More RARE Restaurant Highlights!

By Eric Elkins


Can you smell the meat searing already? RARE, The Denver Steak Championships is coming up fast. With chefs and their grills getting ready to take their places around the DCPA’s Galleria and Sculpture Park on August 15, we thought we’d learn about a few more participating restaurants.


Chef Tony Zarlenga from Café Brazil is thrilled about joining in on Rare. He’s looking forward to being part of something bigger. “For me, the sense of community that develops amongst the participating restaurants always brings a welcome energy to the field,” he says.


And he’s ready to throw down in the competition, where he’s up against some major player in Denver.


“We are a small restaurant but we have a good outline and a good in-house crew,” he says. “With almost a full week of staged preparations at the restaurant before the event, our detail for this entry is very labor-intensive.”


It starts with the cut of meat. “The shoulder tender requires extensive and careful handling to extract the most tender cuts. The volume of preparation needed for this event dictates all hands on deck,” Chef Zarlenga says. “We will be featuring a cold-smoked blackened shoulder tender of beef, alongside fire-roasted gypsy chiles and a fresh herb chimichurri salsa.”


Meanwhile, Chris Maness, General Manager at Del Frisco’s Double Eagle Steakhouse says his team is excited to get in on the fun and share what makes steaks special.


“It’s a fantastic chance for the public to experience that there are so many incredible ways to prepare and present steak,” he says. “The creativity of today’s steakhouse is just mind-blowing!” 


Maness wouldn’t share details about Del Frisco’s approach, saying, “Come and see!”


“Being part of RARE gives us the opportunity to be part of a festival that is specific to our concept at EDGE,” says Simon Purvis, Executive Chef at Four Seasons Hotel Denver. “As a progressive American steakhouse, we will be able to show off what we do best and spend so much time researching and perfecting...steak.” 

And what can we expect from Chef Purvis? “My approach to cooking is to let the ingredients stand out for themselves,” he says. “We are preparing a wagyu striploin with pickled porcini mushrooms, stone ground mustard hollandaise, and tarragon oil.” 


These three restaurants will join more than 20 competitors next Thursday evening, vying for top prizes in both “traditional” (with sides) and “creative” categories. They’ll cook up their perfect bites for participants to enjoy (and vote on), and each steak preparation will be paired with a cocktail designed to complement the dish. Steaks are provided by Meyer Natural Angus and Laura's Lean, so you know the cuts will be perfect. If you’re there, you’ll get the chance to try the magical concoctions of every competitor — unlimited steak! And help judge whose steaks deserve special recognition. 


But RARE is more than just a steak-eating festival. With live music from the electric string quartet Spinphony, liquor sampling from local and national distilleries, and other festivities, this will be THE summer blowout you’ve been waiting for.


Join DiningOut Events in partnership with Stella Artois and benefitting The Denver Health Foundation on August 15, starting at 6pm. Tickets are selling quickly, and the price increases as each level is sold out. Buy yours today, and get your chompers ready!

Jeff Suskin