Jax Oyster Bar, the LoDo location, hired chef Eric Lee to replace Amos Watts, who will be departing at the end of July to take over the stoves at Acorn, the Denver outpost of Oak at Fourteenth.
"Amos and Steve Redzikowski from Oak at Fourteenth and Acorn have worked together before, and this is a great opportunity for Amos to work with him once again," says Adam Reed, the Jax brand executive manager. "We were thrilled to have Amos return to Jax, where he learned under Sheila Lucero as a line cook, prior to working at Cyrus and now, we are proud to see him try something new, again. We look forward to serving him at Jax as well as eating his food at Acorn and, while we are sad to see him go, we are thrilled to work with Eric, who has a concept of flavor and mastery of ingredient that is second to none," Reed explained.
Eric Lee has been a part of the Denver-Boulder food scene for several years. He got his start at the Full Moon Grill in Boulder where he spent nearly three years before moving to the Kitchen in Boulder in 2007. By 2010's winter, he was a partner and sous chef at Cafe Aion, a restaurant he opened on the hill with Dakota Soifer. From that point on, Lee's stints in restaurants became shorter. A year after opening Cafe Aion, he moved on to Z Cuisine where he spent a mere few months. He briefly moved to Portland and returned to open the Kitchen Denver in July of 2011. For the last eleven months, Lee has served as an instructor at the Cook Street School of Culinary Arts.
"Eric Lee is a rockstar," Reed says. "He has worked in some of the best kitchens in Colorado as well as abroad. I have worked with him on three different occasions as far back as 2001. We are confident that he will continue and build upon the amazing work Amos has brought to Jax LoDo," he added.