Fundraiser for I Have a Dream Foundation opens great local kitchens.
If you are thinking about building a home or remodeling the one you have and are looking for ideas, if you just enjoy visiting fabulous kitchens in terrific homes, or if you mainly want to support the I Have a Dream Foundation, don’t miss the 2016 Dream Kitchens Tour this weekend, Saturday, April 30. 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., and Sunday, May 1, 12 noon to 4 p.m.
On the 2015 tour are 11 Boulder County homes — up from just six last year. Tickets good for either or both days are $20. Purchase at the I Have a Dream office (5390 Manhattan Drive, Suite 200, Boulder). Online purchases or tickets bought at any King Soopers carry a service charge. FoMoInfo, call 303-444-3636.
Three ingredients mandated for Bavarian beer — and that’s all.
April 23, 1516, was not the date of William Shakespeare’s death. That wouldn’t happen for another hundred years. It was the date of the adoption of the Bavarian Beer Purity Act (Reinheitsgebot in German), decreeing that beer could be made only with three ingredients: water, barley and hops. Period.
This calls for all manner of celebrations, certainly in Germany where some festivals will stretch through the summer, but even in Colorado. Here are some:
AC Goldenand Sandlot Brewery, both part of the Coors family, serve limited release of the Reinheit brew at select World of Beer locations. Master brewer Andreas Gahr from St. Johann Research Brewery in Germany has collaborated on this authentic, old-style German lager.
Boulder’s Bohemiian Biergarten is turning up the party juice this evening, even though Bohemia is now the Czech Republic, not Germany. Really, who cares? Beginning at 8 p.m. this evening, they are serving $5 Paulaner and Hacker-Pschorr Biers (both from Munich and now corporately related). Also, there’s a raffle for commemorative mugs. Austrian Connection plays live. At least Austrian and Germany share a common language (more or less, depending on regional dialects). Create some Reinheitsgebot-themed attire and get a gift.
Mockery Brewing irreverently calls its its event Reinheitsgewhat?!. It starts today at noon, and the irreverence continues as the brewery invites guests to “spend the day rocking and mocking beer laws.” They’ve got limited beer releases, live music by the The Polkanauts (“Metal by Birth-Polka by Choice”) and commemorative beer steins for the first 100 guests. They are putting details on their Facebook event page.
The Rackhouse in RiNo is serving specialty brews from Call to Arms and Fässer, Andechs Döppelbock monastery from noon on. The kitchen is turning out the Bavarian specialty, Leberkäse, a pâté beloved in southern Germany, Austria and Switzerland.
The weather forecast for this coming weekend is uninspiring, but I hope the weathercasters are wrong and this Sunday afternoon is dry. The seventh annual Taste of Pearl is a picaresque event with 15 Boulder restaurants paired with 15 Colorado wineries that are hosted in 15 of downtown Boulder’s best boutiques and galleries.
Attendees will enjoy a stroll from one location to the next a lot more if it is not raining. It takes place on April 17 from 2 to 6 p.m. in the heart of what is called “America’s foodiest town.” Click here for participating restaurants and here for participating wineries.
VIP tickets are sold out, but some general tickets are still available for $65 if bought online, and a limited number may be on sale for $70 the day of the event at the Visitor Information Center(1301 Pearl Street in front of the courthouse).
Samples of food and wine from all participating restaurants and wineries.
Keepsake wine glass.
A re-usable wine carry bag.
A compostable, re-usable wine plate to hold your wine glass while tasting the food.
$5 off a bottle of wine from one of the participating wineries.
Special Offers for event attendees at hosting retail locations (including drawings, free gifts with purchase, discounts and more).
Project to cut down on red meat consumption & up taste.
This is the second year for the Blended Burger Project, designed to make burgers “better” by combining ground meat with chopped mushrooms. Not a promotion directly aimed at consumers (that is, you and me), it challenges chefs to create “an incredibly delicious burger that’s healthier for your guests and more sustainable for the planet.” The burgers, which are to be on the restaurants’ menus from Memorial Day through July 31, must be made with at least 25% cultivated, chopped mushrooms. Foraged wild fungi need not apply.
The James Beard Foundation is behind the project, and winning chefs based on diners’ votes get a trip to prepare their blended burgers at the JBF Food Conference, October 17-18, the prestigious James Beard House in New York. I’m not clear on whether any Colorado chefs were involved last year, when it was called the Better Burger Project. The five winners were respectively from Indiana, Louisiana, Tennessee, California and Pennsylvania), but three of Denver’s best are offering a sneak peek to the 2016 project, and others are invited to participate, so there’s hope for this year. Chefs Alex Seidel (Fruition, Mercantile), Justin Brunson (Old Major, Masterpiece Deli) and Troy Guard (Guard & Grace, TAG Burger, Sunnyside Burger Bar and more) have each created their own renditions of a blended burger.
A media preview is scheduled at Fruition later in the month, but I’ll be out of town so won’t be able to attend. I regret the timing, because A) I believe that for environmental reasons, even the most responsibly raised beef cattle take their toll on the environment; B) for health reasons, many people need to cut down on their red meat consumption; C) I like mushrooms.
A highlight of the Taste of Vail, Larkspur Restaurant, whose format is now something of a pop-up site and events venue, hosts James Beard Foundation Celebrity Chef Tour on Friday, April 1 at 7 p.m. No foolin’. The celeb chefs are locals. Wonderful that Colorado cuisine is at a point where culinary talent doesn’t have to be imported from out of state.
Cooking and mixing and pouring is this star-studded Colorado culinary cast:
Host Chef/Owner Thomas Salamunovich, Larkspur, Vail
Host Chef Paula Turner, Larkspur, Vail
Paul Anders, Mountain Standard and Sweet Basil, Vail.
Troy Guard, Tag Restaurant Group, Denver
Jennifer Jasinski, JBF Award Winner + Bistro Vendôme, Euclid Hall Bar & Kitchen, Rioja and Stoic & Genuine, Denver
Max MacKissock, Bar Dough, Denver
Mark Metzger, St. Julien Hotel & Spa, Boulder
Beverage Director Bryan Dayton, Acorn, Denver and Oak, Boulder
The event isn’t cheap. But for $190, guests get sublime food prepared by some of Colorado’s best chefs — and beverages, ambiance and service to match. Click here for tickets.
The site’s selection is one of what I call “the usual suspects,” that is restaurants that appear on many a list, even where they are arguably not the most logical selection. To wit:
Pepsi Center, Denver (Mountain West Conference)
Seafood might not be the first thing you’d think of in a city that’s a mile high, but Stoic & Genuine is fantastic, and it’s only a mile from the Pepsi Center. “Fresh is everything” is the motto of Jennifer Jasinski and Jorel Pierce, and it applies to every dish, whether it’s the scallop poke, octopus mortadella, oysters (from both coasts), crab legs, a whole Maine lobster, or the intimidating “Seafood Tower of Power.” There’s also a “Surf in Turf” option, which features New York Strip-wrapped Ahi tuna, and an extensive wine list with a surprising amount of sparkling options.
Now I like Stoic & Genuine an awful lot, but it wouldn’t be my for first pick for good eats near the Pepsi Center. I would have selected Coohills, an excellent restaurant within sight of the arena. More to the point, Coohills is doing real March Madness specials as befit its location. From the restaurant’s own website:
MARCH MADNESS AT COOHILLS!
March Madness is coming to Denver and what better place to spend before and after the games then at Coohills – Just a short walk across the street from the Pepsi Center!
We will be opening early for the March Madness games at the Pepsi Center on Thursday, March 17, 2016 and Saturday, March 19, 2016 from 12:30 pm – 11 pm. Chef Tom has created the perfect lunch menu (click HERE to view) for you to enjoy before and after the games! This menu will be available from 12:30 – 4:00 pm on those days. Happy Hour starts at 3 pm and our regular dinner menu will begin at 4 pm. Call and make reservations: (303) 623-5700.
The Denver International Wine Festival has moved around metro Denver locations from the University of Denver to the Omni Interlocken, but this year, it will be at yet another venue, the recently opened Westin Hotel at Denver International Airport. The 12th Annual Denver International Wine Festival is a three-day wine and food festival showcasing the largest selection of international and domestic wines of any Grand Tasting in the Rocky Mountain region. Mark your calendar now.
Wednesday, November 2. Grand Vintners Dinner, a multi-course winemaker’s dinner. Featured winery TBA.
Thursday November 3. Pairsine Chefs Fine Food and Wine Pairing Competition, with 10 celebrated chefs (TBA) will each have been assigned two of the gold-medal-winning wines from the 2016 Denver International Wine Competition. They must create a food pairing for each wine, giving attendees a chance to same 20 food and wine pairings. It’s my favorite part of the festival. A new VIP ticket allows one-hour early access, a raw seafood bar, premium cocktails and a meet-and-greet with the chefs.
Friday November 4. The Grand Tasting of International Wines and Food from 4 to 9 p.m. (VIP) or 6 to 9 p.m. (general admission). This is the region’s largest wine tasting event for consumers, media and trade, with more than 80 wineries and distilleries, plus delectable food and wine tastings, food products, wine accessories, a silent auction and fine art.
Cost: $95 to $175 depending on event and ticket type. Other details to come.
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.