Restaurant Review: Is the Poudre Keg Worth the Stop?
When the Poudre Keg in Fort Collins first opened up, there was a grumble across the city of "another burger joint". But is Poudre Keg different from the rest in town?
Admittedly, when we first walked in on Wednesday night, we were taken back by how quiet it was in the restaurant. Besides a few people playing poker in the upstairs room of the location, there were only two people at the bar in the entire restaurant. Our trepidation was high. Did we make a good choice?
We did, and came to the conclusion that Fort Collins (and all of Northern Colorado) just needs to know about this "diamond in the rough" on Linden Street.
The atmosphere and decor of the Poudre Keg makes you feel very comfortable and welcomed. There was just enough decor to give the venue character, but you didn't feel like it was cluttered.
Plus, honestly, they have the coolest light fixtures that I have seen at the side of each table. Each fixture is a fan that has been converted to brighten up your table. Again, it's the little things that attract me at a restaurant and this was one of the coolest things I have seen.
Our waitress was Cassie, and she was attentive when she needed to be but also let us enjoy our meal without hovering over us continuously. Plus...she was real! Sometimes you get a waitress/waiter at a restaurant who you can tell is just "faking" their performance, while not really being interested in your needs. Cassie did a great job in striking up conversation with us and making our meal more enjoyable. So if you stop by Poudre Keg and she's working that night, you should know you'll be taken care of.
When it comes down to the menu, we all know there are restaurants that sometimes can offer so much that it can be downright confusing. Not with the Poudre Keg menu. Their menu is two pages, front and back, but I don't see how there would be someone that couldn't find something to their liking.
We started out our meal with two appetizers, an order of cheese curds and "nuts & bolts". One of the best things about the "nuts & bolts" is that the jalapeno straws had just enough heat in them where you felt a kick, but they weren't so spicy that you were turned off. The fried outside of both appetizers tasted fresh as well, and didn't have that "stale oil" taste that some restaurants can give off when they sell fried food.
My only recommendation to the Poudre Keg with their appetizers? Change up the ranch dressing. If it's not a homemade ranch dressing, take advantage of that hole and do it now. If it is homemade, try a new recipe. The ranch dressing tasted very generic and we wish it had more of a ranch "punch" to it so we could enjoy our appetizer even more.
But with that being the only thing we would change with the appetizer, they are hitting on all cylinders so far in our meal.
With my entree, each of us at our table ended up getting burgers with me getting the "Lobster and Seafood Stuffing" topped burger. I am a fan of both lobster and seafood, but was a little nervous about getting it on top of my burger.
Would it be too fishy tasting?
Would I not be able to taste the seafood at all?
I was incorrect on all fronts. The seafood and lobster they used was fresh tasting and blended perfectly with the burger. There was a certain spice on the outside of the burger, which my wife and I both loved and believe it sets it apart from other burgers in the city. We were trying to figure out the exact spicing that was used, and I thought it had a Montreal steak seasoning to it. I could be wrong, but whatever it was it tasted excellent.
Not a fan of spice on the outside of your burger? Definitely ask if they can cook yours without it. But give it a try first.
The top bun was toasted perfectly, but my one recommendation for the bottom bun was that the burger was so juicy that it made the bun a little soggier than I like. If there was a way to correct this, this burger would be a grand slam.
Each burger comes with a side of fries, and they tasted like the usual fries you get from other restaurants in the city. But they did the job and my plate was clean, so I must've enjoyed them as a nice compliment to the burger itself.
And the cost of this entire meal? If you're looking for a great dinner at a reasonable cost, Poudre Keg is a strong option for you. My wife and I paid for two appetizers (shared amongst three people), had two burgers, and I had two draft beers all for only $43. It's definitely one of the most well priced meals in the city.
What do I give Poudre Keg on a scale of one to five burgers? They score a FOUR from me today, and if they can make the burgers a little less soggy on the bottom along with a new ranch dipping sauce for the appetizers, they could work up to a FIVE (which is tough to get from me).
I know you may be planning your weekend "eating out", so put Poudre Keg on Linden Street in Fort Collins as one of your choices. You will not be disappointed!