Jefferson Park eatery re-establishing its cicchetti bar.
Sarto’s, a metropolitan Italian eatery in the Jefferson Park neighborhood, has had a challenge finding its focus. When it opened nearly three years ago, Brian Laird of Barolo Grill was the first chef. Click here for my report.
There was at least one other top toque before Meyer was appointed as executive chef. He was an interesting choice, having been at Sarto’s veteran in the early days, but his experience is broad. He once cooked at a trout fishing resort near Alamosa and did stints at Old Major, where he worked his way up to junior sous chef before initially joining Sarto’s. He left to help a friend open a fine dining barbecue restaurant in Singapore, returned briefly to Sarto’s before heading north to Alaska to serve as a chef at a boutique fishing lodge where he learned how to cure his own caviar, forage for wild mushrooms and filet a 300-pound halibut. Back in Denver, he returned to Sarto’s to take the helm as executive chef. Hopefully, the third time is the charm.
Meyer has worked to create a culture where employees feel like they can thrive and grow. Despite his fish diversions, his approach to the menu is quintessentially Italian, using the best seasonal ingredients expertly prepared simple and elegant dishes that are also approachable and authentic.
Meyer doesn’t believe great food should just be reserved for special occasions. He has returned the restaurant’s popular Cicchetti Bar back to its roots, making it less of a chef’s table and more of a place where diners can gather socially for cocktails and cicchetti, Italian small bites that change daily. The Cicchetti Bar is open from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. Thursday through Saturday.
Sarto’s is also adding a new calendar of events, including Saturday cooking classes and Sunday Night Screenings, featuring a themed dinner and movie in the restaurant’s private Verona Room.
Sarto’s is at 2900 West 25th Avenue, Jefferson Park, Denver.