Lo Stella Ristorante, Offshoot of 160-Year-Old Original in Italy, Opens in Golden Triangle

Categories: First Look

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Mark Antonation
Lo Stella Ristorante opened in 1850 in Portofino, Ital and now, over 160 years later, Denver is getting a taste of the famous restaurant that has been in the same family for eight generations. Lo Stella Ristorante opened today in the former home of Gallo di Nero in the Golden Triangle, serving housemade pasta and other Italian specialties that owner Alessandro Polo thinks will be unique in Denver's dining scene.

See also: First look: Dulce Vida opens in the Golden Triangle


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Hopdoddy Brings Austin-Style Burgers to Denver on Monday

Categories: First Look

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All photos by Mark Antonation.
The first Hopdoddy Burger Bar opened in Austin, Texas in 2010. There will be seven locations on Monday, when the newest Hopdoddy opens next to Union Station. Hopdoddy President Dan Mesches says the company chose the location because of its combination of historic and modern surroundings. "We love the urban energy," he says. Hopdoddy is bringing its concept -- beef ground onsite several times daily and buns baked in-house -- to a crowded Denver burger market, but hopes the flavors and freshness will win over residents and tourists visiting this bustling part of LoDo.

See also: Sunnyside Burger Bar Starts Flipping Burgers on 38th

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First Look: Work Options for Women Now Pouring at Cafe United

Categories: First Look

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All photos by Danielle Lirette
Coffee's on at Cafe United, in the new Mile High United Way Morgridge Center for Community Change. This is the latest open-to-the-public spot run by Work Options for Women, a local nonprofit that trains at-risk women (and men) for careers in the food-service industry. WOW already runs the cafeteria at the Denver Department of Human Services, at 1200 Federal Boulevard, giving its clients real on-the-job training. And it also operates Cafe Options, a charming breakfast/lunch cafe at 1650 Curtis Street that's been wowing downtown diners for a half-dozen years.

All three give diners a real taste of what a smart program can do to help cook up career opportunities...and good food.

See also: Work Options for Women Brewing Up a Barista Station -- and You Can Help

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Brew 'n Q Homebrew and Barbecue Supply Shop Opens in RiNo

Categories: First Look

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Mark Antonation
Craig Singleton is a do-it-yourself guy. "I like self-sustenance, DIY," he says. "Mom and Dad are that way." So Singleton brews beer, hunts, fishes, barbecues and cures his own meats. He's both passionate and enthusiastic, traits that sometimes earn people the label "nerd" or "geek" -- but in a professional setting often result in well-served customers. That's Singleton's hope for Brew 'n Q, his new homebrew and barbecue-supply store that opened this month in a warehouse space in rapidly developing River North neighborhood.

See also: Photos: Beryl's Beer Company opens in RiNo

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Duy Pham's Parker Garage Brings Fine-Dining Flair to Southeast Suburbs

Categories: First Look, Photos

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All photos by Danielle Lirette.
Chef Duy Pham's culinary career in Colorado has been all over the map. Starting at the legendary Tante Louise on Colfax, he also ran Restaurant Fifteen Twenty-One in Pueblo for several years before heading back to Denver to man the kitchen at Epernay. His latest venture is in suburban Parker, and it's called -- appropriately -- Parker Garage. Taking over the old Warhorse space (which operated for over thirty years there) and restoring it to emphasize its original form as a garage and gas station originally built in 1916, Pham and owner Brent Walker are bringing elevated dining to the casual but unique spot.

See also: Duy Pham Is an Artist -- but These Days, His studio Is the Kitchen

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Colorado's Second LYFE Kitchen Opens in Boulder

Categories: First Look

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Mark Antonation
LYFE Kitchen, the healthy lifestyle restaurant chain that got its start in Palo Alto, California, and made its Colorado debut at the Park Meadows mall in June, opened Wednesday in Boulder under the ownership of Rachel and DJ Mitchell, who also operate the Park Meadows location. Jeremy Bringardner, one of three executive chefs on LYFE's culinary team, was on hand to ensure a smooth opening and to welcome Boulder customers to the fast-casual restaurant.

See also: Review: LYFE Kitchen Has Good Intentions But Needs More

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Aurora Restaurant Roundup: Catfish King and K BBQ

Categories: First Look, Photos

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All photos by Danielle Lirette
Catfish King.
Aurora's restaurant scene may not be on the cutting edge of national food trends or garnering acclaim for its food "concepts" and bar "programs," but the sprawling city has long been an international zone for cuisines not common in Denver. Competition is fierce and multiple restaurants come and go in the same strip-mall locations before customers use their dollars to vote for the best. Two locations have turned over recently: the former Korean-Cajun sports bar Dancing Crab is now K BBQ, while the address that once housed Shead's Rib & Fish Hut (the last restaurant outpost of the family famous for M & D's Barbecue) is now home to Southern food specialist Catfish King.

See also: East Asia Garden Closes on Broadway -- Will Reopen in Cherry Creek With New Name

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Butcher's Bistro Opens for Dinner Tonight in Former Twelve Location

Categories: First Look

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Mark Antonation
Butcher's Bistro will open under the old Kokopelli marquee.
Butcher's Bistro opens at 5 p.m. today in the former location of Twelve, which Jeff Osaka closed in August to concentrate on his new venture, Osaka Ramen. Owner Scott Bauer and executive chef Tyson Holzheimer hope to lure customers with a butcher counter and a menu centered on whole-animal butchery, especially beef from Colorado's Best Beef in Fort Lupton.

See also: What Does Twelve's Closing Say About Denver's Dining Scene?

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Frasca Team Will Open Second Fast-Casual Pizzeria Locale on Sunday

Categories: First Look

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Mark Antonation
Bobby Stuckey and Lachlan Mackinnon-Patterson are opening their second fast-casual version of Pizzeria Locale in West Highland on Sunday. While we were already fans of the prototype that opened in May 2013 at 550 Broadway, the guys from Frasca Food and Wine are going one better this time. In a move that's basically unprecedented, the new Locale will be grinding its own flour every day, in the store, using a heritage wheat variety that the two say will bring flavor, nutrition and life back to the art of pizza -making.

See also: Pizzeria Locale Adds Two Pizzas, a New Salad Mix -- and Soon a Second Denver Spot

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First Look: Fiction Beer Opens On Colfax With Craft Brews and a Bar Made of Books

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All photos by Danielle Lirette
Fiction Beer Company, owned by Ryan and Christa Kilpatrick, opened its doors on the first floor of the Phoenix on the Fax building last weekend, and will celebrate its grand opening tomorrow at 2 p.m. Located on busy Colfax Avenue, on the border of the Park Hill, Monclair, Mayfair and Lowry neighborhoods, the brewery is one of the few on the east side.

The place boasts a bar made out of books, literary quotes on the tables and a theme that brings together the Kilpatrick's love of both books and beer. It also includes a seven-barrel brewing system, six beers on tap and a patio out back.

Turn the page to see photos from Fiction Beer Company.

See also: Mu Brewery Opens in Aurora as Colfax Avenue's Only Beer Maker -- For Now

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