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Steve Ells had the idea to raise money for a fine-dining restaurant with a concept he’d found in the Mission District in San Francisco, where he worked at the highfalutin’ Stars after attending culinary school. And so in July 1993, he opened his first Chipotle Mexican Grill right by the University of Denver, in a former Dolly Madison ice cream store. The fast-casual Mexican joint was a hit from the start. In its first twenty years, the Chipotle chain grew to include more than 1,400 stores — not just across the country, but around the world. And while Ells may never get around to opening that fine-dining restaurant, he’s injected fine-dining sensibilities into Chipotle, with an emphasis on staff training, efficient kitchen work and impeccable ingredients. In fact, Chipotle continues to expand its commitment to locally sourced products. “As the only national restaurant company with a significant commitment to using local produce on a large scale,” Ells says, “we’ve steadily increased our locally sourced produce supply since beginning the program in 2008.” And Chipotle celebrates that commitment with Cultivate, a free food, ideas and music festival in Denver every year.