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Chefs, Brewers, Coffee Roasters React to the Political Climate

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Here's how restaurants, bars, and coffee shops are pushing back

Illegal Pete's

In the flurry of daily political drama where refugees and immigrants are on many people's mind, restaurateurs, coffee shops, and bars are taking matters into their own hands to make a difference and a statement.

Next week, Boulder's Café Aion and Arcana are collaborating on the Flavors Without Boarders dinner that will benefit the ACLU, an organization that has fought back on the recent travel ban with some success. "We do not believe in fear and isolation," a statement from the organizers of the dinner said. "We relish celebrating our diversity and invite you to join us at our table for a night of solidarity. We will be featuring dishes from Iraq, Iran, Syria, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, and Yemen." The all-inclusive dinner costs $120 per person and tickets can be purchased online.

A group of coffee roasters are doing their part too. Through Sprudge, a caffeine-focused publication, a national fundraiser has been set up for the ACLU. Participants have committed to donating $2 for each bag of coffee they sell. In Denver, participants include Huckleberry Roasters, Boxcar Coffee, Novo Coffee, Method Roasters, Kaladi Coffee. The complete list of participants is available online.

Park Burger introduced its burger of the monthLaziz (pronounced lah-zee-s), the Arabic word for tasty. It features za'atar seasoning, tzaziki, crumbled feta, roasted red peppers and fresh mint, all on top of a lamb patty. $1 of each burger sold is donated to the African Community Center (ACC) who aims to help refugees rebuild safe, sustainable lives in Denver.

A group of brewers banded together before the Presidential Inauguration to launch Making Noise: A Pussy Riot Beer, an imperial saison which was tapped at five locations on January 20. Proceeds from the sales were donated to charities like the ACLU, Planned Parenthood, and One Colorado. More beer is in the making and special tappings are already scheduled for April 22, July 19, and October 19. More details here.

A couple of weeks back, Illegal Pete's waitstaff agreed to donate part of its tips to Planned Parenthood. The company matched all donations. All stores are also displaying this sign:

Our colleagues at Westword have been featuring restaurants that serve food from the countries targeted by the executive order. Today, Damascus Grill, a Syrian restaurant was the subject of an article.

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