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Party Like You’re Mario Batali

February 16, 2012

I read the book “heat” about 2 years ago and the author described a dinner with Mario Batali, it lasted hours, there were more courses than could be counted, and they drank magnums of wine until they forgot who they were.

It sounds a bit similar to my weekend. In a new town I feel as though it’s necessary to eat and drink until you have gotten the gist of the new surroundings. I flew into Colorado Springs, CO late Saturday evening and immediately hit the food scene. Good thing my company felt the same way about experiencing the new environment. Dave and I caught up on the last 8 years over cocktails, scallop and shrimp ceviche, and blue corn shrimp and lobster enchiladas. Divine. When the cantina started shutting off their lights we ushered ourselves out into the chilly night air and across the street to an Irish pub. As we walked through the bar to find ourselves a spot to habitate for further communicating our globetrotting ways and sharing battle scars we began to cross the dance floor where some elderly folk were thoroughly enjoying the live band. Dave grabbed the hand of a woman and whisked her away into a spinning, dancing flurry (she may have been caught off guard) and I beckoned a gentleman to accompany me. He couldn’t swing dance but I sure tried to make it happen. Half a song later we were all laughing heartily and exchanging hugs. Many a beer and maybe a little Jameson later we turned in, only to get a running start in the same fashion on Sunday morning.

I don’t think we woke up in time for there to be a hint at breakfast, but we drank french pressed coffee at Pikes Perk to fuel us until we found our way to a Rastafarian-Italian restaurant. That’s right…Rasta Pasta. I had “the mystic”, penne pasta laden with curry, pineapple, and green onion with an extra shot of heat for good measure. I liked it so much I went to the kitchen and talked to the heavily pierced and tattooed man running the line to spy on his work station. Dave and I occupied our table under the red, green, and yellow lights hanging from the ceiling for such an extended time we should have probably paid rent. The atmosphere was very chill, we drank beers followed by many a rum drink off their specialty drink menu among giant murals of Jamaican streets and wall-hangings of Bob Marley. I think throughout this blog post I’ll put a count on my cocktail intake (more for my own reference). So, when we left Rasta Pasta I was at 3.

Driving down the same street, we passed a building we found intriguing…Rendezvous Vodka and Cigar Bar. Not a sign easily passed up…so we didn’t. The lights were low and most of the illumination in the room came from back-lit vodka bottles lining the walls. We tried out a Russian vodka neither of us had heard of before and stuck with it. Super smooth and would have been tasty all by itself, but we like them dirty with blue cheese stuffed olives speared and resting in the martini glass’ depths. Whilst puffing on our cigars we listened to the intoxicated regulars at the end of the bar spouting fabulous ditty’s such as this one “There once was a man named Dave, he lived with a dead hooker in a cave, she stank like shit and was missing a tit, but imagine the money he saved.” Ah, I’m going to steal that one and repeat it in bars here in Dallas…for sure. 5


By that time it was dark and somehow we found ourselves hungry again(In our defense, we did find a pool and hot tub in which to work up an appetite). A big, juicy, hunk of cow…yes…that’s what the doctor ordered. The sign said “The Famous” steakhouse…naturally, they should have a delicious hunk of meat for us to feast upon. The ribeye with a generous side of sauteed mushrooms certainly hit the spot and was even better chased with a few Manhattans. 8

On the way back to the car I mistook an underground entrance to a bar as a subway entrance (there’s no subway in Colorado Springs)…should I have drank more at that point? No…not a good choice…but there was a chandelier hanging in the entrance, we had to enter. What I remember of “The Rabbit Hole” was great, beautiful atmosphere and the bottle of wine was lovely. 11

Ah, Monday…Being awake wasn’t exactly the number one priority on my list…but Dave needed to go to the airport and I was pretty sure there’s more to be done in Colorado Springs.

My friend Ryan also just so happens to live in Colorado Springs…we had about 7 years to catch up on and only one day in which to do it. Brunch anyone? We made our way to the “King’s Chef Diner” and both ordered a “Thing”. UNHOLY!

What is that thing?

Well, let me explain it to you, at the bottom of the heap there’s Two slices of Texas toast, topped with hashbrowns, meat, more hashbrowns, eggs to your specification, chili, and cheese. Not pretty…or heart healthy…but delicious.

Well, the rest of the day after that was spent walking around sampling soda springs just outside of town (a hike was mandatory after that kind of breakfast) and finding local watering holes to consume more ales.

I’m back in Dallas now…and maybe in need of a little calorie counting.


From → The Good Stuff

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