Turn BBQ Frown Upside Down: Eat Local!
Happy First Day of Summer! It’s finally here, the season locals cherish, but often find themselves chasing after the next 3 months. There’s a lot to get in during the warmer weather months when you live at 10,200 feet. It’s the season of baseball, butterflies, and yes, it’s time to say it – barbecues!
Yes, it’s tough. You were looking forward to the annual BBQ that was supposed to be held this weekend, and now, you find yourself crying in your brew instead! Well cheer up, Leadvillites, because here is the remedy to turn that frown upside down. Just like Dorothy in the Wizard of Oz, you don’t have to go much further than your own back yard to find your heart’s desire when it comes to some good BBQ! So here’s your finger licking, lip smacking Leadville Today BBQ report.
Have you tried High Mountain Pies‘ BBQ items lately? DE-lic-ious! Grab a table outside, place your order inside and prepare you taste buds for a special treat. HMP’s St Louis Cut Pork Ribs are seared, braised in the pizza ovens and finished with a tangy BBQ sauce that will have you thinking you can summit that 14er after all! Happy climbing! And don’t forget your BBQ wings! They will give you an extra pep in your step! Or stick with the old favorite, after all like their slogan says: Pizza Makes You Powerful! Pssst, they now serve some brews too!
A few blocks south, but still on the west side you can find the historic Pastime Bar and Café at 120 W. 2nd Street. Nate’s known for his BBQ, so just hope he doesn’t run out of ribs before you get there.
From beef brisket and pulled pork sandwiches to their hearty half rack of ribs, Nate’s hickory-smoked meats are dry-rubbed with Nate’s secret seasonings and served with a choice of homemade BBQ sauce. They’ve got all the great sides – including fried pickles! – that you’d expect to accompany any bib-wearing grub, so don’t be shy and pile it up high. The Pastime is Leadville’s last remaining business on old State Street, aka the red light district, so there’s lots of history there as well. They have a big patio with lots of seating and a view that shows off the two highest peaks in Colorado.
Head back up to Leadville’s main drag and check out the new kid on the block. The Treeline Kitchen is located in the recently renovated Sayer & McKee Building in downtown Leadville. Their arrival on the culinary scene offers some new choices around the dinner table, including the BBQ Pork and Beans Plate. The menu offers something for everyone and be sure to double down on the fried chicken; it’s good!
And let’s not forget Jane’s Hot Dog Stand. For many locals it may be the only bun stuffed with beef or brat they get all summer – so delicious! Soda pop, a bag of chips and a hot dog for $5, now how much more American can you get than that? Besides there’s no better place to watch the world go by than down on historic Harrison Avenue!
On Saturday, June 24, O2 by Periodic Brewing is hosting a BBQ Party on their patio at 401 Harrison Avenue in downtown Leadville. BBQ lovers can find all their favorites from the grill and smoker along with some tasty sides. Served by the plateful!
Should you decide you want to leave the Leadville traffic behind, you can head to southern Lake County to satiate that BBQ craving.
If you haven’t made it down to Twin Lakes Village since Indy Pass opened, then be sure to stop at the Inn and order up some great grill items from the Dayton Dining Room menu. Chef Edward and his staff will delight the senses with their slow-smoked ribs served with their special honey chipotle BBQ sauce. Order a quarter rack as a warm up, or make it a full rack served up with sweet potato hash and slaw.
Or if you’re in the mood for beef, try their ribeye. Eat out on the patio and it’s like you grilled it yourself!
If you’re planning ahead for visitors, then consider making reservations for one of two BBQ train rides being offered on the Leadville, Colorado and Southern Railroad this season. The first one is Saturday, July 8. The Devils Tail BBQ Special, features an evening train ride departing the depot at 6 p.m. This 2.5 hour trip is something special, don’t miss out! Then on September 1, the train will host the Stork Curve-Climax BBQ Special, features an evening train ride, departing the depot at 4:30 p.m. Travel over the Arkansas River at its headwaters and see the beauty of the sunset in September. This ride goes to the end of the line! Both of these BBQ rides sell out, so make reservations, as limited seating is available.
So don’t get the BBQ blues this weekend, instead take a look around at all the Leadville and Lake County has to offer! Support your local businesses and go and get your grub on!