Summit Stop: Samples of the Frisco fare |

Summit Stop: Samples of the Frisco fare

With limited time available, the selection of excellent, locally owned restaurants in Summit County can be somewhat overwhelming. The simplest way to chose one for dinner tonight? Don’t. Instead, skip dinner and spend the afternoon and evening sampling a few of the dining options around town. Try an appetizer tour of Frisco, a hub of unique restaurants. Mosey down Main Street at your own pace, dropping in to two or three of these local eateries along the way and grab a few starters to share.

Start off with a warm cup of gumbo at the Lost Cajun on the west end of Main Street. This new Louisiana-style cafe serves vegetarian, chicken, chicken and sausage and seafood gumbo from a tiny storefront on Main Street. Stop by for Mardi Gras beads and a cup of gumbo for yourself or a bowl to share before heading on.

Next, drop by the Boatyard Pizzeria and Grill, a favorite local grill with the laid-back atmosphere of a lake-side bistro. They have a great variety of creative salads to chose from, but the biggest seller from the starter menu is easily the sesame seared Ahi, served rare with a vegetable stir fry. The fish is sushi grade, brought in four times a week and flavored with a Thai ginger and cilantro sauce.

Then head across the street to Tuscato, a warm, authentic Italian restaurant with a menu of classic cuisine based on family recipes. Between 4 and 6 p.m. the ristorante offers happy hour specials and $5 small sandwiches. Try a meat-lover’s panini served on Focaccia bread or a chicken parmesan, eggplant parmesan or meatball sandwich served hot on a toasted baguette.

Or cruise over to Bagalis for New Orleans-inspired Italian cuisine served in a bright, up-scale atmosphere. Their signature grilled shrimp flatbread, a dish of several shrimp topped with capers and Spanish Manchego cheese served over homemade seasoned French bread, is recommended.

Another option is 5th Avenue Grille, a few doors down from the stop sign on 5th and Main. The Grille is an intimate casual-dining spot with a contemporary feel and fresh shrimp ceviche. Diced with garlic, flavored with citrus juice and served immediately alongside pico de gallo and tortilla chips, the ceviche includes shrimp that, like all of 5th Avenue Grille’s seafood, is organic and sustainably farmed or wild.

Finish off your appetizer tour with a beer and one last bite at the Backcountry Brewery. The upstairs restaurant and brewery is low-key and offers views of the Dillon Reservoir. Pair a house brew with a warm, soft pretzel or their hot spinach and artichoke dip, a blend of cheeses, artichokes and spices served with tortilla chips.

Updated: to clarify location of 5th Ave. Grille

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