Rocky Mountain Food Report

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91.5 KRCC is partnering with The Rocky Mountain Food Report to present stories from their website about previews of new restaurants, updates on longtime favorites, dinners, pop-ups and more as they cover the Pikes Peak region’s food scene. 

The Wobbly Olive is set to open another location in January 2018 at 2611 W. Colorado Ave. The second installment finds a home in the historic district of Old Colorado City, Colorado, right next door to TAPAteria and across the street from Jake & Telly’s Greek Taverna.

Dionne Roberts / Rocky Mountain Food Report

Mother and daughter duo, Michelle and Turu Marx, co-owners of Coquette’s Bistro & Bakery, have been on a path to bring accessibility to gluten-free dining since opening the first location eight years ago in Manitou Springs, Colorado. The decision to specialize spurs from Michelle’s own profound results from the dietary changes she implemented after suffering from unexplainable health issues.

Dionne Roberts / Rocky Mountain Food Report

On Saturday, August 26, RMFR paid a visit to Corner Post Meats to partake in “A Night on the Ranch” the legitimate farm to table dining experience from A Grazing Life.  Although it was originally scheduled to be the last farm tour and dinner this summer, due to such an outpouring of support and popularity, founder, Mike Preisler is adding two additional dates.

Saturday, September 23, chef Franco Ruiz and Fruition Restaurant, and September 30, chef Scott Hybbeneth with Carboy Winery will bring some Denver flavor down to round out the first season. Tickets are now available.

Courtesty FlatIron Spice Company

Have you ever found yourself looking at the red pepper flakes in the stout, swirled, glass shaker on the table at the local pizza parlor and asked yourself, how long has this been sitting here?

Typically it has no protective sealant with complete exposure to the elements, offers a minimal spice profile and the source…who knows. So why have the spices that we add on top of our gourmet foods gone unnoticed and without the same demand for quality?

Dionne Roberts / Rocky Mountain Food Report

Natural Epicurean, The Broadmoor’s casual dining spot, known for it’s health-focused, organic menu and transparent kitchen design, shifts gears to host a pop-up ramen shop. NE Ramen is open exclusively on Friday and Saturday evenings from 5:30 to 8:30 p.m. through Labor Day.

For Natural Epicurean to operate as the venue is “a little contradictory to the concept,” says David Patterson, executive chef at The Broadmoor. “But that’s the point of a pop-up, to get out of your normal skin and be someone else.”

Dionne Roberts / Rocky Mountain Food Report

Pikes Peak Market (Colorado Springs Public Market chose to rebrand as Pikes Peak Market to integrate the entirety of the region) aims to host a soft opening on August 31, pending approval from Public Health. The Art Deco building at 9 South Weber Street, encompasses almost 3,000 square feet and will become the new home for up to 20 local food vendors.

Dionne Roberts / Rocky Mountain Food Report

Blandine Brutel, owner and chef at The French Kitchen, moved from Grenoble, France to Colorado Springs in 2008, and within a few years the self-taught chef began to offer in-home cooking classes to small groups. Just a few months later Brutel proceeded to launch her own French culinary center in May 2012 with a focus on her favorite food, desserts. 

The concept to establish a brick and mortar for her growing venture has been a couple years in the making and as of June 23, The French Kitchen held their grand opening. The new bistro gives Coloradans a taste of Paris with an opportunity to visit what feels like an authentic French cafe.

The only thing better than highlighting local talent is the cultivation of community through culinary events that invite multiple passionate businesses to the table. RMFR with fellow sponsor Focus on the Beer welcomes Telluride’s craft beer to Colorado Springs for a collaborative pop up.

Photo courtesy of Craving4More.

Ashley Sara DeKam, author of the blog Craving4More, wants to share her passion for cooking and self-proclaimed love language with Colorado Springs. A Colorado College alumni, DeKam considers herself a local since 1999 but designed her website during a brief stint living in Portland, Oregon.

This Sunday, July 16, 12:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m. the fourth annual BruFrouFest will be held in Denver, on the newly renovated quad in front of Tivoli Station. The largest pairing festival in the country includes a lineup of over 120 chefs, brewers and mixologists with the accompaniment of live music from six eclectic bands.

Co-founders, Myriah Conroy and John Heins, have a background in event production and designed BruFrou to be an avenue for premium culinary and beverage collaboration.

Dionne Roberts / Rocky Mountain Food Report

A Grazing Life brings authenticity to the overused phrase “farm to table” partnering with Corner Post Meats to host summertime dinners on their sprawling property located in Black Forest. Mike Preisler began his new business venture in early 2017 out of a need he saw to connect Colorado Springs residents to their local farming and ranching community.

The first annual North Gate summer block party will be held on Friday, June 30 and Saturday, July 1 from 11:00 a.m. to 11:00 p.m. Owners of The Brass Tap-Colorado Springs, Mike and Darlene Warmouth, are hosting the event with neighboring Polaris Pointe businesses: Bourbon Brothers Smokehouse & TavernDog HausOverdrive RacewayBoot BarnLillie Avenue and Magnum Shooting Center.

Wrist bands provide entrance for $10 and all associated vendors will be offering incentives, like 25 percent off all alcohol at The Brass Tap. They will also feature live music, discounted beer and a stein hoisting competition at 5:00 p.m. both evenings.

Red Leg Brewing Co., Pikes Peak Brewing Co.Ska BrewingOskar Blues Brewery and High Hops Brewery are all donating beer to help sponsor the event.

The Blue Star has consistently been hosting pairing dinners and with their intimate private dining space it proves to be an ideal venue for these exclusive events. As of November 2016, Brian Blasnek has taken on the role of executive chef and is offering a satisfying ping pong effect varying Blue Star’s focus between beer and wine.

The Passport Program, founded in Denver, Colorado in 2013, is a little black book full of 2-for-1 drink deals.  Now the promotional push includes seven additional foodie cities: Boulder, Colorado Springs, Fort Collins, Kansas City, Nashville, St. Louis, and Washington, D.C.

Dionne Roberts / Rocky Mountain Food Report

It’s no secret that Colorado Springs and TRiNiTY Brewing Company have danced in the past. But old news aside, whether you love ’em, hate ’em or feel indifferent, TRiNiTY brews some outstanding beer. And if you haven’t had the experience of their buttermilk fried bacon with blueberry maple dipping sauce…well you need it in your life.

Over the past month, TRiNiTY has had some of their most exclusive releases that owner and head brewer, Jason Yester calls, “some of the most interesting beers in the world.”

We sat down with Yester to do a tasting of the special tappings during which he breaks down the hoopla swirling around East coast IPA’s, explains some fancy beer language and talks about why we should get past the aesthetics of beer and embrace the haze.

Dionne Roberts / Rocky Mountain Food Report

The first thing you see when you walk into Nightingale Bread, which opened at the beginning of May, is the mill that grinds grain into flour. The 1,000-pound pink granite mill sits in a circular chamber, built just for this purpose.

Like its neighbors at Lincoln CenterBuilding3 Coffee Roasters and Café Red Point, Nightingale is a former elementary school classroom. Hints of this former life still exist in the black tile trim — old chalkboards — as well as Nightingale’s emphasis on educating customers on its product.

In fact, owner David McInnis has put the entire process on display, starting with the mill, which he imported from Raleigh, North Carolina himself.

Image courtesy of Crave Real Burgers-Colorado Springs / Rocky Mountain Food Report

Colorado is known for it’s wild game so we want to know who does it best? We put it out into the universe to ask you where we could find the best buffalo burgers in the state. Rocky Mountain Food Report alongside The Food Channel and Sandwich America gave USA Today a list of our favorite spots and voters chose the top ten finalists.

Culinary Passport, the annual fundraiser for the Pikes Peak Chapter of the American Culinary Federation, was held on Saturday, April 29, at St. Paul’s Catholic Church. The sold-out event had a bustling crowd and gave local chefs a chance to share some of their talents with an international approach. Each guest received a token upon entering to vote for their favorite dish of the night.

Image courtesy of Four by Brother Luck.

Chef Brother Luck’s new restaurant, Four, with a Southwestern focus, opened on Monday, May 1, for dinner service with lunch service not far behind. We got an early glimpse with a chance to try small bites from the menu and some Colorado inspired cocktails.

“I feel a sense of pride for sure,” says Luck. “We’ve put a lot of effort into making this dream come to fruition. But the real work starts now.”

Paravicini’s Italian Bistro has been a staple in Colorado Springs since 2003, and owns the title of “Best Italian” restaurant since 2005. Chef proprietor, Franco Pisani says his “success is from the ground up,” and now plans to keep growing his concept skyward with a rooftop bar to open in May.  

Appropriately named Sopra, which translates to “above,” the free-standing entity will offer a comfortable space for Paravicini’s patrons to wait, enjoy sharable plates and gives Pisani another kitchen to accommodate for new, creative dishes.

Thomas Kolicko, owner/founder of Traverse Image, a production company based out of Denver, is giving the first glimpse of their next documentary, The Whiskey Film. Kolicko is known for directing, Crafting a Nation, a film highlighting microbreweries across the country, with a distinct nod to Colorado’s contribution.

Here are a few more events coming up recommended by The Rocky Mountain Food Report, plus an update on their staff:

• 22nd Annual Pikes Peak Food and Wine Expo: A fun festival of food and drink with samples galore from restaurants and distributors with a cooking competition and craft cocktail competition.  $45. Sunday, March 19, noon to 3 p.m. The Broadmoor World Arena, 3185 Venetucci Blvd.

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Looking for something to do food and/or drink related this week and month?  The Rocky Mountain Food Report has you covered:

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A round-up of can’t-miss events this month from The Rocky Mountain Food Report:

• 26th Annual Wine Festival of Colorado Springs: A benefit for the Colorado Springs Conservatory featuring a weekend of wine-centric events, including tastings, seminars and dinners. Held throughout the city at locations such as the Broadmoor and the Warehouse. March 2-4.

In July of 2016, The Broadmoor welcomed its new director of operations and experienced master chef, John Johnstone, stepping into the role of Vice President of Food and Beverage.

Chef Terence Rogers of TBD Foods in Denver is bringing back casual, in-home dinner parties with an intimate setting located right inside his own quaint Cheesman Park apartment.  We got to attend the winter smoke-out dinner on Friday, February 3, enjoying a self-serve, barbecue-inspired dinner at a table of six.

Recently, Mason Jar Event Group hosted their winter cannabis pairing dinner at art gallery Boulder Creative Collective. Chef Jamey Fader, executive chef at Lola in Denver, cranked out courses while attendees enjoyed marijuana bud, concentrate and edible products from featured sponsors. Talking to the Report, Mason Jar made it clear the dinner’s are a unique opportunity to bring first-timers and aficionados together to appreciate cuisine and Colorado cannabis the way it is intended, in a group setting.

Rocky Mountain Food Report

A round-up of can’t-miss events this month:

• Haute Chocolate Hop: A 13-stop progressive gourmet chocolate tasting. Go online for a full list of the stops — which include shops, restaurants and art galleries — and what’s on the menu. $10. Friday, February 3, 5-8 p.m. Downtown.

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Downtown mogul Perry Sanders, attorney to the famous and owner of the Mining Exchange, the Antlers, the Famous, Springs Orleans and more is offering the full VIP experience for locals with the establishment of his new 365 Grand Club.

Will Rutledge

We’ve long been fans of chef Brother Luck, from enjoying his talents at RMFR’s first anniversary party to breaking the news of his coming downtown restaurant during a recent dinner celebrating Luck’s appearance on the Food Network's TV program Chopped.

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