High Points: From Serving to Surfacing
Our gal in the know shares her fabulous of-the-season finds
Our gal in the know browses, buys, eats, and shares her discoveries from around the state and beyond.
Save: Sabre Paris Utensils. Both modern and traditional, these “old fashioned” acrylic flatware pieces come with a frothy finish available in a variety of indulgent hues, and their lightness and flexibility will make you reach for them every time you entertain. Sabre Paris, a company founded by Francis and Pascale Gelb, makes a variety of serving pieces that are fun and flirty yet surprisingly affordable. $35/pair. Talulah Jones, 1122 E. 17th Ave., Denver. talulahonline.com
Spend: Jonathan’s Spoons Cat Tail Salad Set. Handcrafted of wild cherrywood, this simple serving set is the most popular design sold at Cherry Creek’s longtime artisan shop Show of Hands. “They really hold up. These sets last for years and years,” says store owner Katie Friedland. “Plus, they’re great as a housewarming gift because no matter what someone’s decor is, the tiger stripe design tends to work across the board.” Beautiful and functional, wooden spoons are timeless. $55/pair. 210 Clayton St., Denver. showofhandsdenver.com
Splurge: Carrol Boyes Man/Woman Serving Set. Iconic South African designer Carrol Boyes has found a way to turn everyday living items into functional art. Sculpted of pewter, this serving set has a tribal feel with uniquely male/female sensual imagery on the handles. These whimsical serving pieces are cast in Cape Town and shipped to high-end retail outlets around the country. Who says utensils have to be boring? $155/pair. HW Home (locations in Boulder, Greenwood Village, and Cherry Creek North). hwhome.com
Baker Neighborhood: A Swath of Foodie Heaven
With a tattooed and pierced staff, a widely diverse clientele, reggae music, and seriously hip cocktails, Cho77 is the newest player on the South Broadway strip. Chef Lon Symensma, one of Denver’s hottest chefs (ChoLon and The Cooper Lounge), has done it again with his high-octane homage to Asian street food. Homemade Sriracha sauce and a variety of other table-side condiments complement plates such as Buffalo Chicken Buns; Bacon, Egg & Cheese Ramen; Thai Coconut Chicken Curry; and Red Chile Pork Dumplings. An eclectic mix of yuppies, old-timers, and hipsters regularly form a line out the door to sample each meticulous and aromatic dish. 42 S. Broadway, Denver. cho77.com
Meanwhile, just a few doors down is Gozo, a year-and-a-half-old Spanish/Italian eatery founded by Frank Jolley IV. Gozo offers deceptively simple small-plate Italian and Spanish tapas dishes with a Mediterranean wine list to match. Gozo turns out blistered, wood-fired pizzas, creamy house-made Buratta, perfectly grilled artichokes, crispy pan-roasted Colorado bass, and a decadent three-day-smoked short rib. Look for the garage door front window. 30 S. Broadway, Denver. gozodenver.com
It bears the nickname “Chile Crack” for good reason. The stuff is addicting. Chile Crunch is a Mexican-style savory condiment that can go on almost anything—eggs, potatoes, fish, beef, vegetables, sandwiches, pasta, and more. A blend of roasted chile de arbol, onion, garlic, spices, and oil, a bit of this spread can literally transform the most boring of dishes. Susie Hojel, creator of Chile Crunch, says she experimented for a year before coming up with the right crunch and flavor profile. Originally from Mexico City, Hojel says there’s always some sort of “sauce” on the table in her homeland. “Most Mexican food isn’t spicy, so you add the spice,” she explains. Seven years after introducing Chile Crunch, Hojel can now be thanked for a nationwide obsession. Although it’s made in Denver, it can be found in Dean & Deluca and West Elm stores around the country. Locally, look for the “sauce” at Whole Foods, Savory Spice Shop, Peppercorn, Mondo Market, and many other outlets (visit chilecrunch.com for exact locations). $9.95/jar.
Countertop shopping? Consider sandstone. Kirsten Schmit, of Decorative Materials, was so taken by the product that she used it in both her kitchen and bathroom. Mined and cut from solid stone, each slab has natural coloration and character, rich with depth of movement and untouched blemishes. Loveless Stone, Tile & Marble out of Taos, New Mexico, is the exclusive supplier to Decorative Materials. “We’ve worked for eight years to procure an incredibly neutral color palette, from light taupe to beige to charcoal gray,” says Schmit. Decorative Materials has locations in Denver, Vail, Basalt, and Aspen. decorativematerials.com
Cathy Covell of Lawrence Covell in Cherry Creek North calls the Aesop skin care brand a treasured secret. The fragrance of this Melbourne-based brand and its no-nonsense identical brown bottle packaging has attracted a strong global following. The line includes moisturizers, cleansers, hydrating cream, and facial balancing gel. “They’re not the typical global beauty line,” says Covell. “They are small, quite independent, and take a very different business approach.” For instance, Aesop doesn’t sell their product on the main floor of department stores, but at carefully selected shops. Covell’s favorite Aesop product? The Rejuvenate Intensive Body Balm for its incredible hydration. $27-$123. Lawrence Covell, 225 Steele St., Denver. lawrencecovell.com
Tesha Karn, a travel junkie with an eye for the unique, started collecting exquisite items while traveling around the world doing nonprofit work. Her hobby turned into a business,
T. Karn Imports, in 2007, when Telluride lured her in with its unparalleled climbing and skiing. Today, Karn, along with her husband and 2-year-old daughter, jets to the ends of the earth—favorites include Papua New Guinea, Tibet, Nepal, and India—scouting for treasures. Her 600-square-foot Main Street store is lined with Tibetan milk barrels, Thai fish baskets, Mongolian wooden boxes, Ethiopian throws, Aztec rugs, and brass elephants from India. Delve into the shop for an experience in all things unique. 394 W. Colorado Ave., Telluride. tkarn.com
The Best Homemade Kids’ Snacks on the Planet: More Than 200 Healthy Homemade Snacks You and Your Kids Will Love by Laura Fuentes
This family-friendly cookbook offers parents an answer to the almighty question: Can kids’ snacks actually be healthy? Author Laura Fuentes says yes—and they can taste good, too. full Her book is full of creative and healthy ideas, (from S’mores Popcorn to Edamame Hummus to Avocado Deviled Eggs to Baked Zucchini Chips) and stunning photographs. Just be careful when showing this book to your children: If they’re like mine, the entire book thing will be dog-eared in a nano-second. $24.99; amazon.com
9 Must-Haves from Doris Houghland, owner of downtown Boulder’s iconic Peppercorn gourmet kitchen store since 1977
1. Sheets: Nancy Koltes luxury Italian linens, especially the Foglia pattern. They are so rich and luxurious, you want to stay in bed all day. nancykoltes.com
2. Blanket: Brahms Mount. They have beautiful colors, and they are all made in the U.S.A. brahmsmount.com
3. Tablecloth/Napkins/Dishtowels: Le Jacquard Français. Classic French patterns in a variety of delightful colors. peppercorn.com
4. Flatware: Sabre Paris Kathmandu Grey. thepinkdaisy.com
5. Perfume: Hands-down, Beige by Chanel. It’s so special because it’s only offered at the Las Vegas Chanel store.
6. Clothing: I love the robes and nightdresses we carry in our store from Wrap Up by VP. They have a peacock pattern that is stunning. peppercorn.com
8. Flowers: All white flowers, especially gardenias, tulips, and roses.