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Side Dish

Culinary crumbs and gastronomic gossip

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Good Taste (of Manitou)

Of hedonistic food fundraisers citywide, the annual Taste of Manitou shines as a display of west side talent and commerce. Last Friday's event, benefiting the Manitou Springs Economic Development Council, featured fondue by The Mona Lisa, followed by a creative, four-course dinner prepared by Blue Vervain, Adam's Mountain Caf, Craftwood Inn and also The Cliff House, which hosted the evening.

This year's cuisine theme celebrated Colorado wine and food through the use of local greens, beets, buffalo, bass and peaches, among other things.

Highlights of the evening included gorgeously decorated tables (each sponsored by a different Manitou business, complete with a party favor); the live-auction antics of Manitou Art Theater's Jim Jackson; a Manitou-focused presentation by food writer Claire Walter; and, of course, the food.

My favorite tastes: Blue Vervain's signature beets and goat cheese in honey-thyme-cider sauce; the huckleberry vinaigrette-dressed, loaded salad by Adam's Mountain Caf; and The Cliff House's buffalo drizzled with a chipotle cream sauce.

Plan your attendance next year via tasteofmanitou.com or 685-9741.

For the people, by the people

You may have heard recently that Denver Mayor John Hickenlooper sold off his 40 percent share (between $5 and $10 million) in Wynkoop Holdings Inc., which owns seven Colorado restaurants including Phantom Canyon Brewing Co. in Colorado Springs. You were probably thinking, "Hmmm ... what's this mean for me drinking my Queen's Blonde and shooting a game of pool?"

The answer: nothing.

Wynkoop CEO Lee Driscoll assures that the public won't notice any changes at Phantom or the other businesses, which include Denver's Goosetown Tavern and Wazee Supper Club. Driscoll says the only change affects long-term Wynkoop employees, who may soon be offered the chance to become part of the ownership structure.

Elsewhere in the picnic basket

The 17th anniversary Dinner and Silent Auction to benefit SET Family Medical Clinics with Gov. Bill Ritter as the invited keynote speaker, Saturday, Sept. 15, Cheyenne Mountain Resort, 776-8850, setofcs.org.

The Arthritis Foundation's 15th annual Jewels of the Vine Wine Tasting: Bavarian Nights, Saturday, Sept. 15, Antlers Hilton, 520-5711, blacktie-colorado.com.
Compiled by Matthew Schniper

Send info on new menus, events and food-related news to scene@csindy.com.

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