BurgerFi, a "better burger" joint, will open on Broadway

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Lori Midson

When will the mooing stop? Anyone who lives in Denver, around Denver, even miles from Denver, knows that the last thing this city needs is another burger barn, but that's not stopping cattle herders from other cities from stampeding our stamping grounds with the next latest and greatest burger mania concept. In fact, it won't be long before we're well and truly BurgerFi'ed...by way of Florida.

See also: Reader: "Gourmet" burgers are overpriced disappointments

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Guess where I'm eating pretzel twists?

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Lori Midson

If you've ever been to this restaurant, then you'll recognize these pretzel twists immediately -- and you'll understand, too, why two is never enough. I have no plans to partake in 4/20 this weekend, but if I did, this is where I'd go for my munchie fix, and it's not a stretch to admit that along with eating my own pretzel twists, I'd eat yours, too.

Can you guess where I'm eating?

Special bonus: Anyone who gives the first correct answer to a Guess Where post -- on the Cafe Society blog, not on Facebook -- is entered into the contest pool, and every Monday, we select one lucky winner who'll receive a 2014 EatDenver dining deck, worth up to $520 in discounts at independent restaurants.

First look: Mile High Italian Deli opens in Highland

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All photos by Lori Midson.

The concept behind Mile High Italian Deli, a small, 800-square-foot storefront in Highland, is sandwiches, panini, salads, and, on Saturday, pizzas, the latter of which is an extension of Mile High Pizza Pie, a pizza joint that rose -- and fell -- downtown, after the landlord threatened to raise the rent through the roof. That increase in dough resulted in owner Howard Ellis selling the spot in September of last year following a four-year run -- and inking a lease on the former In Season Local Market, which he operates with business partner Dino Marchig, whose grandmother owns the space, along with Cebiche next door.

See also: LYFE Kitchen -- where everything is under 600 calories -- opening in Park Meadows

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Mlp48 is the winner of our Trillium Easter brunch contest

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UPDATE:
We have a winner of our Trillium Easter brunch contest, in which we asked Cafe Society readers to answer this question: How many mimosas did Trillium serve during last year's Easter brunch? Congratulations to Mlp48, who came the closest with a guess of 142; the actual number is 167. Mlp48, we'll send you an e-mail with info about how to claim your prize.

Original post: Easter brunch is the official culinary transition into spring, and dozens and dozens and dozens of restaurants around the city are gearing up for what's traditionally one of the busiest feasting holidays of the year. Trillium, Ryan Leinonen's Scandinavian-biased restaurant in Ballpark, already boasts one of the loveliest brunches in town, and for Easter brunch, he's definitely outdoing whatever the Easter bunny might be dropping in your basket, unless, of course, he's bringing you roasted bone marrow with pear chutney; a pork-bacon-and-herb terrine; caviar; Swedish pancakes; oysters; or beignets, all of which are on Leinonen's Easter menu.

And guess what? You and one guest have the opportunity to indulge in Leinonen's Easter brunch for free.

See also: Denver's fifty most essential restaurants, No. 46: Trillium


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Win two seats to Easter brunch at Trillium

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Easter brunch is the official culinary transition into spring, and dozens and dozens and dozens of restaurants around the city are gearing up for what's traditionally one of the busiest feasting holidays of the year. Trillium, Ryan Leinonen's Scandinavian-biased restaurant in Ballpark, already boasts one of the loveliest brunches in town, and for Easter brunch, he's definitely outdoing whatever the Easter bunny might be dropping in your basket, unless, of course, he's bringing you roasted bone marrow with pear chutney; a pork-bacon-and-herb terrine; caviar; Swedish pancakes; oysters; or beignets, all of which are on Leinonen's Easter menu.

And guess what? You and one guest have the opportunity to indulge in Leinonen's Easter brunch for free.

See also: Denver's fifty most essential restaurants, No. 46: Trillium


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Guess where I'm eating cheap sushi rolls...that taste cheap?

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Lori Midson

It's an attractive offer: all sushi rolls priced 50 percent off, all day long. But like a lot of things in life, you get what you pay for, and aside from the fact that the fish tasted faded and the rice was even duller, with no hint of the obligatory tang of vinegar, when I asked if freshly grated wasabi was available, the server looked at me as though I'd lost all my marbles. Short, curt answer: "No, it comes out of a bag." Truth be told, I'm inclined to wonder if the fish does, too.

Can you guess where I'm eating?

Special bonus: Anyone who gives the first correct answer to a Guess Where post -- on the Cafe Society blog, not on Facebook -- is entered into the contest pool, and every Monday, we select one lucky winner who'll receive a 2014 EatDenver dining deck, worth up to $520 in discounts at independent restaurants.

LYFE Kitchen -- where everything is under 600 calories -- opening in Park Meadows

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Lori Midson

When I was in my late twenties and early thirties, I avoided eating meat. The reasons why aren't important, but looking back on that phase, I wish I'd chosen a different time in my life to go meat-free, because I was living in Chicago, where militant vegetarians were few and far between. This isn't to say that I ate particularly healthy. In fact, on my way to work each morning, my must-have habit was an egg McMuffin -- just egg and cheese -- from McDonald's. And sometimes, a hash brown. My metabolism was much better then; I was skinny -- super-skinny -- but I was still eating junk.

During those years, there was no True Food Kitchen or Native Foods Cafe, no Chipotle or Maoz Vegetarian, and certainly nothing like LYFE Kitchen (the acronym stands for "Love Your Food Everyday"), a restaurant that opened its first store late last year in, coincidentally, Chicago. And in mid-June, as part of an ambitious growth spurt that will spawn 250 locations nationwide over the next five years, LYFE Kitchen will open in Park Meadows Mall, in the space vacated by California Cafe.

The owners-operators of that location? Rachel and DJ Mitchell, a married couple who grew up together in Chicago and worked for McDonalds and McDonald's Corporation.

See also: After fourteen years, Noboru Muraishi closes Oshima Ramen

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Matt Stein, chef of Bruxie, pleads for a seat at Work & Class

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Lori Midson

Matt Stein
Bruxie
1000 South Colorado Boulevard, Glendale
303-963-9045
bruxie.com

This is part two of my interview with Matt Stein, chef of Bruxie; part one of our conversation ran yesterday.

Most memorable meal you've ever had:
I had dinner in a seafood restaurant in Bari, Italy, with my partners, my wife and a couple of people who worked for us, and we wound up having about twenty courses, including fish species from both the Adriatic and Mediterranean: squirrel fish with the roe; a huge, wild, salt-roasted spigola; sea urchins; oysters; sea dates -- everything you can think of. Needless to say, we also drank too much, and the van we had rented almost got stolen, but aside from that, it was a dinner that was memorable to me on so many different levels.

See also: Matt Stein, chef of Bruxie: "You're only as good as the last meal you put out"


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Guess where I'm eating a corned beef sandwich?

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Lori Midson

Yesterday, after briefly stopping at a restaurant that made me sprint to the nearest wash sink to slather my hands in soap, I didn't have much of an appetite, but that all changed when I took a seat at a well-known deli and ordered a corned beef sandwich stacked with coleslaw and melted Swiss. I only ate half, which worried my server, who was sweeter than the slew of desserts the table next to me had in front of them. "Next time, honey," she said, "save yourself two bucks and just get a half sandwich." Instead, I threw down more money for a bagel and a container of smoked salmon cream cheese for breakfast.

Can you guess where I'm eating?

Special bonus: Anyone who gives the first correct answer to a Guess Where post -- on the Cafe Society blog, not on Facebook -- is entered into the contest pool, and every Monday, we select one lucky winner who'll receive a 2014 EatDenver dining deck, worth up to $520 in discounts at independent restaurants.

Recipe Wednesday: Mizuna, chevre and preserved lemon salad

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Whitney Arris

Pete Marczyk and Barbara Macfarlane do not leave their work behind when they leave Marczyk Fine Foods and head for their great old Denver house with a spacious kitchen. They often bring some of their market's best ingredients home with them and cook up a feast, and when they're not cooking at home, they're working with the staff at Marczyk to create recipes for the rest of us to enjoy, usually turning to Whitney Ariss, a home cook and the market's marketing project manager and events coordinator, for inspiration.

"One of Pete's favorite mottos is 'keep it simple, make it great,' which also might as well be the motto for this salad recipe," says Ariss. And by simple, she adds, "I don't mean store-bought dressing and a bunch of random pre-cut vegetables you happen to have in the fridge."

Simple, yes. Memorable? No. "For this salad, you want really, really good, fresh greens, and a couple other best quality ingredients, which are key, and at the markets, we have a full line of field-grown bagged salad greens from one of our favorite farms, Oxford Gardens, which is in Niwot," says Ariss. "Since the greens are grown in the biologically active and mineral rich soil, which Oxford works so hard to cultivate, they're absolutely full of flavor and nutrition," she notes.

See also: Recipe Wednesday: Chocolate crackles

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