Foodie Files: Arcana
A good friend of mine was raised in Boulder. We’re foodies. Like foodies. When we both lived in Southern California, we were constantly seeking the hottest restaurants. She gave me a Bon Appétit subscription for my birthday. In sum, she’s the best and I trust her judgement. When I texted her to tell her I would be visiting Boulder for the first time to see Laverne Cox speak at CU Boulder, she texted back “Need restaurant recommendations?” I told you, she’s the best. She referred me to a restaurant owned by one of her friends. I quickly reviewed the menu and knew it was the one.
Arcana was located on beautiful Walnut St. It was my first time in Boulder, so this area was quite charming. The restaurant was gorgeous with beautiful oak and light fixtures throughout. I sat at the bar which had a library-style, complete with books on various libations and cocktails.
Arcana has a good and affordable happy hour menu for those stopping in after work. I ordered the $4 cider of the day which was the Argus Ciderkin (Austin, TX). This was a great selection. Whenever you choose the “blah blah of the day” you worry about quality. The Argus Ciderkin is my new favorite cider, as it was not to acidic and the apple flavor was very crisp, smooth, and refreshing.
For an appetizer, I selected the Pull-Apart Bread. In the words of Oprah, I love breaddddddd! Arcana must do bread well since they had several different options on their menu to choose from. I wanted their fried garlic bread but worried about those who had to sit around me for the next couple hours. The Pull-Apart Bread arrived cornucopia style, dressed in poppy seeds with honey butter in the middle. The bread was easy to pull apart, soft and warm. It blended well with the creamy honey butter and resulted in a nice appetizer and pairing for my entrée. The honey butter was incredibly delicious to the point in which I wanted to ask one of the servers for a tub to take home!
As most of you know by now, I love seafood. Thus, the Seafood Rice was instantly my first choice for an entrée. First, the dish arrived and looked and smelled amazing. Large, juicy, flavorful scallops laid on top the perfectly cooked Carolina gold rice. Add in the smoked sausage, crab, hints of pickled veggies, and Cajun seasoning—I was in love. Everything melted in your mouth and the bread from my appetizer paired well with this dish.
Overall, my experience at Arcana was excellent. Great scene and flavorful dishes. It’s a great location for dinner, dates, and happy hour. As I was leaving around 6pm, it was getting quite busy with the after work crowd. The two mixologists were quiet friendly and attentive. I wish I had more time to enjoy their extensive cider, wine, and cocktail list. The whole time I sat at the bar, I watched as they crafted unique cocktails that I would love to try in the future. One of the mixologists even hand-whipped whipped cream right on the spot!