The feel of a classic saloon with wood-slat flooring and a wood-topped bar invites patrons in for a cold pint and a comforting burger. The menu opens with a prologue of starters such as the southwestern-chicken egg rolls infused with chicken, black beans, corn, spinach, and jack cheese ($6.95) and fried-pickle spears ($5.95) for staving off hunger's vanguard. Try your hand at a sandwich such as the bagel Reuben ($8.25) or heft a vegetarian-black-bean burger served with southwestern slaw ($6.25). Diners can also be the architects of their own burger ($4.95), starting with a choice of 15 add-ons ($0.75+ each)—including fried egg, goat cheese, applewood bacon, and brie—before attempting to build an entire city out of ground beef. When the sun shines, many guests find seats in an outdoor patio reminiscent of a German beer garden as they drain a glass of sudsy sustenance.
What comes after setting a Guinness World Record for longest journey on a mini motorcycle? For Ryan Galbraith and Chris Stinson, the answer is opening a sports bar that celebrates Colorado’s thriving action-sports scene. The duo renovated Cheapskates Action Sports Bar themselves to create a haven for local sports lovers, and now pour beers for their enthusiastic customers. Fans of dirt biking, snowboarding, and other extreme sports sip Shock Top and Schlitz at Cheapskates’ two locations Aurora and Arvada, which also serve specialty shots and cocktails. In the kitchen, cooks hand-weigh and season burgers such as the AntiVegan, a bacchanalia of beef, cheese, bacon, and a fried egg, and stir homemade Hobo chili with railroad ties. Cheapskates maintains a festive atmosphere throughout the week with sports broadcasts, happy hours, karaoke performances, ladies night, industry night, and its signature birthday special, which bestows patrons with 20 pitchers of domestic beer for $25.
The bartenders at 12 Volt Tavern bolster its dive-bar cred with a daily two-for-one happy hour, pairing suds and spirits with a punk-rock-heavy jukebox that helped earn it Westword's Best Dive Bar in the ‘Burbs award in 2007. From 3 p.m. to 6 p.m., the daily happy hour lobs beer bottles ($2.75–$4.50) and cans ($2.25–$5.50) to those longing to grip longnecks or crush something other than Pringles cans against their heads. Draft beers ($2.75–$4.50) cascade from foam-flecked taps as imbibers sip to the refrain of rhythmically clacking pool balls and whizzing darts. Mad Dog 20/20 and its 10 electric libations glimmer and gleam over the bar’s pale light, headlining the top shelf of 12 Volt’s library of liquors and spirits ($3.75–$8). On weekends, local punk and rockabilly acts storm the intimate stage, blaring tunes that ricochet off the wall’s aluminum PBR signage and the ceiling’s bottle-cap frescos of Johnny Rotten’s boyhood pony (a cover charge applies to live shows).