Round two with Pippa Taylor, exec chef of Strings
Part one of my interview with Pippa Taylor, executive chef of Strings, ran yesterday. This is part two of our chat
Favorite restaurant in America: At this point, my favorites include Joël Robuchon in Las Vegas, Charlie Trotter's in Chicago and Fenway Franks at Fenway Park in Boston. I've got to be honest, though: I haven't even scratched the surface of the American restaurant scene. There are so many renowned and less-obvious restaurants that I can't wait to try. I see a lot of road trips in my future.
Favorite cheap eat in Denver/Boulder: Jerusalem on Evans. I lived in Cairo, Egypt, for a few years and always get cravings for good Middle Eastern food. "J-rus," as we called it in college, has some seriously good, and seriously authentic, Middle Eastern dishes.
If you only had 24 hours in Denver/Boulder, where would you eat? The Morrison Inn, Tabernash Tavern and Prima. The Morrison Inn and the Tavern are both very unique Colorado staples with delicious and varying menu items, and I couldn't leave Colorado without having the egg ravioli from Prima.
What you'd like to see more of in Denver/Boulder from a culinary standpoint: I'd love to see more tasting menus. I very rarely get a chance to eat out, and when I do, I want to order everything. Tasting menus allow me to sample more of what the kitchen offers, and it makes me feel like I'm on a vacation from the back of the house. It's a real treat.
What you'd like to see less of in Denver/Boulder from a culinary standpoint: I'd like to see fewer Groupon and Living Social deals. I feel like they lower a restaurant's standards.
Most memorable meal you've ever had: Ryan, my husband -- who's the sous chef in the kitchen with me at Strings -- and I were married in Scotland. Much like a decorator enjoys touring beautiful homes, we enjoy touring restaurant kitchens. On our wedding night, we were fortunate enough to tour the kitchen of the restaurant that cooked our marriage feast. In the kitchen, there was a bus tub on the line filled to the brim with live langoustines that were fresh-caught less than a mile from the kitchen. They were clattering around in the tub -- and the most vibrant orange color. We ate those langoustines that night for our wedding dinner, and it was the most delicious, and the most memorable, meal and experience I've ever had. Food that fresh is a true delight.
What's the best food- or kitchen-related gift you've been given? I was raised in the U.K. and grew up snacking on the seemingly oddball treats from there. Last Christmas, Ryan ordered my two favorite candy bars from the U.K. -- Mint Aero bars and Cadbury Crunchies -- along with Walker's prawn cocktail chips. The tastes brought me back to being a kid again.