swiped with grill marks to mop up the sauce, which is so good that you'll beg for a vat of it to lug home.
Hungry for more? All the dishes in our countdown are linked below:
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
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 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 protected].