Colorado roadside restaurant gems

One of my favorite things about being a Colorado travel writer is stumbling across roadside restaurant gems. I honestly never know when or where it’s going to happen.

We’re always looking for a good place to grab a meal, so if you know of a hidden roadside gem, please leave me a comment below. Without further ado, here are a few our favorite roadside finds.

Villa Grove Trade, Villa Grove, Colorado

We discovered this place a couple of years ago on our way home from Durango and stopped there again a couple of weeks ago.

Villa Grove Trade in Villa Grove, Colorado.
You can’t miss Villa Grove Trade as it is one of the only places in Villa Grove, Colorado.

This place isn’t fancy. It’s a quirky restaurant with a small market that sells all sorts of artsy knickknacks that look as though they’ve been collecting dust for some time, but we don’t stop here to shop, we stop here for the sandwiches.

Made fresh-to-order, these sandwiches are like the ones I make at home, except better, and for less than $6, they are a deal to boot. Plus, the folks who work here couldn’t be nicer.

Trading Post Restaurant, Kit Carson, Colorado

The snow was starting to fall in earnest when we decided to stop for lunch on our way home from the High Plains Snow Goose Festival in Lamar this past February.

Hungry, we’d driven through two small towns without finding a restaurant, so when we saw the Trading Post Restaurant we were ready to eat.

Left my calling card at The Trading Post Restaurant in Kit Carson, Colorado.
I left my calling card at The Trading Post Restaurant in Kit Carson, Colorado.

As we went inside I instantly thought that this was a place where my late-grandfather would have felt right at home. The restaurant is reminiscent of another place and time, as is a lot of Southeastern Colorado.

Ryan ordered a hamburger and I ordered a patty melt. These two simple items were some of the best roadside food we’d ever eaten. It will be hard to pass up the Trading Post Restaurant if we happen to drive through Kit Carson again.

The French Bistro, Craig, Colorado

Northwest Colorado is the oddest place to find a top-notch French restaurant and yet it is now home to The French Bistro run by a French family who recently moved to Craig for the cowboy lifestyle.

Located on Highway 40 just outside of Craig and next door to the Wyman Museum, we would not have found this place on our own. Rachel Wattles, owner of the Horse & Hen Bed & Breakfast in Hayden, had recommended that we check it out.

The French Bistro in Craig, Colorado.
It’s easy to miss. Drive slowly as you are heading east out of Craig, or keep your eyes open as you pass the Wyman Museum as you are coming into Craig from the east.

Inside, The French Bistro feels a bit like a French grandmother’s living room, a grandmother who has a penchant for western décor, but is also homesick for France.

We worked our way through three amazing courses at The French Bistro. Starting with escargot dripping in butter, we moved on to two large French entrees – beef stuffed duck for me and chicken in a white wine sauce for Ryan. We ended our gluttonous evening with French desserts.

If you ever find yourself near Craig, Colorado, do yourself a favor and stop at The French Bistro. Your taste buds will thank you.

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