the FEED

A Statement From DQ

Hello Our Dear Friends, There’s just a world of hurt with this COVID-19 virus that came on so fast for all of us. One minute we are filling out March Madness brackets, and the next we are calling off college and professional sports seasons, closing schools and campuses, and turning the lights off at Disney. Shocking is putting it mildly, but it’s exactly what we need to do. Know in your hearts and minds that we at Big Red F Restaurant Group are doing all and everything to create a safe and clean environment (as are all of the restaurants […]


Running a business is hard these days. Razor-thin margins, rising costs, financial challenges at every turn. No one ever held a gun to any entrepreneur’s head and forced them to open their own business—it’s a personal decision made stone cold sober or high as a kite. Bitching and whining about how hard it is is like wishing you hadn’t taken up sky diving as the altimeter is dropping–your choice, your outcome. However, as with most everything, it is getting harder and harder to run a business with a mindset towards doing the right thing. Guests will certainly leap onto a […]

How One CU Professor Uses Mole to Connect With Her Mexican Roots—and the Boulder Community

Centro Mexican Kitchen features Carmen Pacheco-Borden’s delicious moles at a sold-out dinner, plus mole specials for the entire month of March Growing up in Sonora, Mexico, Carmen Pacheco-Borden remembers eating mole—a dish based on a thick, richly flavored sauce—for dinner at least once a month. Like many Mexican families, their mole typically came from a jar. The prepackaged Doña Maria brand was their go-to, meant to offer convenience and ease for busy families. As an adult living in Boulder, Colorado and fixing dinner for her own family, Carmen soon realized that prepackaged mole sauce was anything but convenient. “You always […]

Oui, Oui EEmehrikhan

It was October of 1987, right around the beginning of the third week, when Black Monday occurred: The largest US stock market crash since Black Tuesday in 1929. With President Reagan at the big desk, the DOW on the morning of October 19th was at 2200 points and took a 508 point dump, the largest free-fall in history. That is a universe away from its current comet ride towards the sun. The drop, a 22.6% free fall, would take today’s 28,000 point hayride to $21,672 – still 10x as much as that gut punch in 1987. One month to the […]

Culinary Director Kyle Mendenhall Finds Colorado Connection Through Foraging

  Growing up in California, I always liked the outdoors. But when I combined the outdoors with cooking, it was really two passions coming together. Since I was a teenager, my family has had a cabin in Colorado. Our land is located between Rifle and Grand Junction, perched right at the edge of the incredible Grand Mesa National Forest. It’s the sort of off-the-grid place with no electricity that I try to make it out to every summer with my family. It was at the cabin that I first discovered how much I loved foraging. Finding special ingredients that naturally […]

Farmers Are My Heroes

I’ve never met a farmer who wasn’t the hardest working person I’ve ever met. In the days before skippy chefs said “We are farm-to-table,” it was always farm-to-table when things were growin’. Pickin’ in the morning at a farm and going into work with the goods was called gettin shit to cook tonight on the way into work. The early farmers I knew selling to restaurants had a hard go of it. We were unreliable, our needs changed often and some of us didn’t pay our bills. A farmer would get asked to grow something very specific, which they’d commit […]

Chef She’s Adventures In NYC: Cooking Sustainable Seafood at the James Beard Foundation House

Last week, I had the very exciting opportunity to fly to New York City to cook at the James Beard Foundation house. This wasn’t my first time cooking at the James Beard House—that was way back in 2007 when I did a fall seafood dinner there with then-Jax Fish House chef Hosea Rosenberg. But cooking at the house is always an incredible experience. It’s an actual house in the city, with a teeny-tiny kitchen that’s incredible to cook in. The hoods to the oven are like six feet high, but it’s amazing in every way. I was there to cook […]

It’s Been a Wild Ride

Twenty-Five Years is a Long Time.  It’s a long time to be married, it’s a long time to have a friend, it’s a long time to be in business, and it’s definitely a long time to not wear any pants. It is 1,612 Friday nights and 22,630 staff pre-shifts before service. Hundreds of thousands of phone rings. Millions and millions of guests coming in to relax and restore. We just celebrated our 25th Anniversary at ZOLO Grill last month. So many milestones and boxes checked over that time period.  Almost every restaurant open in Boulder today didn’t exist then – except for […]

Chef Sheila’s Travels: From Sustainable Seafood Advocacy In Washington D.C. to Cooking at the James Beard Gala in Chicago

    May has already been a busy month for me! I was in Washington D.C. last week with three other chefs—Daniele Leoni, Bun Lai, and Sam Monsour—and some of the Monterey Bay Aquarium (MBA) team. I’ve been working with the Monterey Bay as a member of the sustainability focused Blue Ribbon task force for a while now, and I traveled to the capitol with them a couple years ago. This time we were there to present the Portland Pact to members of Congress. The Portland Pact is a document that a group of us chefs, along with the MBA, […]

Sheila off the Hook

  Earlier this month, I had an amazing opportunity to join the first ever Off the Hook dinner at the Newport Aquarium in Kentucky. This “celebration of animals, vegetables, and minerals from the pond to the sea” featured lots of local chefs, plus ten chefs (including yours truly) from the Monterey Bay Aquarium’s Blue Ribbon Task Force. I was joined by Chef Rob Monahan, chef de cuisine at Jax in Boulder, who helped me prep and prepare our course. Often times with out of state events like this, you don’t know what kind of setup you’ll be given to cook […]