Just 4 Me Pastries & Eatery specializes in classic desserts like buttercream-frosted cupcakes and also in creative treats, which includes savory-sweet chocolate-dipped bacon. For a special event, order a fruit pie or a a cake decorated with fondant roses. The spot also serves up gluten-free desserts for those with special dietary needs.
Cupcake Girls' resident chefs whip up cupcakes using both time-tested and unique ingredients, drawing from old family recipes enhanced with their own innovative twists. Corral up to a dozen full-size cupcakes or opt for 12 miniature treats, which were regular size until falling victim to a shrink-ray experiment gone deliciously wrong. Cupcake conjurers assemble opulent pastries such as the Serve with Champagne cake, a devil's food chocolate treat they infuse with Chambord liqueur and raspberry juice before crowning it with chocolate shavings and a fresh raspberry. Otherwise, the Get Your Greens treat anoints a zucchini-based cupcake with cream-cheese frosting, and the Perfect Little Pumpkin cupcake marries the flavorful fall fruit with chocolate chips for an autumnal treat that rivals candy corn on the cob.
A laid-back, beachy vibe flows through BooDad's Beach House Grill; oftentimes, there's even sand on the floor from an outdoor beach with hammocks and a volleyball court. In the kitchen, cooks prepare Cajun-inspired dishes such as bacon-wrapped buffalo shrimp and New Orleans–style muffuletta sandwiches with Genoa salami, ham, and chopped olive salad. Diners can wash it all back with beers or mixed drinks served in glasses or 64-ounce fishbowls.
1950s ephemera decorate Gunther Toody's eight Colorado locations, lending an extra boost of Americana to plates of classic diner food such as burgers and meatloaf. The menu even draws its inspiration from American pop culture of yore, with Elvis fries, burgers named for Howdy Doody, and Big Bopper breakfasts served on platters of chantilly lace. Classic ice-cream treats including shakes, malteds, and black cows help lead each meal to a suitably sweet conclusion.
Sandy’s Restaurant dishes out Southwestern and classic-American comfort food in a cozy dining room made all the more inviting by its knotted-wood walls. Housemade white and wheat toast flanks six-egg omelets or hugs french-dip and egg-salad sandwiches. Sandy’s serves breakfast all day, offering dishes such as pancakes and the Hasty Burrito, the latter of which includes a mixture of sausage, chili, and cheese that should be eaten at the speed of light. The menu also includes chicken-fried steak and housemade red and green chili, all served amid wagon wheels, wooden signs carved with sassy slogans, and other rustic decorations.
In 1984, against the advice of certain friends and family members, a man named Frankie opened a pub on the East Side of Colorado Springs. He began with little more than a small storefront and a chalkboard on which he scrawled the day's burgers and sandwiches. But over the next three decades, to the surprise of everyone except the people who ate Frankie's food, the bar doubled in size. Frankie opened a patio, installed big-screen TVs, and, with the help of his wife—who was once just one of his patrons—began printing real menus. Today, Frankie keeps his visitors full with burgers, steaks, hand-battered onion rings, and other pub eats—most of which are recipes he's been making for years and some of which were inspired by dreams about storm clouds raining nacho cheese.
But Frankie's isn't just about food and beer, it's also about community. Throughout football season, his TVs broadcast the professional and college-level games in College Tickets, games on Sunday, Monday and Thursday Tickets and ESPN's Gameplan package, ranging from regular-season match-ups to special conference games. And every Saturday, live music draws newly formed friends to the dance floor, keeping them moving long into the night.