The Barrel, Estes Park CO 1930s
The proprietors of The Barrel had a sense of humor because they printed “I stole this from….”at the top of this vintage menu.
On simple brown card, the limited food and drink options are laid out. Hungry patrons could go for a 10c bonded hamburger or a deluxe at 15c.
We believe the description of bonded hamburgers is about the preparation of the beef and shows they were made with a meat grinder which allowed a finer texture of beef that could be combined with onions and seasonings.( Previously, beef had to be chopped by hand using special chisels.)
Barbecue was also on the menu as well as three types of cheese, egg, peanut butter and popcorn.
There was no alcohol offering but we wonder if the phrase ‘If it isn’t listed here… ask for it” could be a veiled reference to illegal booze since we believe this menu is dated in the late 1920s or early 30s when Prohibition was still in force.
Estes Park is a town in northern Colorado and is, as the menu says, at an elevation of about 7500 feet. The town lies along the Thompson River and is known as a base for the Rocky Mountain National Park and the nearby wilderness areas of Roosevelt National Forest.
Before Europeans came here, the area was populated by the Arapaho Indians. Estes Park was named after Missouri native Joel Estes who founded the community in 1859.
The Stanley Hotel, built in 1909 as an example of Edward opulence, inspired author Stephen King to use the building as the locale for his fictional hotel the Overlook in the novel The Shining, later made into a film starring Jack Nicholson.
On the other side of this menu card is a list of driving distances from various towns, suggesting this restaurant was popular with tourists in the early days and remains so today.
Courtesy Private Collection.
Each print is accompanied by a copy of the interior menu or cover.