If you haven't been by the Mason Jar restaurant for awhile, you may have missed the fact that after 40 years (1982-2022) the owners have sold it and it is now doing business as Trails End Taproom. We found the staff very welcoming and subtle changes being made to the decor. The beef barbacoa nachos were quite satisfying and the ambience warm and cozy. We've heard the new owners are planning to bring back live music in this building that once housed a Shakey's Pizza. We wish the owners of both businesses well in their new adventures.
Trails End Taproom
2925 W Colorado Ave.
Colorado Springs, CO 80904
Consistently good food, service, and FREE PARKING! This time we tried The Depot burger, which was delicious, as were the upgraded side of onion rings. This burger was the rail thing, topped with Colorado White Cheddar, Applewood Bacon, Lettuce, Tomato, Stout Braised Onions, and Spicy Ketchup. The restaurant is located in the old train depot downtown where diners can still enjoy passing trains just outside the large windows.
10 S. Sierra Madre St.
Colorado Springs, CO 80903
Our first port of call was Toulon, a charming French naval port on the French Riviera with a beautiful natural harbor. Our cruise ship was docked there from 8:00am until 7:00pm, offering plenty of time for some on-shore excursions. Ours included wandering the market area, a train tour of Toulon, a stop at a local park and beach, and some tasty desserts before a boat ride back to the ship dock. We set sail around 8:00 pm on a calm and beautiful moon-lit sea.
The day after arriving Barcelona from Colorado Springs we boarded Royal Caribbean's Vision Of The Seas cruise ship for an eight day Mediterranean cruise. Our itinerary included stops in Spain, France, Monaco, Corsica, and Italy. The accommodations, food, entertainment, and entire crew were outstanding! Over 80 countries were represented on the ship. Our party of 15 had a wonderful time.
After arriving in Barcelona I hailed a taxi to take me to my hotel. It was only around 12:30pm, but I wanted to stop by and leave my luggage there while I wandered around the Gothic Quarter where the hotel was located. The kind gentleman at the front desk told me my room was ready and he could let me check in right away, so I did. Keeping with my tradition of trying to support local businesses, I chose the 4-Star Hotel Colon and was very pleased indeed. It was built in 1951 by Italian Don Antonio Lempar and sits directly across the square from the beautiful Cathedral of Barcelona. One of the small (but adequate) lifts (elevator) took me to my awesome and spacious room which opened up to a rooftop balcony overlooking the Cathedral. After settling in I made my way back to the lobby and out onto the streets to enjoy the sights and sounds of the area. I enjoyed Tapas at the hotel restaurant that afternoon, and my room rate included a fantastic breakfast buffet the next morning. All of the staff that I encountered were absolutely wonderful and very helpful with any questions I had. Everyone also spoke and understood English very well. I highly recommend the Hotel Colon if you're ever traveling in the Barcelona area.
Av. de la Catedral, 7
08002 Barcelona, Spain
+34 933 01 14 04
Sights and sounds of Barcelona include an unending supply of beautiful buildings, unique street performers, ringing bells of nearby cathedrals, casual conversations and languages of people simply relaxing and enjoying themselves in the local town squares. Some of my stops included the Sagrada Família Cathedral (still under constuction), the historic Gothic Quarter, and the Picasso Museum. Just a short walk from there I stopped in at Els 4Cats restaurant, built in 1897. The famous Spanish painter, Pablo Ruiz Picasso (1881-1973) is said to have been a frequent guest. Since it was still early for dinner I chose to simply have one of the house desserts. It was delicious, and the staff were awesome!
Carrer de Montsió, 3
08002 Barcelona, Spain
+34 933 02 41 40
Today we're flying to Barcelona, Spain out of Colorado Springs airport, where we found the price of a round-trip ticket to be about $200 ($684 round trip, booked and paid for in June of 2022) cheaper than flying out of Denver. After a brief stop in Denver our flight included a plane change in Munich, Germany. Since we were going to be gone for two weeks we found it cheaper to take an Uber rather than pay for parking for that many days. We certainly hope to see more flights being offered from Colorado Springs in the future. Non-stop flights to popular cities would definitely be a plus and earn my business! Our Lufthansa itinerary was serviced by United between Colorado Springs and Denver. We found the staff at COS airport to be very friendly and helpful, and security was a breeze compared to the long lines in Denver. Be sure to do some comparisons before you book to be sure you are getting the best value for your hard-earned money. While in Europe we were delighted to discover friends from Colorado Springs were also in the area vacationing. Happy travels!
CHEF STAFON HERE…
Remember those Palisade peaches I told you about yesterday? Well this evening nephie and I enjoyed fresh sliced peaches and black berries over some Häagen-Dazs vanilla bean ice cream. It’s so easy to create a masterpiece with the right ingredients! Delicious doesn’t even begin to describe it!
CHEF STAFON HERE...
With summer on the downside of the roller coaster track (we’re just a couple of weeks from September folks!) you don’t want to miss out sampling some of the local fruits and vegetables while they’re still available. Today we picked up some absolutely divine peaches from Palisade and cantaloupe from Rocky Ford at Taylor Produce on Powers (in front of the old K-Mart). We’ve also had some awesome corn from Olathe and vine-ripened Campari tomatoes, also grown right here in Colorado! I say this in good taste…you don’t have to be a world unknown chef like me to appreciate the delightfully-fresh (and local) tastes of summer! This evening, nephie and I enjoyed an old favorite my dad introduced to me years ago. Start with half a Rocky Ford (check the label) cantaloupe and top with your favorite vanilla ice cream. We like Häagen-Dazs.
Whatever you do, do it fast, for summer definitely won’t last!
Always delicious, and always served up with a smile. This time I had my skirted burger over a bed of lettuce, which allowed me to walk out of the restaurant in a reasonably upright manner without feeling overly stuffed. Since the fries are too good to pass up, I sacrificed the bun. If there are two of you dining, may I suggest just one order of fries to split. This awesome family-owned and operated business has two Colorado Springs locations, downtown on Tejon Street and northeast at Dublin & Powers.
5935 Dublin Blvd. (at Powers)
Colorado Springs, CO 80923
We always enjoy awesome middle eastern cuisine and the best baklava in town at this family-owned restaurant with four Colorado Springs locations. The newest location in Northgate is now open. We found the service was great and the staff welcoming and friendly.
Heart of Jerusalem - Northgate
122 Tracker Dr.
Colorado Springs, CO 80921
In Colorado, when it’s hot, it’s time to get high. That’s exactly what Stella and I did. We headed for the hills. Woodland Park, to be exact. It was about 15 degrees cooler up there, with a nice breeze. We stopped at the Swiss Chalet for lunch. What an awesome Sunday meal with a top-notch crew. When I asked about the “famous” Cobb Salad, the server quickly shared his enthusiasm over the entree. He was right…it was an excellent choice! While I enjoyed the meal and ambience of the restaurant, Stella was outside checkin’ out all the Lotus sports cars (about a dozen) that had gathered in the parking lot. She was a little miffed at me for not stopping by the car wash first. The apple pie à la mode was another great suggestion, and topped off the meal nicely.
Swiss Chalet Restaurant
Woodland Park, CO 80863
The drive down Highway 115 (south of Fort Carson) is well worth it, if you're planning on stopping in at the Juniper Valley Ranch for a home-cooked, family-style dinner. Enjoy the same awesome food, served up by the same family, just the way it began over 70 years ago! Open Thursday - Sunday, limited hours. Reservations are highly recommended.
Juniper Valley Ranch
Colorado Springs, CO 80926
Nothing like an afternoon "Snooze" to keep you motivated for the rest of the day's work. The 3-Egg Omelet with bacon, sausage, and cheddar cheese, along with a "round" of hash browns, sourdough toast and berry jam at this Colorado based diner really hit the spot!
Snooze, An AM Eatery
7587 N. Academy Blvd.
Colorado Springs, CO 80920
A little Mother's Day breakfast at Sheldon's Luncheonette really got the day off to a great start! The Steak and Eggs (scrambled with cheese) proved to be an excellent choice, along with the home fries and sourdough toast.
204 Mount View Lane (at Nevada)
Colorado Springs, CO 80907