When I dine out, I specifically choose establishments where I know I can get something good to drink with my meal. Sometimes I’m craving a certain food at a place that serves only one beer I like; but as long as I can get that one beer, I’m there. When I want Mexican food, I have to get margaritas (not complaining) because most Mexican restaurants do not have much–if anything–in the way of craft beer. But what makes me really happy is a tasty meal and a wide variety of beverage options. And I recently found bliss at TAG Burger Bar.
TAG Burger Bar has 20 craft beers on tap (many of them from Colorado breweries) as well as around 15 other beers in bottles and cans. And, just as with their beer selection, the food menu has something for everyone. To start, pick your base: beef, lamb, bison, turkey, salmon, or veggie burger. They all come with tomato, lettuce, and a pickle spear. But if you want to make it interesting, select one of 15 different styles that all provide extremely unique combinations of toppings. And for all 15 burger creations they give you their suggestions of which beer pairs best with each. For example, get a burger “The Bulldog” style: roasted red pepper, sauteed mushrooms, provolone, and arugula. Pair it with Avery‘s Reverend Belgian Style Quadrupel Ale. Whatever style of burger you want, TAG Burger Bar has the perfect beer to go with it.
Being vegetarian, I naturally chose their house-made veggie burger. After taking way too long to decide how to top it (too many good choices!), I ultimately went with the “Old School,” which has American cheese, grilled onions, and TAG sauce (think spicy thousand island). I also ordered a side of Truffle Aioli and Parmesan Fries. “Old School’s” suggested beer pairing is Oskar Blues‘ Mama’s Little Yella Pils. But since I’m personally not a fan of pilsners, I opted for a New Belgium Ranger IPA as, to me, IPAs go with everything (though those who dislike hoppy beers may disagree). But I had a feeling I wouldn’t be let down by my choice.
When my food arrived (which was surprisingly fast considering how packed it was), I was stunned to see how massive the burger was! I’m more of a grazer–eating smaller, more frequent meals–so I knew there was no way I’d come close to finishing it, especially with fries! But that’s what to-go boxes are for, right? The burger was delectable, and the toppings made it even more wonderful. I found myself tackling it with a fork, as it was a bit crumbly (which is a side effect of a vegan burger: no egg holding it together), but that didn’t stop me from digging in and devouring as much as I could possibly fit into my belly. I made sure to leave room for some truffle fries, which were delightful. The fries were thin-cut–my preference–and topped with grated Parmesan and a very rich truffle aioli. Fries have been one of my favorite foods ever since I was a child, so to me they are a very important companion to a burger. Too often I find myself disappointed with soggy fries or ones that are obviously frozen, but that is certainly not the case at TAG. My meal paired very well with the Ranger, by the way.
As I was winding down–too full but somehow still wanting a little bit more–I ordered a Yeti Imperial Stout by Great Divide. That beer is almost like a dessert itself, so I took a pass on the last course and was satisfied to sip on my Yeti while giving my body a little time to digest.
While I haven’t tried any of their carnivorous offerings, I have heard nothing but positives from those who have. If you want a burger and a great selection of excellent beers, this is definitely the place. If you haven’t been yet, I suggest you try TAG Burger Bar today.