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Flavors of the Week: Feb. 28 and Beyond

A weekly gumbo of news bites and events from the Denver-Boulder dining scene.

Avanti Boulder Introduces 3 Eateries

From left to right, Rye Society Co-Owner/Operator Jerrod Rosen and Operating Partner Ross Goldberg; Rooted Chef/Owner Nicholas Kayser; and New Yorkese Chef/Owner Steve Redzikowski. Photos courtesy Avanti.

A Jewish delicatessen, a New York-by-way-of-Naples pizzeria, and a classic American kitchen are the first restaurants announced for Avanti Food & Beverage’s Boulder location {1401 Pearl Street, Boulder}. Front Range diners may already be familiar with Rye Society through its Denver location, but the bakery and deli’s forthcoming Avanti space is something of a homecoming for Co-Owner/Operator Jerrod Rosen, who happens to be a Boulder native. “We are beyond excited to open in Boulder, where there has been a large void for Jewish deli cuisine for many years,” Rosen says. New Yorkese, which will be led by Oak at Fourteenth Executive Chef/Owner Steve Redzikowski, promises pizza with a crust that blends the blistered exterior of a New York-style pizza with the chewiness of a classic Neapolitan-style pizza. “With Oak being a stone’s throw away from Avanti, this is a perfect place to test out New Yorkese, which has been in my mind since I was 15 years old working at my local pizzeria,” Redzikowski states. Rooted Craft American Kitchen is an upscale, fast-casual restaurant from Chef and Owner Nicholas Kayser that will serve refined versions of favorites, including the Rooted Wagyu Burger and Southern Fried Chicken, with a focus on locally sourced produce and seasonal grains and vegetables. “I’ve worked in restaurants around the world and am really looking forward to showcasing the culmination of my experiences at Rooted,” Kayser notes. Avanti is expected to open in late spring with a total of six food concepts. AVANTIFANDB.COM

Seedstock Celebrates Leap-Year Babies with Free Pint

Seedstock Brewery offers free drink for those with leap-year birthdays. Photo courtesy of Seedstock.

In honor of the once-every-four-years phenomenon that is leap year, Seedstock Brewery {3610 West Colfax Avenue, Denver; 720.476.7831} will—on Saturday, Feb. 29—offer a free pint to anyone born on Feb. 29 (and who, of course, are 21 or older). The brewery recently released a lineup of winter beers, including a Winter Warmer collaboration with Goldspot Brewing and its Imperial Stout. SEEDSTOCKBREWERY.COM

Jill’s Toasts St. Julien’s 15th with Happy Hour Special

Jill’s celebrates the St. Julien’s 15th anniversary with a happy hour special. File photo.

In celebration of the St. Julien Hotel & Spa’s {900 Walnut Street, Boulder; 720.406.9696} 15th anniversary, in-house eatery Jill’s Restaurant will feature a $15 happy hour duo throughout March. The special includes an order of Jill’s Bistro Tots and a glass of Chandon Brut. A longtime favorite, Jill’s Bistro Tots have been on the menu since the restaurant opened in 2005 and are seasoned with truffle aioli and Reggiano cheese, and they are perfectly complemented by the dry, sparkling wine. The happy hour duo will be available daily from 4-6pm in both Jill’s Restaurant and the T-Zero Cocktail Bar. STJULIEN.COM

In March, The Oysters are Your World at Jax

In advance of the High West Oyster Fest, Jax is offering Oyster Month specials. Photo courtesy of Jax.

March is Oyster Month at Jax Fish House & Oyster Bar {multiple locations}, which will offer contests, giveaways, and specials all month long. Oyster Month culminates with the 8th annual High West Oyster Fest on Thursday, April 2, at the EXDO Event Center in Denver’s RiNo neighborhood. Oyster Month isn’t just about oysters, however. For each of Jax’s proprietary Emersum Oysters sold throughout the month, Jax will donate 10 cents to First Descents, an organization that provides outdoor experiences to young adults fighting cancer. Additionally, all proceeds from the High West Oyster Fest will be donated to First Descents. High West Oyster Fest tickets can be purchased via Tock. For more information about individual Oyster Month happenings, visit the Jax website. JAXFISHHOUSE.COM

Que Bueno Suerte Fires Up Nitrogen-Frozen Cocktails

Que Bueno Suerte!

The nitro craze catches on at Que Bueno Suerte beginning March 1. File photo.

On March 1, Que Bueno Suerte {1518 South Pearl Street, Denver; 720.642.7322} will introduce nitrogen-frozen cocktails. Guests can turn their favorite drinks—including margaritas, daiquiris, and piña coladas—into frosty, creamy delights. Diners can also experiment with flavor profiles from Que Bueno Suerte’s margarita add-on options, and add a nitro kick on top. QBSUERTE.COM

Sushi-Rama RiNo Launches Kaiseki Program

Sushi-Rama’s kaiseki program kicks off March 2. File photo.

Sushi-Rama’s RiNo location {2615 Larimer Street, Denver; 720.476.4643} will begin a kaiseki program on Monday, March 2. Kaiseki is a traditional, multicourse Japanese dinner that reflects the skills and techniques of the chef. At Sushi-Rama, guests can expect a set menu that will change every two weeks and feature fresh fish and seasonal produce. A three-course meal will be available for $35, and the meal with a beer and sake-add-on is $45. SUSHI-RAMA.COM

Mexican Travels Inspire New Spring Menu at Rio Grande

Rio Grande’s new spring menu was informed by the restaurant team’s recent travels in Mexico. File photo.

Fueled by its team’s recent travels through different regions of Mexico, Rio Grande Mexican Restaurant {multiple locations} will showcase its special spring menu from March 3-April 27. The new menu includes Smoky Paloma with Creyente mezcal, grapefruit, Aperol, fresh lime, and Topo Chico; Roasted Relleno, a quinoa-stuffed poblano pepper served with black bean sauce and seasonal seared greens; Shrimp and Avocado Aguachile featuring lime-cured shrimp; Fried Avocado Tacos with escabeche, chile morita crema, and cotija; and more. RIOGRANDEMEXICAN.COM

Corrida Welcomes Celebrated Winemaker Pérez

corrida

Renowned winemaker Raúl Pérez joins Corrida March 5 for a tasting menu with wine pairings. File photo.

Distinguished Spanish winemaker Raúl Pérez will visit Corrida {1023 Walnut Street, Boulder; 303.444.1333} on Thursday, March 5, for a four-course tasting menu paired with wines selected by Pérez and exclusive to the dinner. The event is $115 per person; reservations are available from 6-10pm and may be made online or by calling the restaurant. CORRIDABOULDER.COM

Jovanina’s Invites Exploration of Misunderstood Spirit on Absinthe Day

jovaninia

Jovanina’s absinthe offerings can help demystify this oft-misunderstood spirit. File photo.

Thursday, March 5, is National Absinthe Day, and Jovanina’s Broken Italian {1520 Blake Street, Denver; 720.541.7721} invites guests to get to know this often-misunderstood spirit through its innovative absinthe program. The knowledgeable team at this Prohibition-style lounge can help you debunk absinthe misconceptions and enjoy a tasting to celebrate this notorious, herbal liquor. JOVANINA.COM

Chef Laudisio Cooks Up Lunch Series, Annual Dinner at The Med

Chef Antonio Laudisio’s lunch series at The Med continues on March 3 and March 10. File photo.

Celebrated chef and Boulder food scene legend Antonio Laudisio is joining the culinary team at The Mediterranean {1002 Walnut Street, Boulder; 303.444.5335} each Tuesday for series of weekly lunches. The special a la carte lunch menus will vary and be available from 11am-2pm at The Med’s west bar; seating will be available on a first-come, first-served basis. The series continues March 3, and March 10. The Med will host its annual Laudisio Dinner on Tuesday, March 24. For reservations to the Laudisio Dinner, email [email protected] THEMEDBOULDER.COM

Renowned Sommelier Sohm Joins Frasca for ‘Wine Simple’ Event

Attendees at Frasca’s “Wine Simple” tasting event will receive a signed copy of Aldo Sohm’s new book. Photo courtesy of Penguin Random House.

Acclaimed sommelier Aldo Sohm, author of the new book “Wine Simple: A Totally Approachable Guide by a World-Class Sommelier,” will join Frasca Food and Wine {1738 Pearl Street, Boulder; 303.442.6966} for a tasting menu with wine pairings beginning at 5:30pm on Monday, March 9. The event is $165 per person and includes a four-course tasting menu with wine pairings selected by Sohm as well as a signed copy of “Wine Simple.” Reservations can be made online. FRASCAFOODANDWINE.COM

Polls Close Soon for 2020 Garnish Games

Saydee Hopkins of Williams & Graham shows off her 2020 creation, the Pearl Dragon. Photo by Brent Andeck.

At 6pm on Monday, March 9, at Improper City {3201 Walnut Street, Denver} 16 top bartenders from 16 of Denver’s best taverns and restaurants will face off with their most inspired custom cocktails complemented by their most creative garnishes. The bartenders and their cocktails can be viewed now on the Garnish Games website, and online voting for best garnish is open through 2am on March 1. Garnish Games admission and drink samples are free, but attendees are asked to RSVP. GARNISHGAMES.COM

Tickets On Sale for YWCA Boulder County Fundraiser Catered by Blackbelly

Boulder's best chef

Chef Hosea Rosenberg and Blackbelly will cater YWCA Boulder County’s annual gala. File photo.

Tickets are on sale for the YWCA Boulder County’s annual fundraising gala, which begins at 6pm on Saturday, March 7, at the Boulder Jewish Community Center {6007 Oreg Avenue, Boulder}. The event is titled “Hear Us Roar: A Speakeasy Soiree” and will highlight the 1920s and celebrate the 100th anniversary of the 19th Amendment with a nod to the 55th anniversary of the Voting Rights Act. The event will be catered by Blackbelly and its award-winning Executive Chef and Owner Hosea Rosenberg. Avery Brewing Company is the beer sponsor, and a signature gin cocktail will be offered by Longmont’s Dry Land Distillers. Tickets for the event are $125 and are limited to 240; they can be purchased via Handbid. YWCA Boulder County is dedicated to eliminating racism, empowering women, and promoting peace, justice, freedom, and dignity for all. YWCABOULDER.ORG

Top Female Chefs Contribute Appetizers to International Women’s Day Benefit

James Beard Award-winning Chef Jennifer Jasinski is among the chefs contributing to the International Women’s Day benefit March 8. Photo by Clayton Vurciaga.

Tickets are now available for the second annual International Women’s Day Celebration at The Ramble Hotel {1280 25th Street, Denver; 720.996.6300}. The event will be held from 4-7pm on Sunday, March 8, and will bring together some of Denver’s most talented female entrepreneurs for a night of delicious foods and drinks, as well as an all-female marketplace. Appetizers and small bites will be crafted by a number of renowned Denver-area chefs, including Dana Rodriguez of Super Mega Bien and Work & Class; Jen Jasinski of Rioja, Stoic & Genuine, and Bistro Vendôme; Kodi Simkins of Wolf’s Tailor; and Mel Schmidt of Death & Co. Marketplace vendors include Babe Walls, Sacred Thistle, Animal Hand Made, Women’s Wine Guild of Colorado, and The Riveter. Tickets are $45 per person and may be purchased via the events site Two Parts. All proceeds will benefit Girls Inc. of Metro Denver, a nonprofit that encourages girls to be strong, smart, and bold through direct service and advocacy.

Monster Mash: Whiskies of the World Unites Hundreds of Spirits in Denver

Whiskies of the World will highlight hundreds of native and imported whiskey brands on March 13. Photo courtesy Whiskies of the World.

One of the largest whiskey-tasting events in the United States, Whiskies of the World returns to Denver on Friday, March 13, at the Four Seasons Hotel {1111 14th Street, Denver; 303.389.3000}. Whiskies of the World will feature hundreds of native bourbons and imported whiskies, and this year’s event will spotlight a collection of Colorado spirits including Stranahan’s Colorado Whiskey, Crater Lakes Spirits, and Old Elk’s Bourbon. General admission tickets are $100 and allow guests access to general tastings, light bites, and a branded snifter glass. VIP tickets are $150 and include pre-event access, priority reservations for master classes, and private access to additional high-end whiskey and culinary experiences. Tickets can be purchased online. WHISKIESOFTHEWORLD.COM

Top Colorado Chefs Join Forces for Fundraiser to Benefit Patrick Ayres

Alex Seidel

Alex Seidel is among the renowned Colorado chefs teaming up March 31 to benefit fellow chef Patrick Ayres, who is battling a form of brain cancer. File photo.

Some of Colorado’s most notable chefs will come together on Tuesday, March 31, at Aurum Food & Wine {811 Yampa Street, Steamboat Springs} for a fundraiser to benefit fellow chef Patrick Ayres. Ayres, who is culinary director of Steamboat’s recently opened Periodic Table, is battling stage 3 astrocytoma, a form of brain cancer. The fundraiser will feature a five-course “Chef Duel,” with two teams of chefs striving to create the tastiest dishes as judged anonymously by the benefit’s guests. The event’s all-star roster of award-winning Colorado chefs includes Brian Duncan (Aurum, Breckenridge); Gabriel Ledesma (Aurum, Steamboat Springs); Jacob Nelson (Table 79, Steamboat Springs); Alex Seidel (Fruition, Denver); Caroline Glover (Annette, Denver); Matt Chasseur (Peche, Palisade); and Josh Niernberg (Bin 707 Foodbar, Grand Junction). Each guest will receive five courses, including a hot and cold dish that highlights the same theme ingredient, and each table will be allotted one vote toward the overall dinner winner. The money raised from the event will help Ayres and his family as he continues treatment. Tickets for the fundraiser can be purchased by emailing Philips Armstrong at [email protected]. Donations may also be made via a GoFundMe page established for Patrick Ayres.

Drum(stick) Roll: Chicken Fight Tickets On Sale Now

Fowl play is on the menu at Chicken Fight. File photo.

More than 40 Front Range restaurants have already signed on to participate in Chicken Fight 2020, which will be held Thursday, May 21, at Lawrence Street and Park Avenue in Denver. Tickets are now available at three different price tiers, each of which features unlimited chicken dishes and cocktails. CHICKENFIGHTFEST.COM

Compiled by Steve Lysaker; restaurant and bar news from the greater Denver-Boulder area may be emailed to [email protected]