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Wednesday, March 16, 2016

McCabe's man moves to Garden of the Gods Club

Posted By on Wed, Mar 16, 2016 at 11:22 AM

We've long known restaurateur Greg Howard of McCabe's Tavern to be a community man, jumping in to feed firefighters and hosting all kinds of public events. 

The familiar face from Phantom Canyon for years prior to McCabe's has also proven himself willing to take risks, such as last year's menu reboot that brought a large vegan selection to the menu of pub classics. 

Now, after 27 years in the business, Howard's venturing into new frontiers again, taking the position of director of food and beverage for The Garden of the Gods Club and Resort, as of April 4. 

  • Courtesy Garden of the Gods Club
"I'm really excited about this. My 10-year plan was to be doing something else," he said by phone this morning. "We've been working on this for a while at McCabe's, positioning [his wife and business partner] Ari to take over." 

He says Ari has already been involved full-time in operations for the past 8 years, and now she's shifting away from accounting duties and more onto the floor and into the kitchen. After handing over some new recipe ideas for an upcoming menu refresh, Howard says he'll be entirely hands off — well, except for swinging by to see friends and enjoy a drink. All the licenses and paperwork will transfer into her name. 

And gone will be the jeans and t-shirt work uniform; it's a suit and tie moving forward for Howard. 

"Yeah, I had to go shopping," he jokes. "But I feel great about it, I'm ready to shine a bit." 

He says rather than being behind the line sweating on a daily basis, he'll now be more in an oversight role, coordinating banquets with the sales department and chef Brian Knutson, plus checking in on the daily business between the dining areas, Kissing Camels Golf Course and, soon, a new wellness center

"This is a skill-set I've been working on for a long time," he says, describing days where he forced himself out of the kitchen and onto the floor to hone the customer-service side of his enterprise. "I know I can bring a lot to the table."

Here's more on both Howard and the club, from a press release:
The Garden of the Gods Club and Resort’s General Manager, Laura Neumann, along with Gemstone Hotels and Resorts are pleased to announce they have enhanced their executive team, bringing on Greg Howard as the Director of Food and Beverage.

“We are thrilled to have Greg as part of our executive team,” noted Laura Neumann, General Manager. “He has enhanced Colorado Springs’ local restaurant experience and displayed executive leadership across the state through his professional contributions and philanthropic outreach.”

Howard brings over 25 years of experience in resorts and independent restaurants. He is a graduate of Johnson & Wales University in Providence, Rhode Island, and spent four years at Keystone Resort in both Culinary and Front-of-House leadership. He moved to Colorado Springs in 1997 and worked for nine years at Phantom Canyon Brewing Co., the last six as General Manager. Since 2006, he has owned and operated McCabe’s Tavern.

In addition to his entrepreneurship, Howard is a prominent contributor to the Colorado Springs community. He served for two years as President of the Colorado Restaurant Association Pikes Peak Chapter and seven years as a member of the CRA’s State Board and is currently a member of the City of Colorado Springs Liquor Licensing Board. At McCabe’s, he has supported numerous charitable organizations, including Pikes Peak Community Foundation, Kids on Bikes, Shift Thrift Store, UpaDowna, Concrete Couch, the Humane Society, March of Dimes and more. He continues to live in Colorado Springs with his wife Ari, daughter Kaitlyn (16) and son Jason (13). Howard’s first day at the Club will be April 4.

Howard will be supported by Chef Brian Knutson and the food and beverage management team who bring private club experience from the Denver Country Club, Colorado Springs Country Club and The Broadmoor.

Together, they will be executing enhanced food and beverages concepts for all of the Club’s dining outlets in conjunction with Tom Decotiis and Marta Erhard. Tom and Marta are co-founders of Corvirtus, a Colorado Springs company providing professional consulting services to Fortune 500 companies for over 30 years. They have worked with leading hospitality companies such as Ruth’s Chris Steak House, Farmers Restaurant Group, Provenance Hotels, Bloomin' Brands (Outback Steakhouse, Carrabba’s Italian Grill, Bonefish Grill and Fleming’s Steakhouse) and Smashburger.

In addition, the Club has engaged the services of Charles Anderson, founder and president of Service Culture International. Charles will be working with the Club to develop and deliver a comprehensive training program for staff at all levels within the Club. Charles is a world-class training professional with more than three decades of experience educating teams at five-star club resorts across the U.S. and internationally. Additionally, he has taught staff for the White House, the Pentagon and aides to numerous four-star generals.

Perched high atop a mesa in Colorado Springs, Colorado, the legendary Garden of the Gods Club and Resort (Club) is a private country club and public resort featuring stunning views of Pikes Peak and the Rocky Mountains towering over the majestic red sandstone formations in the Garden of the Gods Park, a National Natural Landmark. With a heritage of unparalleled distinction, the Club continues that tradition today of luxury and excellent service in a tranquil environment, as members mingle with local celebrities and business moguls during lavish events, and families relax poolside, on the golf course, or in the recreation centers.

Club amenities include a private 27-hole golf course (Kissing Camels) with panoramic views, indoor and outdoor tennis courts, a basketball/soccer court, children’s playground, private fine and casual dining, cutting-edge fitness programs, a family recreation center featuring table and video games, junior-Olympic-sized swimming pool, wading pool, children’s spray garden, cabanas, and unique social events.

Garden of the Gods Club and Resort offers 69 spacious, and 56 newly-renovated, guest rooms and suites, all offering high-speed Internet and incredible views of Pikes Peak and Garden of the Gods Park, with complimentary valet parking for members and overnight guests. In addition, the Club has flexible indoor and outdoor event venues for weddings, corporate meetings and retreats, and other private functions.

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