There’s nothing more frightening than being in an unfamiliar place looking for a suitable dinner the night before a half ironman. When going from Kansas City to Boulder, CO, for a race, I was at a disadvantage of not knowing my options. On one hand you want the proper nutrition and on the other hand you want to actually enjoy your meal and like the taste and flavor. You have to be careful as quality taste could lead you to GI nightmares for race day.
Recently I was in Boulder, CO, for Ironman Boulder 70.3 (link examiner) and I was facing the dilemma of where to eat for pre race dinner. I wanted taste and protein, but I didn’t want a race morning surprise with all of those nerves working my GI system overtime.
The added bonus is that I was not familiar with the area and local cuisine. After some looking on the internet and advice of some locals, I ended up at Shug’s Low Country Cuisine – FACEBOOK (www.facebook.com/shugslcc) – TWITTER (http://twitter.com/shugslcc).
I know what you’re thinking. “Down South cooking could equal some bad GI times”. Not the case with Shug’s. The menu supplied enough fish options that you could avoid loading up on spices and get the grub you need to fuel race day.
The theme at Shug’s was class mixed with practicality. In Boulder, being outside is everything. You get that option with outside seating to watch all that Pearl Street has to offer in people watching. The actual restaurant was well put together and decorated.
The staff was abundant. From the hostess to the servers and busboys, everyone treated you with respect and attended to you in a timely manner. My glass of Arnold Palmer was never below one quarter empty and my water was always topped off.
The tie for the owner is local. The owning group stems from the Colorado Buffalo football team. It’s not a chain that picked Boulder as the next great opportunity to make a quick buck. They ownership cares about the community and its reputation in the community.
The presentation of the meal was great. It was cooked to perfection and all the trimmings looked great.
The taste and flavor was just as good as the presentation.
Location was right off Pearl Street Mall. While I will list this as a detraction as well, it’s a plus since it’s RIGHT off the mall. Before or after dinner all you have to do is walk down half a block and you can watch all the statue people and street performers you want.
The owners are very in to social media. They interact in a regular basis on their facebook and twitter pages. If you asked a question or wanted to know some details, they will get a response to you pretty quick.
THE DOWN SIDE
Location is very important for any business. I’m sure space on Pearl Street is a premium as that is the main drag for Boulder. They are located in downtown Boulder, half block south of Hotel Boulder, just around the corner from the Pearl Street Mall. You have to know where and what you are looking for to find them.
South cooking isn’t for everyone. I enjoy fish so it was not a problem to find something that appealed to me. If you like Cajun style, then it’s right up your alley.
They are pretty new. It will take a little time before they become known and a little more mainstream in Boulder with their type of menu. They continue to engage both locally and on social media so that should not be an issue in the near future.
I walked away from Shug’s feeling satiated. I got my protein I wanted with some carbs (side of rice) and I wasn’t relegated to a bland dinner to avoid race morning issues. Shug’s was a little difficult to find but well worth it after the meal. The location is convenient if you want to take the family or significant other back down Pearl Street Mall for some last minute shopping or people watching.