Kombucha, Bamboo Bicycles, Juicing, oh my! – BambuCycles

 

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Check out BambuCycles in the Highlands – stop in and slam a green one for us, Credit: Kirsten Ebey, Mar 2014

Healthy, scrumptious things to consume and cool bicycles are two things that Denverites go bananas over; it’s not hard to see why Denver, Boulder, and the Loveland areas made top 10 on a recent study’s slimmest cities! Check out this local business that’s helping us reach such lofty fitness goals – Stop #2 on the March 2014 Denver Dishcrawl, BambuCycles.

 

Using a masticating juicer (that means no blades, my friends) the fruits and veggies juiced by the guys at BambuCycles leave nearly all of the vitamins and nutrients in tact, extracting all of the pulp and fiber; the process uses a slower, crushing and squeezing method than other commonplace juicers. Another cool fact: BambuCycles in LoHi succeeds at extracting about 90% juice instead of the typical juicer’s 60% return. They make our Jack LaLanne juicer look like a joke! Check out the differences between masticating (more expensive) and centrifugal (more common, less expensive) juicers here for an easy run-down on the two.

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BambuCycles doing what they do best! Credit: Kirsten Ebey, Mar 2014

The guys at BambuCycles juiced two, glorious samples for us- one green, and one made of fruits including pineapple, cantaloupe, and watermelon. Ever wondered about how juicing works, or wanted to take advantage of the many health benefits juicing provides? Stop in and chat with Angel and the guys; not only a wealth of knowledge, the staff are happy to assist you with customized juice orders, detoxes, and cleanses.

 

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Bright and full of flavor – The Mexican Salad at BambuCycles. Credit: Kirsten Ebey, Mar 2014

Some of the fruit was saved from juicing and chopped into small salads with a spicy twist (pictured above).

Try a rendition of this vibrant, flavorful melon salad:

  • Take your favorite melons (cantaloupe, watermelon, etc), and chop into 1” chunks – we like to fill a standard dinner-bowl full of the fruit to split between two people.
  • Drizzle lemon juice (to taste). We prefer a TON of lemon juice simply because the tangy and sweet combination of the lemon juice and the fruit is incredible.
  • Dust some cayenne (we prefer) or chili pepper throughout the salad – be careful! (also, to taste)
  • Sea Salt (to taste).
  • Mix the fruit, lemon juice, salt, and cayenne / chili pepper together, making sure each piece of fruit gets this crazy combination of ingredients for the best variety of flavors in every bite. Seriously, it’s like a party in your mouth.

 

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Another great experience provided on this Dishcrawl stop? Kombucha on tap! If you’re not familiar with Kombucha Tea, let us explain: Happy Leaf is a well known Kombucha producer, pulling from multiple types of tea in their brewing: green, white, and black. Benefits of Kombucha per The Food Renegade:

#1. DETOX!

 

#2. Helps with those pesky joints

 

#3. Digestion & Gut Health

 

#4. Boosts the Immune System

 

Check out The Food Renegade for more great info on Kombucha.

 

 

BambuCycles offer a stylish ride that stands out in a crowd. Not only are they cool looking, but they also provide natural shock absorption that simply can’t be replicated by other machined bikes. Stop in and check out these sweet rides!

 

Alright, alright… juicing, healthy & delicious snacks, Kombucha, AND bamboo bikes? Does BambuCycles NOT do anything awesome?

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Annelise, enjoying some juice and Bamboo Bikes. Photo Credit: Kirsten Ebey, Mar 2014

The answer is obviously no. They offer some serious benefits to the LoHi community, and definitely have a blast doing it. We look forward to stopping in again soon and learning more about their interesting business.

 

 

 

Denver Dishcrawl Stop 1: LoHi Steak Bar, A Gathering Place

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Check out the gathering space provided in the private room of LoHi Steak Bar! Click on the pic to be re-directed to the LoHi Steak Bar’s website to check out their menu, specials, and events going on. Photo Credit: Kirsten Ebey, Mar 2014

 

A gathering place, LoHi Steak Bar is centrally located on 32nd Ave & Tejon St. – right in the middle of all the LoHi (Lower Highlands Denver, for you newbies) action.

With an easy locale, a welcoming atmosphere, and a killer restaurant and bar menu, it’s easy to see why LoHi Steak Bar is an easy choice in LoHi.

The first stop on our Denver Dishcrawl, LoHi Steak Bar, accommodated our vast group in a private dining area. With name tags on our shirts signaling vegetarian or otherwise, dishes composed of their specialties were placed before us.

On other organized  “crawls”, it’s not uncommon to receive a dish or two crammed onto one, crowded plate; it’s also not uncommon to receive a well-versed speech regarding said crowded dish from some trainee who barely knows the joint.

LoHi sent out their best dishes and friendly, intelligent staff to go over the SEVERAL dishes they created and disbursed. Details of local ingredients and other facts of each dish were provided in advance of each plate devouring.

 

Check out the deliciousness LoHi Steak Bar prepared for the Crawl: 

First, we were provided button mushrooms stuffed with Polidori Sausage (a local Colorado company!). Lemon was provided to be squeezed over the mushrooms, adding an incredibly tangy flavor to the hearty plate. Well done, LoHi… well done. Also pictured is a fantastic Moscow Mule in the proper, copper mug. Just a friendly, DenverSpeax reminder – if it doesn’t come in a copper mug, it’s not real. Write that down.

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We have a weakness for Moscow Mules – it’s true… And, stuffed mushrooms? Let’s just call this photo “Heaven”. Photo Credit: Kirsten Ebey, Mar 2014

 

Next, we’re presented with “not your average” Hummus PlateLoHi uses fresh ingredients to concoct a thick, creamy Hummus with olives and red pepper. DenverSpeax feels there’s a fine art in creating your own house Hummus, especially when it tastes as great as their’s (and when you’ve tried countless times at home, each ending in failure…)! Great starter for your table of friends.

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LoHi Steak Bar’s Homemade Hummus. Click on the photo to check out this, and other, menu items. Photo Credit: Kirsten Ebey, Mar 2014

Here we go – the pride and joy of Stop #1 at LoHi Steak Bar – the vegetarian Portobello Sandwich (made especially for the Dishcrawl) and the House Ground Chuck Hamburger. Both were exceptionally prepared: juicy, fully dressed, and flavorful. There wasn’t the slightest hint of stuffy or dull – just two classics that delivered nothing short of satisfaction. Oh! Their seasoned, crispy House Frites were fantastic as well, and served as a welcomed and complimenting, over-indulgent side.

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Mmmm…..portobello sandwich. How we love thee! Photo Credit: Kirsten Ebey, Mar 2014

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For all of the carnivores out there, this one’s for you. Photo Credit: Kirsten Ebey, Mar 2014

As if all of this weren’t enough, LoHi went ahead and dished out creamy, delicious Cheesecake as well! Sorry, this went too fast for the camera to keep up – our sincere apologies.

Please keep in mind that this was only Stop #1 of 4 on the Denver Dishcrawl, folks. We understand that at this time you must REALLY be kicking yourself for not attending. We get it, and luckily there are more Dishcrawls coming up in Denver. Make sure you stop by the Dishcrawl site to check out the next events, and secure you & your friends’ spots. Even though we’re only one stop in to this magical, dish crawl blogging journey, I’m sure you’re understanding the great value and experience Dishcrawl.com is prepared to provide us all.

Not only does Dishcrawl bring us together within our beloved Denver community, it introduces us to great gathering spots, like LoHi Steak Bar. I think Maggie said it best when describing our first stop as a “non-stuffy” place; we agree that LoHi Steak Bar is perfect for relaxing and hanging out with those who mean the most. Check out their events, specials, and menus on their site. Also, make sure you invite us to your food fest – it hasn’t even been a week, but we’re ready for more mushrooms, burgers, and frites!

 

DenverSpeax First Dishcrawl: Denver

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Annelise, our newest writer for DenverSpeax standing next to some impressive, and exclusive, bamboo bikes at our second stop on the Dishcrawl. Photo Credit: Kirsten Ebey, Mar 2014

Last Wednesday, Annelise and I (Kirsten) went on a foodie adventure via Dishcrawl Denver. We visited four, happening spots that each displayed the true meaning of communal and friendly gathering, while also providing a flexible and fun environment to try their specialty dishes. Let’s be honest – it was a foodie’s paradise.

From portobello sandwiches to salted, oreo ice cream – we indulged in much of what LoHi has to offer in the arena of “good eats”… in only a few hours’ time. We also got to meet a ton of new friends from various industries, all calling themselves “foodies” as well! Food + New Friends = Can’t Go Wrong.

Maggie, our Dishcrawl ambassador, did a fantastic job of highlighting not only the specialties, but also the contributions to the community of each stop. We mowwed down on meat and vegetarian dishes alike, and are proud to bring you the low down on all that is good in LoHi in these next few features.

Stay tuned for our upcoming, exclusive features on each stop of the Denver Dishcrawl in LoHi. Not only did we find new mouth-watering eats, but also small businesses that are strengthening our Denver community in very unique way.

Make sure you check out Dishcrawl and pencil in the Denver dates on your calendar. With the combination of great food, fun, and new friends, it’s just silly not to be there.

Denver Dishcrawl in LoHi – Wednesday, Mar 19th, 2014

Denver Dishcrawl in Lohi – Wednesday, Mar 19th, 2014

Go ahead and mark your calendars for an upcoming cool event put on by Dishcrawl.com; Denverspeax will be there, getting a better understanding of the community, local happenings, and… well, eating, of course! This event, beginning at approximately 7 pm (meeting place provided upon ticket purchase) will take us on a tour to 3 eateries in the Lohi (the lower highlands) area – what a better way to get to know a few fun places to eat and hang with new friends? The possibility of meeting chefs and other creators is high while we munch on dish crawl creations and surprises! You know you want to go…

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Last summer, a bike ride with an unfortunate pedal issue took us to a cool spot in LoHi. Credit: Kirsten Ebey, Mar 2014

Check out the website and sign up for this Wednesday’s crawl in LoHi. For more information on this great event, contact Maggie, Denver’s Dishcrawl ambassador, email: Maggiek@dishcrawl.com.

Stay tuned for our write-up on on this cool experience – hope to see you there! We love guest features 🙂

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Exploring the Highlands – Seafood Landing

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Seafood Landing has a great selection of seafood, and is located right in the heart of the Highlands on 32nd Ave. Credit: Kirsten Ebey, Feb 2014

Remember a few months back when we explored The Highlands and visited places like Vert Beauty & The Matador? We also visited this fantastic seafood shop located at 3457 W. 32nd Ave called Seafood Landing. Open since 1974, the staff over at Seafood Landing really know their stuff, and carry an incredible selection. With the help of Seafood Landing, we can now make a May 2014 Crawfish Boil actually happen right here in DENVER!

When speaking with the staff, we learned that the original owners of Seafood Landing actually brought seafood to Colorado about 25 years ago – we’d say that’s quite the incredible feat, and deserves to be recognized.

Seafood Landing not only sells a great variety, they also have spices, cookbooks, and other novelties to help you do it right – this is definitely a plus! Not sure what spice or recipe to follow for your purchase? Ask them! They’re happy to help make your experience enjoyable in any way possible.

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We are big fans of the spices on display in this fisheye pic! Check out their marinades and spices to keep your seafood delicious and exciting. Credit: Kirsten Ebey, Feb 2014

The Omega-3 found in fish oil is fantastic for your health! Looking to lower blood pressure and help out your heart? Fish! Trying to figure out a way to burn fat faster? Pick a day or two of the week and eat fish instead of red meat as your protein. The benefits are plenty – good thing we have Seafood Landing to help us out! Stop in and say hi – check them out and support local business that supports your health.

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Exploring the Highlands – Vert Beauty

Denver, Colorado – a mecca for healthy rehabilitation for many individuals, it’s hard NOT to run into a store providing all-natural alternatives for food, housewares, cleaning, and medicinal products. It’s strange to think that cosmetics wouldn’t be a common part of that list, seeing as our skin is our biggest organ. We’re so used to focusing on what we put into our bodies that what we put on our bodies is an afterthought. Luckily, Vert Beauty has moved into town to change all of that.

Opening its doors December 1, 2013, on 32nd Ave in the Highlands, Vert (pronounced “ver”) Beauty is the only location we have found that focuses on natural and organic beauty products in Denver, Colorado. Now, we don’t want to throw you off with the words “cosmetics” and “beauty products” because when we visited last Friday, we found products for any age and gender. Vert Beauty also supports multiple lines of product, making it easy for everyone to find something they like. Additionally, if there’s not a fragrance that tickles your fancy, create your own at their fragrance-bar located near the rear of the shop.

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Inside the Vert Beauty store – Steve takes a look at what they have to offer in their multiple lines of products. To check out the lines offered at Vert beauty, click on the picture to be taken to their website. Credit: Kirsten Ebey, Dec 2013

The mission of Vert is to bring out your natural beauty utilizing natural products. Not only do they provide the goods, they also render services in application for special occasions, “just because”, or other consultation. Make sure to “Like” Vert Beauty on Facebook so you’re in the know on any special offers and discounts.

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Beautiful shop, friendly and helpful staff – Vert Beauty. Click on the picture to visit their Facebook page. Make sure you show your support and “Like” ’em!

If you’re looking for more information regarding natural and organic beauty products, here are a few of the sites we found helpful:

The Importance of Natural Products in the Age of Modern Cosmetics

A blog post from August 2013, this entry from the blog “Body Mind Beauty Health” provides some great insight regarding natural and organic products.

At-Home Spa Treatments: Relax Without Having To Pay The Bill

This article provides a list of natural ingredients you can pick up at the grocery store, and their multi-uses.

Ten Best Natural Beauty Products (per Totalbeauty.com, 2012)

Total Beauty provides unbiased reviews of 10 of their favorite natural products of 2012, some of which you can find locally at Vert Beauty.

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Exploring the Highlands – The Matador

The Highlands of Denver is a place we haven’t ventured to very much as of yet; but last Friday, we changed that! Denverspeax decided it was time to go on our first, dedicated Highlands adventure. This is where we found a quaint, down-to-Earth part of town chocked full of thriving, small businesses. Our first stop was for lunch at The Matador, located at 32nd Ave in the Highlands.

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Warm and Inviting, the Matador in the Highlands. Fisheye lens. Credit: Kirsten Ebey, Dec 2013

The Matador was one of the places we visited, and, boy, we’re glad we did! Like we were regulars, the bartender greeted us immediately as we walked in. Sitting at the bar, he helped us with drinks, suggested chips and salsa for a starter, and grabbed menus for us to peruse as soon as we sat down.

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Homemade chips and salsa at Matador. Credit: Kirsten Ebey, Dec 2013

In addition to the appetizer, Steven and I purchased a Carnitas Taco Plate to split; the meal included two tacos on flour tortillas with shredded pork, shredded romaine, garlic sour cream, and Guajillo chili sauce along with large portions of black beans, rice, and spicy pico de gallo for added spice and flavor. We were told that their tortillas are one of the only products that are not made in house, from scratch.

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Carnitas taco plate from the Matador – check out other mouth-watering, Tex-Mex cuisine by clicking on the picture above to be taken to their menu! Credit: Kirsten Ebey, Dec 2013.

True to the Tex-Mex style of cuisine, both American and Mexican influence is present within their Carnitas. The burst of garlic in the sour cream compliments the sweet and tangy shredded pork; the chili sauce grouped with the pico adds that Mexican kick, welcoming a cold, limed and salted Pacifico on draft. Steve and I split the above plate, and were completely stuffed. We cleared the entire thing, and honestly, could have stopped there…but we found ceviche listed in the appetizers section of the menu. Please note, if ceviche is on the menu, we will order it. We gravitate to ceviche, and have to try any and everyone’s!

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Delicious ceviche by Matador. Click on the picture to be brought to their menu! Credit: Kirsten Ebey, Dec 2013

The ingredients are so incredibly fresh, and grouped with the saltiness of the homemade chips makes for a fantastic pairing. We finished every tart, chunky bite while draining another bowl of chips.

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Check out the tequila bar – there are so many different premium bottles! Credit: Kirsten Ebey, Dec 2013.

Aside from great food, Matador offers a large variety of tequilas. Many of which are on display behind the bar, reflecting light from the sunshine outside. Sounds like a place for tequila connoisseurs, carrying over 120 superior tequilas.

Be sure to stop by and check the Matador. Whether you’re looking for a snack, a full meal, a tequila sampler, or just grabbing a beer in the neighborhood, The Matador will satisfy your craving. Check them out on Facebook to learn more.

Qdoba Mexican Grill – Helping the Home State

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Stop in at your local Colorado Qdoba today only to donate to the Colorado Flood relief fund, and as a “thank you”, they’ll provide you with a coupon for free chips and three-cheese queso for your next visit. Check out the picture posted, and stop on in. Qdoba is matching the donations up to $20,000 – how awesome is that?! Come help out those that have lost so much. See you there!

For All You Bikers Out There – Strava

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Screenshot of the “Explore” tab in my Strava account. Click on the picture to be brought to their website to check it out. Credit: Strava website, July 2013

A friend at work told me about this free app for my iphone (works for droids as well) called “Strava“. So far, I’ve learned that you can set goals and challenges for yourself, keep track of your progress with your phone / laptop, and find other rides that Strava members have mapped out. Today, a few of us are going for a bikeride from 17th & Colorado to REI in the Highlands. I’m totally going to record my ride using the Strava app and check it out for you guys! I’m sure it isn’t the most sophisticated, incredibly accurate bicycling app, but honestly – that’s not what I’m looking for. Just something to help me with tracking my progress. 

In a town like Denver, you get hooked on exercise like bike riding, and I’d really like to see if this app motivates me, and helps me get back into shape. I’ll let you all know how it works! 

If anyone has used the app and has some tips or comments, we’d love to hear!