Overhauls for All: Our Restaurant Roll Call for January 2015

Categories: Cafe Society

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Rioja
A trio of popular restaurants are undergoing major overhauls. On January 9, Jen Jasinski and Beth Gruitch closed Rioja, which had marked its tenth anniversary in November, for an overhaul that will be revealed on February 4, when they reopen the Larimer Square favorite. Up in LoHi, Z Cuisine owner/chef Patrick Dupays closed his spot after the holidays to make some long-planned changes to the dining room. With the bar at À Côté two doors down still open and serving the full Z Cuisine menu to regulars, Dupays says he's not in a rush to reopen the main restaurant. "I'm still French," he explains. "I'm taking my time to do things."

Alex Seidel is definitely on the fast track with the remodeling job at Fruition, which closed this week for a renovation that will be revealed on February 6, the eighth anniversary of the restaurant's opening. Keep reading for more restaurant action in January.

See also: Restaurant Roll Call for 2014

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Five More Pigskin Parties for Super Bowl Sunday, Plus One For the Football Haters

Categories: Things To Do

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Brandon Marshall
More than just Patriots fans will be celebrating at these parties on Sunday.
We've already brought you a six-pack of Super Bowl parties to check out this Sunday, but the football fun just keeps on coming. Whether you want to see the Seahawks and Patriots battle it out, watch cheerleaders do their thing, or just enjoy a quiet dinner, these Denver Super Bowl events have you covered.

See also: 20 Intoler-a-Bowl Memes, For Fans Who Want Seahawks, Patriots to Both Lose Super Bowl

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Eck's Saloon Has Poured Its Last Shot in Lakewood

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Jon Solomon
Eck's Saloon, another local watering hole that's dried up.
Dive bars are disappearing all over metro Denver. The latest casualty? Eck's Saloon, which was a rock-music haven as well as a popular Lakewood joint, although it had apparently become a lot less popular in recent years. Jon Solomon reported the news yesterday on Backbeat; once owned by Mike Bruno (who also owned Iliff Park Saloon and Bruno's Saloon), the bar had changed hands twice in as many years.

See also: Lakewood Rock Haven Eck's Saloon Has Closed

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The Roasted Vegetable Sandwich at Masterpiece Deli is a Messy Marvel

Categories: Vegetarian

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Chelsea Keeney
Every sandwich here is a Masterpiece.
Whether you work downtown or hang out in Highland, Masterpiece Delicatessen has two locations (the newer of the two is in Uptown) that are sure to satisfy for a quick grab-and-go lunch or a sit-down meal with a friend or colleague. But don't let your life intrude upon your lunch at Masterpiece: the roasted vegetable sandwich is a meal worth closing your laptop and setting your smart phone down for -- because you'll need both hands to consume the messy spread of sauce, cheese and soft-cooked vegetables loaded between halves of a crisp-crusted Grateful Bread baguette.

See Also: People Get Ready -- for Bob Marley and Pamela Anderson Tacos at Zi South

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Street Kitchen Asian Bistro Closes at Vallagio in Englewood

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Westword
Street Kitchen Asian Bistro in the Vellagio development south of the Denver Tech Center.
Chef/restaurateur Mary Nguyen opened Street Kitchen Asian Bistro in the Vallagio at Inverness development in Englewood four years ago as a south-suburban complement to her Uptown Parallel Seventeen, now repackaged as P17. Since then, she's also launched Olive & Finch, which made our list of the ten best new restaurants of 2013. While the two East 17th Avenue eateries continue to draw neighborhood diners, Street Kitchen seemed like the odd man out in the trio -- and now it's out altogether. Street Kitchen's website is down and the phone is disconnected. (We were unable to reach Nguyen at her other restaurants.)

See also: It Takes Guts and a Little Heart to Dine With the Denver Adventurous Eaters Club

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You'll Always Have Paris -- If You Buy a Piece of the Iconic Coffeehouse Tomorrow

Categories: Cafe Society

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Westword
Paris on the Platte on its last day.
The sad news traveled fast: Paris on the Platte would pour its last cup of coffee on January 17. Former and current regulars hurried over to say goodbye to Faye Maguire, who'd opened the coffeehouse 28 years ago, when that stretch of Platte Street was almost a no man's land (although there did happen to be a newspaper office -- ours -- on the corner). And the memories started pouring out, including a lovely piece from Bree Davies, who went to Paris as a teenager to smoke cigarettes and dream big dreams.

But if you want to remember Paris on the Platte with more than memories, head to its former home tomorrow.

See also: Paris on the Platte Will Close Today

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Reader: When I Want to Sit at a Counter, I Go to Pete's Kitchen

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Danielle Lirette
Chef Lance Barto puts the finishing touches to a Brussels sprouts dish at Brazen.
Chef's counters are becoming increasingly important features at local restaurants, including Brazen Neighborhood Eatery, the new restaurant in northwest Denver that Gretchen Kurtz reviews this week. In fact, Brazen rates our list of the twelve best chef's counters in Denver, which we rolled out yesterday. But did we miss one?

See also: The Twelve Best Chef's Counters in Denver

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Stouts, Seahawks and Secret Histories: A Six-Pack of the Weekend's Tastiest Events

Categories: Things To Do

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Brandon Marshall
Lovers of dark beer wear it on their sleeves for Stout Month, starting this Sunday at Mountain Sun pubs.
This weekend you can step into Denver's culinary past at the historic Casa Mayan, learn how to make your own kimchi and sample tons of local stouts. Oh, and we hear there's a big football game on Sunday. Keep reading for a taste of what's on the culinary calendar.

See also: The Mountain Sun Group Readies Nearly 600 Kegs for Its 22nd Annual Stout Month

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Twelve Best Chef's Counters in Denver

Categories: Best of Denver

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Danielle Lirette
Chef's counters like this one at Brazen are heating up the Denver dining scene.
In her review of Brazen Neighborhood Eatery, Gretchen Kurtz extols the chef's counter, where she says tastes are shared "like secrets," food is delivered by cooks who describe it in great detail, and amuse-bouche, a treat usually given to insiders, are the norm. But Brazen isn't the only spot in town where the chef's counter rivals the dining room as prime seating. Here are a dozen of our favorites, listed in alphabetical order -- except for number one, which was named Best Chef's Counter in the Best of Denver 2014. Will it win again?

See also: Best Chef's Counter 2104: Rioja

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Denver Baker to Compete on Food Network's Duff Till Dawn

Categories: Things To Do

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Courtesy of Food Network
Denver's Avalon Yarnes (right) will compete on the Food Network's Duff Till Dawn cake baking throwdown.
Celebrity cake maker Duff Goldman, who rose to fame with his show Ace of Cakes, is hoping to whisk you away with a new show premiering tonight at 9:30 p.m. called Duff Till Dawn, which the Food Network is billing as an "underground competition" pitting bakers against one another in a midnight battle. The show encourages smack talk and tension between the contestants, one of whom will be Denver's Avalon Yarnes, owner of Avalon Cakes, a primarily online bakery specializing in cake art for special occasions.

See also: Cafe Aion Chef Dakota Soifer Wins on Food Network's Cutthroat Kitchen

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