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Best Bites: Rozzi's Lakeshore Tavern

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Rozzi's Lakeshore Tavern

1022 West Lakeshore Drive, Colchester 863-2342

When I travel to a large city, I always try to hit the most pretentious,avant-garde restaurant around. "Air" served as part of a tastingmenu? Count me in.

But I also appreciate creativity in more ordinary foods, which is why I like Rozzi's and its menu of 26 different hamburgers.  When I first saw a sign advertising thisphenomenon, I assumed it would include “burger with lettuce,” “burger withlettuce and tomato,” and so on. Instead I found a menu loaded with the kinds of unusualpatties that appear on menus throughout the country, but which I've never seen in Vermont.Ever hear of a Guber Burger? Invented at the Wheel-Inn in Sedalia, MO, this Midwestspecialty features melted gooey, peanut butter atop the meat. Rozzi’s also has aBreakfast Burger, Red Hot Cheeseburger and most believe it or not, an EscargotBurger.

But I craved an Elvis Burger ($7.99). The half-pound of beefcame cooked exactly medium — what the French call “a point.” Slathered inpeanut butter and topped with three banana halves, I worried that the usuallettuce and tomato would interfere with the experience. Au contraire. Thebananas and fruity tomato paired brilliantly.

Another revelation was the plate of Chicken Sliders ($6.99).The tiny, southern-fried sandwiches accurately mimicked the long-since-discontinuedfavorite of my childhood, KFC’s Chicken Littles. No other chicken slidermatched them until now.

Next time, I might spring for brunch, which is alwaysavailable, and inlcudes Tie-Dyed Pancakes (with M&Ms), biscuits and gravy and KahluaFrench Toast. But what really looms is “The Dozer.” It's composed of two, one-poundpatties, and you win a T-shirt if you eat the whole thing. I want that shirt.

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