Renaissance of Rosenberg’s

Five Points bagelry & deli reopening.

001Five months after being burned out in a terrible fire, Rosenberg’s Bagels and Deli is reopening at 6 a.m. tomorrow. Owner Josh Pollack and his 18-person team made good use of the unplanned sabbatical, collectively volunteering some 1,000 hours and raising more than $8,000 for charity.

The new Rosenberg's.
The new Rosenberg’s.

During the  summer, Rosenberg’s hosted pop-ups at the weekly Slow Food Farmers Market at The Source, and at festivals and special events in Denver. All pop-up proceeds went to such local charities as Project Angel Heart, Friends of the Denver Fire Department, Slow Food Denver and Stamp Out Hunger. Each Rosenberg’s staff member volunteered at least 75 hours assisting with food drives, replanting community gardens and feeding the sick for such organizations such as Metro Caring, Project Angel Heart, Food Bank of the Rockies, Denver Parks & Recreation and Extreme Community Makeover. For this commitment to community alone, we should all patronize Rosenberg’s.

A taosted bagel with a cream cheese schmear, lox onion, tomato and capers is about much New York authenticity as is found in Denver.
A toasted bagel with a cream cheese schmear, lox, a bit of sliced onion, tomato and capers is about much New York authenticity as is found in Denver.

But the New York-style bagels and toppings are very good, and Pollack has several other worthy projects underway. These include the City Pretzel cart launched earlier this summer; a second Rosenberg’s coming to the Stanley Marketplace when it openin in Aurora; Lou’s Italian Deli, slated to debut in RiNo in early 201, and what is described as “a joining of forces with The Bagel Store, an iconic, kosher bakery in Southeast Denver.” Not sure what “joining forces” means.

Rosenberg’s is at  725 E. 26th Avenue, Denver.
Rosenberg's Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Fourth Flatirons Food Film Festival

Celluloid celebration of all things food plus great speakers.

flatironsfoodfilmfest-squareThe fourth annual Flatirons Food Film Festival is coming right up (Thursday, October 20 through Sunday, October 24), but since I’m flying off to China on the 16th, I will miss it all this year —  both literally and figuratively.

In addition to films, local and visiting speakers and samples, Saturday is geared to young foodies with kid-friendly food films and pettable goats from a local dairy. Tickets to individual events and the economical and convenient, and  all-film passes are available through eventBrite.

Festival schedule

Thursday, Oct. 20
DOUGH screening, 7:30 p.m., Boulder Public Library
Speaker: Josh Pollack of Rosenberg’s Bagels, just reopened after a devastating fire

Friday, Oct. 21
Chefs Night at eTown Hall: A Celebration of Munchies Films,
6 to 7:30 p.m., VIP party
7:30 p.m., short films screening
Speakers: Chef Theo Adley, Hosea Rosenberg, chef and co-owner of Blackbelly market, Bryan Dayton of OAK at fourteenth, Chad Pettrone of Northeast Seafood Products
Munchies After Party. Dakota Soifer of Cafe Aion, Theo Adley, and Michael DeBoer of the French Twist food truck are cooking dishes that were created by some of the chefs in a film about a pop-up in honor of the Mission Chinese cookbook (Danny Bowien of Mission Chinese, Andy Ricker of the Pok Pok restaurants, and Jessica Koslow of Sqirl).

Saturday, Oct. 22 (all film screenings at the Boulder Public Library)
Children’s Tour of the Boulder Farmers Market. 9:30 to 10:30 a.m.
Food Films for Children, screening with presentations from Tim Brod of Highland Honey Bees, Dan Hayward of Savory Spice Shop – Boulder and Taber Ward and her Mountain Flower Goat Dairy goats, 10:45 a.m.

FEAR NO FRUIT screening, 1:30pm
Speaker: Hass Hassan, co-founder of the original Alfalfa’s Market
SOMM: INTO THE BOTTLE screening, 4 p.m. (followed by a wine sampling at 6 p.m. for SOMM and CITY OF GOLD ticket holders)
Speaker: Bobby Stuckey of Frasca Food and Wine. He is a master sommelier and therefore has gone through the arduous process.
CITY OF GOLD screening, 7:15p.m.
Speakers: Pulitzer Prize winner Jonathan Gold of the Los Angeles Times, Amanda Faison of 5280 Magazine
After party, 10 p.m., Bramble and Hare restaurant

Sunday, Oct.23  (both screenings at International Film Series, Muenzinger Auditorium, CU-Boulder campus; free shuttle available from downtown)
JUST EAT IT screening, 12 p.m.
Speaker: Philip Taylor of Mad Agriculture
THEATER OF LIFE screening, 2 p.m.
Speaker: Peter Svatek, director

Monday, October 24
Taste the Wild: Bristol Bay Sockeye Salmon Dinner, 6 p.m., Basta (co-sponsored by Chefs Collaborative and the Bristol Bay Regional Seafood Development Association)
Salmon dish chefs: Josh Pollack, Kelly Whitaker of Basta, Kyle Mendenhall of Arcana

Happy News of 3 Reopenings

Conor O’Neill’s, Rosenberg’s & The Campus Lounge comeback tales.

reopeningjpgI recently posted news of the shuttering of two longtime metro area standbys, Boulder’s Conor O’Neill’s and The Campus Lounge in Denver, but couldn’t bear to write about the devastating fatal fire that closed Rosenberg’s Bagels & Delicatessen in Five Points. These three are or soon will be back. I suspect there won’t be Grand Reopenings (that was all I could find online), but the reopenings of these favorites will be grand.

Conor O’Neill’s reopened just a week after it closed, thanks to a deal struck with the Irish pub’s landlord.  The Irish pub rehired staff who rushed to put back everything they had taken down just a few days earlier. The new owners of The Campus Lounge in Denver’s Bonnie Brae area say they are keeping the name, the horseshoe bar and even the landmark sign but are redoing much else.

Rosenberg’s is to rise again in mid-October, having satisfied their loyal customers and perhaps finding new ones with a pop-up at the Slow Food Famers Market in The Source in RiNo and elsewhere , and also donated money, time and effort to various good causes.

Beard Celebrity Chefs in Colorado

1515 Restaurant and Devil’s Thumb Ranch to host some of the best.

JamesBeardFoundation-logoThe James Beard House in New York is one of America’s culinary holy places, and the James Beard Foundation located there is the keeper of the flame. Dining there is a WOW! experience, no matter who is cooking, and the foundation is increasingly spreading the epicurean wealth with events elsewhere.

Coming right up (October 20) is the JBF’s Celebrity Chef Tour at 1515 Restaurant in Denver, when chef/restaurateur Gene Tang  hosts the  following kitchen wizards in what I understand is the only Denver event this year:

  • Gene Tang, Restaurant 1515, Denver
  • Jeff Cleary, Grateful Bread, Denver
  • Stephen Fried,  Gullo Specialty Foods, Hicksville, NY
  • Laurent Mechin,  St Julien Hotel & Spa, Boulder
  • Mark Monette, Flagstaff House, Boulder
  • Kevin Nashan, The Peacemaker and Sidney Street Cafe, St. Louis
  • Martin Rios, Restaurant Martín, Santa Fe
  • Mindy Segal, Mindy’s HotChocolate, Chicago
    JBF Award–Winning Pastry Chef

Click here to buy tickets, which are $115 per person with U.S. Bank FlexPerks Rewards and $175 for everyone else for the dinner, paired wines, gratuities and taxes.

And at Devil’s Thumb Ranch

On Saturday, November 19, Devil’s Thumb Ranch in Taberbash hosts the sixth annual James Beard Foundation Fundraising Dinner, which in format is similar to the Celebrity Chef Tour. Its purpose is to support the JBF’s scholarship fund.

This year’s event will be held in memoriam of the late Chef Evan Treadwell, who was killed in a boating accident on September 6. Like the mission of the James Beard Foundation, Chef Treadwell was dedicated to mentoring professional chefs. His legacy will be honored by his peers from Denver and by the culinary team at Devil’s Thumb Ranch, who — like Chef Treadwell — demonstrate talent, expertise and most importantly, passion for what they do.  Their inventive dishes will be shared with guests, elegantly paired with wines from Joseph Phelps Winery of Napa, presented by Master Sommelier Damon Ornowski.

Participating chefs are:

  • Alex Seidel, Fruition, Denver
  • Justin Brunson, Ole Major, Denver
  • Jeff Osaka, Osaka Ramen, Denver
  • Paul Reilly, Beast + Bottle, Denver
  • Natalie, Basarov, Devil’s Thumb Ranch

Tickets cost $150 per person for JBF winners and $200 for the rest of us. Call  970-726-5633 to reserve.

Devil’s Thumb Ranch Resort & Spa is at 3530 County Road 83, Tabernash; 970-726-5632.

Easy As Apple Cake

Simple fall recipe for tasty cake.

appleWhen your friends have apple trees, you get lots of apples. I rarely make the same recipe more than once, but this Dutch Apple Cake Recipe was so good that I have repeated it and probably will again when apple season 2017 arrives.


Dutch Apple Cake

3 medium or 4 smallish apples, peeled, cored and sliced
2 Tbsp. sugar
2 tsp. cinnamon
1 cup sugar
2/3 cup unsalted butter, softened + butter to grease loaf pan
3 large eggs
2 tsp. vanilla extract
2 cups flour (I use Hungarian High Altitude flour)
1/8 tsp. salt

1. In a large bowl combine apple slices, 2 Tbsp. sugar and cinnamon. Let stand for 1/2 hour.
2. Meanwhile, preheat oven to 300°.
3. In another large bowl, cream butter and 1 cup sugar until light and fluffy.
4. Add eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition.  Add vanilla.
5. Combine flour and salt. Gradually add to butter/sugar/egg mixture, beating until smooth.

6. Transfer to well-buttered 9 by 5-inch loaf pan.
7. Push apple slices vertically into the batter, placing them close together.

8. Bake for 1½to 1¾ hours, until a toothpick inserted near the center comes out clean. The cake will have puffed up to the height of the rim. Cool for 10 minutes, then remove to wire rack. (Apologies for no image; I forgot.)

Slice and serve while still warm. Vanilla ice cream goes well with it.

Ali Baba Now in Boulder

Lebanese-Mediterranean restaurant’s newest location.

p1120190When we come back from the Western Slope, we often stop at the Ali Baba Grill in Golden for Lebanese/Middle Eastern food that is tasty, healthy, moderately priced and served quickly. Boulder has  its own Ali Baba Grill — the fourth location. We’re happy.

It is on the same block with the new (and instantly popular) Rayback Collective. The décor is beyond simple — just a few Middle Eastern touches, but this is a place you don’t visit for its appearance.  We seem to have neglected photographing the chicken kabobs, here are pieces of most and tender chicken served off the skewer. Sorry. Portions are generous at Ali Baba — always enough to bring some home.

Hummus -- house-made and nicely presented.
Tahini -forward hummus topped with olive oil and paprika  — house-made and nicely presented.
Muhamara, a tangy puree of walnut, red bell peppers, cracked wheat, onion, and lemon juice, topped with olive oil.
Muhamara, a tangy puree of walnut, red bell peppers, cracked wheat, onion and lemon juice, topped with olive oil.
Soft, chewy pita, ready to tear into pieces and eat with just about everything on the menu.
Soft, chewy pita, ready to tear into pieces and eat with just about everything on the menu.
Cucumbers, lettuce and tomatoes comprise the Ali Baba side salad.
Cucumbers, lettuce and tomatoes comprise the Ali Baba side salad.

Price check: At dinner, appetizers, $4.95-$9.95; entrées, $12.95-$19.95 (plus Lebanese meats, $29.95 for two); soups and salads, $4.25-$5.95); “pies” (savory empanada-like pastries), $2-$3 (plus 6-iem combos, $10-$12.

 It is located in the building once occupied by the Siamese Plate Too and since then, a couple of other short-lived eateries. 3033 28th Street, Boulder; 303- 440-1393.

Zomato hasn’t yet discovered the Boulder location, so this box is for Golden.
Ali Baba Grill Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Awesome Avelina Launches in LoDo

New LoDo eatery with sterling pedigree.

Avelina executive chef John Broening.
Avelina executive chef John Broening.

Chef John Broening and pastry chef Yasmin Lozada-Hissom, partners in life and in business, are the culinary brains behind Avelina, a big new restaurant carrying a name that means “little bird.” Individually and together, they have produced exquisite fare in a number of restaurants, and Yasmin has been a James Beard finalist/semi-finalist pastry chef more times than I can recall.

Chef de cuisine John Broening and sous-chef Bradley Yard in the large, open kitchen.
Thumbs-up-from chef de cuisine John Broening  (ight) and sous-chef Bradley Yard in the large, open kitchen.

I first encountered Broening at Primitivo, at the time the only fine-dining restaurant in downtown Colorado Springs, and again at Brasserie Rouge in the Ice House before Union Station’s major make-over.  He joined Udi’s on Broadway, where and Yasmin met.  They were in turn at Duo, Olivéa, Spuntino and now Avelina, which is owned by North Carolina-based Urban Food Group out but thanks to them and their team, it has a distinct Colorado flair.

A quiet moment before Avelina's opening party gets roaring.
A quiet moment before Avelina’s opening party gets roaring.

The enormous space. which is proportioned like a big bank with high ceilings, large light fixtures and commodious furnishings, made for a grand setting for the grand opening party. The food — small bites or this and that — was as delicious as  it was beautiful and vice versa. The servers were busy as worker bees ferrying out platter after platter (and beverages as well).  Sometimes they  had time to let guests know what we were eating. Other times not, so here are some uncaptioned food pictures.

p1120168p1120166 p1120167 p1120169

Price check: Shared plates, $5-$16, charcuterie, $11-$12; large plates, $19-$39.

Avelina is one block from Union Station at 1550 17th Street (entrance at Wazee Street),  Denver; 720-904-6711.

Claire Walter's Colorado-oriented but not Colorado-exclusive blog about restaurants, food and wine events, recipes and related news. For address of any restaurant, click on the Zomato icon at the end of the post.