When I first decided I wanted to be a food writer it was because of my love of food. Whether it be McDonalds, airplane food, or a five star restaurant I had a simple respect for all food. I hate to admit it but I am starting to become more picky. I find myself eating at restaurants being disappointed or thinking to myself I could have made this better. I really hate that because I feel like I have lost a part of my food innocence. Now I’m older more mature and experienced with my food trying’s and I just can’t have the same respect for all foods. It’s almost like being young and liking a boy for the first time. When you are young you’ll put up with anything, bad kisser who drools on you, someone who never calls; you get where I am going but now I have standards. Don’t worry I still love airplane food. With that said Acorn brought me back to my food youth. If you are looking for the best dinner in Denver you have to eat at Acorn. Last Thursday my sister took my brother-in-law to Acorn for his birthday dinner and I got to tag along. It was incredible.
I was blown away. My taste buds were wowed it was that good. Let me paint you a little picture of how our meal went. It was like we ate all over the world. We ordered six small plates then one large plate. After a MOMO RiNo cocktail got me going we began with the crispy egg and applewood smoke bacon salad. It was covered in shaved cheese which had a smoky flavor to it. Next came the ricotta gnudi. It was a more dense pillow like dumpling with the most light wild mushroom sauce. It was light then heavy then light again. Your mind was blown with every bite. Then we had the tomato braised meatballs, the lamb swarma, that had a tzatziki sauce that made me feel like I was back in Greece, and we finished out meat round with the oak smoked duck breast. Just when we thought we were full the Nantucket bay scallop crudo “new style” was put on our table. Raw scallops chopped up and topped with brown butter, chives, and radish. They were so sweet and succulent and so refreshing. As soon as you would swallow, you would immediately need another bite to get that flavor and gentle texture back in your mouth.
We ordered the tender belly pork porterhouse for our large plate and it was just as tasty as the rest. It was surrounded by Yukon gold potatoes, yellow foot mushrooms and tons of shishito peppers.
(I apologize for any blurry pictures, it was too good to take the time to focus the camera)
Dinner ended with a butterscotch pudding as a suggestion by our waiter. Our waiter was just as amazing. Not pretentious but very real and of course knowledgeable and was able to give real suggestions.
I don’t have one bad thing to say. If you are hungry go to Acorn now.
My mom turned 60 on November 29th of last year. My sister and I brought her out to Denver to stay with us for a weekend to celebrate this grand birthday. With December being busy and the New Year sneaking up on me my mom’s birthday post somehow got pushed aside. But alas it gets the glory it deserves. I of course had to make a dessert and this time I picked cream puffs. It is a recipe I’ve made before, which I try to avoid and get creative, but I knew it was a favorite of my moms. If you want to impress a crowd with a recipe that took you no time and barely any ingredients make these. Seriously look at how fancy these look.
For the filling I just whipped up some cream and then melted dark chocolate chips for the drizzle.
This was what we had for our in-home birthday celebration but for our go out meal we went to Old Major. We had the winter squash soup, the squid, the ham and biscuits, smoked pork shank carbonara, the nose to tail plate, the cheesy anson mills grits, and the pork fat fries. I can barely breath just thinking about all this food. Everything was devine. The squash soup had so much flavor your taste buds screamed for more. The biscuits were light and fluffy in the ham and in biscuits and the cream eggy flavor was so rich in the carbonara. The nose to tail plate was like a treasure hunt and almost an experiment as we sat there urging each one of us to try the different kinds of meats.
We almost didn’t order the side of grits and boy oh boy I am glad we did. With out a doubt these were the best grits I have ever tasted. I am a midwest girl so that might not say much but I did live in South Carolina and tried all kinds of grits down there and the grits from Old Major are the big league. You took a bite and tasted the butter and felt the bits of grit texture and your month waits for the familiar heavy feeling that grits haveto come but wait it never does. These grits were like eating a pillow, or a cloud. Just amazing. Oh and I almost forgot about the pretzel bread and butter; so good.
The grits weren’t the only thing on the menu that was shockingly good but also the orange spice sorbet. We were so full we didn’t want to get anything heavy so my mom just ordered the sorbet to get just get “something.” It was incredible. Sweet, tart citrus flavor with an amazing sorbet crystallized texture.