For All You Bikers Out There – Strava

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Screenshot of the “Explore” tab in my Strava account. Click on the picture to be brought to their website to check it out. Credit: Strava website, July 2013

A friend at work told me about this free app for my iphone (works for droids as well) called “Strava“. So far, I’ve learned that you can set goals and challenges for yourself, keep track of your progress with your phone / laptop, and find other rides that Strava members have mapped out. Today, a few of us are going for a bikeride from 17th & Colorado to REI in the Highlands. I’m totally going to record my ride using the Strava app and check it out for you guys! I’m sure it isn’t the most sophisticated, incredibly accurate bicycling app, but honestly – that’s not what I’m looking for. Just something to help me with tracking my progress. 

In a town like Denver, you get hooked on exercise like bike riding, and I’d really like to see if this app motivates me, and helps me get back into shape. I’ll let you all know how it works! 

If anyone has used the app and has some tips or comments, we’d love to hear!

Milk Bar – Not the Chocolate, but the Sweet Place on Broadway

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Logo borrowed from Milk Bar’s Facebook Page. Click to visit and Like ’em! You know you should… Credit: Milk Bar Facebook Page, June 2013

3 Rooms, 3 DJ’s, 3 bars – if there’s not something you like at Milk Bar, then I hate to say it, but pal – there’s something wrong with you. Steven Mercer, my other half, and I headed over to Milk Bar last Saturday night on a tip from a friend in LA. He advised us that his friend would be spinning at Milk Bar, and that he was amazing to watch and listen to. This is our first “club” atmosphere that we’ve dove into since living in Grand Rapids, MI, so of course, we were completely skeptical before arriving. To be honest, we told our friends that we’d be home an hour later – the goal was to stop by and support a friend of a friend. So, we left our apartment at about 11:00 pm to catch a cab to the alley entrance behind 1037 Broadway in Denver, CO. 

 

Yeah, we didn’t get home until about 2:15 am, if that says anything. 

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As Beaux (far left) explained, “It’s not that hard to make friends here – just walk up to people and start talking to them!” So, we did. And were rewarded with a picture. Credit: Steven Mercer, June 2013

When you walk into Milk Bar, you think, “What am I getting myself into?” Answer: Awesome Fun Happy Time. Milk Bar as a whole supports three separate rooms with three separate DJ’s, genres of music, dance floors, lights, and bars. There’s also a large smoking patio connected, so it’s unnecessary to leave the bar to have a cigarette; drinks are welcome on the patio. 

Every walk of life inhabits Milk Bar, which is what made Steven and I fall in love with the place immediately. I don’t dress in “gothic” attire, nor do I dress “steam punk” or have cool piercings, but I love those who do, and I love the ability to be in the same vicinity as those who are so comfortable with just being themselves and having a great time. This is what Milk Bar is all about – they provide the opportunity for anyone and everyone to come, let loose, and be themselves, regardless of what you’re into. They support so many genres of music with different atmospheres that it sucks in an incredible amount of different individuals, all with the same goal in mind – a good time. 

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We did not bring the “big” camera, so in order to show you the aesthetic beauty of this great place, I’ve borrowed the above picture from Milk Bar’s Facebook Page. Please click on the above photo, visit their Facebook Page, and Like ’em! Credit: Milk Bar Facebook Page, July 2013

Aside from the great atmosphere and the welcoming people, the drinks were great. Nicely poured without robbing my pocketbook (totally just called a wallet a pocketbook). Both Steven and I stuck with liquor, and weren’t broke when 2 am rolled around. Keep in mind there is cover – we paid $5 to get in last Saturday, which is a cheap fee for the stiff drinks, awesome people, and great music.

Suggestions before going to Milk: 

  • Put on your dancing shoes. 
  • Download Shazam. Not all of the songs will register, but it’s worth a shot – they spin some great music! 
  • Check out their Facebook page to see what events are coming up and who is spinning.

We’re hoping to stop by again this upcoming weekend, and let loose at Milk Bar. Hope to see you there, friends. 

Countdown to 4th of July & the Colorado Rapids

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Credit: Ticket Horse & the Colorado Rapids. Click on the picture to purchase tickets for the game on the 4th!

Yes, ladies and gentleman – we are only days away from celebrating ‘Merica right here in Denver, CO, and I, for one, can’t wait. Basically, the entire DenverSpeax crew is catching a 7 pm shuttle from The Three Lions Football Pub on Colfax to Dick’s Sporting Goods Park to watch the Colorado Rapids take on the New York Red Bulls. Tickets were about $25 bucks (plus convenience fee) for bleachers, and the bus ride to, and from, Three Lions is $10 per person. There’s also fireworks. What would a 4th of July be without fireworks, really? Not awesome – that’s what. Come join us for an awesome game of football / soccer, and wish America one kick ass birthday. Hope to see you there!

 

Ace Eat Serve- Asian Comfort Food & Ping Pong

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Ace Restaurant, situated at 501 E 17th Ave in Denver, CO. This shot doesn’t come close to doing the incredible porch justice, but you can make out the mist pretty well! Credit: Kirsten Ebey June 2013

You heard it right – Asian comfort food AND a dedicated Ping Pong (or Table Tennis) Hall reside at Ace Eat Serve Restaurant in Denver, CO. Add a bar and spacious outdoor patio with mist ducts along the rooftop edges, and you’ve got a feature-packed restaurant that’s perfect for numerous occasions such as hanging out, lunch with the family, or drinks after work.

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With so many faves, it’s so hard to choose just one! Or, two… or five. Click on the pic for Ace’s menu! Shawna Jones, pictured. Credit: Kirsten Ebey June 2013

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Pictured is the drink Ms. Shawna Jones ordered: Ace’s blackcherry soda and vodka. Credit: Kirsten Ebey June 2013

My friend, Shawna Jones, and I biked the 5 miles (roundtrip) to Ace on one of the hottest days we’ve had this summer, and sat out on the patio for lunch. First thing on our mind: cooling off. The falling mist was glorious, and checked that issue right off our list. Second thing on our mind: cocktails – that bike ride in the heat kind of wore us out, so in addition to water, we thought it best to order a tasty adult beverage.

While Shawna ordered a Vodka and ACE Blackcherry Soda (delicious, by the way- pictured right), I grabbed a Shiner Ruby, my favorite summer seasonal brewski that mixes grapefruit with ginger; also, what a great beer pairing for our upcoming feast.

The menu features a ton of Asian-style food favorites – dumplings, pork ramen, bibimbap, you name it. There are so many favorites listed that both Shawna and I ordered a total of five items to share – it’s THAT HARD TO CHOOSE. I had been to Ace one time previously and had an idea from that experience of what I just had to order: steamed vegetables (only $3 bucks for a heaping plateful of garlic- and ginger-infused, steamed veggies – that’s a steal!) and a Pork Bao Bun. Shawna ordered the Kalbi (Korean BBQ short beef ribs) and chicken dumplings. We both decided that since we were there, we really needed to just go for it, and ordered the vegetable potstickers as well – it was necessary. So, as mentioned earlier, a feast was had.

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Table sauces pictured: Black Bean Sauce (left) and Crisp Chili Oil (right). Click on the picture for a link to Ace’s Menu! Credit: Kirsten Ebey June 2013

We waited probably about 20 minutes, which is such great timing. Although Ace‘s dishes appear to be so simple, each dish has crazy, complex flavor. Paired with their two signature table sauces, you can’t go wrong: the Crisp Chili Oil sauce (my favorite – I dump it on everything) consists of dried red chilies, sesame oil, and textured vegetable Protein while the Black Bean Sauce consists fermented soy beans, chilies, dark soy, and garlic (info gathered from Ace’s Official Website).

Pictured top, and clockwise: Veggie potstickers, steamed veggies, and Pork Bao Bun. Credit: Kirsten Ebey June 2013

Of everything we ordered, I honestly can’t pick a favorite – everything was amazing, and adding the Crisp Chili Oil sauce adds a whole new twist, bringing out flavors of the dish you would not otherwise notice as well as serving as a great enhancement for very lightly marinated, steamed veggies. If I had to guess though, I would think that the short ribs have found an irreplaceable spot in Shawna’s heart. In addition to the amazing food, the ambience is so incredible – there’s a very large hall within the restaurant dedicated for Ping Pong enthusiasts everywhere. On their website, you can view the rules of the game, as well as spot openings for when you and your friend can grab a table. The outside patio is perfect for these summer months, with the cool mist making it incredibly refreshing and comfortable to sit in the partial sun. The menu is built for all ages – kids menu, drink menu with happy hour specials, dessert menu, and juice bar in addition to the lunch and dinner menus, of course. There’s no way to peg what type of person to bring, and for what type of occasion – Ace Restaurant is so versatile yet welcoming that it’s the perfect location for business lunches as well as a stop during your night on the town.

Pictured above: Korean Short Ribs (left) and Chicken Dumplings (right). Credit: Kirsten Ebey June 2013

There are plenty of places to park on the street, as well as bike racks available (remember your Ulock!). An extra bonus is being able to see your bike from the patio!

I hope you have the opportunity to stop and check out this great place; Ace Eat Serve is such a cool place to eat and hang out, and I can’t wait to go for my third time! There are so many places to eat in Denver, but sometimes you just find places that really resonate with you – Ace is definitely one of them. Go check them out! NOW.

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The amazing menu of Ace Restaurant. Credit: Kirsten Ebey June 2013 Click the picture to be taken to Ace’s menu!

 

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