The Skirted Heifer (Colorado Springs, CO)

Much like my review of King’s Chef Diner, I’ve had a handful of places that I had started reviewing around Colorado Springs, but deferred publishing once Covid hit, preferring to wait until I could make sure I could follow up and revisit them to check up on how they are doing. One of these places is The Skirted Heifer, a burger joint which I’ve visited on several trips to Colorado Springs. Now, with visits on my 2019 and 2021 trips, I can confirm things are well at the Heifer.

Located on the west side of downtown Colorado Springs’ Acacia Park (with another location in North Colorado Springs), the Heifer is basically a modest build-your-own burger bar. The menu, in fact, pretty much is “burger and fries”, just with two options for fries (regular or sweet potato, both seasoned with their in-house blend), but a healthy set of options for your burger itself. Starting with the protein itself (grass-fed beef, turkey, or quinoa), bun (classic sesame, whole wheat, garlic focaccia, or gluten free), and toppings (up to five free toppings of your usual variety, and about a dozen deluxe toppings (bacon, mushrooms, or pueblo chiles), and cheese. To make choosing everything easier, they’ve even got a menu of “No Brainers”, pre-configured combinations that work well.

But what makes the Heifer stand out is the cheese. While they’ve got a good selection of your basic burger cheese toppings (American, cheddar, blue cheese, or pepper jack), they’ve also got their namesake “Skirted Heifer”: once your burger is almost done, they bury it in a giant mound of shredded cheese (spilling over on to the griddle), sprinkle some water on it to steam it, cover it, and let it both melt and crisp on the griddle. The resulting “skirt” of crisped cheese makes the namesake “Skirted Heifer” burger.

It’s a nice variation on the burger concept, since it adds quite a bit of cheese, much of it crisped, to the overall burger, and while I wouldn’t want this on every burger, the crisped, seared cheese is a good overall concept. It’s not quite unique; a very similar concept was used at Chris Madrid’s in San Antonia to make their Tostada Burger, and actually it reminds me most of one of my favorite breakfasts, the José at Al’s Breakfast. The burger underneath that giant plinth of cheese is a good, solid burger as well: good beef, a nice sear, and a good selection of quality toppings (I had pueblo chiles and garlic on mine).

The fries, meanwhile, while not the star attraction at the Heifer, aren’t a slouch, either. These aren’t you typical “throw some Sysco fries in the Frialator” fries, but nicely executed thin potato fries, crisp on the outside, tender on the inside, with a pleasing in-house spice blend that adds some good flavor without overwhelming the fries themsevels.

And, as I hinted to in my sometimes neither me, nor my cardiologist, are in the mood for that much cheese, so on my handful of visits, I have occasionally ordered something other than the namesake Skirted Heifer, like a burger served up with bacon and pepper jack instead of the giant cheddar skirt; the result is still a solid, well-executed burger.

Overall, while the primary attraction that The Skirted Heifer is their namesake burger, it’s definitely a good place to go for burgers and fries in a friendly, affordable, and straightforward burger bar. I keep going back, and not just because it’s across the street from my usual hotel.

No comments yet.

Leave a Reply