While the 16 blocks of Cherry Creek North are much quieter for now, the local business community is still (virtually) here for all your shopping, dining and wellness needs. We're keeping you updated all week long with how-to guides and promotions from your favorite places with Keep Cherry Creek Unique.
Note: All restaurants featured in this series have confirmed they are adhering to CDC food safety guidelines as required by the City of Denver. If you have any questions, please contact individual restaurants to learn more.
How to Make Dinner Feel Like an Italian Vacation
Featuring The Gallinari Family from Pasta Pasta Pasta
Lasagna Bolognese from Pasta Pasta Pasta
As a local, family-focused restaurant, Pasta Pasta Pasta brings a true taste of Italian heritage to Denver's dining scene. Owner Vittorio Gallinari and Chef Mario Petit, who took over the restaurant two years ago, decided the best way to share their love for Florentine flavors to-go is to create a family-style dinner special that's easy to take home and share with your family. Launched this week, the Family Style Dinner special features enough penne, spaghetti (both $44), or lasagna bolognese ($49) or vegetarian ($48) to feed a crew of up to six people.
Until you're able to come back and dine in the restaurant, Gallinari, Petit and Vittorio's son Federico are here to help your family enjoy Italian food and culture from the comfort of home. Their tips on drink and music pairings, plus a few Italian phrases to celebrate your meal, will help make your dinner table feel a little more like an Italian café.
Pasta Pasta Pasta won Best Table Décor at last year's Cherry Creek North Food & Wine. From left: Cherry Creek North BID staff Blake Meikle and Jenny Starkey, Pasta Pasta Pasta's Federico Gallinari and Chef Mario Petit.
Wine and Drinks
If you're opting for wine with dinner, Federico recommends selecting a chianti, barbera, or morellino di scansano.
"These are great choices to pair with lasagna and pasta alla bolognese because they have a good body that go well with the dishes that we offer, since there is meat sauce in them," he says.
The Vineyard Wine Shop is a great locally-owned wine provider to walk you through the best pairing for each dish. You can browse online and order curbside pick-up, or contact them directly for their expert assistance.
For an Italian-inspired non-alcoholic option, Pasta Pasta Pasta offers San Pellegrino in a variety of flavors. Aranciata Rosa (blood orange) is delicious on it's own, or can be mixed with vodka and fresh citrus for an easy and refreshing cocktail.
Set the mood with an inspiring playlist. Federico is a fan of Italian artists Andrea Bocelli, Giorgia and Jovanotti, or you can opt for a mix of Italian-American and traditional Italian songs.
You might not be able to hop on a flight to Milan anytime soon, but these simple Italian phrases are fun to try around the dinner table. What better opportunity to perfect your pronunciation and learn something new?
Start off the evening: Buon Appetito (Enjoy your meal.)
Applaud the chef: Buonissimo (Very tasty!)
Toast the table: Alla Salute (Cheers to your health!)
Pasta Pasta Pasta's family-style dinners come with salad, Italian baguette and sauce of your choice. Order to-go, delivery or curbside pick-up here.
3 Steps to Building the Perfect Baja Taco Bar
Featuring Christina Martin from SOL MEXICAN COCINA
When most of us think Mexican food, it's smothered burritos and enchiladas. But being at home more means needing to satisfy your Mexican cravings with a little less "smother" with the perfect handheld meal the entire family can get behind: tacos!
Providing tons of toppings lets everyone customize their taco. (Or just get a SOL Mexican Cocina Street Taco 6-Pack, and everyone is happy!)
Christina Martin, general manager at SOL Mexican Cocina, has a few tried-and-true tips to create traditional Mexican tacos at home that are full of flavor.
1. Pick a protein. While most tacos start with braised meats like carne asada (beef), carnitas (pork) or pollo (chicken), you can easily make them vegetarian with beans or roasted veggies.
2. Place your toppings. Martin recommends putting all your favorite taco fixings in bowls around the table. Her favorites are pico de gallo, diced onions, hot sauce, sliced limes, and cotija or ranchero cheese.
3. Serve with warm corn tortillas. No truer words have been spoken: "Like a good dough makes for an awesome pizza pie, a great tortilla makes for a great taco!"
If you don't feel like spending the weekend making fresh tortillas by hand, SOL is willing to do all the work for you. Bring a taste of baja home by ordering take-out, delivery, or curbside pick-up (available by request).
BONUS: Mention this post, and receive $10 off any food order over $35. And don't forget the margaritas!
Support all the Cherry Creek North restaurants offering delivery, to-go and curbside pick-up by ordering a bite from one of your favorites (or try somewhere new) this weekend!