Category Archives: Restaurant & multiple restaurants

Cured Offer Tour de France Matches

Regional cheeses and drinks echo Grand Tour route.

Cured-logoOnce again, Will Frischkorn is preparing for the Tour de France. The greatest of all the Grand Tour races in Europe starts on Saturday in Holland, whisks through a bit of Belgium before its grueling route around France with the traditional finish in Paris. But these days, he’s not getting his body and mind into shape to ride 3,360 kilometers.  Rather, he and his wife, Coral,  who own Cured, have put again together a little Tour of their own that is assembled for customer with a love of cheese, a passion for French wine and a good appetite.

TDF-2015-map

Will broke the Tour into eight stages, each corresponding to 3 to 4 days of racing, and for each region, he has chosen a cheese and a beverage. As the riders make their way around France, it is possible to follow along with region-appropriate cheese and wine and the Tour on the tube or on your computer.

Each stage, available individually for $40 or as part of the whole package for $295, comes with a chunk of cheese and a beverage to pair.  While mostly wine, they also have an exceptional beer and even a bottle of Calvados this year, paying homage to the route that the organizers chose for this 102nd edition of the Tour. Participants in Cured’s entire tour receive a Team Garmin Cannondale musette bag filled with Will’s favorite cycling ride and recovery snacks. This year’s Tour is available for pickup at Cured, or for $90 each week, they’ll deliver a box to  your doorstep with that week’s stages. Call Cured at 720-389-8096 to purchase a Tour and visit their website to learn more and read about the individual stages.

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Lunada in Lafayette a Tasty Surprise

001Southwestern restaurant  next to a mall that is becoming a mega-church.

Lafayette’s Flatirons Community Church has been making headlines for its huge congregation (10,000 members) and its expansion into the Lafayette Marketplace, which used to have several restaurants. The church bought the mall from Jim Quinlan,  owner of Jax Mercantile, which anchors the mall.  On Saturday, we were scheduled to do volunteer  tree planting at the Wild Animal Sanctuary, and we were told to expect mud. It was indirectly because of Jax Ranch Supply, where I went to buy rubber boots, so we discovered A) the location of the headline-making church and B) Lunada. It is one of the few remaining restaurants there.

The space was once an Indian restaurant, and the wall colors translate well o Southwestern style.
The space was once an Indian restaurant, and the wall colors translate well o Southwestern style.
Lunada usually referrs to the crescent moon, but the restaurant's dramatic art depicts the full moon.
Lunada usually referrs to the crescent moon, but the restaurant’s dramatic art depicts the full moon.
A good marg in a cactus-steam glass are a good start.
A good marg in a cactus-stem glass is a good start to any Mexican meal.
Nachos, natch.
Nachos, natch.
A trio of sliders on mini-brioche bread are sided with thin, skin-on fries. The burgers are topped with cheddar cheese, chipotle mayo and crunchy
A trio of sliders on mini-brioche bread are sided with thin, skin-on fries. The burgers are topped with cheddar cheese, chipotle mayo and crunchy “tumble weed onions.”
Signs of the times at the former mall.
Signs of the times at the former mall.

Price check: Soups, Salads and Stew, $4-$8.99; Para la Mesa (shareable food “for the table”), $2.99-$7.50; Char-Grllled Burgers, $8.50-$10.99; Los Tacos, $8.49-$12/49 (incl ranchero beans and rice); Las Enchiladas, $9.50-$12.

Click to add a blog post for Lunada Eatery & Cantina on Zomato

Wonderful Wine Pairing at 1515 Restaurant

Four courses and eight wines make for indulgent evening,

001I had long heard about 1515 Restaurant on the fringes of Denver’s LoDo district, known for great dining options, but I had never eat there — until last night. Owner Gene Tang, executive chef Joseph Arena and master sommelier Emily Papach tag-teamed to present a four-course feast, each one paired with one wine from Cambria Estate Winery and one from Freemark Abbey, both in California’s Napa Valley, several being single vineyard wines.

A table set with starched linens, multiple wineglasses and a an artillery of flatware is always a promise of fine food and wine to come.
A table set with starched linens, multiple wineglasses and a an artillery of flatware is always a promise of fine food and wine to come.
Emily Papach table-hopped after each course to ask us all which wine we thought paired better with the dish we just ate. Our little pod of four seemed to agree that some wines tasted better by themselves and some worked better with the food.
Emily Papach table-hopped after each course to ask us all which wine we thought paired better with the dish we just ate. Our little pod of four seemed to agree that some wines tasted better by themselves and some worked better with the food.
The first course was an artistic presentation or a wonderful crisp-crusted egg prepared sous-vide so that the white and yolk cooked evenly, a frog leg (
The first course was an artistic presentation or a wonderful crisp-crusted egg prepared sous-vide so that the white and yolk cooked evenly, a frog leg (“tastes like chicken”). edamame, bits of spring green onion, sherry and butter sauce (called vin jaune) and red olives. Yes, red olives! Both wines were 2012 Viogniers, the Napa Valley label from Freemark Abbey and Tepusquet Vineyard from Cambria.
Roasted golden tilefish. which tastes something like snapper, buerre blanc, asparagus tips arranged in a tic-tac-toe pattern and capers.
Roasted golden tilefish. which tastes something like snapper, buerre blanc, asparagus tips arranged in a tic-tac-toe pattern and capers. The wines were both 2013 chardonnays Freemark’s Napa Valley and Cambria’s Katherine’s Vineyard.
My little camera cannot ever capture beef dishes as beautiful as they are on the plate. This course of 7X Wagyu beef topped with crisp tidbits of bone marrow, plus rainbow chard and a wonderful ragout of wild mushroom Bordelaise. The beef was flavorful but not especially tender, but what left a bad taste was learning that 7X Cattle Company is a holding of one of the Koch brothers. Freemark Abbey Cabernet Sauvignon 2011 and Cambria Benchbreak Vineyard Pinot Noir 2011 went a long way in helping me overlook that knowledge.
My little camera cannot ever capture beef dishes as beautiful as they are on the plate. This course of 7X Wagyu beef topped with crisp tidbits of bone marrow, plus rainbow chard and a wonderful ragout of wild mushroom Bordelaise. The beef was flavorful but not especially tender, but what left a bad taste was learning that 7X Cattle Company is a holding of one of the Koch brothers. Freemark Abbey Cabernet Sauvignon 2011 and Cambria Benchbreak Vineyard Pinot Noir 2011 went a long way in helping me overlook that knowledge.
The exquisite composted dessert was a fitting finale to this wonderful meal. A deep chocolate terrine topped with a perfect vanilla tuile with salted caramel ice cream called for fabulous wines. Cambria's Tepusquet Vineyard Syrah 2012 was fine, but the Freemark Abbey Sycamore Vineyard Caber Sauvignon was over the top. Aged in new French oak plus a year of bottle-aging, it retails at $107 per bottle and was by far the most expensive wine poured at this wonderful dinner.
The exquisite composted dessert was a fitting finale to this wonderful meal. A deep chocolate terrine topped with a perfect vanilla tuile with salted caramel ice cream called for fabulous wines. Cambria’s Tepusquet Vineyard Syrah 2012 was fine, but the Freemark Abbey Sycamore Vineyard Caber Sauvignon was over the top. Aged in new French oak plus a year of bottle-aging, it retails at $107 per bottle and was by far the most expensive wine poured at this wonderful dinner.

1515 Restaurant on Urbanspoon

BurgerFi’s Green Practices & Better Food

Selective franchise built on ethically raised ingredients & recycled décor.

006I don’t really know the inspiration for this franchise chain’s name, but I do believe, that like Colorado-based Chipotle, BurgerFi is committed to environmental stewardship and quality ingredients. A burger place that uses natural, grass-fed, hormone- and antibiotic-free Angus beef is noteworthy. And where else would you find a hot dog made with Kobe-style beef? The furniture is made from recycled materials, so it’s a fast-casual place that does strain my conscience or offend my taste buds.

Environmentally conscientious messages
Environmentally conscientious messages reinforce BurgerFi’s philosophy.
BurgerFi sears its brand into the buns. Here, a cheeseburger with a choice of cheeses.
BurgerFi sears its brand into the buns. Here, a cheeseburger with a choice of cheeses.
Skin-on, hand-cut fries are available in three sizes. This is the small, and it was plenty big enough to share.
Skin-on, hand-cut fries are available in three sizes. This is the small, and it was plenty big enough to share.

BurgerFi franchise locations are scattered around the country. The one kitty-corner from the History Colorado Center, across the street from the new Art Hotel and around the corner from the Denver Art Museum is the only one in Colorado — for now.

Price check: Burgers, $6.09-$7.99, plus $10.59 for a double burger made with 28-day dry-aged brisket and loaded: also build-your-own, $4.59 single, $6.09 double, $7.59 triple with some toppings included and others additional; “dogs,” $3.99-$5.49; $3.29-$6.99 with a choice of toppings 59¢-$1.79 extra; “custards” (shakes, malts and ice ream desserts, $3.99-$5.99.

BurgerFi on Urbanspoon

Boulder — An Underrated Food City?

Thrillist-logo Thrillist.com the latest to “discover” Boulder’s vibrant food scene.

I’m always pleased when national media shine the spotlight on Colorado’s food scene — even more so when Boulder is singled out. But I was startled when Thrillist.com selected Boulder as for its roundup of “The 7 Most Underrated American Food Cities in 2015.”

Underrated? Boulder’s highly regarded, even nationally known restaurants are written about all the time, and Boulder  boasts one of the best farmers’ markets in the land and has been the wellspring for natural and organic food companies starting with Celestial Seasonings to whichever food or beverage startup will launch next weekend.

Thrillist.com tasked Cindy Sutter, the Boulder Daily Camera food editor, with writing about the Boulder food scene. She focused on the restaurant aspect, understandably including “the usual suspects.” Here’s what she wrote:

“When people think of America’s culinary capitals they usually look to the coasts: New York, San  Francisco,      and New Orleans all regularly top the lists of the best American food cities. But hiding in the ‘flyover states’ and in ‘harbors-that-not-many-people-live-in’ is a cache of culinary talent that’s just as worthy of sinking your teeth into.

“We’ve already touched on seven of these underdog cities, but our country’s cupboards are hiding so much more deliciousness and so many cities’ scenes have exploded in the past year, so we thought it worthwhile to give props to seven more gastronomically obsessed towns. And to show just what makes each great, we tapped a local writer to share what makes that food scene unique. Here are seven cities you’ll immediately want to visit.”

About Boulder: “Boulder residents would likely be surprised to find their town on an underrated food city list. And it’s not only because Bon Appétit magazine picked Boulder as America’s Foodiest Town in 2010. Take a walk down Pearl Street in downtown Boulder, and you’ll see what the magazine folks saw.

“Start at Frasca Food and Wine, where co-owners Lachlan Mackinnon Patterson and Bobby Stuckey have two James Beard Awards. Stuckey is one of 118 Master Sommeliers worldwide, as are six other Boulder residents. Not bad for a town with a population of 100,000 and change. Head west (toward the mountains) and make another stop at OAK at fourteenth, where local meats, vegetables, and even luscious Colorado peaches take a turn in the restaurant’s wood-fired oven.

“Veer a block or so off Pearl to find the Black Cat, whose chef-owner, Eric Skokan, raises the restaurant’s vegetables (including heirloom dent corn for GMO-free polenta), as well as ducks, pigs, and beef cattle on his farm on county-owned land preserved for agricultural uses. This year, Skokan released a cookbook, ‘Farm Fork Food’, that he edited on his smartphone from the seat of his tractor. Or try The Kitchen, which has nourished relationships with local organic farmers since it opened in 2004; its nonprofit Kitchen Community builds school gardens, placing more than a 100 in Chicago, where it also recently opened a restaurant to positive reviews. You also might want to try Salt, where the food is local, seasonal, and GMO-free.

“Food, health, and sustainable agriculture have a long, intertwining history in Boulder. The bustling Boulder County Farmers’ Market, also near Pearl Street, got its start in 1987. The town that popularized herbal tea and tofu also had a strong hand in craft beer, with Boulder County boasting 40 breweries and counting. After you’ve taken in the scene, do what Boulderites do: eat and run (or hike or bike). There are trails just a few steps away from those amazing restaurants.

“And if that’s not enough for you, go east a couple of miles and find ‘Top Chef’ winner Hosea Rosenberg’s Blackbelly, which received well-deserved national attention when it opened last year.” – Cindy Sutter, Daily Camera food editor.

Rounding out the “most underrated list” are Baltimore; Birmingham, Ala.; Kansas City, Mo.; Memphis, Tenn.; Portland, Maine and Providence, R.I.

Well-Priced Wine Pairing with Master Somm’

1515 Restaurant’s May 27 dinner promises great food & wines to match for $65.

1515Restaurant-logoI don’t usually post news about wine-pairing dinners because there are so many, But this one caught my eye for two reasons. First, the wines will be introduced by Emily Papach, the 19th woman in the nation to have earned the title of Master Sommelier (out of 21 total). She will lead a very special wine dinner (menu below) at 1515 Restaurant in Denver on Wednesday, May 27 at 6:00 p.m.  Second was the price. The dinner including paired wines is only $65 per person (plus tax and gratuity).  Believe me when I say that this is a helluva a deal for such a dinner. Food alone at wine-pairing dinners is often that much, with the wines additional.

1515 Restaurant is a fine-dining restaurant known for modern American cuisine in a relaxed yet elegant setting. “This is a rare opportunity to get to know one of the most respected wine experts in the US and taste wines paired with food she recommends,” said restaurateur Gene Tang. himself a First Level sommelier.  “We’re going to have a lot of fun with this event. I’m sure there will be some spirited debates over which ones go best with each course.” I’m really looking forward to this evening.

This splendid disk of roast duck with mixed greens and duck cracklings on mac-and-cheese is not on the Chappalette dinner menu. I offer it here only to show a 1515 Restaurant presentation.
Roast duck with mixed greens and duck cracklings on mac-and-cheese is not on the Chappellet dinner menu. I offer it here only to show a 1515 Restaurant presentation.

About the Sommelier

Papach.
Papach.

Emily Papach got on the fast track to Master Sommelier certification, sometimes called the toughest education in the world. After graduating from the University of Virignia in 2044, she started working at Danny Meyer’s Gramercy Tavern in New York City. She was a wine captain and cellar assistant, while completing the Diploma studies for the Wine & Spirit Education Trust.  In 2008, she relocated to her home state of Virginia, to become a salesperson for specialty importer and Master Sommelier, Fran Kysela.  Emily then enrolled in the Court of Master Sommeliers Introductory Course in 2009 and completed the Certified Exam that same year.  In the spring of 2010, she passed the Advanced Exam in Anaheim on her first attempt. Not many Master Somms pass the first time. She is currently the national sales analyst and wine educator at Chappellet Vineyard, a family-owned Napa Valley winery that was founded in 1967.

Below is the menu that Gene Tang has planned and the wines Emily Papach has selected to pair with it. A bonus: Each guest at Wednesday’s dinner will be entered into a drawing to win a 1.5-liter bottle of Cambria wine.

The Menu

First Course

Crispy Fried Hen Egg | Frog Leg ragout, Spring Pea, Ramp, Vin Juane
Wine: Cambria “Tepusquet Vineyard’ Viognier 2013

Second Course

Roasted Sturgeon | Lemon Beurre Blanc, Fiddlehead Fern, Caper
Wine: Cambria “Katherine’s Vineyard” Chardonnay

Third Course

Seared Beef Tenderloin | Bone Marrow Crusted, Rainbow Chard, Wild Mushroom Bordeaulaise
Wine: Freemark Abbey “Sycamore Vineyard” Cabernet Sauvignon 2010

Fourth Course

Chocolate and Sea Salt  – Cocoa Nib Tuiles, Salted Caramel Ice Cream
Wine: Cambria “Tequsquet Vinyard” Syrah 2012

Reservations can still be made by calling the restaurant at 303-571-0011 or online.

Kelly Liken Sells Vail Restaurant Space

Acclaimed chef shutting namesake eatery.

Kelly Liken
Kelly Liken

Kelly Liken is one of Vail’s star chefs, but her name will soon be off the namesake restaurant she opened in the Gateway Building back in 2004, when she was just 27 years old. The last dinner service will take place on Saturday, May 16.  She says that Kelly Liken, the brand, is not going anywhere. She and her husband and partner, Rick Colomitz, are considering what the next iteration of the Kelly Liken brand will be. Meanwhile,  a new restaurant called Vintage will open in the Kelly Liken space in the Gateway building in June in time for the summer season. Brodie Broderick, owner and general manager at Vintage, says it will be “an all-day concept, serving breakfast, lunch and dinner at ‘approachable price points’,” in addition to late night snacks.

She plans to continue working Sowing Seeds, a program in local schools that teaches students about the joy of growing, harvesting, preparing and eating their own food. She also plans to participate in events such as the James Beard Celebrity Chef Tour and has plans to continue culinary programs such as the Annual Vail to Aspen Horseback Ride this summer.

Liken’s honors include being named one of the “Next Generation of Women Chefs” by Bon Appetit magazine and appearing on television shows as “Iron Chef America” and “Top Chef.”  She has cooked at the James Beard House in New York City. Most recently, she was part of the James Beard Celebrity Chef Tour in Vail.  Fans are encouraged to enjoy one more handcrafted cocktail or savor one more sticky bun sundae, so Restaurant Kelly Liken will be open and taking reservations for dinner through Saturday, May 16. Currently on the website is a spring special — three courses for $45 and also a wine special. Reserve by calling 970-479-0175.