If anyone around here hasn’t noticed, I love food. I’ve churned out words on the subject with some voracity, and am prone to giving unsolicited food advice. Most recently, I had someone tell me they were traveling to St. Louis and within mere hours of discovering this, I had texted that person specific instructions regarding St. Louis thin-crust style pizza. No, they did not ask for the information, but I assumed they wanted it because I am a little food-pinionated, to say the least.
(I forgot to include in my text that if one happens to be anywhere near Busch Stadium in the ol’ STL, try to squeeze in a visit to the Broadway Oyster Bar. Okay I’m done. For now.)
At a recent Fortified Collaborations dinner event, the charming young lady sitting across from me actually asked me where I like to eat here in Fort Collins. I got a little stuck explaining the love I have for my top choice, and walked away from that conversation considering further possibilities.
Here are my top five favorite places to eat in Fort Collins, Colorado.
No, you didn’t ask. But I am going to tell you, anyway.
I try not to go too much, because I don’t want to ever tire of this place, though I don’t think I could. This fully functioning butcher counter that is surrounded by a restaurant offers consistent fare that is Americana with a Western spin.
There is a Rueben made with bison that I highly recommend. The duck sausage is out of this world, and there is a smoked salmon Benedict that I cannot seem to steer away from. For my last birthday, I ordered a Choice City Burger. They blend the bacon and the cheese INTO THE BURGER prior to grilling. If that doesn’t get you through the doors of this local favorite on the edge of Old Town, I don’t know what will.
BONUS: the beer selection is varied and outstanding.
I am lucky to live near Campus West neighborhood in Fort Collins, which has a surprising number of decent places to eat. Cafe de Bangkok might be the best example of these, as it is often difficult to get a table. Sometimes they cannot even answer the phone to take your pick-up order.
The effort it takes to explore their menu is always worth it. I have not yet been disappointed with any of what I have tried, and their Pad Se-We may be the best I have ever had. It is hard for me not to order the Eggplant with Basil during each encounter with the menu.
BONUS: if you cannot get a table fast enough to satisfy your hunger – you’re already in Campus West. There are other great places to eat (see below).
I have a food-obsessed friend who claims to have “evangelized” this place to anyone who will listen. I have joined her cult. Their specialty is pie pastry, and they fill it with, well, holy flavor-filled delightfulness is all I can say.
I love the sausage roll, the quiche, and the profiterole most of all. But if it were ever within my budget, diet and timeframe, I would simply try everything available in their glass case of heavenly offerings. Yeah, like in one sitting. With six other people. Oh man, I just had a great idea for a group feed at Waltzing Kangaroo.
BONUS: this food is grab-and-go, and the CSU campus is just across the street from their location. There is a beautiful walk to be had on these collegiate grounds.
When Vietnamese is done right, just try and hold me back. My love for the banh mi goes way back, but I have to admit that when I eat at Young’s, it’s usually noodles I am after. There are no shortcuts in flavor here, and the bright tastes of Vietnam are maintained with authenticity.
Their menu is rather epic, and the challenge to try everything that appeals to my omnivore eyes would take a very long time. Sounds good to me.
BONUS: you get a lot of bang for your buck in portion size at Young’s.
If you haven’t eaten here yet, I don’t know why. Okay, so you’re allergic to chicken (shout-out to my friend, Rob). But if you’re NOT allergic to chicken, get your arse to MCHC. When people tell me they are going to eat there, and I am not going to be with them, I get pangs of jealousy.
This chicken is a formula of goodness that comes to FoCoCO by way of Nashville. A little slice of the south that is a welcome indulgence, most visitors that swing through our home get dragged through the doors of MCHC almost immediately upon arrival. There are multiple levels of hotness to their selection of fried chicken. Get ready to explore.
BONUS: another place with a great beer selection, MCHC is also partially al fresco in the summer, with the whole front of the restaurant open to the outside.
Where do you love to eat in Fort Collins? If you don’t know, go find out.