| Andrew Chapman|
|From left to right: Etai Bar-on, Uid Bar-on and Robin Bar-on.|
This is part one of my conversation with Udi Bar-on, founder of Udi's. Tune it tomorrow to read part two of our interview.
In 1994, when Udi Bar-on, who today lays claim to eleven eponymous local restaurants and cafes, a catering company and Colorado's largest artisan bakery, first opened a long-gone dessert shop in the former Northglenn Mall, no one could have predicted that an unexpected leap into gluten-free bakery products would have made him a millionaire. But in 2012, that's exactly what happened: Bar-on, his son, Etai, and daughter Robin, the chef of all the Udi's restaurants and cafes, sold Udi's Foods to Smart Balance -- now Boulder Brands -- for $125 million. And while the iconic Udi's name is one of the most recognizable brands in the Colorado culinary community, one of the stipulations of the mammoth sale was that the family would rebrand its company and dispense with the Udi's name - and they'd need to do it by July of this year. "Now that the life cycle of the gluten-free business is complete, we have an incredible opportunity to use those resources to support the seemingly infinite number of opportunities that lay ahead for our company, soon to be known by another name," says Udi.
See also: First look: Udi's Cafe, Pizza and Bar opens in Glendale's City Set ProjectMore »