Beast + Bottle, the restaurant opened by brother and sister duo Paul and Aileen Reilly, got high praised from Westword this week. Gretchen Kurtz, the restaurant critic, a self-declared introvert, enjoyed just about everything the extroverted Reilly family created in the Uptown space previously occupied by Olivéa.
With the goal of challenging and educating the diner, Beast + Bottle serves a menu that made even Kurtz have to ask a lot of questions. "Nearly all dishes come with at least one relatively unknown ingredient," she says. What not to miss? The Bangs Island mussels, which she calls "incredible" and the loin chop, which changes its garnishes with the seasons.
The Populist, the RiNo eatery owned by Crema's Jonathan Price and Noah Power win the heart of 5280 Magazine restaurant critic Stacey Brugeman with its service. The service philosophy there seems to be about building relationships with the dining community, relationships that form over wine from countries like Lebanon or beet agnolotti.
Brugeman recognized that the Populist has some great strengths, but also some flaws. Some meals came before cocktails and some elaborate presentations allowed confusion on how it should be eaten. But at the end of the day, she enjoyed dishes like the deconstructed Cubano and the Mediterranean chickpeas tossed in Noosa Yoghurt.
· Beast + Bottle: From farm-to-fork, nose-to-tail, this restaurant is full of delightful surprises [Westword]
· Chef Paul Reilly On Butchering a Whole Lamb Into 40 Pounds of Scrap [EDen]
· Beast + Bottle to Go Into Olivea Space [EDen]
· A Sense Of Place: The Populist