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Frank Bonanno is a ‘Chef Driven’ on new TV show

January 17, 2014

I guess chef/restaurant mogul Frank Bonanno needed something else to do.

It’s not enough that he’s stewarding his ever-increasing restaurant empire, which includes stand-outs such as Mizuna, Luca d’Italia, Osteria Marco, Bones, Lou’s Food Bar, etc.?

Now comes news that the super chef has landed his own television series, “Chef Driven,” on PBS affiliate, Colorado Public Television Channel 12.

“In the series, I’m hitting the road, cooking along the way, and meeting some of Colorado’s most notable farmers, ranchers, bakers, confectioners, brewers and distillers,” Bonanno said.

The journey begins at 6 p.m. MST on Sunday, Jan. 26 with “Stewards of the Land.” Starting Jan. 27, the series also will be available in high definition for free download on the “Chef Driven” website (www.chefdrivenshow.com) when it goes online. For a full show schedule and a list
of episodes, visit www.bonannoconcepts.com/chef-driven.

You can join Bonanno during for a watch party co-hosted by Seattle Fish Co. where the chef will prepare a seafood party and the show will loop throughout the night. The $30 per person price covered all food, featured cocktails, beer and wine.

Reservations are required by calling Lou’s at 303-458-0336.

Frank Bonanno is hosting his own TV show, 'Chef Driven,' on local PBS station, CBT12. The show debuts on Sunday, Jan. 26. (Bonanno Concepts photo)

Frank Bonanno is hosting his own TV show, ‘Chef Driven,’ on local PBS station, Colorado Public Television Channel 12. The show debuts on Sunday, Jan. 26. (Bonanno Concepts photo)

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Hungry? Expect restaurant invasion around town

January 15, 2014

The Denver Post has compiled a list of 10 new eateries anticipated to open this year, which you should add to your “watch list” if you’re the type who likes being on the foodie forefront. They are:

* Ruth’s Chris Steak House – 700 15th St., Jan. 27

* Work and Class - 2500 Larimer St., Jan. 29

* Atticus – 1135 E. Evans Ave., late January

* Lowdown Brewery + Kitchen – 800 Lincoln St., early February

* Guard and Grace – 1801 California St., February

* Solitaire – 3927 W. 32nd Ave., spring

* Stoic & Genuine –  17th and Wynkoop streets, Union Station, July

* Mercantile Dining and Provision – 17th and Wynkoop streets, Union Station, July (read more about Mercantile here)

* Argyll Whisky Beer – 1035 E. 17th St., summer

* Sarto’s – 2900 W. 25th Ave., summer

Read more at http://www.denverpost.com/food/ci_24904811/big-restaurant-year-set-table-dozens-more-denver?source=nav.


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Blue Ribbon reception brings restaurants and hotels together with legislators

January 10, 2014

Restaurants and hotels in Denver make our economic world go ’round. Consider that together both sectors will generate more than $13 billion in sales this year, which generates more than $850 million in state and local taxes.

Also, restaurants and hotels employ roughly 286,000 employees in 11,500 establishments. A big deal.

So it makes total sense that the Colorado Restaurant Association and the Colorado Hotel and Lodging Association throw a joint event annually on the first day of the Colorado Legislature to wine and dine lawmakers that could affect the hospitality business.

I have attended this event for more years than I care to reveal, and I would say that the hearty party Wednesday on the 38th floor of the adjoining tower at the Grand Hyatt Hotel attracted more festive folks than I’ve ever seen.

We wined and dined from tasty treats from restaurants including: Angelo’s Taverna, Baca at Inverness Hotel & Resort, Hurricane Grill & Wings, Lala’s Wine Bar & Pizzeria, Mangia Bevi Café, Metropolitan State University Denver, Outback Steakhouse, Penrose Room at the Broadmoor, Ted’s Montana Grill, Texas Roadhouse,  The Airplane Restaurant, The Fort and The Fresh Fish Company.

Pete Meersman, the slowly retiring CEO of the Colorado Restaurant Association introduced Sonia Riggs, the new “chief cheese” who is taking over Meersman’s impressive reign. About restaurants, he said, “Restaurants and hotels are the cornerstone of Colorado’s economy.”

Christine O’Donnell, president of the Colorado Hotel & Lodging Association, more pointedly addressed the legislators attending the event. “It takes only a slight change in the laws to turn a profitable hotel or restaurant into an unprofitable business,” she said. “We ask you to keep that in mind during this year’s legislative session.”

And former Wynkoop Brewing Co. founder Gov. John Hickenlooper stopped by to speak and be among his “peeps,” as he would say. He referenced deceased The Fort founder Sam Arnold.

“I think about the people who aren’t here,” Hickenlooper said. “Sam Arnold really put Colorado on the map.”


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It was the year that was … and here are a few of my favorite things

December 27, 2013

These are a few of my favorite things…

When the dog bites, when the bee stings, when I’m feeling sad…

I’m thinking about the best bites I put in my mouth during this year.

OK, let’s start with the bone marrow at Colt & Gray, really the best.

And we’ll segue to the proscuitto wrapped melon at Capital Grille.

What else? The best carpaccio made by chef Sean Yontz no matter where he was.

Any pasta dish at Shells and Sauce.

Mexican food at La Fiesta, Zocalo or Mexico City Lounge.

A sandwich at Masterpiece Delicatessen, which opened in my ‘hood but I still haven’t tried.

Racines either Mexicali Salad or Cheesy nutty salad. Beyond the best!

A buffalo cheeseburger at City Grille cooked perfectly medium rare. What’s better than that?

Dim sum at The Empress. Westword Editor and co-founder Patty Calhoun and I love the variety of dumplings and meat options: duck or barbecued pork?

And a partridge in a pear tree…

Check out Westword’s vote on the best of 2013 at inbox@westword-insider.com and social community.


Sandwiches at Masterpiece and the bone marrow at Colt & Gray. (Photos by Masterpiece Delicatessen and Colt & Gray)

The bone marrow at Colt & Gray, above, and the sandwich selection at Masterpiece Delicatessen, below. (Photos by Colt & Gray and Masterpiece Delicatessen)MasterpieceDeli_sandwiches

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Ondo’s in Cherry Creek North is bidding adios

December 18, 2013

Ondo’s Spanish Tapas Bar at 250 Steele St. is shutting its doors on Dec. 31. Here’s what the owners, Curt and Deicy Steinbecker posted on the website:

“After over four years of many highs and lows. Deicy and I have decided that we will not continue our efforts in 2014. It’s with a heavy heart that we came to this difficult decision, but it’s one that is best for our family … Our goal from the start was to serve the most authentic Spanish tapas in Denver, and we believe that we always stayed true to this goal. But, due to the present circumstances, we can’t continue on.

“Thanks to all of our faithful customers who made these four years memorable. you were the reason we happily came to work every day. We will miss you. We hope to see you one more time at Ondo’s Spanish Tapas Bar before the end of the year.”

Ondo's logo

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More foodie fodder…

December 18, 2013

Located on Denver’s historic Larimer Square, Tamayo, Richard Sandoval’s modern Mexican restaurant is launching a Mole Festival that will run January through March. These colorful sauces are a blend of spices, herbs and some times up to 20 ingredients, from various regions of Mexico.

Some of Tamayo’s moles are spicy and some sweet. Find more information at www.richardsandoval.com or by calling 720-946-1433. Tamayo is located at 1400 Larimer Street.

The special menu includes:

* Enmolada quesadillas: Tasting plate of cheese quesadillas/topped with mole rojo, pipian, negro, poblano.

* Mole tradicionales: Served over your choice of pan-roasted chicken breast, sautéed jumbo shrimp, grilled skirt steak, slow-cooked pork carnitas or market vegetables.

* Mole pipian, Mexico City: Slightly spicy blend or pumpkin seeds, tomatillos, chile poblano, nuts served with chipotle rice/black bean puree. Chef recommends sautéed jumbo shrimp or market vegetables.

* Mole poblano, Puebla: Complex, nutty flavors with spice, chiles, Mexican chocolate served with Mexican rice refried beans/sweet plantains. Chef recommends pan-seared chicken breast.

* Mole rojo, Oaxaca: Mild guajillo chiles, chile ancho, cumin and oregano served with cilantro rice/charro beans/cheese corn quesadilla. Chef recommends slow-cooked pork carnitas.

* Mole Negro, Oaxaca: Medium spiced with nuts, charred tomatoes, avocado leaves served with cotija rice/refried beans. Chef recommends grilled skirt steak.

Handcrafted cocktails include:

* Coconut mango mojito: Parrot Bay coconut rum/simple syrup/fresh mango puree/fresh mint/fresh lime/coconut rim.

* Pineapple picante margarita: Pineapple and serrano-infused tequila/agave nectar/house made sour mix/fresh lime juice.

Tamayo's carnitas. (RichardSandoval.com photo)

Tamayo’s carnitas. (RichardSandoval.com photo)

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Have a favorite foodie? Let the EatDenver Dining Deck fill the wish list

December 16, 2013

Deck the Halls with cards of dining.

The perfect holiday gift for your favorite foodie may be the EatDenver Deck, a gift that will keep on giving all year long. The EatDenver Deck includes 52 $10 gift cards for $50, redeemable at select members of the EatDenver Independent Restaurant Network.

Dine at any of these Denver Restaurants with a $10 gift card. Total value of $520.

1515 Restaurant, Ace Eat Serve, Adelitas Cocina Y Cantina, Appaloosa Grill, Bistro Vendome, Black Pearl, Bonanno Brothers Pizza, Bones, Carmines on Penn, Cholon Bistro, Coohills 1400, Coral Room, Duo, El Camino, Elway’s Cherry Creek, Euclid Hall, Great Northern, Green Russell, Russell’s Smokehouse, Happy Cakes, Harman’s Eat + Drink, Humboldt: Farm Fish Wine, Ignite!, Jonesy’s Eat Bar, Le Grand Bistro & Oyster Bar, Linger, Locanda Del Borgo, Lou’s Food Bar, Luca D’Italia, Marco’s Coal-fired Pizza, Max Gill & Grill, Mizuna, Osteria Marco, Panzano, Punch Bowl Social, Racines, Rialto Café, Rioja, Root Down, Row 14 Bistro & Wine Bar, Second Home Kitchen + Bar, Steuben’s, Steve’s Snappin’ Dogs, Stoney’s Bar & Grill, Tables, The Avenue Grill, The Corner Office, The Fort, The Village Cork, Two-Fisted Mario’s Pizza, Vesta Dipping Grill, Washington Park Grille and Wynkoop Brewing Company.

The deck gets you $10 off on a $25 purchase of food dine-in only. Not valid for alcohol, gratuity or tax. Limited to one card per table. Valid from Jan. 1 to Dec. 31. Not valid during Denver Restaurant Week.

More information: http://eatdenver.com/eatdenver-deck/.

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