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Highland chefs unite at Venue for the first in a series of collaborative dinners

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First, the good news: Venue executive chef James Rugile, Max Mackissock from Squeaky Bean, Shazz Cafe exec chef Benny Kaplan, Tyler Skrivanek of Duo and Brad Rowell of Colt & Gray have all hooked up to create the Highland Chef's Collaborative, a five-dinner series that begins tonight at Venue, 3609 West 32nd Avenue. "We're highlighting the transition from summer into fall and focusing on providing a warm, comforting tasting menu with wines," explained Rugile.

Now, the bad news: The dinner is sold out. "We're on a waiting list," Rugile told me, "but every chef will have the opportunity to host a dinner at their own restaurant." Which means that there will be future opportunities to partake in the culinary camaraderie.

If you want to try and squeeze into tonight's dinner (there's been at least one cancellation), which begins at 6:30 p.m., call 303-477-0477. If you were smart and made your reservation in advance, here's what you have to look forward to at tonight's feast:

Amuse Bouche Crispy veal sweetbreads with frisee and turnip puree

Benny Kaplan: Shazz Cafe Brussels leaf salad with sweet Potato, confit mushrooms, poached Heritage duck egg and bacon balsamic vinaigrette

Brad Rowell: Colt & Gray Squid Stew with fennel, orange, garlic aioli

James Rugile: Venue Quail with garlic pomme puree, cranberry compote, sage and duck jus

Max Mackissock: Squeaky Bean Slow-cooked pancetta and cauliflower, apple and fried parsley

Tyler Skrivanek: Duo Apple crostata with Colorado Jonagold apples, cranberries and crème fraîche ice cream

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