Pro golfer Kerr on the menu
Column by Penny Parker
EDGE restaurant at The Four Seasons Hotel Denver is partnering with Double Cross Vodka to present an intimate dinner on Aug. 7 featuring professional golfer Cristie Kerr, who plays on the U.S. Ladies Professional Golf Association tour.
When not on the course, Kerr swaps her clubs for Cabernet from her own Curvature Wines collection. The evening begins with a reception at 6:30 p.m. in EDGE bar with passed hors d'oeuvres, Double Cross Vodka and Curvature wines. The three-course dinner begins at 7:15 p.m.
Cost is $75 per person, not including tax and gratuity. Reservations: 303-389-3050.
Kerr will be competing for the American team in the Solheim Cup Aug. 16-18 at Colorado Golf Club in Parker. There also will be three pre-tournament practice rounds and other events on Aug. 13-15 at the Colorado course.
Broening, Thompson rejoin forces
Chef John Broening, who gained fame for his two revered Denver restaurants, Denver Brasserie Rouge in The Ice House and at Duo in the Highland neighborhood, is returning to kitchen at Le Grand Bistro & Oyster Bar at 1512 Curtis St. See the full story at www.5280.com/blogs/2013/07/08/breaking-john-broening-heads-le-grand-oyster-bar-bistro.
“We're putting the Brasserie Rouge band back together,” restaurant owner Robert Thompson told Westword. Broening will join Le Grand Bistro & Oyster Bar as executive chef and also as culinary director of Seasoned Development, Thompson's restaurant company.
Thompson owns Le Grand, Punch Bowl Social and the Argyll Gastro Pub concept. He co-opened Brasserie Rouge with Leigh Jones in 2003. Broening, now chef and co-owner of Spuntino and formerly the executive chef of Duo and the late Olivéa, headed up the kitchen originally at Brasserie Rouge. Broening's French cooking skills were not enough to prevent the restaurant closing a year later, though.
Expect lighter fare at Le Grand, Broening says. He notes that Le Grand's offerings will be more seasonal.
Retirement community goes Hollywood
When Elly and Jim Andersen moved to the Wind Crest retirement community five years ago, they didn't move far from their former house in Cherry Hills, because they didn't want to move away from family.
The couple is proud of their family legacy — all their children, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren contribute so much to their lives. But one grandchild in particular is making a splash in the celebrity spotlight. And her work in Hollywood is attracting a new generation of fans and the Highlands Ranch community where she often visits.
AnnaSophia Robb, the 19-year-old actress who has starred in major motion pictures like” Soul Surfer,” “Charlie and the Chocolate Factory,” “Bridge to Terabithia” and “Because of Winn-Dixie” now stars in “The Carrie Diaries.” The weekly television show on The CW is based on the popular HBO series “Sex and the City.” In it, Robb plays teenager Carrie Bradshaw in high school in 1984.
The Andersens love seeing Robb work — they've been on set with her as far away as London — but they love it the most when their granddaughter visits them on the Highlands Ranch campus and spends quality time.
As for Robb, well, she's a huge fan of Wind Crest.
Robb grew up in Colorado not far from where her grandparents lived and was in high school when her grandparents moved to Wind Crest. “My grandpa would pick me up from school two times a week, and I'd hang out with them before I went to kickboxing,” she says.
She appreciates the pool, the hot tub, going to dinners and brunches on campus, and she wishes they sold the cookies in the marketplace store 24/7. She laughs, “I'd get home from school and miss them,” referring to both the cookies and her grandparents.
But the thing Robb says she appreciates most about Wind Crest is how both her grandparents thrive on campus. ”It's just really convenient. They can go to the gym, join clubs, and my grandpa can work on his trains. They have everything they need and want at their fingertips,” Robb says.
The model railroad club is one of the most appealing things about Wind Crest to Jim; his outdoor train set is a memory that warms his granddaughter's heart, and she's glad he can continue to do what he is so passionate about.
Passionate living runs in the family. While raising her family and helping with her grandchildren, Elly's lifework has been to give of herself and her time to those she loves. She's even kept a treasure chest of all the clippings she can find about Robb for the last 10 years, since she began acting in Because of Winn-Dixie.
Elly recalls a fond memory from the set. Cicely Tyson had forgotten a line, and Robb whispered to the actress, “It's OK, my grandma forgets things, too.” Elly laughs at what she calls a “sort of backhanded compliment.”
“It's neat to look back and see how little she was,” Elly says of her granddaughter. The whole family knew she would be an actress when she was just 2 years old. She was, according to the Andersens, born for the spotlight and with “the prettiest little face.”
Even though their granddaughter lives in New York while working on the show, the Andersens know it won't be long before they see her again.
The Blue Bonnet moves into middle age
The Blue Bonnet Cafe & Lounge on South Broadway is celebrating its 45th year of the Mobell family ownership this month with steals of deals for diners.
It's been 45 years since Arlene and Phil Mobell purchased the long-standing restaurant at 475 S. Broadway, and the popular Mexican eatery has evolved under current owners, the brother and sister team of Gary and Marci Mobell. Many of the Blue Bonnet's staff have logged three decades with the restaurant.
“My sister Marci and I visit with the tables each and every lunch and dinner that we are here, seven days a week,” Gary said. “We love the interaction with the customers and (value) their opinions. My mom was known for this and we carry on her tradition as she calls daily to check in.”
To celebrate the 45th anniversary, the Mobells are offering customers 45-cent bottomless chips and salsa, two happy hour tacos, two happy hour lettuce wraps or Blue Bonnet signature bottled hot sauce for $4.50 each.
Happy hour is from 3 to 6 p.m. Monday through Friday, and from 9 p.m. to close Monday through Saturday. For more information, visit www.bluebonnetrestaurant.com.
New sports sheriff on CBS4
Tom Helmer, former sports broadcaster on Root Sports, is moving over to join the CBS4 news team replacing the departing Gary Miller on Friday and Saturday nights, plus filling in elsewhere as needed.
Miller is taking on play-by-play radio duties in the fall as the voice of the Colorado State University Rams.
For Root Sports, Helmer co-hosted television broadcasts of Colorado Rockies games and covered the University of Denver, University of Colorado and the Colorado High School Activities Association.
He's been recognized for sportscasting with an Associated Press award and two regional Emmys for host of the Rockies postgame report, and host of a franchise segment called “Tom on the Town.”
Helmer also previously served as sports anchor for KXTV in Sacramento, Fox 6 in San Diego and as sports director at WZZM in Grand Rapids, Mich.
For more information, go to www.cbsdenver.com.
10th Castle Rock WineFest returns
Douglas County wine aficionados and anyone in the Castle Rock area on July 20 may want to attend the 10th annual Castle Rock WineFest.
The Grand Tasting of Colorado is from 2 to 8 p.m. at The Grange in the Meadows at 3692 Meadows Blvd. More than two dozen wineries and more than 180 varieties of Colorado wine will be a part of the Castle Rock WineFest.
The event includes tastings, wine seminars, cooking demonstrations, fabulous food trucks, and Denver-based band Waitin' On Ray will perform. The first 2,000 WineFest attendees will receive a free wine bottle tote and wine glass.
For tickets and more information, visit www.CastleRockWineFest.com or call the Castle Rock Chamber at 303-688-4597.
Bravo for Jasinski
I told you earlier that Jennifer Jasinski, chef-owner of Rioja, Bistro Vendome and Euclid Hall, would be competing in Bravo's “Top Chef Masters 5” along with Richard Sandoval, the restaurant mogul who oversees operations in Colorado at Tamayo, Zengo, Al Lado and La Sandias as well as Maya in the Westin in Avon.
Bravo just announced that viewers will be invited and encouraged to vote weekly for their favorite chef team at www.bravotv.com or by text message to determine which team receives a donation to its designated charity.
The total amount that Bravo will donate over the course of the campaign, from July 24 through Sept. 25, will be divided into various amounts each week as designated by the television network.
To vote, tune in to “Top Chef Masters” and follow the on-air instructions. As chef teams are eliminated from the “Top Chef Masters” competition, they will no longer be eligible to compete in the campaign.
You must be 18 or older to submit your vote. Votes must be cast by the authorized account holder of the cell phone from which the vote is made. The limit is 40 votes per person per weekly voting period regardless of the method.
Jasinski has chosen Work Options for Women, a wonderful organization that teaches underprivileged women hospitality industry skills, as her designated charity.
WOW is holding a premiere party from 7 to 10 p.m. on July 24 at Kuni Lexus Greenwood Village, 5150 S. Quebec. Donations are welcome. RSVP at www.topchefmasterspremierparty-es2.eventbrite.com.
In addition to Jasinski's culinary competition, chef Jorel Pierce of Euclid Hall also will be participating in an online battle that has already begun. To see Pierce in action, go to www.bravotv.com/battle.
Washington Redskins quarterback Robert Griffin III married his fiancee, Rebecca Liddicoat (who's from Denver), July 6 in Denver, according to The Denver Post.
Griffin and Liddicoat held their rehearsal dinner at Shanahan's Steakhouse in Denver. Thirty to 40 guests attended the dinner at Redskins coach (and former Broncos coach) Mike Shanahan's steakhouse in the Denver Tech Center.
Griffin reportedly was seen picking up his wedding tuxedo July 5 at the Men's Wearhouse in Cherry Creek.
Other members of the Redskins organization — Shanahan, his son and offensive coordinator Kyle Shanahan, owner Daniel Snyder, General Manager Bruce Allen, starting right tackle Tyler Polumbus and backup quarterback Kirk Cousins — also were seen in Denver.
Also seen around town at the Avett Brothers concert at Red Rocks on July 6: Gov. John Hickenlooper and his estranged wife, Helen Thorpe.
Eavesdropping on Facebook: “You know you are getting old when your sweetie says, `Let's go upstairs and make love,' and you respond `Pick one, I can't do both!' That's why our new home in Arizona is just one floor.”
Penny Parker's “Mile High Life” column gives insights into the best events, restaurants, businesses, parties and people throughout the metro area. Parker also writes for Blacktie-Colorado.com. You can subscribe and read her columns (Monday, Wednesday and Friday) at www.pennyparker.blacktie-colorado.com. Send her Mile High Life column tips and eavesdroppings at firstname.lastname@example.org or at 303-619-5209.