While the heart of Johnny Carino's menu is rooted in genuine Italian traditions, forward-thinking creativity has birthed what they like to call their signature dishes. Led by executive chef Chris Peitersen, the seasoned kitchen staff blends fresh ingredients along with extra time to create high-quality, spiced Italian preparations. Diners will find entrees such as 16-layer lasagna with made-from-scratch sauce, and pizzas made with home-baked crust. Other signature choices include the spicy shrimp and chicken, baked stuffed mushrooms topped with house lemon basil cream sauce, and tiramisu made from the ground up. Entrees can be paired any selection from Carino's extensive wine list and drink menu.
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.
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.
Sensory overload is the stock and trade at Rawkus. The massive venue, sporting 13,000 square feet for hundreds of regular-shaped feet to stand in, carries electronic accoutrements that range from a surrealistic laser system to a pro audio system for transcendent evenings out. While sprinkling its schedule with DJs, dance parties, and rock acts, the venue also serves beer and liquor from its bar and snacks from its kitchen.
Veterans Liquor furnishes shoppers with beverages for any occasion from its wide selection of wines, beer, and liquors. Occasional shipments of rare bottles highlight the standard inventory of domestic craft beers, local brews, and international wines.
On any given night, during any sports season, fans can gather at Overtime Sports Bar & Grill to watch their team play on a host of flat screen TVs. But it's not just about the sports here. There's also a full menu of classic grill food and a full bar stocked with frosty brews and mixed drinks. The bar hosts 10-week long poker tournaments on Tuesday and Thursday nights. Occasionally, a murder mystery crops up, with bar patrons playing the role of suspects and sleuths simultaneously, meaning they all have to figure out how to use a magnifying glass as a shield.