For more than four decades, Eddy, T-Bones Deli & Meat Market's head butcher, has cleaved and trimmed meats into hearty cuts and chops. Steaks, pork chops, grade-A turkeys, European sausages, and other meats line up in the shop's glass display cases, divided into tidy rows by lanes of Astroturf. T-Bones also serves brisket sliders, snow-crab legs, pastas, and other meals indoors or beneath umbrellas on the outdoor-patio bar. An array of wines, sauces and marinades, chips, and other grocery items round out T-Bones' inventory.
Leon Butler opened Brookside Optical in 1989 with the vision that all clients, even those with hard-to-correct eyesight, could have access to stylish eyewear. Today, the shelves stock colorful frames ($100+) by small manufacturers and such designers as l.a. Eyeworks, Theo, and Anne et Valentin. Whether in retro cat-eye shapes or planted with futuristic jet packs, each pair of glasses is crafted by the on-site lab and ready to wear within days.
Utilizing the best cuts of meats and the finest spices, Werner's hand-twists preservative-free sausages in natural casings that pop when bitten and giggle when tickled. The bockwurst floods taste receptors with rich veal and chives ($6.69 per pound), and the smoked cheddar-bier brat induces salivation with coarse ground pork, beer buds, and cheddar ($4.79 per pound). Passed down through generations in a baton-shaped cookbook, the recipe for swedish potato sausage blends one third pork, one third beef, and one third potato to please spud devotees ($4.99 per pound).
Located in a building that originally housed a mercantile store for settlers heading west, Gilbert, Whitney & Co. outfits kitchen commandos with high-quality cookware, premium ingredients, and gourmet groceries. Imprison criminally delicious foodstuffs in a two-piece set of oval Rachel Ray casseroles ($48), or peruse a wide range of knives, peelers, blenders, and other instruments as fit for cooking as they are for juggling. Choosy cheese-lovers can pick from a panoply of winsome wedges, including havarti ($10.44/lb.), parmesan ($8.64/lb.), and gruyere ($11.45/lb.), while bean fiends can get their caffeinated kick from the coffees of Oklahoma-based Neighbor's Coffee ($12.95/lb.). The store’s friendly staff is always on hand to help provide information about an exotic spice, give advice on a recipe, or explain what type of butter is best for carving into the shape of former governors.
The resident butchers at Curt's Famous Meats serve up award-winning steaks, burgers, and homemade sausage in a 64-year-old, full-service butcher shop and deli. Meat mavens skillfully slice up choice rib-eye steaks ($13.99/lb.), Kansas City strips ($13.99/lb.), and T-bones ($12.99/lb.) that are juicier than water-cooler gossip about fresh peaches. Groupon holders can also sample sliced slab back bacon ($5.99/lb.) or stack sesame buns with 8-ounce filet burgers ($5 each). Curt's Famous Meats' enthusiastic, predominantly female staff welcomes customers' questions about how to choose the best cut, how to achieve a perfect medium rare, or how to gently demote baked potatoes to side dishes.
A line of stalwart cowboys wearing metal sombreros guards the red-brick, mural-covered façade of Los Alamos Market y Cocina, hinting at the quirky mom-and-pop charm to be found inside. Every day, members of the Juarez family work the counters at the convenience store or labor over the stoves of the kitchen, producing made-from-scratch Mexican feasts of pork adobo, menudo, posole, and carne asada. Guests plop down on green vinyl booths near the open kitchen, but not before they’ve loaded up their plates at a buffet with chilies rellenos, marinated chicken, and stewed barbacoa. In the attached grocery and market, interesting products hang from the ceiling and shelves, including a line of novelty piñatas made to look like rival university mascots or local business competitors.