The Sweet Life of Matt and Cody: Fast five restaurant reviews

Cody Moore and Matt Lawrence

Quick and helpful restaurant reviews for a great eats and busy schedule:

Yum Yum’s Mediterranean Restaurant

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This Mediterranean joint on the corner of Elizabeth and City Park shares space with a full service smoothie bar. The simple exterior and dining room conceals the fresh and exotic flavors of Yum Yum’s kitchen.

Founded by Lebanese immigrants, the menu includes everything from lamb gyros to kabobs and homemade hummus. The falafels are made in-house and fried to golden perfection. More adventurous eaters should try the stuffed grape leaves, which are equally delicious warm or cold.

Vegan and vegetarian friendly. $5-12

Maza Kabob

Freshly grilled kabobs are ready to be served to customers at Maza Kabob on Monday night. (Photo credit: Eliot Foust)
Freshly grilled kabobs are ready to be served to customers at Maza Kabob on Monday night. (Photo credit: Eliot Foust)

If you’re in the mood for low-key Afghan food done right, then look no further. Tucked into a strip mall off South College, this counter-service eatery serves up warm, spiced dishes that fall into the perfect niche between Indian and Mediterranean cuisines. The friendly staff is happy to decipher their menu and make suggestions.

While their kabobs are good, the highlights of their menu include Burrani, a roasted eggplant dish that transforms this spongy, lifeless veggie into a sweet and smoky pillow.

Don’t skip dessert. Their zhalla, an Afghan ice cream topped with crispy rice noodles, pistachios and a dusting of cardamom, is flavorful without being too sweet or heavy.

Vegan and vegetarian friendly. $4-15

Ace Gillett’s

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Bars, like Ace Gillet's have hidden options and amenities that are great for students to take part in. Photo by Anne-Marie Kottenstette
Bars, like Ace Gillet’s have hidden options and amenities that are great for students to take part in. Photo by Anne-Marie Kottenstette

Underneath the Armstrong Hotel in downtown Fort Collins is a little time machine of a restaurant that takes you to a Noir-styled restaurant straight out of the 50s. With live music almost every night, Gillett’s atmosphere will surely take you back.

As for food, Gillett’s specializes in tapas (small sized plates) so you can sample much more of the menu. Gillett’s menu is Italian inspired and focuses on savory tastes.

We would recommend the Prosciutto Wrapped Dates which are stuffed with gorgonzola and dipped in port wine reduction. Also try the Colorado Beef Carpaccio, thinly sliced Wagyu beef topped with truffle creme fraiche surrounding watercrest, roasted tomatoes, caper berries and shaved truffles, though you can’t go wrong with the rest of menu.

It’s a bit more expensive than other restaurants on the list, but it’s a romantic place for a date night. $12-25 per person.

Krazy Karl’s

Krazy Karl's employee James Gilbert spreads sauce over several pizza crusts. Gilbet said he likes the work environment in the pizza shop because the people are fun to work with and the work environment is laid back but he has enough work to keep him busy. (Photo Credit: Megan Fischer)
Krazy Karl’s employee James Gilbert spreads sauce over several pizza crusts. Gilbet said he likes the work environment in the pizza shop because the people are fun to work with and the work environment is laid back but he has enough work to keep him busy. (Photo Credit: Megan Fischer)

If you haven’t gone here yet you’re missing out on a college student’s fantasy. In the middle of Campus West hiding behind Spoons is this local gem. It seems that Karl’s is always packed, playing the current sports game on TV and serving up pizzas and local brews to hordes of hungry customers.

Krazy Karl’s most popular pizza is the North of the Border, a cheese pizza topped with pepperoni, green chilis and balls of cream cheese. Krazy Karl’s also does has a lot of choice for speciality pizzas, all of which are great. Karl’s is open until 3AM and offers delivery for late night cravings. If you haven’t gone here yet, step to it, this is a FoCo icon.

$5-12

 

Dam Good Tacos

Dam Good Tacos co-owners Ali Hatcher and Michael Falco at their shop in the ally on Laurel St. Ali is a Colorado State University Public Health alum.
Dam Good Tacos co-owners Ali Hatcher and Michael Falco at their shop in the ally on Laurel St. Ali is a Colorado State University Public Health alum.

A self-described hole in the wall, Dam Good Tacos has been dishing out unusual flavors wrapped in locally-sourced tortillas since 2013.

Located in the alley of Laurel Street, it is only a short walk downstairs from the Alleycat Coffee House. Pick up one of the Earth, Wind & Fire tacos, stuffed with sweet potato, kale, tofu and a tomato ginger sauce.

The Bandito is undoubtedly the most popular choice: pork topped with a creamy avocado-tomatillo sauce and crispy cheese strings. Look out for their mobile cart on the corner of Oak and College on weekends.

Vegan, vegetarian and gluten-free options available. $3-10

Collegian Foodies Matt Lawrence and Cody Moore write about food every Thursday. They can be reached at entertainment@collegian.com or on Twitter at @LawrenceFoods and @codymoorecsu