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Sometimes the best quotes stand alone. Here are a few that didn’t make it into recent stories but have stuck with us—and are too good to stay on the cutting-room floor.


On location, location, location…“Originally, we wanted to open in southwest Denver. I hear all the time, ‘Denver is so white.’ Well, parts of Denver are very white. If you look west of Federal [Boulevard] or near Sun Valley they aren’t.”—Kristin Lacy, co-founder, Convivio Café, Denver


On developing a creative restaurant scene…“Ten out of 10 people who have seen the Block Party menu want a burger with fries….I don’t know why I feel it necessary to push the agenda. The U.S. hasn’t carved out much of a niche outside of the northeast, northwest, or California. There’s so much homogeneous food happening across the country. It’s so difficult to get out of that cycle.”—Josh Niernberg, chef/owner, Block PartyTacoparty, and Bin 707 FoodbarGrand Junction


On a mini-boom of openings…“I don’t want to take away from that experience but there are these places that are institutions that are struggling, because we’re competing against all these new, shiny places that are opening up and are actively, creatively seeking ways to take your business from you.”—Christine Parisi, owner, Parisi, Denver


On getting rid of the tip pool…“We left the decision up to a vote: It was [to keep] tips in front of the house. We had PPP so were able to pay back of the house. It was front of house decision….I have a manager—she manages one day per week and bartends. She made $80,000 in 10 months [in 2020]. It’s unbelievable. I’m so happy we can give that but there needs to be some sort of balance. We pay dishwashers $17 or $18 per hour.”—Melissa Strong, owner, Bird & Jim, Estes Park

Talk to us! Email your experiences (and thoughts, opinions, and questions—anything, really) to askus@diningout.com

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