Growing up, kitchens were the last place Emilio Peiro wanted to be. Over time, however, the youngest of five boys began cherishing his opportunities to cook traditional Spanish cuisine with his mother. Using her recipes, imported ingredients, and some additional skills picked up from his older brother, a fellow chef, Emilio now recreates his family’s meals at Emilio's Restaurante Español.
Said recipes include more than 45 tapas, ranging from flambéed chorizo to vegetarian- and vegan-friendly dishes, such as sherry-infused onion potatoes. For more substantial meals, Emilio and his culinary team toss garden veggies with smoked paprika and stir chunks of mussels, calamari, and shrimp into paella.
Bartenders complement Emilio’s bites with an extensive selection of handpicked Spanish wines, as well as housemade sangrias. After feasting, stick around until 2 a.m. for nightly live music, plus events such as salsa nights, where participants learn to dance while balancing bowls of salsa on their heads.
Hailing from Trinidad and Tobago, head chef Claudia Fentress crafts an island-inspired menu, which contains mouthfuls of Caribbean and American cuisine to feed guests consuming earfuls of live jazz. Experience life stranded on a deserted island with a world-class chef by diving into jumbo-sized pan-seared scallops with Caribbean seasoning and a garlic-butter coconut sauce ($13), then feast on a fresh rack of lamb marinated in rosemary, mint, and garlic ($21). Served with a side of Caribbean cognac-mustard sauce, the stuffed grilled chicken breast deftly hides bites of vegetables, crab, and shrimp ($19), and the swashbuckling Caribbean vegetable trio ($15) slices through hunger with cabbage, green beans, muscle-building spinach, and plantain swords.
Saisaki's chefs weren't content to simply fuse the dishes of two different cultures. Instead, they culled culinary techniques and recipes from Japan, China, Thailand, and Malaysia to prepare raw and cooked Eastern cuisine. Traditional and specialty sushi rolls slip snugly between chopsticks, as do Hunan-style scallops and tender cuts of steak cooked over a toasty hibachi flame. Desserts such as hot-fudge chocolate cake provide a satisfying epilogue to any meal, and this year, the bistro is celebrating its third anniversary.
Saddle Ridge is a rock 'n' country nightclub with an attached sit-down restaurant, the Cheyenne Supper Club. The two venues' shared menu includes American classics, such as starters of barbecue chicken wings ($8.95) and potato skins loaded with cheese and bacon ($6.95). Tend to massive hunger rumbles with hearty hunks of main-course meat, such as the savory 8 oz. filet mignon, grilled to order with demi-glaze, mashed potatoes, and green beans ($18.95). For a handheld version, try the thin-sliced meat of the beef dip, with provolone cheese and jus dip ($7.95). Lighter eaters can opt for a flavorfully buoyant mixed-green house salad with cherry tomatoes, shredded cheese, cucumbers, bacon bits, and croutons ($5.95).
The rollicking sounds of blues artists headlining the two stages of the restaurant’s performance venue filter through this barbecue hot spot. It features spice-rubbed meats served up with a selection of homestyle sides. The menu centers on hickory-smoked beef, seasoned and smoked pork, and rubbed and grilled chicken and ribs that are steeped in spices, like Marco Polo’s scrapbook. The restaurant outfits tables with a selection of spicy, savory, and slightly sweet sauces, allowing patrons to customize heat levels on entrees or provide a flavorful accompaniment to fried pickles, baskets of corn bread, or Mojo pit beans.
The flavors of three tropical nations meet in the kitchen of Lola's Caribbean Restaurant, where Chef Roberto Sierra prepares Cuban, Dominican, and Puerto Rican classics. He marinates fresh seafood for his ceviche, mashes plantains to serve with shrimp, and flavors steaks with house-made chimichurri sauce. Land and sea come together in dishes such as the Zancocho, a medley of tender oxtail, flank steak, chicken, Dominican sausage, and shrimp that a Daily Press writer described as "a rich, flavorful stew." Though the menu brims with meaty dishes, Chef Sierra prepares vegetarian entrees by request. White tablecloths and a glowing chandelier create an ambience that feels relaxed, yet elegant—much like wearing a larger person's tuxedo.