Rocky Mountain Farmers, Ranchers & Artisans Influence Denver Dining



The term may be overused these days but the intention remains relevant. Diners want inventive dishes made with the freshest possible ingredients and least possible impact on the environment. Chefs want to offer exactly that. One result of this synergistic aspiration is a new focus on something that had all but disappeared from the American landscape in the age of big agriculture–the small farm. Now, local organic produce, animals raised humanely, handcrafted cheese and sausage, house-made canned and preserved goods and a desire to waste nothing all have become the new normal in trendsetting restaurants, and Denver is well ahead of the curve.

The drive to use local purveyors and ingredients is strong in Colorado. From pizza at Sazza to multi-course meals at Root Down, there are restaurants at which farm-to-table is not a trend but a sustained passion. One of the best-known chefs in this space is Alex Seidel, who has Fruition, Mercantile Dining & Provision and his own Fruition Farms, which provides ingredients for both restaurants. Equally passionate are the chefs at urban Farmer in the Oxford Hotel and 15/Fifty in the Sheraton Downtown Denver., proving that good, locally sourced food and sustainability are important to hotel chefs, too. There are many more. The best news is that this is no longer a trend; it's the new norm, at least here in Denver.


10
Greenwood Village


Sazza brings local, sustainable and farm-to-table concepts to the world of pizza. "We have never felt it necessary to define our version of farm-to-table because it is a lifestyle choice not a business decision," says Jeff Rogoff, owner of...  Read More


Old Major
Photo courtesy of Old Major


Old Major serves elevated farm-inspired american cuisine "focused on seafood, swine & wine. We're friends with our farmers and fishermen," says management on the restaurants website. "We focus on heritage-raised meats from Colorado farms we...  Read More




Yes, this Sheraton is a huge convention hotel, part of Marriott's Convention & Resort Network, but forget preconceived ideas. Its restaurant, 15/Fifty, is as "farm-to-table" as any in town. Flavorful, beautifully constructed dishes and...  Read More


7
Alamo Placita


"At Beatrice & Woodsley, we search for and serve the best quality and most sustainable products available," says Travis Messervey, executive chef. Like other Denver chefs, he says the term farm-to-table has become mostly a marketing...  Read More


6
North Denver
Duo


"I like to think of my baking style is that of grace, nostalgia and satisfaction, much like our team and our community that we love to serve," says Tiffany Leong, Duo's pastry chef, on the restaurant's website. Indeed, this restaurant is...  Read More




Located in a chic, airy space with patio seating on Union Station's courtyard, Mercantile offers the perfect mix of sophistication and comfort in its design and its menu. There are plenty of veggie, meat, seafood and house-made pasta...  Read More




Chef Chris Starkus brought his passion for gardening, growing and beekeeping to the heart of LoDo. "As a chef, bee keeper and farmer I understand that when you can begin from seed selection, that's really where the flavor starts," he says. "No...  Read More


3
Capitol Hill


Potager, which means kitchen garden in French, opened in 1997 in Denver's Capital Hill area. The owners, a father and daughter, say the theme of the restaurant is not about a particular type of cuisine (though there are French dishes on the...  Read More


2
Alamo Placita


Alex Seidel opened Fruition Restaurant in 2007. With its menu of upscale comfort food it was an instant success and remains among Denver's most popular restaurants. Seidel then bought a 10-acre farm and became a hands-on farmer, producing...  Read More


1
Commons Park


Root Down, in Denver's Highlands neighborhood, won't compromise on its dedication to local and sustainable goods and its philosophy that ranching, farming and fishing should be humane and not harm the planet. Almost everything is certified...  Read More


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Meet Christine Loomis

Christine has written about every aspect of travel, from romance and adventure to family and wellness. She is also lucky to have had three major home states through the years: New York,...  More About Christine

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