Olive Garden has had a tough month. Its new, "Never Ending Pasta Pass" promo was mocked by everyone from Jimmy Kimmel to Red Eye; more ominously, Starboard Value, an investor that's trying to gain control of Darden Restaurants, Olive Garden's owner, at the annual meeting October 10, slapped the chai ... More >>
In her recent review of the Kitchen Next Door Glendale, Gretchen Kurtz gave a short history of the TGI Fridays phenomenon, and wondered if the Kitchen Next Door could be the next big thing? It's certainly becoming big in Denver, where the Kitchen Next Door just opened in Union Station, in a space th ... More >>
"When Restaurant Kevin Taylor opened, it was a completely new offering for Denver, a city still very much trying to find its way on the culinary map," reflects Kevin Taylor, chef of Kevin Taylor's at the Opera House, Limelight Supper Club, Palettes at the Denver Art Museum, Rouge and the Teller Bar ... More >>
The Food Network's Chef Wanted sent chef/host Anne Burrell to the Mile High City for tomorrow night's episode, a "Mile High Melee" in which Burrell helps Second Home Kitchen Bar find a new chef. See also: Second Home among Denver's ten best plates of chicken and waffles.
Once a year, on New Year's Day, I meet a squadron of friends and colleagues at P.F. Chang's for a hangover lunch, and one of the dishes that we always order is the joint's chicken lettuce wraps, which, if I'm being honest, are one of my guilty pleasures. The lettuce wraps here, however, could -- and ... More >>
It was just two years ago that Frank's Kitchen opened its doors. The regular e-mail that Dina Berta, a longtime restaurant reporter, and her contractor-turned-chef husband, Frank, sent out last week was full of plans for the future after a successful car show. They were talking about doing more even ... More >>
By now everyone who isn't hiding in a television-free cave has heard about the Kitchen Nightmares episode featuring Amy's Baking Company (an Arizona pizza place with bad food and worse owners) that was so ugly and combative that Gordon Ramsay walked away. This may have been the only episode I've see ... More >>
The idea for Grand Lux Cafe came to life when the Venetian Resort, Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas asked David Overton, founder of the Cheesecake Factory chain, to create an upscale casual restaurant concept for their property. But what happened in Vegas should have stayed in Vegas -- or at least out ... More >>
Technomic Inc. has released its inaugural list of Chain Restaurant Consumers' Choice Award honorees, winners, chosen from 115 fast-food, fast-casual and full-service restaurants, with the winners selected by consumers. So now for the two pressing questions: What, exactly, is Technomic, and which r ... More >>
When 86-year-old newspaper columnist Marilyn Hagerty wrote her now-famous review of a North Dakota Olive Garden back in March, I wouldn't say that her story changed the path of restaurant reviews everywhere -- or even anywhere. But it did give food writers, myself included, an appreciation for the f ... More >>
Olive Garden just announced that it's ditching its fifteen-year-old slogan "When You're Here, You're Family" in favor of the simple "Go Olive Garden." While the old slogan was incredibly cheesy to the point of being disingenuous, at least the marketing folks put more than a cigarette break's worth o ... More >>
Mark MangerDina Berta traded the write stuff for the right stuff.When Dina Berta made the jump from writing about restaurants to running a restaurant, she had one insight that helped prepare her for the road ahead: "I knew a little about the industry, and I knew it was a lot of work, but also ... More >>
Olive Garden just announced that it would be kicking fries and milkshakes off of the children's menu at all its restaurants, replacing them with smoothies and grapes. This move is designed to please parents who drag their squirming spawn into the post-popular Italian chain, but it's tough bre ... More >>
Companies will do anything these days to get you to become their fan on Facebook. Free concert tickets? Check. Free donuts? Check. Deep discounts on sneakers? Check. Naturally, fast-food chains were way out in front of the trend, offering discounts to Facebook fans in exchange for them beamin ... More >>
More than eighty years after Maid-Rite got its start in Muscatine, Iowa, the chain has finally made it as far west as Denver, where Ralph's Maid-Rite Sports Diner opened last week in Littleton. Ralph's serves the loose-meat and breaded pork tenderloin sandwiches that are hallmarks of Maid-Ri ... More >>
T.G.I. Friday's -- which has five restaurants in the metro area and a frightening number around the country -- is trying to update its image with craft beer and other specials. But is it too little, too late? Our "Top Five Reasons T.G.I. Friday's isn't cool anymore" is bringing out fans and ... More >>
Because Denver doesn't have enough burger fortresses to satiate a city of burger maniacs, we're soon getting another one: Five Star Burgers, a Taos, New Mexico-based burger barn, with an additional location in Albuquerque, is adding a third outpost in Denver, which will open in May at the St ... More >>
Shawarma Mediterranean GrillShawarma Grill's beef shawarma plateIn 2000, brothers Abe and Pierre Dagher closed Cedars, a Lebanese joint on Federal Boulevard they'd owned for fourteen years, and went their separate ways, exiting the restaurant industry for other trades. But now they're back t ... More >>
Opinions are revving up in advance of today's food-truck meeting at the Downtown Denver Partnership, where stakeholders -- among them mobile food vendors, restaurant owners, downtown businesses, city agencies and neighborhood groups -- will have a preliminary discussion of the role of food tr ... More >>
You can find Brian Melton behind the bar at TAG.All the talk about "In the Weeds" inspired Brian Melton to send in this missive about the restaurant industry. It's our New Year's Eve gift for everyone in the business --and anyone out on the town tonight who benefits from exemplary workers in ... More >>
We knew rap had gone mainstream when Will Smith's The Fresh Prince of Bel Air began airing in 1990, and we know craft beer has done the same now that T.G.I. Friday's is pairing its new menu items with selected beers from New Belgium Brewing. On December 21, the casual dining chain will host ... More >>
Nineteen meat cutters from Texas Roadhouse outposts throughout the country will show off their butchering prowess today at the South Suburban Ice Arena, 6580 South Vine Street, as part of the second round of the steakhouse chain's National Meat Competition. The competitors, including Vicente ... More >>
JoeAnn and John Falco closed the sale on the Brittany Hill building, 9350 Grant Street, a massive structure with sweeping views of the Front Range, in spring of 2009, prompting buzz that the space would rise again. Almost a year and a half later, though, the spot still sits dark.
Garbanzo Mediterranean Grill, which is owned and operated by Denver based Aloon Mor, has signed a deal with Doherty Enterprises to expand its dining concept to the East Coast.
No one ever said the restaurant business was easy. Most people (the smart ones) would actually say that, short of becoming a medical guinea pig or hand-grenade catcher, the food service-industry is one of the toughest out there. Fun, sure. Exciting. But not the easiest way in the world to m ... More >>
As the owners of 8 Rivers, their fourth restaurant, Wanda James and Scott Durrah know the food business. And as the owners of Apothecary of Colorado, the medical marijuana dispensary they opened in December at 1730 Blake Street, just two blocks from their restaurant at 1550 Blake, they know t ... More >>
Of the 42,000 runners who killed themselves finished the New York City Marathon -- the world's largest -- this past Sunday, Bobby Stuckey, the master sommelier at Frasca Food & Wine in Boulder, placed 283rd with a time of 2:47:23. That's right: the guy who drinks, pours, studies and explains ... More >>
Riverfront Fashion brings style to the great outdoors.
Downtown is a relative ghost town tonight, with even such mainstays as Dixons closed on account of snow. But there are still restaurants serving tonight, chief among them P.F. Chang's at 1415 15th Street (the only one of the metro locations open, and seating a fair amount of tables as well as doing ... More >>
Misery loves company, and if the National Restaurant Association's annual forecast -- released on Friday, December 19 -- is correct, Coloradans will still be getting out of the house and into restaurants in 2009. According to the 2009 Restaurant Industry Forecast, Colorado will place third in t ... More >>
If your bank account isn't on the rocks, the Capital Grille has just the holiday item for you: a $1,000 martini. But this drink, officially named the Share Our Strength Charity Martini, comes with a real twist: a white topaz and diamond caviar rope bracelet, a limited-edition, custom piece by desig ... More >>
Ex-employees say Jim Sullivan ran his empire like the dictator he named a restaurant after. Since Monday, when I posted my first blog about the sudden closure of Nine75 and Ocean -- Jim Sullivan’s last two Sullivan Restaurant Group operations -- my phone has been ringing off the hook. Some ca ... More >>
Restaurants unwrap a few surprises.
Theres good reason to call Denver a cow town.
Kevin Taylor steps into the Limelight.
Suddenly, the big chains are looking better.
Taking the tube
Maggiano's Little Italy
The Capital Grille
The Capital Grille
California Pizza Kitchen
An innovative welfare-to-work program feeds the restaurant business.
Here's a tip for restaurateurs: Before you cut into your waitstaff's wages, check state regulations.