Wednesday, September 27, 2017

Paravicini's Italian Bistro dubbed "Best Italian in Colorado" by MSN Lifestyle

Posted By on Wed, Sep 27, 2017 at 5:44 PM

  • File photo
The Indy won't announce its results for Best Of Colorado Springs until Oct. 11. But MSN Lifestyle recently declared Paravicini's Italian Bistro the best Italian restaurant in the state. Published on Sept. 26, the MSN piece listed the best Italian eateries in each state, plus Washington, D.C., biasing toward independent and family-owned businesses, according to the article.

It's been a while since we've reviewed Paravicini's, but recently, we were impressed by the offerings at chef/owner Franco Pisani's new eatery, Sopra Antipasto and Wine Bar, which is just upstairs. Check out the full list of MSN's favorite Italian spots here. And check newsstands across town for the first half of our reader-selected Best Of Colorado Springs winners on Oct. 11.
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Friday, September 22, 2017

Bristol Brewing Company adds canning line

Posted By on Fri, Sep 22, 2017 at 11:16 AM

A Bristol employee just dropped off three (sadly unfilled) cans at the Indy office. Take a look at them in the slideshow below!
———————-ORIGINAL POST 4:02 P.M. TUESDAY, SEPTEMBER 12, 2017———————-
Starting Oct. 2, Bristol Brewing Company will offer its Laughing Lab Scottish ale, Beehive blond ale and Compass IPA in 12-ounce aluminum cans.

"Those are our strongest flagships," says co-founder/owner Mike Bristol. "We look at cans as a way of extending where you can experience Bristol.” Cans are lighter and less likely to cause injury when broken than glass, making them preferable for toting beer on a hiking, biking or rafting trip.

Rather than establishing their own canning line, Bristol will be working with Denver's Great Divide Brewing Company.

“I’ve known [Great Divide founder/owner] Bryan Dunn for about 20 years now," says Bristol. "Both of our breweries have been around about the same amount of time.” The beers will still be brewed in Colorado Springs, but Bristol says they'll be shipped up to Great Divide's canning facility in Denver's River North neighborhood.

Bristol says those three beers will still be released in bottles. They'll be evaluating how well canning has served them at the end of the year. Bristol says it's likely they'll add a fourth canned offering — possibly something they already brew, possibly something new — in Spring or early Summer of 2018, with a mixed 12-pack to follow after.

In the mean time, Bristol says that the taproom will be releasing a coffee Dunkelweizen in the Bristol Pub on Thursday, Sept. 21, a collaboration with Loyal Coffee. Check Bristol's Facebook page for details.
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Tuesday, September 12, 2017

Wobbly Olive announces Westside location, new executive chef

Posted By on Tue, Sep 12, 2017 at 12:38 PM

Chef Supansa Banker has agreed to be Corporate Executive Chef for Sean and Inez Fitzgerald's restaurants. - MATTHEW SCHNIPER
  • Matthew Schniper
  • Chef Supansa Banker has agreed to be Corporate Executive Chef for Sean and Inez Fitzgerald's restaurants.
Sean Fitzgerald, owner of The Wobbly Olive and The Collective, has been busy. He's just signed a lease for a second Wobbly Olive location, set to open at 2611 W. Colorado Ave., next to TAPAteria, in the former Lorig's Western Wear.

“We found a landlord that we felt we could get along with, so we went for it,” says Sean. He and wife/co-owner Inez opened the original Wobbly Olive at 3317 Cinema Point in 2014, expanding their food and bar empire with The Collective in 2016 and Sakura Speakeasy earlier this year. Sean says demolition has already begun at the new Wobby Olive, and he would like to be open by the end of January, though that's a very tentative date.

Further, Sean has hired a corporate executive chef to oversee the food at all of his current and future eateries — Supansa Banker, known most recently for her work at 2South Food + Wine Bar.

Look for details on Banker's role and the future of the Wobbly Olive in a future edition of Side Dish.

In the mean time, Sean has announced that his bar staff will be training with Sean Kenyon, dubbed American Bartender of the Year at the 2014 Spirited Awards. He's best known for his work at Denver's Williams & Graham. Tonight, Sept. 12, both Seans will be mixing a special cocktail menu at The Collective starting at 6:30.
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Monday, September 11, 2017

Oskar Blues Brewery launches new canned cocktail line

Posted By on Mon, Sep 11, 2017 at 4:43 PM

Oskar Blues' line of canned cocktails launches with the mOSKow Mule - GRIFFIN SWARTZELL
  • Griffin Swartzell
  • Oskar Blues' line of canned cocktails launches with the mOSKow Mule
Lyons, Colorado-based Oskar Blues continues to expand its business ventures. The brewery/restaurant company/soda manufacturer/coffee roaster/boutique bicycle manufacturer has announced Spirits by Oskar Blues (S.O.B.), its brand of distilled spirits and canned cocktails. The first such cocktail, mOSKow Mule, is now available at bars and liquor stores across Colorado.

Oskar Blues recently sent us a sample of the mOSKow Mule as a promotion. The mix is based on Oskar Blues's house-brand B. Stiff and Sons ginger beer, mixed with vodka made from a "recipe perfected and distilled in Longmont," we're told, and canned with light carbonation. We get two cans of 7.43 percent ABV booze boxed with two limes — the cocktail has lime already, but it doesn't read when sipped straight from the can.

A pre-packaged cocktail is a tricky thing. Good cocktails depend heavily on the bartender's control of their ingredients and how they're mixed. Canned cocktails don't — can't — get the temperature and dilution control a good bartender has. They'll inevitably be shaken in transit, meaning subtle elements like those in whisky or gin will be bruised into oblivion.

Maybe that's why we feel the ginger in this drink tastes a hint stale or muted, even next to bottled ginger ales. That said, even served straight from a chilled can, it's not too sweet or boozy. We add the juice of the whole lime and find it's a little too limeade-tasting at the front of the sip, though the ginger rules the finish. According to our PR contact, a quarter of a lime should do for a four-pack, so keep that in mind.

All told, though, it's a step or three in quality above most pre-mixed drinks and alcopops on the market that we've tried. We're interested to see where OB goes with this in the future, both with this and with their S.O.B. distillery, set to open in 2018. In the mean time, we'll continue to review any booze that lands in our mailbox.
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Evan Neece beats Charlie Dolan in Brother Luck's cooking competition series

Posted By on Mon, Sep 11, 2017 at 2:37 PM

Are you ready for more cooking competition? - GRIFFIN SWARTZELL
  • Griffin Swartzell
  • Are you ready for more cooking competition?
Chef Brother Luck, chef/owner at Four by Brother Luck, launched a new series of cooking competitions in his kitchen on Thursday, Aug. 31, dubbed 86'd.

The first iteration saw Evan Neece of Cowboy Star pitted against Charlie Dolan of Cañon City's Pizza Madness. Neece scored a narrow victory, impressing Luck as well as judges Tara Juarros and Scott Batley, both of whom were pulled from the audience.

Neece and Dolan had an hour to make four courses from ingredients in the Four pantry. Luck added four constraints: they had to make a dish with striped sea bass, they had to make a dish with oysters, they had to make a dish with a dumpling, and they had to make a classic French omelette. The judges praised Neece's preparation of sea bass over eggplant purée, with Luck enjoying his acid balance in particular. All three judges also enjoyed Dolan's pretzels and beer cheese, his dumpling dish.

Luck considers this competition as the first of many to come — he's putting together a bracket of local chefs he hopes to pit against one another, with the overall winner taking home some sort of prize. Further, he hopes to feature local chefs who don't get as much attention in town — the up-and-coming chefs who have reputations to build.

Luck will announce the next round soon. Until then, check out some photos from the event in the slideshow below.
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Friday, September 1, 2017

Good Neighbors Meeting House opens in former Dogtooth spot

Posted By on Fri, Sep 1, 2017 at 11:57 AM

GN co-owners Yemi Mobolade (left) and Russ Ware. - MATTHEW SCHNIPER
  • Matthew Schniper
  • GN co-owners Yemi Mobolade (left) and Russ Ware.

Good Neighbors Meeting House offered a soft opening preview ahead of Friday, Sept. 1's official opening — at 3 p.m.

Check out the slideshow below for a sneak peek of the space, formerly Dogtooth Coffee Company, brought to by the team behind Wild Goose Meeting House.

Subway tiles contribute to a fresh decor, complete with shiny soda, coffee and beer taps. Early samplings of food and drink showed plenty of promise — on par with what fans are familiar with at the Wild Goose.

Mobolade and Ware have been big community builders since they launched downtown, and Good Neighbors will easily carry on that tradition and grow new friendships in the tight-knit neighborhood, by all appearances.

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