A Birthday on the Byway
July 10th, 2017: My 52nd Birthday
Dateline: Palisade (East Orchard Mesa), Colorado
My plan was to ride over to a couple of the vineyards nearest to the bed and breakfast I was staying at to get a bottle of local wine. As it was my birthday, I especially wanted to have a glass of wine or three on the gorgeous back deck of the Cherokee Vineyards Bed and Breakfast. The deck overlooks the vineyards and mountains, and, oh my gosh, that deck was my spot to be the entire time I was there. I just could not get enough of it. Quiet, spectacular beauty. I ate my breakfast there, savored my morning coffee, checked my social media, blogged, pulled myself away for a spell to go for a ride, but then spent the evenings back on that deck. I should have taken a short video of what it looked like at night with the reflection of the setting sun lighting up the Book Cliffs and the Grand Mesa. I am certain I could live out the rest of my days right there in that spot.
I biked about a mile down the Fruit and Wine Byway to Carlson Vineyards, tasted a few wines, selected not one but two bottles of wine (a cherry wine and a red blend), and then decided to ride the remaining sevenish miles to the town of Palisade to eat a late lunch. It was hot. 100 degrees. And biking mountain roads at over 4,700 feet of elevation was kicking my Illinois ass. But it was my birthday, and I needed to eat, and there were no other options for food other than biking into Palisade or biking back into Grand Junction. So onward I went.
Upon arriving in Palisade, I asked a woman taking a cigarette break at the gas station what she recommended. One of the places she recommended was The Palisade Cafe, which was located right off Main Street. I had the most amazing birthday meal there. Seriously. I need to tell you a bit about that.
The Pal Burger: 1/3 lb fresh Roan Creek Ranch beef, lava rock char-grilled, house-made aioli, fresh local veggies on Slice O'Life's whole-grain bun.
Dessert: Lavender Vanilla Creme Brûlée
And, of course, a special drink.
Holy Hell, was that ever delicious!
I decided to save Palisade Brewing Company for another day because I didn't trust myself. I had ridden down to Copper Club Brewing Company in Fruita a few days earlier for "one" and spent an entire afternoon there.
So, yeah, it was a birthday to remember on the Palisade Fruit & Byway. 🚲🍷👍🏻