Rialto Cafe's Robert McCarthy on cooking better than a second-grader

Robertmccarthy2.jpg
Lori Midson

Robert McCarthy
Rialto Cafe
934 16th Street
303-893-2233
www.rialtocafe.com

This is part two of my interview with Robert McCarthy, executive chef of Rialto Cafe. Part one of that interview ran in this space yesterday.

Favorite restaurant in America: Lupa, Mario Batali's restaurant in New York. It's really simple, straightforward food done incredibly well. Making dishes that taste that good using so few ingredients is the signature of a great chef.

Best food city in America: I don't know if it's the best food city in America, but my favorite city for food is San Francisco. I know that cities like New York, Chicago and New Orleans all have the same diversity of restaurants that San Francisco has, but having lived there for ten years, I know and appreciate the food of San Francisco much better than any other city.

Favorite Denver/Boulder restaurant(s) other than your own: I've always been a big fan of Solera. I worked for Goose for a little while when I was waiting to open my bakery and really enjoyed his style of food.

What you'd like to see more of in Denver/Boulder from a culinary standpoint: Spanish/Basque food and, really, any ethnic foods outside of the standards.

What you'd like to see less of in Denver/Boulder from a culinary standpoint: Frozen, dyed, Cryovacked shitty tuna.

Current Denver culinary genius: Genius might be a little much, and I don't know that I can single anyone out, especially since there are a lot of people doing some very good things here, and I'm always looking forward to seeing who's going to bring the next idea to the table. That said, I really think Goose Sorensen is doing a great job at Solera. I really love his style of food -- it intrigues me -- and I really like him as a person. He's got a great thing going on over there.

What's the best food- or kitchen-related gift you've been given? I got a smoker for my first Father's Day from my wife that I use all the time. I think, though, that if she knew how much time I'd end up spending with it, she would have gotten me a tie.


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