An early dinner combination plate at The Branding Iron, in Pagosa Springs, CO.
Set just northeast of Pagosa Springs, The Branding Iron brings some down home Texas BBQ to southwest Colorado. Open from May to October (gotta get out of town when it snows!), the Western decor and memorabilia alone is worth a trip through the front door. However, sit down for a meal (on a bonafide Western horse saddle-chair, if you wish), and you'll be coming back for sure.
An early dinner, in August, resulted in a combo plate, complete with BBQ chicken, sausage, pork ribs, and brisket - all cooked tender, with a rich, deep smoke bite. A spicy, not sweet, BBQ sauce is available, if you're predisposed to smothering the already flavorful portions. Sides for the day included beans, cob corn, potatoes and bread.