On the Road Eats: Road Trip from Dallas to Vail

It’s been a crazy year and it was time for a vacation with the family.  We skied, snow-shoed, shopped and ate.  What a great trip!

Hotel: Colorado Springs Marriott
Would I stay again?  Yes.  It was clean and had quick access to the highway.  Interstate 25 was shut down late on a Saturday afternoon so this was the farthest north we could get in Colorado.  The hotel was a bit overwhelmed with all of the people that checked in unexpectedly and the restaurant had some challenges handling the dinner options but overall, the stay was fine.

Hotel: Vail Marriott Mountain Resort
Would I stay again?  Yes.  I had hoped for an upgrade to a suite due to status but according to the engineering team, they were at 96% occupancy so I was happy with my room with a view and a balcony.  My family did a grab and go breakfast so they could hit the slopes early but we did not dine any where else in the restaurant.  The front desk staff was very nice and they assisted with the adventure locker(I borrowed the shoes for snow shoeing)- big thank you to Mike for all of the recommendations during our trip.  I also emailed the GM before our trip and he provided a bunch of great options for dining and activities for me since I don’t ski.

Restaurants:

Lunch  (Amarillo, TX): The Public House
Would I dine again? Yes
.  Driving from Dallas to Colorado and Amarillo is the goal for the first stop for food.  The Public House had a good menu and everyone enjoyed their meal.  When making the reservation through OpenTable.com, it said that all servers would be masked but since Texas changed the mandates within the week or so before, I think they forgot to update their OpenTable profile as only one employee was masked.

Dinner: Montauk Seafood Grill
Would I dine again? Yes. 
Great seafood options!  We had oysters, clam chowder and halibut.  The food was great but the server we had (Chelsea) was absolutely amazing.

Breakfast: The Little Diner
Would I dine again? Yes. 
I did to-go breakfast here not once, not twice but three times because I liked the breakfast burrito so much…and the fact that Resy doesn’t allow for reservations for 1 made this my only option.

Breakfast:  Westside Cafe
Would I dine again?
Yes.  It is on the other side of the highway from the mountain but a short car ride.  It’s attached to the Doubletree Hotel and was super casual.  My daughter and I went for breakfast.  She got the French toast and I got the southwestern skillet. I enjoyed it so much I went back a few days later for an awesome omelette.

Lunch: El Segundo
Would I dine again? Yes. 
I got a table outside, a beer and two tacos(ahi tuna and grouper)- Delicious!

Lunch: The Craftsman  (Edwards)
Would I dine again? Yes. 
I read about this spot online and it was recommended by the GM of our hotel. Very creative sandwiches and everything was delicious.

Dinner: Northside Kitchen
Would I dine again? Most Likely. 
I hate to say this but I was slightly underwhelmed by my meal but my husband and daughter both enjoyed their dinners.  Seafood risotto for me, a cheeseburger for her (she said it was awesome) and the roasted chicken for the husband.  The service was great, all the food looked great coming out of the kitchen and the atmosphere was wonderful so maybe it was me that had the off night.

Dinner: Lancelot
Would I dine again? Yes. 
I was told that when you dine at Lancelot, you must have the prime rib so I did.  I also added the french onion soup but had to pass on dessert because I was so full.

Dinner: Pepi’s Bar & Restaurant
Would I dine again? Yes. 
I was told you must visit as it has been here for years. Happy to have schnitzel and spaetzle

Dinner: Zino
Would I dine again? Yes. 
I celebrated my birthday here and they made the evening quite special with a personalized menu and a great meal!

Lunch:  Garfinkel’s
Would I dine again? Yes.  
A quick place to grab a drink or a meal for lunch or apres ski.  And the hot chocolate hit the spot!

Lunch:  The Red Lion
Would I dine again? Yes.  
A quick place to grab a drink or a meal during or after a day of skiing.

Lunch: Big Bear Bistro
Would I dine again? Maybe. 
I met my husband and daughter between runs for a quick takeout lunch since I was off snow-shoeing.  I had a simple salad and their sandwiches looked good.

Dinner: Pazzo’s
Would I dine again? Yes. 
Sometimes you just need a super casual evening with no reservations and a small table on a sidewalk.
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Breakfast: Rebel Bread
Would I dine again? Yes. 
We found this on the way home from Vail to Dallas once we hit Denver.  We picked up a bunch of pastries and ate in the car.  Delish.


On the Road Eats: North Austin

Hotel: Aloft Austin Northwest
Would I stay again?  Yes.  It was clean, convenient to our office and the staff was nice.  Options for amazing dining were very limited compared to downtown but it was easy on and off the highway to get me where I needed to be ontime.

aLoft

Restaurants:

Dinner: Paul Martin’s American Grill
Would I dine again? Maybe
.  I ended up driving to Austin rather than flying from Dallas so I arrived at dinner time.  I decided to eat in the Domain area so I could have choices.  I wanted a nicer bar to sit, eat dinner and enjoy a glass of wine before heading to the hotel after an almost 4-hour drive.  The pork chop was good, the wine was fine and one of the two bartenders was very knowledgable.

Pork Chop with brussel sprouts

Breakfast: One Taco
Would I dine again? Yes. 
Love breakfast tacos and when in Austin, it is a must.  I found a small spot on the way to our office and it hit the spot.

Lunch: Rudy’s
Would I dine again? Yes. 
I knew the local options were going to be a lot of chains so I stuck with one that I really enjoy.

Brisket and Sausage and Corn and Cole Slaw

Dinner: Soto
Would I dine again? YES
.  I asked a colleague in Austin where I could eat close to my hotel and he knows I enjoy great local spots.  His response…you won’t find what you are looking for.  I was so happy he was wrong.  When you arrive at Soto, you do not expect to see a Party City next store.  And then you walk into this very modern restaurant that delivers amazing service.  Now onto the food.  The server recommended a new sake to me and brought me a small edamame starter, I selected the chef’s choice for sushi and finished with a small appetizer since I was hungrier than I thought.  I would definitely go back even thought I blew through my per diem!

Lunch: Rosarito Food Truck
Would I dine again? Maybe. 
I love food trucks and the tuna tostada I had was awesome.  The tempura rice bowl was just ok.  I find that tempura is just not my favorite anymore….but my mistake for ordering it.  But that tostada- fantastic!

This trip took place before all of the restrictions became our new reality and this will be my last trip for a while due to world events. I look forward to supporting more local restaurants once I get on the road again!

On the Road Eats: Dayton, OH

Hotel:  Courtyard Dayton Beavercreek
Would I stay again?  Yes.  It was clean, convenient to where I needed to be and if I needed to be there longer, there was shopping and restaurants close by.  Unfortunately I was not very productive once I made it there after dinner due to the time change and the lack of sleep from the night before.

Restaurants:

Dinner: Mamma DiSalvo’s
Would I dine again? Yes
.  My client recommended Mamma Disalvo’s when I asked for a great local spot.  The food and service were both great and I would not hesitate to send friends here!

Lunch: City Barbeque
Would I dine again? No. 
I hate to say that I would not go back but I have eaten BBQ in North Carolina, Kansas City and in Texas where I live so I was a bit disappointed.  But the place was packed so it must be one of the better options.

On the Road Eats: Santa Barbara

Hotel:  Hilton Santa Barbara
Would I stay again?  Yes.  The last time I stayed it was a DoubleTree and I always got an upgrade.  This year, upgraded to a partial ocean view in the building I like.  The hotel has been rebranded and updated and some things have changed like the free breakfast which used to be better as a DoubleTree.

Restaurants:

Lunch: Oku
Would I dine again? Yes
.  Sushi with a view!  Needed to have a light lunch so I shared a couple items with a friend before attending an event, the way of the dragon roll and the cauliflower appetizer.

Super Bowl Party: The Project
Would I dine again? Yes. 
Corazon Cucina does the food and they have a good size bar and patio.  It was an easy walk to the Hilton as well as to other bars, restaurants and shopping on State Street.

Dinner: Loquita
Would I dine again? Yes
.  Amazing. Loved this place.  I would go back multiple times if I could visit Santa Barbara more often.

Dinner: Finch & Fork
Would I dine again? Yes. 
I chose this restaurant for my last night in town although for some reason I was not 100% excited. Happy to report that dinner was wonderful and the service was amazing.