We had breakfast in Jerome, Arizona, at Quince (keen-say, Spanish for 15). While not immediately bicycle-related, we did see three devotees grinding up and over the mountain, which presents a combination of elevation gain, narrow roads with tight switchback turns, and automobile traffic that is not for the faint of heart or the fragile of spirit. The route is popular with a certain hardy, spirited road cyclist for just those characteristics. Check it out, and grimace:
17 miles of spirit-sapping delicious mountain climbing
|Art for sale in the bathroom, possibly a view of the inner struggle of a cyclist grinding up Mingus Mountain|
|These are reputed to be customers who left poor tips|
Me, I just drove up for breakfast. The food at Quince was outstanding, inspired by New Mexico, faithful to its origins but also interpreted into something unique. The breakfast burrito was fantastic, constructed around a chorizo of mountain-scaling power, and covered in a perfect green chili sauce. Many breakfast burritos I've eaten have been very good and very filling, jammed with potatoes, eggs, onions, and various meat products, and I think of the good ones as dense packages of power-punching flavor to fill an empty belly. Quince's breakfast burrito was something else entirely, though, possibly like dancing with Salma Hayek: hot, tasty, ineffable, you never want it to end.
Unlike cycling up Mingus, I imagine, which has to cause you to start wondering what you've gotten into, somewhere around mile 11. I may give it a try some day. Cycling up Mingus through Jerome, I mean. Dancing with Salma Hayek is pretty unlikely. Although I've heard they crank up the music at Quince on Friday nights, and with food and decor like that, I suppose anything's possible. The pancakes were also excellent, fluffy and silly-huge, and the scrambled eggs with cheese blend also made me want to go back for more. And, it would not be complete if I didn't mention that the coffee was excellent, with top-notch service, too. Master Chef Valdimir Costa's cuisine left me feeling ready to do the impossible.
Quince: one more thing to love about Jerome. Get up. Go ride.
|Skullies in the window next door|