Bah humbug! While visions of local sugarplums were dancing in most Denver diners' heads, one Scrooge took issue with the Denver culinary scene -- and Colorado's image outside of the state. See also: Balls! What does Colorado taste like to you?
Says one Denver diner:
If you look at old food purveyor guides, from the earlier 20th Century, you will find reference to Rocky Ford Cantaloupe, Loveland Cherries and Celery from Arvada. Arvada was considered the celery capital of the US for the blanched celery that they produced. When I came here that product was still produced by small growers -- it is no more. Loveland Cherries disappeared as from a virus and competition. Rocky Ford cantaloupe may be locally championed but I do not think it has obtained national significance as other products such as Georgia peaches. Of course, cantaloupe's popularity may be on its deathbed.
It takes time for food products to gain a uniqueness and Colorado is a fairly new state. It takes marketing and taking the product out from the generic commodity market to a unique value added product over time. So, that Beef is commodity, but Angus Beef is value added. Buffalo was not readily and easily available when I arrived but over time, there has been growth in producers -- but I do not think it has reached the celebrated state of a value added Colorado unique product.
Micro-brews. I pretty much grew up here and the only thing I can think of as "Colorado-style" is when you walk into a chain Mexican restaurant and they have "Spanish rice" on the menu. I've never known what Spanish rice is and I love Mexican food. And everything is "smothered" unless you beg the waitress to "hold the smothering,please."
I've never eaten Elk or Bison. Or Rocky Mountain Oysters.
I'm saying "Colorado-style" is the lack of absolutely killer Italian like you'd get in NYC, or New Mexican-style food like you get in NM, or other regional specialties (hot dogs in New Jersey, Philly Cheese Steaks in...what's that city's name...) but boy do we have every chain restaurant in the world!
That said, I think there's great food to be had here. Some of the best beer in the world, as well. But if you're looking for "local regional fare," forget it here.
Bah humbug! What do you think of our local regional fare? And what is Colorado-style to you?
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