I’ve lived in Fort Collins, Colorado on and off since 1992, when I was just a kid, and it’s safe to say it’s changed quite a bit since then. As a college town that has matured, I would describe our restaurant scene as casual and standard – lots of options, but nothing that is too crazy or expensive. We are a pretty practical people here, who love a good brunch, good portion sizes, and good service. I’m no foodie, nor do I consider Fort Collins to be a foodie place, but we still have lots of good restaurants to choose from, and here are some of my favs:
- Restaurant 415: Great lunch options, including the Provincial sandwich which has blueberry jam, brie, carmelized onions, and arugula. Also famous for their chicken and waffles and fresh ginger drinks.
- Jaws Sushi: Delicious, creative sushi, which can be made more creative by simply asking the sushi chefs. They also have some great sides dishes to accompany, including an avocado salad that I crave…
- Cafe de Bangkok: Best thai in town. Love their curries especially, and has a more unique menu than just pad thai. This place was so crowded they expanded into the place next door. Still located in a completely nondescript shopping center, but don’t judge the book by it’s cover.
- Silver Grill Cafe: One of the oldest (maybe it is actually the oldest?) restaurants in town, located in the heart of our historic Old Town. This breakfast and lunch place is always bustling, and often has a 45 min wait on weekends around brunch time. Fort Collins loves a good brunch, and Silver Grill sets the standard. They are famous for their cinnamon rolls, which they serve fresh, sliced and toasted, or sliced and battered as French Toast…
- Vern’s Place: Located 15 min up the road in the town of Laporte, Vern’s is a perfect destination for a bike ride along the Poudre River, or a great launching point for a mountain adventure. Also famous for their cinnamon rolls (which I actually prefer over Silver Grill’s), Vern’s has your typical country cafe fare, and a great new deck.
- Tasty Harmony: One of the more creative restaurants in town, and totally vegetarian fare. They use jackfruit, tempeh, and seitan as meat substitutes, and they make their own nut cheeses as well, so as to accommodate all manner of dietary restriction.
- Saigon Grill: Although they serve all the typical Chinese dishes like Sesame Chicken, we are addicted to their pho and noodle bowls. Their first Fort Collins location (between a law office and a Subway) is soon to be joined by a second restaurant near campus. This place is always doing business, but be forewarned that they are closed on Mondays (which has made for several sad Monday nights for us, because we can’t seem to remember that).
- Lucille’s: This delicious Creole Cafe is located in a sweet little historic house, and almost always has a wait. Amazing egg dishes, beignets, chicory coffee, biscuits, and crawfish etouffee…
- Big City Burrito: A bit of a dive, but the original restaurant of what has now become a franchise. Ordering is a little intimidating here the first time – options of which kind of tortilla, all the different fillings, etc. Famous for their potato burritos, but don’t be afraid to customize your creation.
- Pizza Casbah: Best pizza in town as determined by our family pizza bracket (think Pizza Madness rather than March Madness). New York style, and the restaurant has no ambiance, parking, or hardly even any table and chairs, so definitely plan on just ordering it for carryout.
And just for fun, I mapped them out: