Tattoo Artist : Currently employed at "Best of Colorado Springs" Silver Medal "Place to get Tattooed" Pens & Needles.
Best Of 2015: Tattoo Parlor
Best Of 2015: Piercing Parlor
Forget everything you ever thought you knew about the look and feel of a tattoo parlor: the hard waiting-room chairs, ticking fluorescent lights, and glumly painted walls. Pens & Needles turns the status quo on its head, in a big way. Comfortable waiting areas and confident, friendly support staff make guests feel at ease as they await their chosen body modification. "Sure, the atmosphere is cool," you say, "but what about the art?" Well, their team is GOOD, providing quality, safe, beautiful work you'll be proud to rock all the way to the grave. — Bridgett Harris
Best Of 2014: Fine Dining
Best Of 2014: Restaurant for Carnivores
When The Famous won these same two categories last year, plus Best Overall Restaurant, I re-visited that same month for a full review, seeking to really unpack the why of it all. I discovered a cocktail of explanations, the sum of excellence at all turns, and a larger-than-life-ness to huge portions of pretty seafood plates and steaks. There was even an affordable burger ($12 at the Friday lunch special) that's a king monster badass, made mostly with primal cut trimmings for intensely rich flavor, served on a delightful house rosemary-onion sourdough bun. The house cocktail program ranks among the best in town, too, and the swank décor makes you feel like a big dog. — Matthew Schniper
Best Of 2015: Irish Pub
With weekly pub sing-alongs, half-priced Whiskey Wednesdays, and the most epically Irish Sunday brunch imaginable, it's easy to see why Jack Quinn's is Colorado Springs' favorite Irish pub. The place is Irish through and through. You'll find traditional music on Sunday evenings, your favorite brews on tap, and an authentic menu filled with rich and filling home-style cuisine. Sláinte! — Bridgett Harris
Best Of 2013: Deli
Best Of 2013: Sandwiches
Jimmy John's delivers on a number of levels, from rushing sandwiches direct to your door to having them wrapped up and ready to go pretty much by the time you reach the end of the counter. The brainchild of Jimmy John Liautaud, who started the first shop as an Illinois teen in 1983, the chain has grown to 690 stores across the nation. And as its Web site boasts, there are no additives, no junk and, at least according to a sign in the downtown franchise, no hippies. (If a location opens up in Manitou, this will surely change.) There's also classic rock, so you can get a dose of Zeppelin and Clapton with your lunchtime fix. — Bill Forman
Happy hour: Monday-Friday, 3-6 p.m. and 10 p.m. to close
The goods: $3 house drafts, wines and wells, $5 appetizers
Rock Bottom may be corporate, but its Springs location does all its brewing on-site, every beer the product of local brewmaster Jason Leeman. He picked up two awards at the Manitou Craft Lager Festival last summer, and each month unveils a new creation. Rock Bottom usually offers about 14 brews on tap, but don't expect to find Bud or Coors: "If we don't brew it," Leeman says, "we don't serve it."