Burgers at LYFE and Sunnyside Burger Bar: A Second Helping of Cafe Society, September 14-19

Categories: Cafe Society

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Danielle Lirette
A big, healthy burger at LYFE Kitchen.
This week in Cafe Society, Gretchen Kurtz reviewed LYFE Kitchen, where the portions were small and mostly uninspired. In Chef and Tell, Cook Street's John Parks talked about his hands-on-approach for teaching novice chefs, the importance of knife skills and more.

See also: From Oktoberfest to the BigWonderful, the Top Ten Culinary Events This Weekend

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Founding Family Selling Johnson's Corner to TravelCenters of America

Categories: Cafe Society

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Here's how former Cafe critic Jason Sheehan remembered his first view of Colorado's iconic truck stop: "Johnson's Corner sat right off the frontage road, a dusty sprawl of parking lots and big rigs, mirrored windows reflecting the endless, flat nothing all around it. Johnson's had everything: a restaurant, general store, CB and chrome shop, attached RV park and Sunday chapel, gas pumps, long-distance phone and mail service, even a flea market in full swing just down the road where you could get anything from a bucket of Coors longnecks (five for five bucks) to a Chinese knockoff switchblade to an amethyst crystal necklace guaranteed to quell the bitter humors for less than the friction between the two ten-spots burning a hole in your wallet. It was a scene you'd expect to see in the opening credits of some big-budget Jerry Bruckheimer end-of-the-world sci-fi blockbuster, with a bunch of scrappy survivors trying to eke a living out of the post-apocalyptic wasteland, selling chicken-fried steaks and plastic dashboard Jesuses to a steady stream of mutant road folk in Mad Max leathers and hockey pads."

See also: Jason Sheehan's "The Truck Stopped Here"


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Cap City Tavern Extends Patio Season for Outdoorsy Types

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Kristin Pazulski
Cap City Tavern's patio offers a barrier to the elements that's perfect for fall weather.
Our desire for patio pleasures doesn't fade with the coming of fall. In fact, Denver loves its cool-weather patios: The opportunity to don hats and scarves while wrapping our beers in mittened hands reminds us of mountain nights around a fire. But while we love the cool, open air, it's helpful to find a patio that shelters us from the elements. That's not solely why my friends and I love Cap City Tavern, but it's one of the few places where you can find a heated, covered patio with a huge TV.

See also: Ten best restaurants in the Golden Triangle

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Fishing for Compliments: A Second Helping of Cafe Society, September 7-12

Categories: Cafe Society

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Danielle Lirette
This week on Cafe Society, Gretchen Kurtz visited a Denver icon, the long-standing Barolo Grill. Mark Antonation talked to Kevin Grossi of Lola Mexican Fish House for Chef and Tell. And our quest for great barbecue in Denver culminated with our list of the ten best BBQ spots in town.

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How Long Would You Wait for Brunch? A Second Helping of Cafe Society, September 2-5

Categories: Cafe Society

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Bistro Barbes, small but mighty.
Do good things come in small packages? That's been Gretchen Kurtz's experience this summer; she's reviewed a number of tiny restaurants over the past few months, most recently Bistro Barb├Ęs, and found that while the kitchens may be tiny, they cook up big flavors. And speaking of big flavors, before Mark Antonation left barbecue behind and moved on to Indian cuisine for Ethniche, he checked in with barbecue expert (and James Beard Award-winning author) James Miller for this week's Chef and Tell.

See also: Ten Best Tiny Restaurants in Denver

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Patio of the Week: Weather the Changing Seasons at the Source

Categories: Cafe Society

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Kristin Pazulski
The patios at The Source are bordered by an interesting rock wall held together with a web of wire fencing.

What's better than one great patio? Two! This week's featured patio brings a double dose of outdoor seating, plus an indoor space that offers the perfect bridge between summer patio time and warmer seating to escape autumn's chill. The Source, if you don't already know, is an artisan collective on Brighton Boulevard that includes, among other things: a bakery, butcher, produce stand, gallery space, coffee roaster, liquor store and brewery. It's the fancy urban version of a grocery store, with the bonus of two restaurants: Acorn and Comida Cantina.

See also: A Jam-packed Saturday at the Source, including a tap takeover and Western Daughters popup

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Burgers, BBQ and the BSide: Our Restaurant Roll Call for August

Categories: Cafe Society

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BurgerFi brought more big burgers to Denver.
After two big months for restaurant openings, the pace slowed a little in August -- but still, more than twenty new spots opened their doors this month, everything from downhome burger bars to the upscale Cooper Lounge in Union Station. Keep reading for our Restaurant Roll Call for August.

See also: Restaurant Roll Call for July 2014

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The Denver Bagel Versus the New York Bagel

Categories: Cafe Society

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Kristin Pazulski
Eden Myles makes a Denver bagel.
New York native Eden Myles has spent years in the bagel biz in Denver, so when Josh Pollack opened Rosenberg's Bagels & Delicatessen and started touting his authentic "New York" bagel, he got a rise out of Myles.

See also: Josh Pollack Is on a Roll With Rosenberg's Bagels & Delicatessen

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The Inaugural GlobalFest Celebrates Ethnic Flavors in Aurora

Categories: Cafe Society

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J. Wohletz
Lady Di's Nigerian Cuisine.
The lawn in front of the Aurora Municipal Center on East Alameda Parkway was home to the first Aurora GlobalFest on Saturday, where cultural performances, beers from around the world and international tastes from local restaurants -- from American barbecue to Nigerian curried goat -- showcased Aurora's reputation as a hotbed of global cuisine.
Participating restaurants and caterers included Pho 888, The Nile Ethiopian Restaurant, Los Pastes (Mexican empanadas), Sunburst Grill (Filipino), Brooks Smoke House Barbecue, Flava, Voula's Kitchen and Lady Di's Nigerian Cuisine.

See also: Best BBQ in a Garage: Brooks Smokehouse Bar-B-Que


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From Burt's to Bye-Bye Twelve: A Second Helping of Cafe, August 18-22

Categories: Cafe Society

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Danielle Lirette
A dish from Mayan Manjar Yucateco.
This week in Cafe Society, Gretchen Kurtz reviews Mayan Majar Yucateco, an underdog that's taken over the former Maria Empanada space and could be a real contender. As she approaches her hundredth Cafe review, she also considers how the restaurant scene in Denver has changed over the past two years. And for Chef and Tell, chef Jason Morse tells Mark Antonation about cooking for Colorado Proud, his love of local ingredients and more.

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