For the rest of the month, we continue to spread a different kind of love: the love for our local restaurants and chefs. Early February, restaurant critic Stacey Brugeman of 5280 Magazine launched the month-long pay-it-forward love series with praises for chef Mary Nguyen and her new café, Olive & Finch. Nguyen spoke of Mark Dym of Marco's Coal Fired Pizza who praised chef Troy Guard's TAG who then shared his love for chef Jeff Osaka of Twelve. Osaka praised Beast + Bottle' Paul Reilly who talked up Bob Blair of Fuel Cafe who wrote a heartfelt note about Potager's Teri Rippeto. The chef and owner of the 17 year old Cap Hill restaurant continued the series with praises for Rob and Karin Lawler of the Truffle Cheese Shop and the Truffle Table . They expressed gratitude for the friendship of chef Brian Laird who talked about his former sous chef, Darrell Truett of Barolo Grill. Truett shared his thoughts on Alex Seidel of Fruition who passed along the love to Keegan Gerhard of D Bar. It's Gerhard's turn and the subject of his note is chef Jamey Fader of the Big Red F Group.
The personalities, diversity and community are my favorite parts of being in the restaurant industry. You meet so many different people all wanting/expecting something different form you. When I met Jamey Fader, it was genuine and refreshing. I knew immediately I could just be me. Jamey has an ease about the way he does things. In all I have ever done in my life, I have always felt that the ones that make it look easy are the truly great ones. Jamey is one of the greats. He is a chef who knows he's a cook. He believes in our craft. He understands the power of commitment. He has taken an uncommon path to being a cook and then a chef and he's not done yet. Jamey loves the community and fights for things being done right in concrete and effective ways. He takes chances and is not afraid to fail. Jamey is principled but not pushy. He has managed to find time to start an amazing family. Calm under pressure doesn't do his character justice. Food is a playground for Jamey. He lets his food do the talking. I believe he could, if he desired, compete at the most modern level of cuisine or simply put up a dish you would swear was made by a Mexican grandmother. Solid. Hilarious. Vigilant. Jamey is a gentleman. I am grateful for him in the Denver food scene and humbled in being able to call him a friend.
Every day, the recipient of the praises will have a chance to pass the love around. Come back tomorrow to hear what chef Fader is obsessing over this month.
· February Love: Restaurant Critic Stacey Brugeman on Olive & Finch [EDen]
· Chef Mary Nguyen on Marco's Coal Fired Pizza [EDen]
· February Is For Lovers: Chef Mark Dym on TAG [EDen]
· Chef Troy Guard on Twelve Restaurant and Jeff Osaka [EDen]
· February Is For Lovers: Chef Jeff Osaka on Beast +Bottle [EDen]
· Paul Reilly of Beast + Bottle on Fuel Cafe's Bob Blair [EDen]
· Bob Blair of Fuel Cafe on Potager's Chef and Owner Teri Rippeto [EDen]
· Potager's Teri Rippeto on Rob and Karin Lawler of the Truffle [EDen]
· Karin Lawler of the Truffle Table on Brian Laird of Sarto's [EDen]
· Brian Laird of the Upcoming Sarto's on Darrel Truett of Barolo Grill [EDen]
Jamey Fader [Photo: Cafe Society/Lori Midson]