Posts tagged " Amanda Vagnino Bartczak "

Where to Eat this Weekend: Oliverde

March 2nd, 2012 Posted by Boulder, Chefs, Culinary Connectors No Comment yet

Most chefs will say your dishes can only be as good as your product.  Sure, there are a few ingredients you can cut corners on, but olive oils and balsamics are not one of them–they can turn an average dish into a “wow, why is this so good?” dish.  Lucky for us, Boulder’s Oliverde is there to help decide which oils and vinegars are best for everyday cooking or special occasions.  Most of the staff are chefs and can give advice on oil or anything beyond.  All olive oils are of the highest quality, available the first pressed and cold pressed with over fifty to choose from.  Choosing the right one can be daunting, so they have a tasting bar staffed by an expert who can guide you to your olive oil soul mate. In addition to educating customers on olive oils, Oliverde can customize labels for party favors (perfect for the upcoming wedding season!), and also holds various cooking demonstrations and wine tastings.

This Saturday, March 3rd, Oliverde is having local artists in the store to showcase their paintings, crafts, jewelry and glass work. Cappello’s gluten free pasta will be doing a live demo in the store, using Oliverde olive oils with their fresh pastas.

Catch Oliverde on our chef led Boulder Savor the Flavor tour.

Saturday, March 31: wine tasting with the local winery, Settembre Cellars.

Follow Oliverde on Facebook for updates on new products and events!


2027 Broadway

Boulder, CO  80302

Phone: 303-442-2199

Where to Eat this Weekend: The Pig & Block

February 24th, 2012 Posted by Chefs, Culinary Connectors, Denver No Comment yet

The Highlands’ Tejon Street is quickly giving the busy 32nd and Lowell a little friendly neighborhood competition.  Studded with coffee shops, long standing Italian joints, and Mexican favorites, Tejon Street is a low-key alternative to its busier counterpart.  New to Tejon Street is the Old South Pearl Street farmer’s market staple, The Pig & Block.  An old world charcuterie and butcher shop featuring cheeses and house-made terrines makes this little shop a carnivore’s dream.  The items in stock change frequently: everything from Bacon Bratwurst, Porchetta, and wings– The Pig & Block is a savory stop for anyone in the market for meat.

This weekends specials are Andouille Sausage, Terrine de Forestier and Wild Boar Salami.  Follow the Pig & Block on Facebook to stay up to date on what’s new!

The Pig & Block 


Where to Eat this Weekend: The Kitchen [Next Door]

February 17th, 2012 Posted by Boulder, Culinary Connectors, restaurants No Comment yet
The Kitchen [Next Door] is a food lover’s go-to spot when eating on a budget.  With a delicious, earthy menu featuring items all around $10, including the addictive kale chips and garlic smashed potatoes, The Kitchen [Next Door] is like an upscale farm picnic in an urban setting. Keeping with The Kitchen family ideals, all beer and wine is served on tap in order to reduce waste and is just $3.  If you have your kids in tow, $2 of the cost of their meal will be donated to help build gardens in local schools.
1035 Pearl Street
Boulder, CO 80302
Phone:  720.542.8159

Where to Eat this Weekend: Piece, Love & Chocolate

February 10th, 2012 Posted by Boulder, Culinary Connectors, restaurants No Comment yet

Everyone loves chocolate.  Not everyone knows where to buy good chocolate.  Thankfully, Boulder’s Piece, Love and Chocolate can help any over-sugared hollow chocolate bunny lover find the perfect cacoa treat for their honey this Valentine’s Day.   From exotic chocolate bars to decadent cakes and unique or traditional house-made truffles, Piece, Love and Chocolate has just what the Love Doctor ordered to impress beyond the drug store heart shaped boxes.

Today from 2pm – 6pm, Izzybelle Chocolate LLC will be at the shop to demonstrate their recipe for baked chicken with a chili chocolate sauce – with samples!

Piece, Love & Chocolate
805 Pearl St
Boulder, CO 80302
(303) 449-4804

Where to Eat this Weekend: Zydeco’s

February 3rd, 2012 Posted by Chefs, Culinary Connectors, Denver, restaurants No Comment yet

In a prime location for late-night kicks, Zydeco’s brings an appropriate taste of southern hospitality, class, and New Orleans flavor to Lodo.  Chef J. Michael Menton brings his southern roots to the table in everything from Abita drafts, frog legs, to beignets. Zydeco’s also features live music every Friday and Saturday from 7-11pm, to help dance away the etouffée. For weekend brunch, you can eat like a Cajun King–fried chicken and waffles with bacon cayenne syrup.   If you really enjoy reveling in the southern spirit, join Zydeco’s on Madri Gras, February 21st; they will open at 11am, hosting a crawfish boil, two bands (1pm-5pm and 7pm-11pm), and more frog legs and gumbo.

Culinary Connectors is hosting Supper Club with Zydeco’s Tuesday, February 7th at 6:30pm.

1730 Wynkoop St
Denver, CO 80202

Where to Eat this Weekend: The Village Cork

January 27th, 2012 Posted by Chefs, Culinary Connectors, Denver, restaurants No Comment yet

Walking into The Village Cork, one is greeted by a harmonious scene: happy patrons sipping wine, carefully constructed cheese plates in front of them, servers actively participating with each table from the first glass poured to the last lick of a desert spoon, and at the center of all it all is chef Samir Mohammad. Samir cooks behind the bar with no over-head, two induction burners, a convection oven, and an infectious passion for food. He is what makes The Village Cork one of the city’s hidden treasures.   The work Samir does with his small space in the middle of the restaurant action is inspiring.  If you are able to sit at the bar and watch him, it’s like attending a live taping for the Food Network.  A few favorites on the current (and ever-changing) menu are the seldom seen Duchess potatoes with Pecorino and wild mushroom demi-glaze; the pork carpaccio, with Il Mondo Vecchio copa and a caper, cornichon, arugula, pickled cauliflower salad with a marinated egg yolk; the decadent mushroom and lentil Wellingtons with a truffle crème fraiche and truffle caviar; and the dish which pays homage to Samir’s New Mexican roots: the Chimayo flank steak over pork belly posole rubbed with New Mexico Chimayo chile, fennel, cardamom, coriander, oregano, and cumin. The Village Cork is accepting reservations for Valentines Day, featuring a playful menu (bubbles included).  It’s a sure way to fall in love with your honey or, The Village Cork.

Samir often holds cooking classes.  Friend The Village Cork on Facebook for updates!

Opening for Sunday brunch and dinner starting March 18th.

The Village Cork
1300 South Pearl Street
Denver, CO 80210

Where to Eat this Weekend: BB’s Kitchen

January 20th, 2012 Posted by Aspen, Chefs, Culinary Connectors, restaurants No Comment yet

In affluent Aspen, cozy BB’s Kitchen offers seasonal upscale comfort on a plate in a panoramic setting without astronomical prices.  BB’s serves breakfast (think a pulled pork benedict), lunch (healthy salads and stacked sandwiches on house-made breads), an après-ski menu under $12, and a scrumptious dinner menu, including the treasured Six Point Berkshire pork chop with green chili spoon bread, as well as a variety of house-made pastas.  BB’s also has fun weekly events like trivia on Tuesdays and Sunday-fundays with “adult brunch”: $15 bottomless mimosas, bloodies, and Shiner or Trumer Pilsner complete with DJ.  


BB’s Kitchen 

525 E Cooper Ave, 2nd Floor

Aspen, CO 81611

(970) 429.8284














Oak at Fourteenth, round two

January 16th, 2012 Posted by Boulder, Chefs, Culinary Connectors, restaurants No Comment yet

Many consider Boulder the biggest little food town in the West and when Oak at Fourteenth opened in fall of 2010, Boulder was buzzing about their newest restaurant darling.  Oak promised to bring more recognition to Boulder with a dynamic cocktail program designed by the famed beverage director/owner Bryan Dayton, a rustic, but elegant wood-fired oven-inspired menu perfected by Jean Georges-trained chef/owner, Steven Redzikowski, and a well-rounded, attentive staff.   Oak quickly gained momentum in its first six months, including a Food & Wine mention and GQ’s naming of Bryan as the most inspired bartender in the country.  Last March Oak at Fourteenth suffered a tragic fire causing severe damage to the whole building; the doors were closed for nine months to re-build.   Although the interior has changed and the menus have been tweaked, Oak at Fourteenth still has the same familiar vibe, elemental yet modern menu, surprising takes on classic cocktails, old world wines, and an admirable resilience.

Beverage director/owner Bryan hooks us up with a few pointers.

What is your favorite cocktail and food pairing on the current menu at Oak?

Our WC and Soda Cocktail, which is part of our new house made soda program, it has kumquat, tarragon and Campari in it.  It is amazing with the fried pickles!

What do you look for in a cocktail menu when you go out?  Anything you gravitate towards or stay away from?

I look at the theme of the place and see if the cocktail menu stays true to the identity of the establishment. I generally stay away from “Martini” and “shot” sections.

What do you recommend people have at home to make a killer cocktail?

A must have at home is Gin, Campari and Sweet vermouth- Can you say Negroni! Benedictine is a staple also.

What do you drink when you are at home?

I generally drink wine with dinner, a hoppy IPA after work and a little Amari when need be. Margaritas are a must in the summer or, year round!

Where to Eat this Weekend: Ozo Coffee

January 12th, 2012 Posted by Boulder, Culinary Connectors, restaurants No Comment yet

Ozo Coffee is Boulder’s Mecca for coffee connoisseurs.  Baristas are more like mixologists who know your profession, kids names, and if you like extra foam.  The educated baristas are what makes Ozo’s special, even creating a little latte art to get your day started right.  With brew bar tastings every Friday at 2pm, showcasing one coffee brewed with three different processes you can feel like one of these sassy baristas too.

Ozo Coffee

1015 Pearl St, St. 100,

Boulder, CO 80302

(720) 974-0215


Where to Eat this Weekend: The Corner Office

January 6th, 2012 Posted by Chefs, Culinary Connectors, Denver, restaurants No Comment yet




The Corner Office is a constant crowd-pleaser with dishes such as the house-ground Office Burger to suit the conservative diner or for the more adventurous, The Ramen with a 62-degree egg garnished with a house-made chicharrón. These days with our wallets being cleaned out by Santa, hosting house parties, and New Years Eve debauchery, The Corner Office gives us a reason to come back out without having to dip into our 401K’s, featuring a 3-course menu for $52.80 for two (tax +gratuity not included).  Each month the menu is themed based on a theater program at the nearby Denver Center for the Performing Arts.  Arroz con Pollo, inspired by West Side Story or Maghreb Lamb Meatballs for the The Lion King have been featured in the past.  These monthly menus are keeping Chef Will Cisa on his toes.  No stranger to thinking outside of the box, Chef Cisa loves the challenge.  To add to the excitement, diners can vote for their favorite 3-course menu and the crowd’s best choice will be TCO’s featured on their Denver Restaurant Week Menu.  Follow The Corner Office on Facebook and Twitter to see when voting begins.






1401 Curtis Street

Denver, CO 80202