If you have had the pleasure of visiting Telluride you probably were struck by the amazing natural beauty and the stunning mountains that stretch skyward at the end of the box canyon. You were probably also charmed by the Victorian homes, and the individually owned businesses that line Main Street, most with historic storefront facades.
What you probably didn’t notice right away but it may have stuck with you, is that there are no fast food restaurants in Telluride. That’s right, you have to travel 65 miles to get to the nearest Mickey Ds! No Wendy’s, no Pizza Hut, no Burger King and no Taco Bell.
So what does one do in Telluride when your stomach is rumbling and you need a quick bite, pronto, like STAT. I mean there are times when you have just a few minutes to grab lunch or you’ve skipped breakfast and in need of calories earlier than the lunch hour. So what is Telluride’s answer to fast food…the food carts!
Diki Wachenstedt is the grilled cheese lady, you can buy only one sandwich and fall in love. Not only are the sandwiches delicious, but Diki is always up for a small chat. The menu has a mix of your regular cheddar cheese, to bacon and pepper jack to (my personal favorite) brie and apricot sandwiches. She has a variety of drinks and new this year she is offering Grilled Cheese Cart hats and shirts for her number one fans. You can find her in front of Elks Park any day of the week, so go grab yourself a delicious grilled sandwich!
Hot dogs are a true American food, so why should Telluride miss out on that? Diggity Doggs is a food cart that started in 1997 and has been growing ever since. It started as, and still is, a cart but also has a small building in the mountain village for the year round hot dog lovers out there. You can get your average meat lover dog, or they have turkey and tofu options too!
You know you’re in Telluride when there are people who bike their ingredients to town. The Biking Burrito is a mobile food cart that sells burritos and quesadillas, because what else would you need? There are many variations to choose from its hard to pick just one!
Greek and Mediterranean food is becoming more and more popular and Jennifer Ruenz thought she could bring the trend to Telluride. The Gyro Stand offers authentic salads and gyros for people who want a quick taste from across seas. They make your order right in front of you so you know exactly what they put in it.
One of our newest stands in Telluride is Slurp, it opened this year and is doing great. They offer Vietnamese food, which is hard to find in the Rockies, but they wanted to bring more cultural diversity to Telluride. You can order a noodle bowl or spring rolls and know that you are about to eat something delicious.
You can’t buy a good soft pretzel just anywhere but thankfully, in Telluride, you can! Telluride Twisted Treats opened in 2014, though it’s new it does not lack in deliciousness. The pretzels come in a variety of flavors and many toppings and dips to go with. The prices are great too! The next time you hop on the gondola I wish you luck trying to resist the temptation that awaits you.
I think that all of the food in Telluride is absolutely delicious, and that does not exclude the carts. However, I can’t help but choose some that I enjoy more than others. I personally think that the Grilled Cheese cart is the best option for a quick lunch on the go. They are made right in front of you, and I know no matter what I choose for my sandwich, it will be amazing. If you are looking for a quick snack though, I prefer a soft pretzel with cheese from Telluride Twisted Treats. I am a pretzel lover, and cannot help but order one if I’m hungry and near the cart.
So, even though we don’t have any fancy fast food restaurants that every other town has, we make it up with our food carts. I think they add a bit more of uniqueness to our beautiful town, and I don’t miss Taco Bell one bit!