The super-premium ice cream at Glacier Homemade Ice Cream & Gelato—which represented Colorado on Serious Eats’ list of America’s Best Ice Cream—is proof that less is more. Their chief concern is “overrun,” a term that refers to how much air is mixed into each batch of ice cream. Some less delicious ice creams can contain up to 50% air; however, Glacier’s flavors contain only 5%–7% air, yielding richer flavors and a creamier texture.
Also lauded by outlets such as the Denver Post and Colorado Daily, Glacier has a catalogue of more than 800 flavors, up to 60 of which are on hand and ready to scoop at all times. Their ice cream wizards create a new flavor every two weeks, resulting custom tastes such as chocolate raspberry truffle, caramel Oreo, and espresso chocolate buzz with a double-strength coffee base. They also craft premium Italian gelatos with skim milk, producing rich frozen treats with half the fat of ice cream in flavors such as chocolate hazelnut, peanut butter fudge, and pistachio.
No matter the flavor, Glacier uses fresh ingredients such as hand-squeezed limes, ripe strawberries, and homemade chocolate. They’ve also committed to staying Colorado-local whenever possible, receiving produce from local food producers in Penrose, Rocky Ford, Palisade, and even stocking local Umpire State Coffee, local Jerry's Nut House, imported Italian candy and using local produce like apples, melons, and peaches.
Winner of numerous accolades from the readers of the Springs Gazette and the Independent, Josh & John's has firmly established itself as a local favorite. Each scoop of the shop's ice cream is fresh, often churned just hours before, and made without hormone-filled, artificially beefed-up dairy products. Like the seasons, special flavors come and go by the day or week, but popular stalwarts such as yellow cake, chocolate-chip-cookie dough, and oatmeal cookie hold down the creamy fort. Toppings such as fresh whipped cream, nuts, fruit, or house-crafted caramel add an extra dash of flavor.
Decorated with pastel and chrome creamery gear and an open chalkboard filled with doodles, Josh & John's is as local as an ice-cream parlor can get, unless it’s located inside an actual local resident. Every day, the friendly staff puts up a new trivia question for patrons to answer, and if you come in on cold, rainy, or snowy days, you'll get bonus punches on your Ice Creamometer card. Josh & John's is also celebrating the opening of a new location in Mountain Shadows.
Paintings and other works by local artists festoon Cucuru Gallery Cafe, whose walls are painted with the rustic reds and deep greens of the Spanish countryside. Glasses of Spanish wines and specialty cocktails clink within the single-story house-turned-café, such as the Barista blended with espresso and brûlée liqueurs. Cucuru's drinks pair with tapas and other Hispanic-inspired dishes, such as crispy spiced patatas bravas with garlic-aioli dipping sauce and pollo oloroso, which tops a seared chicken breast, manchego cheese, and mashed potatoes with an oloroso-mushroom demi-glace. The café hosts live entertainment throughout the week, such as jazz, funk, and other genres, and opens on Tuesdays for sultry tango classes.
Steve Kuhnau grew up battling allergies and low blood sugar, and in the late 60's, he finally found the perfect solution, and it was delicious. Blending real fruit, proteins, nutrients, and other mix-ins, Steve created Smoothie King to provide nutritious drinks, many of which can be as filling and healthful as a meal. Fiber, probiotics, antioxidants, and other enhancements can boost the health effects of customers, plus skipping added sweeteners can help avoid calories, carbs, and conniving tooth fairies who have a malicious contract with all sugars.
Marvel’s is devoted to crafting specialty treats, all of which are made from scratch with original recipes. Fresh and dried fruits get the royal treatment at this boutique bakery; like most members of royal families, the fruit is first dipped in molten chocolate, and then tucked in an equally decadent, edible chocolate basket for spurring on effusive ogling. Customize your carryon of confections by choosing between milk- or dark-chocolate coating, or requesting that a personalized message be drizzled in white chocolate on your basket's base. Nearly all sentiments pack greater power when scripted in sugar, so today's Groupon presents a top-notch opportunity to sweetly say “happy birthday, Mom” or “surrender, Dorothy.” This family-owned treatery is based in Memphis, and only recently crept northward to prove to Colorado Springsteens that it's the boss of sophisticated sweets.
Couture Cupcakes & Cakes, which holds the titles of Top Cupcake 2010 from Colorado Springs Independent and the Best Cupcakes of 2011 from The Gazette, dresses up miniature cakes in more than 60 different flavors. Wrap tongues in tart tastes with the triple lemon, a lemon cupcake encasing a lemon-curd filling and crowned with a lemon-buttercream tiara. Coco connoisseurs can delve into a brownie chunk, a brunette cake pedestal adorned with a dollop of rich chocolate frosting swaddling an emotionally needy brownie bite, and the fresh, seasonal notes of a fruit medley harmonize with a buttercream concerto composed of cream cheese and bavarian cream. Couture Cupcakes & Cakes' assorted options allow customers to grab their taste buds’ attention by mixing and matching styles, including the red velvet's savory bites, the M&M's melty moments, or the key lime's ability to make mouths pucker with charming one-liners.