Oh sure, you can go downtown. You'll find a little dancing, a little drinking and a lot of disorder. You might even find a young lad or lass. But you'll never find The Party, and that's because it's way north of Fillmore Street.
And why shouldn't it be? You've got, like, 200 chain restaurants between the U.S. Air Force Academy and Powers Boulevard, all powered by countless 20-somethings. When they're off work, they drink and drink and sing at Good Company Restaurant & Bar (7625 N. Union Blvd., goodcompanybar.com), a corner spot that's probably older than the neighborhood and continually reinvents itself. Or they go to Guthrie's (1410 Kelly Johnson Blvd., 260-8486). It's L-shaped with roughly the square footage of the car that brought you, but it's got a dartboard at the long end.
The Dublin House (1850 Dominion Way, 265-8820) — "The Dub House" or "The Dub," if you had my friends — teems with a mix of horny singles and couples of all ages, those who want to just drink and karaoke with fury, and rocking lovers of live music. The cops will follow you out of the parking lot, so, as at all the spots mentioned here, drink like you want to stay out of jail.
Considering you'd likely be making a drive north to hit it, that advice goes double for O'Malley's Steak Pub (104 S. Hwy. 105, omalleys.biz) in Palmer Lake. Besides the pretty awesome fact that there's a grill in the back for cooking your own burgers and steaks, the barn-looking bar's got a popular vibe all its own — last year, readers voted it the Best Neighborhood Bar in the area.
Though it sometimes seems damn near impossible to find a Denver Broncos bar, those catering to sports of all types are everywhere. Indie ones include All-American Sports Café Bar & Grill (12225 Voyager Pkwy., allamericansportscafe.com), whose wings are an Indy favorite, and Overtime Sports Bar & Grill (2809 Dublin Blvd., otsportsbar.qwestoffice.net), where you can get started with breakfast on weekend game days.
Way up north, 1st and 10 Sports Bar & Grill (1455 Cipriani Loop, 1stand10monument.com) in Monument has great, great pizza and an impressive array of microbrews for the discerning drinker (which you, reader, clearly are). Farther south is Back East Bar & Grill (9475 Briar Village Point, backeastbarandgrill.com) and, toward Garden of the Gods, Hondo's Sports Bar & Grill (4659 Centennial Blvd., hondoscoloradosprings.com).
Another Pint American Ale House (13860 Gleneagle Drive, anotherpint.net) has some the hardest-to-get brews from elsewhere. Add in monthly beer dinners, and it's a place to keep in mind.
Now, you might have heard we have a few breweries around here. Trinity Brewing Co. (1466 Garden of the Gods Road, trinitybrew.com) specializes in saisons and, like any good brewer, shares its taps with a wide array of out-of-state outfits. At the new Pikes Peak Brewing Co. (1756 Lake Woodmoor Drive, Monument, pikespeakbrewing.com), brewer Chris Wright has already established himself as a badass. Colorado Mountain Brewery (11202 Rampart Hills View, cmbrew.com) goes the full-restaurant route while catering to the AFA crowd. That leaves national chain BJ's Restaurant and Brewhouse (5150 N. Nevada Ave., bjsbrewhouse.com), whose avocado egg rolls are better than they have any right to be.
And speaking of beer, you can get some while also getting an eyeful at Fabulous TNT's (4630 Austin Bluffs Pkwy., fabuloustnts.com), the rare all-nude club with a full bar.