Diamond Belle Saloon
One of the draws of the Strater Hotel is the very touristy but fun Diamond Belle Saloon. It's decked out to the nines with Victorian flair, complete with "one of the most famous original ragtime piano bars in the Wild West", costumed dance hall girls and bartenders and of course a piano man pounding out tunes one after another on an incredible old piano.
And if that weren't enough every Monday, Wednesday, and Friday night there is a gunfight.
It was amazing how packed the joint gets for that. We saw the beginning of the theatrics from outside through the window, but Skye being the kid from Hollywood raised around movie sets, had a been there, done that sort of attitude and I was more than fine with skipping it.
We all got sorted and headed out to find some suitable grub.
We passed a few restaurants that I'm sure would have been more than satisfactory, but there was some sort of flame display that I spied down the way.
"Let's just go as far as that fire and then we'll come back if we don't see anything we like"
We landed in front of Cosmo.
I know I said that it deserved it's own entry and it does, but the clock is ticking and time is not on my side when it comes to blogging and
May I present you then with our wonderful dining experience at COSMOpolitan Restaurant Durango.
We were lured in with a very diverse and wonderful sounding menu.
The service was wonderful, very helpful and informed but not overbearing. And everything was well-timed, an important but often neglected aspect of a good dining experience.
So many good things to choose from but ultimately we had:
Lobster Corn Dogs
Remoulade sauce, truffle oil
Organic Quinoa and Vegetables Roasted local veggies, local beets, arugula salad with smoked tomato vinaigrette, sauteed wild mushrooms
We were torn between Salmon and their Marlin special, mostly because I was concerned about the environmental impact of our decision. I assumed that Marlin being a big ocean going fish was a definite no-no, which is why I was surprised that they were serving it in the first place. The restaruant was definitely eco-minded, "The Cosmo is dedicated to using all natural & organic ingredients when ever possible. We give preference to local farms & use product that is made in our community. We recycle our fryer oil, glass, cardboard & plastic."
Out came the Iphone and the Seafood Watch App and "There's uncertainty about the health and abundance of blue marlin populations; however, Seafood Watch recommends blue marlin from Hawaii as a "Good Alternative", due to minimal bycatch by the U.S. fleet."
So with a nod to Hemingway we ordered the Marlin.
Being a chocoholic desert was a no-brainer.
Everything was delicious.
Thumbs up and highly recommended from Jon-of-all-trades by Jon the Reviewer
Just across the street from the Strater is an amazing newstand with so many, many magazines and ones that I really like. I was finally able to find Communities: Life in Cooperative Culture, a magazine I've been hunting for quite some time now.
Needless to say, I spent too much time and money and walked out with an armful of magazines. Including some free local ones which lead me to Ska Brewery.
There were a couple of breweries right there on Main Street, but Ska was calling me even though it was pretty far of the beaten path. In fact we got lost on the way there even with the help of my Iphone.
I was drawn to Ska Brewing Company because I read that it was 100% wind powered.
"Are you sure they have food?" Cindy asked with a tone that meant business.
"Of course they do", I said with a tone that meant I was full of it and was hoping that I would get lucky.
Lucky for me, Zia Taqueria had a little airstream trailer parked out front serving up fresh and tasty Mexican food.
The beers were all very nice and unique, especially the Ole Mole, a brew with a bite, which went perfectly with my fish tacos.
I picked up a mixed 12 pack, as well as some other nice swag, like a Ska luggage tag for my upcoming trip, which got pinched somewhere between Albuquerque and Atlanta, dang TSA, and something I hope to be able to use in the future, The Beer Drinker's Guide to Colorado.