Arepas for lunch
Stuffed-to-the-brim Venezuelan sandwich pockets are now selling from Old South Pearl.
Quiero Arepas opened its brick-and-mortar shop over the weekend at 1859 S. Pearl St., Westword was the first to report.
For years, the business has been operating out of Avanti food hall in Highland and from a roaming food truck. All three operations will continue to be active.
The arepas, which are made from cornflour and are naturally gluten-free, come in variations like El Caribe with avocado, smoked salmon, fried plantains, guasacaca (avocado salsa), capers and cheese.
In early 2019, owners Igor and Beckie Panasewicz took over the former home of Makan Malaysian Cafe to open this first brick-and-mortar shop.
1859 S. Pearl St., 720-432-4205; quieroarepas.com; 11 a.m.-9 p.m. daily
A rum bar and an “ice laboratory”
A new rum bar and street food spot both open on Wednesday at 17th and Blake Street.
Rose & Thorn restaurant and its underground speakeasy sister, Double Barrel Club, have taken over the former home of Southern Hospitality in LoDo. They’re going to provide food and drinks from lunch to dinner and on into late nights.
At Rose & Thorn, customers will find “upscale international street food” from South America, Central America and the Caribbean, according to owner Shawn Ellis.
You’ll also notice a separate menu of infused ice cubes to go with your tequila-focused craft cocktails. The cubes are created in an onsite “ice laboratory” and come in flavors like rose petal and black garlic maple.
Downstairs at Double Barrel Club, Cuban-American plates and cocktails will be served from dinner until 2 a.m. There will be a big rum selection to choose from as well as private rum lockers for purchase.
1433 17th St.; roseandthorncollective.com; starting Wednesday from 11 a.m.-3 p.m. for lunch and 3 p.m.-close for dinner at Rose & Thorn, and from 5 p.m.-close at Double Barrel Club
Next-level deli meats
The owner of the LoHi restaurant and butcher Old Major has started his own deli meat business, selling cold cuts, bacon and more around town at various restaurants and supermarkets.
Chef Justin Brunson’s River Bear Meats can be found at Mercantile and Citizen Rail and Marczyk Fine Foods, among other retailers, 5280 reports.
And when Leevers Locavore grocery store opens later this year, at 2630 W. 38th Ave. between Highland and Sunnyside, River Bear will stock the entire meat counter.
Brunson works with ranchers in Minnesota, Iowa, Nebraska and Kansas, he tells 5280, so his final packaged products can be traced to a single animal. They’re processed, brined and smoked from a new facility in north Denver.
“Our meats are made of meat,” reads the slogan on River Bear Meats website.
3821 Steele St., 720-298-3368 (production facility only); riverbearmeats.com for more information and retail locations
Wine festival for the rest of us
A new Denver wine festival debuts this weekend, and it’s geared toward connoisseurs and novices alike.
Vinochromatic organizers hope to replace “the traditionally sophisticated and somewhat intimidating (wine tasting) environment with an approachable, judgment-free experience,” according to a release.
The tasting, which takes place Saturday afternoon and evening at downtown Denver’s CTRL Collective, is put on by Two Parts, a local event promoter.
More: Renovated Rio Grande reopens in Boulder
It promises to pour traditional varietals and blends alongside New World organic, biodynamic and natural wines, all set before a light-art-installation backdrop.
Local restaurants including Dos Santos, White Pie, Bar Helix and The Way Back will hand out paired bites to attendees.
1800 Wazee St.; two sessions from 1-4 p.m. and 7-10 p.m. on Saturday, April 27; $75 for tickets to one session, available at vinochromatic.com
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