Roadhouse Boulder Depot, 2366 Junction Place, Boulder, roadhouseboulderdepot.com
The Roadhouse Boulder Depot is a cozy place to get a drink and have some upscale pub grub. Whether you’re waiting for your bus or you’ve navigated streets made look like sidewalks, you’ll be glad to be inside the Depot. The menu borrows flavors from around the globe but fits neatly into a few categories: sandwiches, burgers, bowls, salads, pizza and small plates. The Colorado Cubano is a take on the classic sandwich that bursts with flavor and provides deeply satisfying texture. In addition to the traditional ham, pickles, mustard and Swiss, the Depot stacks on tender pulled pork and a few slices of hot capicola for a fiery, spicy, meaty kick. All the flavors play nice, and the pressed and charred roll is the perfect vessel for all that goodness. $14.
Vegetable Green Curry
Phuket Thai, 1156 W. Dillon Road, Unit 4, Louisville, phuketboulder.com
What defines comfort food? Is it nostalgia? Is it carbs? Is it something else altogether? We think comfort food is simply food that settles you when you’re anxious, food that sticks to the bones and softens your tone for an hour or two after you eat it. Thai food might not be nostalgic for many folks here in the States, but you can’t say it’s not comfort food. Phuket Thai in Louisville dishes out a classic menu full of straightforward comfort dishes, like green curry. Add meat if you’d like, but summer felt like it called for a vegetable curry. With crisp green beans, lightly sweet bell peppers, tender zucchini and eggplant, crunchy bamboo shoots and bright broccoli swimming in a coconut milk-based bath of green curry sauce, this is a dish that is meant to lift the spirits and soothe the mind. Lunch $8.75, dinner $10.
La Rue Bayou, Mobile, Boulder County, laruebayou.com
Cajun food is fun. Spicy, meaty, saucy, indulgent… you name the quality you’re after, there’s a Cajun dish for it. La Rue Bayou food truck serves all the classics, but we opted for a cultural hybrid of a dish — the Cajun poutine. Thick-cut, crispy and Cajun-seasoning-dusted fries are topped with blocks of sharp and mild Cheddar, and sauced with brown gravy. The fries are great, the cheese is fresh and the gravy is savory, but what makes this version of poutine pop, of course, is the piquant, paprika-heavy Cajun seasoning. These are hard to resist. $8.
Fortunate Squirrel Nut Brown
300 Suns Brewing, 335 First Ave., Longmont, 300susnbrewing.com
Did you feel that? That first early morning chill this week, the one that’s a prelude to leaves changing and frosty windows? That got us in the mood for a darker brew, but one that still has a bit of vibrancy and life — it is still mid-August after all. The Fortunate Squirrel Nut Brown from Longmont’s 300 Suns Brewing was the perfect brew for this moment. It’s got malt for days and a nuttiness that will have you pining for fall, but just enough bitterness and choppiness to keep the palate guessing. Prices vary.