Cinco de Mayo, Mountain Style

A roundup places to celebrate in the Colorado mountains

In honor of Cinco de Mayo, I thought I’d write a roundup of some of my favorite places to celebrate in the Colorado mountains. And if you can’t get there by Sunday, the 5th of May, add these places to your list of Colorado restaurants you must visit this summer.

Maya, Avon

Photo courtesy of Maya.

Located inside the Westin Riverfront Resort & Spa, Maya is one of my favorite restaurants in Colorado. It’s a Chef Richard Sandoval establishment and I tend to be a fan whenever and wherever I find myself in one of his eateries.

We’ve been to Maya a handful of times and have eaten their culinary creations at Taste of Vail. They created one of my favorite bites this year at Mountain Top Tastings: a spicy rabbit taco.

Photo courtesy of Maya.

One of our favorite aspects of Maya, in addition to their fabulous patio, is the tequila selection. It’s incredible, as is the happy hour.  

This restaurant puts a modern twist on Mexican cuisine and serves up items like Mezcal Braised Short Ribs and Blue Crab & Shrimp Enchiladas. I appreciate that there are always vegetarian options on the menu, something that came in handy when I took my vegetarian mother here on a girls’ weekend.

Slope & Hatch, Glenwood Springs

Calamari Taco at Slope & Hatch. Photo by Heidi Kerr-Schlaefer.

This tiny restaurant under the bridge in Glenwood Springs is a favorite. We always plan a lunch stop even when our destination is somewhere else in Colorado because Slope & Hatch is that good.

I have dreams of their calamari tacos. These one-of-a-kind tacos are tossed in a chili glaze with sesame and sprinkled with a citrus-spiked slaw. For those who don’t like seafood, they have other unique offerings that include curried lamb tacos, Cubano tacos, Thai veggie stir fry tacos and more.

The best part is that Ryan, who likes tacos but also loves a good hot dog, can get a great hot dog here. Their classic Chicago Dog is his favorite dog in Colorado. It’s piled high with all the proper ingredients and then sprinkled with celery salt.

All tacos are served with chips and dogs are served with fries. You may have to order to-go because this place is popular and seating is tight. Thankfully, it’s easy to find a place to eat next to the Colorado River.

Taco Cabo, Steamboat Springs

Photo by Heidi Kerr-Schlaefer.

Taco Cabo gets my money every time I am in Steamboat Springs. It’s not fancy, with an order counter and plastic tables outside, but locals flock here for fast, good and inexpensive food.

If it’s packed and we can’t find a table (which happens frequently) we take our meal to either Storm Peak Brewery or Butcherknife Brewery. Each is just a two-minute drive away.

Taco Cabo tacos at Storm Peak Brewing Co. Photo by Heidi Kerr-Schlaefer.

I have eaten a lot of tacos in Colorado and these might be the best. I always order a side of roasted jalapeños. Just thinking about Taco Cabo makes me hungry.

Venga Venga, Snowmass Village

I have two words for you: Tableside guacamole.

I didn’t mean to list two Richard Sandoval restaurants in this article but we have such excellent memories from this slopeside eatery that it has to be included. On our first visit to Venga Venga, we sat at the bar and enjoyed banter with a friendly bartender as well as the best tableside guacamole I’ve eaten outside of Mexico.

Photo by Jeremy Swanson.

On our second visit, we sat on the sunlit patio and listened to the free summer concert series which happens right outside the restaurant. We sipped margaritas as the sun went down and Whitewater Ramble entertained the crowd. It was magic.

If I could choose one type of food to live on for the rest of my life it would be Mexican food. Thankfully, Colorado has no shortage of this cuisine and I could easily make this article 5000 words long. I would include Zia in Durango, every Mexican restaurant in Alamosa, Lime in Winter Park and The Ditch in Winter Park. I’ll stop, however, and leave the tasty research up to you.

Categories: The Heidi Guide