Break-festes Park

Mountain Home Cafe’s breakfast & lunch eats.

070Five things I like about Mountain Home Café in Estes Park’s Upper Stanley Village café: 1) It was not too noisy; 2) The food was scratch-made; 3) service was attentive; 4) breakfast dishes are available any time the café is open; 5) it appears to be a generous business, supporting local and health causes.

Simple café keeps the volume down with acoustic tile on the ceiling and carpet on the floors -- not a modern look but easy on the eardrums.
Simple café keeps the volume down with acoustic tile on the ceiling and carpet on the floors — not a modern look but easy on the eardrums.
Pink ribbon for the battle against beast cancer on the end of booth seats; Other seats are adorned with red ribbons for the fight against drug- and alcohol-related violence.
Pink ribbon for the battle against beast cancer on the end of booth seats; Other seats are adorned with red ribbons for the fight against drug- and alcohol-related violence.

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Denver Indies Shine at The Big Eat

Annual festival showcases Denver’s independent restaurants.

BigEat-logo-jpgThe Big Eat on Thursday, July 14 is a collegial culinary festival that celebrates the best of the local dining scene. Fifty bucks buys  unlimited bites from more than 50 restaurants including popular favorites and even the not-yet-open Mister Tuna. Colorado wines from the Winery at Holy Cross Abbey, a local craft brews and cocktails starring spirits from the likes of Peach Street Distillers and Distillery 291.

The festival benefits EatDenver, a nonprofit organization that supports and promotes the city’s independently run restaurants.  This year, The Big Eat groups restaurants by neighborhood — Berkeley, Downtown, RiNo, etc. 6 to 9 p.m. The Big Eat takes places from6 to 9 p.m. at the Garner Galleria at the Denver Performing Arts Complex, 1100 13th Street. Click here to purchase tickets

Gluten-Free Restaurant in The Springs Cited

Coquette’s is singled out for its baked goods.

Coquetts-logoColorado celiacs who cannot eat gluten and also those who prefer gluten-free rejoice! Coquette’s Bistro & Bakery in Colorado Springs has been named one of the country’s best.  Here’s what In Love With Food posted in “10 of the Best Gluten-Free Bakeries in the U.S.” posted:

Award-winning, family-run, inspired by the Greek tradition of valuing food as not just something to eat, but something to celebrate, there really wasn’t any doubt this place would be a hit. This spot serves as a full restaurant, with appetizers, burgers on freshly baked gluten-free bread and even sells its gluten-free flour blend.

I’m happy that a business outside of metro Denver appeared on a national list, but my choice would have been for the Rheinlander Bakery in Arvada. It’s an exceptional, family-owned German bakery that went gluten-free some years ago when owner Ed Dimmer’s wife was diagnosed with celiac. It’s a bakery, period — and has been for more than half a century.

 

‘Julie & Julia’ at Bistro Vendome

French restaurant + film about French cooking.

Marc Piscotty/News Staff Photographer SHOT 5/26/2003 - Bistro Vendome food and scenics
From Bing Images

There’s a new French connection in Denver in a few days as Bistro Vendome debuts its Movie Night series with one of my favorite food movies, “Julie & Julia,” made from one of my favorite food books of the same name. The story involves a young woman in New York who embarked on an ambitious project to take her mine off her dreadful job. The project: Julie Powell cooking her way through the Julia Child opus, Mastering the Art of French Cooking.  Along the way, she started a blog, which caught the right attention that resulted in a book contract and then a movie.

Bistro Vendome’s state-of-the-art audiovisual system in the main dining room is showing the delightful movie on a 103-inch screen. Guests are served the classic culinary comedy paired with a three-course prix fixe menu by chef Adam Branz.

  • Heirloom tomato bruschetta
  • Choice of Fillet of Sole with brown butter, lemon, parsley or Boeuf Bourguignon
  • Apple Tarte Tatin

Show time is 8 p.m. on Monday, July 11. Please make reservations at 303-825-3232. The restaurant promises future movie nights. It is at 1420 Larimer Square, with an entrance via the Sussex Breezeway.

Food Network Mag Loves Peppercorn

Boulder cookware & more store one of nation’s 10 best.

This is actually the 30th anniversary logo, but the store is now closer to 40 years old.
This is actually the 30th anniversary logo, but the store is now closer to 40 years old.

Colorado chefs and restaurants – especially in metro Denver and occasionally Boulder — find their way onto national “best” and “top” lists, mainly because the food sites have stringers in the Mile High City. The Food Network magazine, which I’ve occasionally contributed to, just compiled a list of specialty stores that carry cookware, bakeware, kitchen, small appliances. gadgets and more. One that sells more — much more — is Boulder’s divine Peppercorn. I’ve often said that I’d like my whole life to look like Peppercorn. I’m afraid that it doesn’t.

Peppercorn, Boulder
Cookbooks and chocolate and cookware, oh my! Peppercorn, located on Boulder’s historic downtown pedestrian mall, gets the culinary shopping experience right. What better way to fuel a cook’s imagination than to offer creative bites alongside kitchen utensils? Though it carries a great selection of cookware, barware, bed and bath basics, cutlery and appliances, this shop is also known for its esoteric collection of specialty foods. Rocky Mountain Poo (chocolate-covered sunflower seeds), anyone? Bring a sense of humor, your appetite and your biggest tote bag.

CulCol on ‘DiningOut’ Blog List

I’m pleased and proud that this food/restaurant blog  is one of 11 local blogs featured in the Denver/Boulder edition of ‘DiningOut.” It is also the longest-running of the near-dozen blogs that were spotlighted. I describe it as Colorado-centric but not Colorado exclusive. Click here to see the roundup. Thanks to Maya Silver and the other “deciders” at Dining Out.

‘Meeting’ Mimi Sheraton

Legendary restaurant critic and her book 1,000 Foods to Eat Before You Die

100FoodsBefreYouDie-coverSome long-ago, long-running bylines from The New York Times stick in my mind: John Noble Wilford on science, Ada Louise Huxtable on architecture and Mimi Sheraton on food.  A Facebook post by my friend Grace Lichtenstein, herself a Times alumna, caught my eye because it featured one of these illustrious names: “Mimi Sheraton’s 1,000 Favorite Foods.”

I hadn’t thought about Mimi Sheraton in a very long time, and as so often happens in such cases, my reaction was: “I didn’t know that she was still alive.” Well she is (she’s 90) , she has a recent book out and was the subject of a terrific profile that Grace about her for New York City Woman.

Sheraton’s book is called 1,000 Foods to Eat Before You Die: A Food Lover’s Life List. She doesn’t believe that everyone must lie everything, but she advocates trying — and so do I, usually.

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.