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El Rinconcito, Colorado Café, Mission Coffee Roasters 

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click to enlarge Colorado Café - GRIFFIN SWARTZELL
  • Griffin Swartzell
  • Colorado Café

Colorado Café

Various locations, 216-6571, facebook.com/coloradocafefoodtruck

The Colorado Café food truck, opened in June, mostly does business in the north part of town. We catch owner Tasha Brugh at an office park in Monument on a cool, cloudy day. We're grateful for a hot meatball sub ($7) from the pretty blue-green truck — not just because it's a welcome warm-up. With rich, savory meatballs and a nicely seasoned red sauce, all seasonings balance deftly into a pleasant and well-portioned bite overall.

However, dessert disappoints a little. The house-baked pineapple cake ($2) resembles pound cake gone dry, topped with non-dairy frosting — mildly sweet, but no real flavor. Fortunately, the pineapple topping adds the needed moisture and flavor to the bite, presenting mild cinnamon and nutmeg flavors. Sadly, the menu lacks the reader-recommended peach cobbler. Ah well, maybe on my next visit. — GS

click to enlarge El Rinconcito - MATTHEW SCHNIPER
  • Matthew Schniper
  • El Rinconcito

El Rinconcito

2237 E. Platte Ave., 217-3004

The dive-y location housed La Costa Chica for many years, then Los Compadres. Four months ago it became El Rinconcito under new ownership. What the atmosphere lacks — Pepto-Bismol-colored walls at least set a cute tone — the food more than compensates for. Twenty styles of fat tortas run in the $8.50 to $10 range and bad-ass legit street tacos run $2 each (cash only).

Our Super Cubana torta stacks a variety of pork preparations with egg, chorizo, cheese and hot dog slivers on a fluffy telera roll. You bite, ingredients spill out, you taste layers of savoriness spiked by an occasional jalapeño sliver, and comfort food overload takes over. Of the five tacos we try, I'd skip the overly gooey chicharrón and drier cesina suadero, described as differently spiced asada. Instead get the tripe, pineapple-flecked pastor, and alambre, a mix of asada, chorizo and pastor bound by a touch of cheese for a chewy, char-laced mouth-hammer of epic glory. — MS

click to enlarge Mission Coffee Roasters - GRIFFIN SWARTZELL
  • Griffin Swartzell
  • Mission Coffee Roasters

Mission Coffee Roasters

11641 Ridgeline Drive, 888/673-4069, missioncoffeeroasters.com

Big things are coming down the pike for Mission Coffee Roasters, owner/roaster Brett Bixler tells me when I tour his north-end facility. We can't talk details until the ink's dry, but fans of the roastery will hopefully see Mission beans more places in the area. We can say, though, that the coffee remains good, and the roastery's charity- and community-minded attitude has not been dampened — they're soon adding more artists to their Artist blend bag series, available at Whole Foods.

At the café, we try a raspberry white mocha ($3.65/12-ounce), surprisingly balanced for a sugary drink. Try also a bright and citric cold brew ($2.75/12-ounce), too. But after a marathon of coffee with a headache coming on, I commit heresy and order a green tea frappe ($4.25/12-ounce), which drinks sweet and creamy, akin to good ice cream. — GS

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