Round two with Jeremy Kittelson, exec chef of Ambria
This is part two of my chef and tell interview with Jeremy Kittleson, exec chef of Ambria. Part one of our chat ran yesterday.
Favorite Denver/Boulder restaurant(s) other than your own: I really like going to Euclid Hall. Anywhere I can go and eat awesome food, have great beer, great service and listen to rap music is going to be a favorite of mine. They do a really great job there, and it helps that I'm such a huge Jay-Z fan.
Favorite cheap eat: I'm a sucker for tacos. I could eat them all day, every day. They're delicious, not to mention a complete meal. I'm still looking for my favorite taco place here, but so far, I really like El Taco Veloz on Federal. I love Star Kitchen, too, and I had a really great dinner there recently.
Best thing about cooking in Denver: I love cooking in a great food town that's so close to the outdoors, which is really the reason I came to Colorado in the first place. I wanted to live and make a life in a place where I could enjoy the outdoors and get away from the city.
Last restaurant you visited: Euclid Hall.
What you'd like to see more of in Denver/Boulder from a culinary standpoint: I'm relatively new to the city and haven't had the chance to get out that much, but pizza is one of my favorite foods -- and I haven't seen too many pizza places out there that I've been really impressed with. That said, I can't wait to try Pizzeria Locale, in Boulder. I hear it's amazing.
What you'd like to see less of in Denver/Boulder from a culinary standpoint: Menus that are all over the place and trying to be all things to all people. I want to know what I can expect going into a restaurant, and I want to see a real flow to a menu. Other than that, I've been very impressed with the chefs and restaurants in Denver.
Rules of conduct in your kitchen: Respect the food, respect each other and work clean. I'm a clean freak, and I'm also a real stickler for consolidating products -- like chicken stock -- down to smaller containers. It shows a lack of respect and complete laziness when cooks don't do that. And no chile pepper or mushroom chef pants are allowed in my kitchen, although I admit that there was a time when I thought they were cool. Oh...and all of the towels have to be perfectly stacked and folded into quarters -- and you always have to show the clean side.