Chef Mary Nguyen is ready to welcome Cherry Creek neighbors to the new Olive & Finch.EXPAND
Chef Mary Nguyen is ready to welcome Cherry Creek neighbors to the new Olive & Finch.
Mark Antonation

The New Cherry Creek Olive & Finch Opens Wednesday, February 1

When chef Mary Nguyen opened Olive & Finch at 1552 East 17th Avenue in 2013, she never expected it to be anything more than a passion project. "The success of Olive & Finch has been a surprise, because I really opened it to meet my own needs," the chef explains.

But now the homey cafe, bakery and restaurant has become her whole restaurant world (she closed her first restaurant, P17, last summer) — and that world is about to expand. A new Olive & Finch will open at 7 a.m. on Wednesday, February 1, in Cherry Creek North. Located at the corner of East First Avenue and Cook Street, the younger sibling to the Uptown original will include more square footage to allow Nguyen to present a wider range of menu items and pastries for breakfast, lunch and dinner.

Breakfast skillets like the Bogota, with chorizo, vegetables and eggs, will be familiar to Olive & Finch customers.EXPAND
Breakfast skillets like the Bogota, with chorizo, vegetables and eggs, will be familiar to Olive & Finch customers.
Mark Antonation

The basic idea behind the restaurant will remain the same, however. Breakfast will include baked goods as well as menu items ranging from egg-topped hashes and sandwiches to quinoa pancakes to slow-cooked North African shakshuka. Everything is made from scratch, including granola, fluffy biscuits and fresh-pressed juices. A full coffee program perks up morning offerings, and brunch-style cocktails like the Good Morning Mary, Greyhound, Screwdriver and mimosa are available by the glass or carafe.

Breakfast is served all day, but at 11 a.m., lunch sandwiches (many named after Nguyen's family and friends) and plated entrees are added, giving options of sixteen hot and cold sandwiches, a variety of meal-sized salads, daily soups and elegant, plated dishes that are new to the Olive & Finch repertoire. Nguyen uses sous-vide techniques and high-tech combi ovens typically found only in full-service restaurants so that proteins can be cooked to temperature while service times are kept low in the fast-casual setting. So a six-ounce, demi-glace-laced bistro filet comes out tender and medium-rare atop a bed of succotash and chimichurri, for just under $15.

The bistro tender is topped with caramelized-onion demi and comes with corn and green-chile succotash.EXPAND
The bistro tender is topped with caramelized-onion demi and comes with corn and green-chile succotash.
Mark Antonation

In fact, nothing on the menu exceeds $15, which Nguyen feels is critical to maintaining a casual, neighborhood ambience. She notes that keeping costs low is possible "if you're really conscious of what you're making and you try to be sustainable. We try to use everything and try to be respectful of the food."

The pastry program has also been expanded, so you'll find more baked goods at the new Olive & Finch, courtesy of pastry chef and assistant general manager Amber Otis, who has been with Nguyen since the original opened. Many items are gluten-free, including home-style cookies as well as fancier desserts like coconut cake and mousse-filled chocolate domes.

The new location's bigger service counter means more pastry choices.EXPAND
The new location's bigger service counter means more pastry choices.
Mark Antonation

Olive & Finch has offered catering since the beginning — but with a larger kitchen in this new spot, Nguyen is putting more emphasis on the program, with set catering menus for boxed lunches and hot items as well as off-menu options. Cakes and other special-order pastries can also be ordered for weddings and other events.

The new Cherry Creek location will be open from 7 a.m. to 10 p.m. daily, with a happy hour from 3 to 6 p.m. beginning on March 1 that will include $3 drinks, tartines and small plates. Once the weather warms up, a spacious patio facing Cook Street will be decked out with lounge-style seating and a kids' area. Keep reading for more photos.

The Luca sandwich is packed full of Italian ingredients, including four meats, two cheeses, roasted tomatoes, tapenade and garlic aioli.EXPAND
The Luca sandwich is packed full of Italian ingredients, including four meats, two cheeses, roasted tomatoes, tapenade and garlic aioli.
Mark Antonation
The Cashman comes with roast beef, brie, horseradish aioli, roasted bell peppers and caramelized onions.EXPAND
The Cashman comes with roast beef, brie, horseradish aioli, roasted bell peppers and caramelized onions.
Mark Antonation
Three-cheese polenta topped with 140-degree eggs makes for a hearty breakfast or comforting dinner.EXPAND
Three-cheese polenta topped with 140-degree eggs makes for a hearty breakfast or comforting dinner.
Mark Antonation
Inside the new Olive & Finch.EXPAND
Inside the new Olive & Finch.
Mark Antonation
Inside the new Olive & Finch.EXPAND
Inside the new Olive & Finch.
Mark Antonation
Inside the new Olive & Finch.EXPAND
Inside the new Olive & Finch.
Mark Antonation
Inside the new Olive & Finch.EXPAND
Inside the new Olive & Finch.
Mark Antonation
Inside the new Olive & Finch.EXPAND
Inside the new Olive & Finch.
Mark Antonation

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