The Chowder Room Brings Maritime Charm to Broadway

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Matt and Carrie Stein ladled up the first bowl of clam chowder yesterday at the Chowder Room, one of the first Denver restaurants to open in 2015. We stopped by to check out the quaint maritime-themed dining room, the soups -- there will be three daily plus a vegan "chowder" -- and the rest of the brief but seafood-packed menu of traditional and regional recipes with a few modern twists.

Keep reading for more photos from the Chowder Room.

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Stein's daily chowders include a classic, creamy New England style studded with ocean clams, which the chef says hold up well in a soup; a spicy red seafood chowder; and a vegan (and gluten-free) "chowder" made with a house curry blend, coconut, tofu roasted cauliflower and eggplant. A chowder of the day will feature lesser-known regional specialties and creative takes on the classics made a la minute rather than in big batches. "There will be about eight other styles that we'll rotate through," says Stein.

The entree list is studded with calamari (fried or baked), crabcakes in the style of the Pacific Northwest and jumbo Mexican shrimp fried or cooked in Stein's award-winning New Orleans-style barbecue -- think tomato-based with a cayenne zing and a punch of fresh lemon. Alamosa striped bass makes an appearance, right now with winter squash, mushrooms and thyme -- but that will change with the seasons. Stein was first introduced to the hybrid bass raised sustainably in the San Louis Valley while he was working in California. "Even in Los Angeles, it's considered 'the kind,'" he notes.

The Steins' son Zane will be bartending, mixing cocktails from a list designed by his dad. The drinks menu also comprises a substantial wine list for such a small restaurant and a short but thoughtfully chosen selection of beers, including El Boqueron Seawater Lager from Spain and Surrette Farmhouse Ale from Crooked Stave.

Keep reading for more photos from the Chowder Room.

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