- Griffin Swartzell
4375 Sinton Road, 719-528-1155, caspiancafe.com
It’s easy to feel locked in during this quarantine, but that means it’s all the more important to seek some kind of enrichment. That could be anything from trying new games to digital happy hours with friends to getting takeout from an unfamiliar restaurant, maybe the sort of place that can be seen from the highway but is just enough out of the way that it’s easy to forget about. For me, Caspian Cafe is one of many such spots that’s long begged for attention, and now offers curbside pickup.
Persian chicken in walnut sauce comes in a pan sauce made of puréed walnuts, olive oil, dried apricots, caramelized onions, pomegranate and cilantro. The pomegranate adds sourness more than fruit flavor, and its savory saltiness pops something fierce with the grill char on the chicken breast. A side of cooked tomatoes, onions and zucchini adds some freshness and helps sop that sauce.
Lamb tajine with apricots and almonds suffers in presentation taken to-go, but the flavor hits a grand slam. A rich sauce perfumed with spices like cumin serves as an already excellent base, and the taste of the lamb meat goes well with the sweetness and tang of the dried fruit, with chunks of almond adding crunch for texture.