Briarhurst Manor Restaurant has overlooked Garden of the Gods Park in the shadow of Pikes Peak since 1876, when Manitou Springs town founder Dr. William Bell constructed the pink sandstone Tudor-style manor. The English country architecture showcases elegant flourishes such as a tiled fireplace, dark-wood boiserie, and a garden room where sunlight streams through towering windows. Not surprisingly, Briarhurst Manor has been hailed as one of the 100 most romantic restaurants in the country according to OpenTable's 2012 and 2013 Diners' Choice awards.
The cuisine matches the interior?s opulence: Chef Neal Moreno glazes duck-shank confit in a gooseberry cassis, and augments the flavor of Colorado lamb chops with chestnut fig jus. Cabernet sauvignons and chardonnays from Napa Valley punctuate the restaurant's extensive wine list and give beer a reason to feel as insecure as a styrofoam rabbit marooned amid a pack of real wolves.
An intimate, family-operated musical haven, The Loft Music Venue shares its passion for the performing arts by showcasing singer-songwriters and a variety of different genres, including acoustic pop, jazz, indie, blues and more. Designed to emulate the quaint gems peppered throughout New York and Chicago, The Loft’s cozy ambiance of exposed brick walls and wooden floors has coaxed accolades from ColoradoSprings.com, which lauds the venue as “a little sanctuary above the bustle of Colorado Ave.”
When Travis Dickey opened the first Dickey's Barbecue Pit in Dallas in 1941, he kept his menu small and simple, only cooking up beef brisket, pit hams, and barbecue beans, which he sold alongside potato chips, beer, bottled milk, and sodas. Dickey smoked all of his meat in-house, a practice that put his eatery on the map and one that his sons, Roland and T.D. Dickey, still rely on today.
The menu has expanded since Travis?s time behind the grill, offering plates and sandwiches that brim with nine kinds of barbecued meats, including spicy cheddar sausages, pork ribs, polish sausage, and Texas-style beef brisket that?s chopped to order. Several types of baked potatoes are piled high with meats and cheeses, which diners can wash down with a gallon of tea or Dickey's signature 32-ounce big yellow cup of soda. Staying true to the same spirit of hospitality, cooks always include a buttery roll; a homestyle side such as jalape?o beans and fried okra; dill pickles; and free ice cream with every meat plate.
Chef Matthew Franklin of Farro Italian Restaurant delights discerning palates with an extensive wine list and a menu of innovative Italian fare that won acclaim in the Denver Post. Catch a handcrafted, brick-oven-baked dough disk decorated with prosciutto, gorgonzola, and balsamic fig preserves ($12), or dive into spaghetti swimming with shrimp, scallops, mussels, and clams in a spicy red sauce ($17). The flat-iron steak, doused in gorgonzola butter and accompanied by a mountain of roasted Yukon Gold potatoes ($18), straightens out wrinkled tongues with an overload of savory flavors.
Rising Roll dishes out a menu of paninis, melts, and gourmet wraps. The chicken and apple sandwich layers made-from-scratch chicken salad, hickory smoked bacon, and granny smith apples and is topped with bleu cheese dressing ($7.45). Vegetarians can sink flora-sharpened teeth into the Original Veggie, a combination of lettuce, tomato, cucumber, roasted red peppers, provolone, guacamole, and mayo ($6.99). Sandwichers choose from a lineup of bready foundations such as multi-grain bread, croissants, and sun-dried tomato wraps; decisions continue with a side choice of potato salad, pasta salad, or coleslaw. A selection of salads provides carb-conscious eats for diners restricted by diets or a soft spot for fluffy grains. The Maui salad packs crisp romaine with grilled chicken breast, crumbled blue cheese, mandarin oranges, and chopped pecans ($8.39).
Supper Solutions boasts a miscellany of cuisine options for busy familial units, with take-home meals that satisfy up to six hungry noshers. Try out the In Session concept, choosing your meals online before cruising to Supper Solutions to craft your fare in the fully stocked kitchen during a 1.5- to 2-hour hands-on cookfest. Patrons suffering from overloaded carpool schedules or authoritarian library due dates can grab Suppers to Go, ordering their chow and then picking it up in its ready-made form. The menus change monthly and come in Size Wise, which feeds two to three, and Full Size, which feeds four to six.