For the past 25 years, Ba Forde has been the matriarch behind Kim Ba, the excellent Vietnamese joint at 2495 South Havana that's been the recipient of numerous Westword Best of Denver awards, including Best Vietnamese Restaurant, a prize it snagged every year between 2005 and 2009. And now her son, John Forde, has culled from his mother's menu to open Kimba Grill, a quick-service Vietnamese noodle bowl house at 1470-C South Santa Fe Drive. "I took some dishes from my mother's menu and made them a little more modern, a little more trendy," says John, who opened the restaurant in mid-March.
It was after years of working in management positions for Chipotle, Quizno's and Einstein Brothers that John eventually decided that he wanted to do his own place. "I woke up one morning and wanted to do something for me, to carry on my mom's legacy and to provide extremely fresh ingredients -- nothing here is pre-made -- to people that love Vietnamese food," explains John. "There is nothing cookie-cutter about our food and everything is made with the best ingredients we can find," adds John, whose menu is a mix of build-your-own noodle bowls and spring rolls and Vietnamese egg rolls and salads, including papaya and cabbage.
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