Colorado: Durango Diner
Durango, a picturesque mountain town in southern Colorado, has earned its reputation as a travel destination with its beautiful summer weather, extended fall leaf-peeping season and superb winter skiing. No matter your reason for visiting, no trip to Durango is complete without a stop at the Durango Diner. Gary and Donna Broad have owned the landmark eatery on historic Main Avenue since 1980 and still pride themselves on cooking everything from scratch, from huevos rancheros to the “biggest and best in the West” hotcakes (a nod to the plate-size pancakes Gary ate at Long Island diners as a kid). Snag a stool counter or one of a handful of tables, then peruse the menu. Anything with Gary’s housemade green chili is a solid option; try it in the The Cure, where it’s lavished over grated-to-order local potatoes that are covered in cheese and scattered with your choice of toppings. The green chili and the Southwest salsa are so popular that they’ve been permanent fixtures at local grocery stores for more than 20 years, and Gary estimates the diner ships out at least a case a day.