How we long for Chautauqua Dining Hall in springtime. And Teocalli Cocina’s lively bar in downtown Lafayette. And the community of, well, Community, and Rosetta Hall, and all the other fine establishments that have had to curtail or amend operations during stay-at-home orders. As we oblige such orders, we can’t help but dream about a time in the not-too-distant future when we can eat out in public. Here’s a list of some of the dishes we’re dreaming of most, but if you can’t wait, check out boulderweekly.com/cuisine/restaurant-listings for the spots still offering these exceptional dishes for curbside pickup and delivery.
1. Pork Shank Pibil
Teocalli Cocina, 103 N. Public Road, Unit C, Lafayette, teocallicocina.com (Takeout/delivery available)
Pork shank served on the bone (the meat falls off with hardly any effort) alongside pickled and smoked onions, x-ni-peck (a Mayan salsa with mango and habanero), savory rice, bright black beans and lightly fried yellow corn tortillas.
2. Fried Hot Honey Chicken Sandwich
Community, 206 S. Boulder Road, Lafayette, eatatcommunity.com (Takeout/delivery available)
Gluten-free fried chicken thighs with gooey white cheese, and a fresh herb slaw made with red cabbage and house-made pickles.
3. Dan Dan Noodles
Hot Pot Noodle House, 4800 Baseline Road, Boulder, noodlehouseboulder.com (Takeout/delivery available)
Tender ground pork, slivered cucumber, peanuts, steamed and peppery mustard greens and spicy red chile paste in harmony over noodles with a perfect chew.
4. Benne Toast
Jacaranda at Rosetta Hall, 1109 Walnut St., Boulder, rosettahall.com/chefs/jacaranda
This eye-popping benne toast is comprised of a thick, crusty slice of sweet potato bread topped with creamy sweet potato puree, dollops of silky mascarpone, pumpkin seeds, a dusting of crunchy and earthy dukkah and bright lime zest.
5. Lardo Tigella
La Tigella at Rosetta Hall, 1109 Walnut St., Boulder, rosettahall.com/chefs/la-tigella (Takeout on select days/times)
Split, crispy bread filled with lardo (cured pig fatback) paste, rosemary, garlic and Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese. It’s delightfully fatty, without becoming unctuous, and the clever additions of rosemary, garlic and piquant cheese balance each bite.
6. Pecan Sticky Bun
Lucky’s Bakehouse and Creamery, 3990 Broadway, Boulder, luckysmarket.com/stores/luckys-bakehouse-creamery (Popups at times, available in Lucky’s stores other times)
Jennifer Bush’s excellent lineup of pastries at Lucky’s Bakehouse includes a pecan sticky bun, which consists of a chewy cinnamon bun “topped” — sticky buns are typically baked bottom-up and flipped — with crushed pecans and a brown sugar glaze.
7. Tropic Like It’s Hot
Jungle, 2018 10th St., Boulder, jungletiki.com (Pickup cocktails Wednesday and Friday)
A smoky and citrusy mixture of Oaxacan rum, mezcal, cactus fruit, ancho chili and a dried slice of sour orange that’s lit on fire, extinguished by the drinker and dropped into the cocktail. $12.
8. Baked Meatball Sandwich
Lefty’s Gourmet Pizza, 364 Second Ave., Niwot, leftysgourmetpizza.com (Takeout/delivery available)
Tomato sauce and mozzarella cheese ooze between giant, tender meatballs, all packed in a long hoagie roll that’s toasted to perfection — it’s crispy, with a chewy interior and a healthy amount of flavorful char.
9. Colorado Cubano
Roadhouse Boulder Depot, 2366 Junction Place, Boulder, roadhouseboulderdepot.com (Takeout/delivery available)
The traditional ham, pickles, mustard and Swiss, with tender pulled pork and a few slices of hot capicola for a fiery, spicy, meaty kick.
10. Mango Shrimp Tacos
Jefe’s Tacos & Tequila, 246 Main St., Longmont, jefeslongmont.com (Takeout available)
Decadent tacos with crispy tempura shrimp lightly fried in rice flour and tossed in a sweet honey glaze along with fresh diced mango and basil.
11. Crazy Tuna Poke
Sushi Aji, 489 U.S. 287, Unit 100, Lafayette, sushiajilafayette.com (Takeout available)
Fresh tuna tossed in a spicy sauce with tempura-fried asparagus, sweet potato, onion, avocado, cucumber and seaweed salad.
12. Mid-East Sampler
Arabesque, 1634 Walnut St., arabesqueboulder.com (Takeout available)
Oh, how we long for Arabesque’s airy patio and its plate of hand-rolled grape leaves, hummus adorned with olive oil, pickles and whole chickpeas, tabbouleh and tangy baba ghanoush garnished with crispy bell pepper.
13. Tajikistan Plov
Boulder Dushanbe Teahouse, 1770 13th St., Boulder, boulderteahouse.com (Tea/chai available online)
Perfectly grilled lamb laid atop a traditional rice dish with onion, chickpeas, dried apricots and currants, served with housemade, thick naan.
14. Chicken Kabsa
Ali Baba Grill, 3033 28th St., Boulder, alibabagrill.com (Takeout available)
Hefty cuts of chicken (or lamb) are spiced with black pepper, cloves, cardamom, saffron, cinnamon, black lime, bay leaves and nutmeg, and served over a heaping bed of flavorful rice loaded with thick cuts of carrot, potato and bell pepper.
15. Memphis Fried Chicken Sandwich
Bluff Street Bar & Billiards, 2690 28th St., Suite E, Boulder, bluffstreetbar.com
Placed between a chewy, slightly sweet bun, a massive, tender chicken breast, fried to crispy perfection, is matched with tangy house pickles, an irresistible slaw and a punchy “mojo” barbecue sauce.
16. Brownie Boulder Field
Bittersweet Cafe and Confections, 836 Main St., Louisville, bittersweetcafes.com (Takeout/delivery available)
Two dense, luscious, fudgy brownies stacked atop each other, sprinkled with chopped pecans and drizzled with ridiculously good caramel.
17. Beet-Cured Trout Benedict
Chautauqua Dining Hall, 900 Baseline Road, Boulder, chautauqua.com/dining-hall
Rich, beautiful small filets of trout are piled onto crispy potato cakes and topped with spinach, poached eggs and hollandaise sauce, in a perfect setting.
Basta, 3601 Arapahoe Ave., Boulder, bastaboulder.com (Takeout of limited menu available)
There’s no better pizza of this style in the state. A light, chewy, perfectly crisped and lightly charred crust with sausage, mozzarella, crispy kale, chile and fennel pollen atop ignite your taste buds and satisfy your stomach.
19. Pork Ribs
Wayne’s Smoke Shack, 406 Center Drive, Superior, waynessmokeshack.com (Takeout available at times)
Thick, flavorful bark covers fall-off-the-bone meat that’s juicier and more flavorful than you can imagine.
20. Cardamom Bun
Babettes, 2030 Ionosphere St., Longmont, babettesbakery.com (Takeout available)
This work-of-art, chewy, moist, just-sweet-enough cinnamon and cardamom roll is one you’ll polish off in no time.