Jeff Jones, chef of P17: "Without your cooks, or your dishwasher, you're nothing"

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Lori Midson

Jeff Jones
P17
1600 East 17th Avenue
303-399-0988
p17denver.com

This is part two of my interview with Jeff Jones, chef de cuisine of P17; part one of our conversation ran yesterday.

Your three favorite Denver restaurants other than your own:
I love Snooze on Larimer, and when I'm craving a nice breakfast or brunch on a day off, that's my go-to. I especially love their "bella-bella benny." Euclid Hall is always a good decision, too; their food is fantastic, with enough variety to please everybody, plus they have a great selection of beers and my favorite gin. Il Posto treats me like family. I've had numerous great meals there, and I can always count on a good glass of wine, nice cheeses and friendship.

See also: Jeff Jones, chef of P17: "We become a better restaurant when you give us constructive criticism"


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Jeff Jones, chef of P17: "We become a better restaurant when you give us constructive criticism"

jeffjones1.jpg
Lori Midson

Jeff Jones
P17
1600 East 17th Avenue
303-399-0988
p17denver.com

This is part one of my interview with Jeff Jones, chef de cuisine of P17; part two of our conversation will run tomorrow.

When you're a kid, there's nothing worse than constantly being on the move. Unless, that is, you happen to wind up in Paris, in a flat above a patisserie, where the sweet scent of fresh-baked bread, croissants and pastries drifts through your window. Then again, for Jeff Jones, the chef de cuisine at P17, even the aroma of fresh croissants couldn't overcome his first encounter with salmon. "My mother would take me to the market in Paris every day to grab our food, and I honestly didn't think much of it until one day, when my mom failed to distract me from the whole salmon that just happened to be at eye level with me," recalls Jones. "I was horrified, and salmon plagued my dreams for years."

See also: Exclusive first look: Mary Nguyen opens P17, a neighborhood bistro

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Samuel McCandless, chef de cuisine at the Squeaky Bean, on the hand sink and your reflection

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Lori Midson

Samuel McCandless
The Squeaky Bean

1500 Wynkoop Street
303-623-2665
squeakybean.net

This is part two of my interview with Sam McCandless, chef de cuisine at the Squeaky Bean; part one of our conversation ran yesterday.

Most memorable meal you've ever had:
Eating at L20 with my mom. I was jaded as a young cook who was trying to be the best, and my mom snapped me out of it. She made sure I knew just how fortunate I was to cook on that level.

See also: Samuel McCandless, chef de cuisine at the Squeaky Bean: "Start with the best and end with something even better"


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Samuel McCandless, chef de cuisine at the Squeaky Bean: "Start with the best and end with something even better"

Samuelsb.jpg
Lori Midson

Samuel McCandless
The Squeaky Bean

1500 Wynkoop Street
303-623-2665
squeakybean.net

This is part one of my interview with Sam McCandless, chef de cuisine at the Squeaky Bean; part two of our conversation will run tomorrow.

When he was a kid, the mere thought of cooking panicked Samuel McCandless. "I was kinda scared to cook when I was young, and I have no idea why, other than that I was intimidated and didn't want to be bad at it," says McCandless, who went on to cook in some of the best restaurants in the country, under some of the best chefs in the country, and is now the chef de cuisine at The Squeaky Bean. The fear dissipated as soon his clogs shuffled into a professional kitchen, which happened to be in a retirement home in Billings, Montana, close to Red Lodge, where he grew up.

See also: Squeaky Bean chef Theo Adley launches a new lunch menu - and the best burger in town

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Daniel Bradley, chef of 5280 Burger Bar: "If you're not willing to give up your life to the craft, don't do it"

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Lori Midson

Daniel Bradley
5280 Burger Bar
500 16th Street Mall
303-825-1020
5280burgerbar.com

This is part two of my interview with Daniel Bradley, exec chef of 5280 Burger Bar; part one of our chat ran yesterday.

Your three favorite Denver/Boulder restaurants other than your own:
I had dinner at Interstate the other night, and I have to say it was amazing, especially the calamari, which was the best calamari I've ever had. I'm also a sucker for the tea sandwiches and pork pâté at Williams & Graham, and I love Pho 555. I mean, who doesn't love pho at 2 a.m.?

See also: Daniel Bradley, chef of 5280 Burger Bar: "I don't want baby food and spit on my plate"


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Daniel Bradley, chef of 5280 Burger Bar: "I don't want baby food and spit on my plate"

Daniel52801.jpg
Lori Midson

Daniel Bradley
5280 Burger Bar
500 16th Street Mall
303-825-1020
5280burgerbar.com

This is part one of my interview with Daniel Bradley, exec chef of 5280 Burger Bar; tune in tomorrow for part two of our chat.

When you grow up in Burlingame, California, where fields of fresh produce are within skipping distance and family dinners never include an ingredient plucked from a box or poured from a can, a hamburger from McDonald's can really screw with your body. Daniel Bradley found that out the hard way. "Everything we ate at home was prepared from scratch, and it wasn't until I was twelve or so that I had my first hamburger from McDonald's, and it made me violently, ridiculously ill," remembers Bradley. Decades later, he's now the exec chef of 5280 Burger Bar, which opened earlier this year in the Denver Pavilions.

See also: 5280 Burger Bar & Creamery opening today in Denver Pavilions


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Diane Snider, chef of Row 14, on stripping down to her underwear

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Lori Midson

Diane Snider
Row 14 Bistro & Wine Bar
891 14th Street
303-825-0100
row14denver.com

This is part two of my interview with Diane Snider, exec chef of Row 14 Bistro & Wine Bar; part one of our conversation ran yesterday.

Most memorable meal you've ever had:
When I traveled to Estoril, Portugal, a little town outside of Lisbon, I found this authentic Portuguese restaurant and ordered the octopus, which was slow-cooked in extra-virgin olive oil and served with potatoes. When I took that first bite, my tastebuds began dancing...it was so tender and so well prepared, and I knew I had to savor every bite, so I tried to eat it as slowly as I could. I was also very reluctant to share it with my company. At the same time, I wanted them to try it, if only to understand how delicious it was. I had to know how the kitchen prepared it, so I asked our server and he told me the secret. I'll eventually travel back to Portugal just to have this dish again.

See also: Diane Snider, chef of Row 14, on hiring the smart ones


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Diane Snider, chef of Row 14, on hiring the smart ones

DianeSnider1.jpg
Lori Midson

Diane Snider
Row 14 Bistro & Wine Bar
891 14th Street
303-825-0100
row14denver.com

This is part one of my interview with Diane Snider, exec chef of Row 14 Bistro & Wine Bar; part two of our chat will run tomorrow.

Diane Snider had her first food epiphany in the sixth grade, hundreds of miles away from her birthplace of Oahu, Hawaii. "I went to Tennessee for the summer with my best friend, and the family I stayed with farmed all of their own food, which was such a surreal experience for me, because at that age, all I knew was food that came out of a box, or looking for recipes in cookbooks, and this was the first time that I'd ever experienced food that was all made from scratch," remembers Snider, today the executive chef at Row 14 Bistro & Wine Bar.

See also: Best By-the-Glass Wine List Denver 2013 - Row 14 Bistro & Wine Bar

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Chris Canales, chef of Volta: "Don't think that being a chef is glamorous"

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Lori Midson

Chris Canales
Volta Mediterranean Restaurant
2480 Canyon Boulevard, Boulder
303-938-8800
voltaboulder.com

This is part two of my interview with Chris Canales, exec chef of Volta; part one of my chat with Canales ran yesterday.

Most memorable meal you've ever had:
I can't remember a single most memorable meal, but all my memories are associated with food in one way or another. When I was growing up we didn't have much, but we always had good food, whether it was for a birthday or a funeral. No matter what, my mom and my aunts were always making something delicious.

See also: Volta chef Chris Canales on more all-you-can-eat pizza and free food for all


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Volta chef Chris Canales on more all-you-can-eat pizza and free food for all

Chrisvolta.jpg
Lori Midson

Chris Canales
Volta Mediterranean Restaurant
2480 Canyon Boulevard, Boulder
303-938-8800
voltaboulder.com

This is part one of my interview with Chris Canales; part two of my chat with Canales will run tomorrow.

Volta, with its sophisticated menu, swank interior and elegant al fresco courtyard, is far from the world where executive chef Chris Canales grew up in Fullerton, California. "We didn't have a lot of things, we didn't go out to dinner very often, and we didn't have much money, but my mom and aunts, all of whom are 100 percent Mexican -- not to mention awesome cooks -- always made up for it by having really, really good food, even if it was just a pot of beans and tortillas," says Canales, who started cooking at thirteen as a way to put some cash in his pocket.

See also: Alba's replacement, Volta, opens today in Boulder

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