Two. Two! TWO meals in one entry!
As with our July road trip to the South, I was determined to find places to eat in Colorado Springs that we didn’t have back home in Indianapolis. Here we backtrack a bit to recap a couple of culinary experiences we had in the margins between the last several chapters in this series. One was very much Of Colorado, while the other gave us a mostly happy case of vacation déjà vu.
Previously on Midlife Crisis Crossover:
Each year my wife and I take a road trip to a different part of the United States and see what sorts of historical landmarks, natural wonders, man-made oddities, unexplored restaurants, and cautionary tales await us. From November 1-6, 2015, we racked up a number of personal firsts. My wife Anne was invited on her first business trip to Colorado Springs, all expenses paid from flight to food to lodging to rental car, to assist with cross-training at a distant affiliate. Her supervisor gave me permission to attend as her personal travel companion as long as I bought my own plane ticket and food. I posted one photo for each of the six days while we were on location. With this series, we delve into selections from the 500+ other photos we took along the way.
After I finished exhausting myself at the Red Rock Canyon Open Space on Day Two, I met Anne back at the hotel, rested a bit, then drove us out for dinner at a seafood place called English Dockside West. We felt we had no choice when we discovered its owners are from Alabama. We found an unexpected chance to relive one of the best parts of our July trip: southern seafood!
Their dining room seemed huge, but was nearly empty on Monday night. Our server was congenial and versed in which cooking methods are a better fit with which fish species, though service wasn’t the speediest despite the lack of competition from other customers. Maybe that’s a good sign of cooking to order as opposed to nuking last Thursday’s specials.
Departing took longer than expected because arranging separate checks turned out to be quite a tricky task. Anne’s business per diem covered hers while mine was on my own dime. We’re not used to “going Dutch” and apparently neither are the locals, so that part was weirder than it needed to be.
But the food wasn’t too far off from our actual Alabama experiences, despite the distance between Colorado and the nearest ocean catches. That lead photo is our appetizer, Oysters on the Bay, which we devoured in seconds. Pictured below: Anne’s shrimp dinner.
The side dishes in my walleye dinner look more dominating than they actually were. The fish itself was exactly what I’d hoped except for the pair of pin bones I hit toward the end. Ow.
* * * * *
The next day, by the time I’d finally ordered myself to take my leave of Cheyenne Mountain and their A-plus zoo (and the unique tower that looms above it), it was late afternoon and I was starving. I faked my way through some of the miles from the autumnal mountainside scenery to their bustling downtown scene, where finding street-side parking was plentiful and cheap by my standards. Numerous art pieces stand here and there, but I was in a bit of a hurry to not-starve and only paused for a couple.
Plan A was a place called French Fry Heaven, but their deserted storefront told me they’d gone out of business. Their still-active website had neglected to mention that part. So that didn’t pan out.
Plan B was just up the block: Bingo Burger!
Bingo Burger’s flagship store is down in Pueblo, but the Colorado Springs location is their only other, so they’re not a massive corporate chain yet. Creative burgers are their specialty, but each store has their own unique items that the other doesn’t. To an extent it reminded me of Smashburger and other similar places, but that’s not a drawback to me.
My sandwich of choice was the Tejon — ground Colorado lamb with goat cheese, rosemary mushrooms, and lemon-rosemary aioli. Their fry options are normal, sweet potato, or half-and-half of each. They offer seven different flavors of ketchup. The curry ketchup was a bit left-field but not displeasing.
To be continued!
[Link enclosed here to handy checklist for previous and future chapters, and for our complete road trip history to date. Follow us on Facebook or via email signup for new-entry alerts, or over on Twitter if you want to track my TV live-tweeting and other signs of life between entries. Thanks for reading!]