Restaurant Roundup: The Wild Fig, Gozo, and Session Kitchen
June 19, 2014 • Restaurants
I’ve been awfully busy since I returned from Italy a few weeks ago, leaving very little time for cooking other than throwing a steak on the grill and pairing it with a salad – not really blog-worthy cooking or recipes! But I did manage to spend a couple of days in Aspen for the Colorado Book Award ceremonies (still tingling over my win for Tasting Colorado!), and have had a couple of other meals out with friends and family, so let me share.While I was in Aspen, some good friends took me to dinner at The Wild Fig. It was a bit breezy and cool, but we opted to bundle up and sit on the lovely patio, where we shared some incredible food: a coarsely chopped gazpacho and The Fig Salad (field greens, balsamic marinated mission figs, pancetta, blue cheese, crispy shallots) for starters. Then my friends had two different (and delicious) pasta dishes while I order the whole fish, which happened to be Alamosa Striped Bass. I had always heard of this fish because many chefs called for it in their recipes for my cookbook, but I had never had the chance to try it. It was simply the best – crunchy skin (I usually don’t even like fish skin, but this was great, thanks to the lemon, garlic, parsley seasonings), succulent, moist flesh inside. We shared everything with some French rose wine, and the evening could not have been more relaxing.Back in Denver, we met up with some friends on the ever-evolving south end of Broadway in Denver in the Baker District for dinner at the new Gozo. (Sorry for the sun on these photos, but hopefully it allows you to feel how lovely dinner table was by the open front windows with the western sun setting.) If you go, don’t look for their name on the building, but rather their tagline: Kitchen // Wine // Cocktails. Often with friends we just order a bunch of appetizers for the table, and none of these disappointed: creamy burrata with some crispy crostini, a silky pork meatball bathed in sauce and covered with grated cheese, and crispy calamari and onions with a zippy dipping sauce.The pizzas at Gozo are done in their in house pizza oven and even though I just returned from Italy, these were a pretty good alternative, this one with cheese, spicy sausage, and onions.My last meal out recently was for brunch at the Pearl St. Farmers’ Market on Sunday for Father’s Day. Only our daughter could be here for the day, along with my husband’s cousin whom we haven’t seen in nearly 30 years, and we opted for Session Kitchen, at a nice outdoor table with shade.Greg’s cousin ordered the Loaded Avocado: royal red shrimp, pico, horseradish creme fraiche, beef bacon, and chives. And if you wonder what beef bacon is or tastes like, it’s just like bacon, but with a distinctly beefy taste, sort of a cross between beef jerky and pork bacon. And it’s good! This dish, by the way, is gluten free for any of you who need that.I think I made the best selection (prompted by the waiter given my considerations): The Fried Green Tomato Parmesan Ciabatta: open faced, with aged provolone & potato frico, marinara, and a lovely basil salad topping the whole thing. Spectacular as far as sandwiches go.
I check one off! What’s on your list?