Steakhouse No. 316, 1922 13th St., Boulder, steakhouse316.com
When Steakhouse No. 316 came in to the old Conor O’Neill’s spot off Pearl Street in Boulder, we were excited to see what the owners would bring from their landmark Aspen restaurant into our city. Good news: they brought a classic steak house with exceptional service and a deep menu. The interior is elegant, with bold red-fabric booths, jet-black walls, hunting-lodge pictures and big flower arrangements. No matter whether you’re getting a big steak in a private booth, or cozying up to the bar for a martini, your coat will be checked, your waiter will be well-attired and you’ll feel, somewhat oddly upon your first visit, at home. As for the food and drink, it’s exceptional. We opted for the rotisserie chicken off the bar menu. A succulent chicken quarter is placed atop whipped potatoes and topped with an irresistible mushroom ragout, and served on a small cast-iron plate. $19.
VisionQuest Brewery, 2510 47th St., Suite A2, Boulder, visionquestbrewing.com
Well, the wizards at VisionQuest did it again. Their Barbera rosé-style golden sour ale is wild, weird, delicious and unlike anything you’ll find elsewhere. The ale is brewed with grape must and aged in oak barrels for seven months. There’s a ton of pleasant funk in this, and the unique, robust flavor of grape candy. The sourness will please those who like sours. The brewers point out that although it’ll taste a little sweet, it’s actually dry as a bone — fermented until all the residual sugars are out. You won’t believe this juice is almost 9 percent ABV, either. $14, available in bottles.
Jafrani Malai Kofta
The Taj, 2630 Baseline Road, Boulder, tajindianboulder.com
Simply put, the jafrani malai kofta is one of the best Indian dishes we’ve had in a while. This vegetarian dish starts with potato and paneer (cheese) koftas, which are abundantly spiced and lightly fried to create something like falafel dumplings, but not quite — these are moister and a little more gooey. The koftas are set in a korma sauce (cream, stock and spices) and served atop saffron jafrani rice, which is billowy and immensely flavorful. Altogether, each forkful hits about a hundred notes on your tongue, but still creates one singular, satisfying bite. $12.95.
General Tao’s Chicken
Tsing Tao, 607 S. Broadway, Suite A, Boulder, tsingtaoasiankitchen.com
When the craving for good, old-fashioned take-out Chinese food hits, Tsing Tao’s got all the staples you might want — kung pao chicken, orange chicken, Mongolian beef, lo mein, egg foo young, it’s all there. We went for the General Tao’s chicken. It was a clean take on the Chinese classic, the chicken was crispy and moist, the vegetables were fresh and punchy, and the sauce was well-apportioned and had a little kick to it. $12.95.